Wednesday, 17 October 2012
"The Igbos Are People Who’d Undergone Genocide, And Who Felt Completely Rejected By The Rest Of The Community" - Wole Soyinka
Words below were the response of Professor Wole Soyina During an interview with a Telegraph UK reporter when he was asked of his opinion about the Biafran war and how he was able to overcome solitary confinement for during the war.
"Writing in certain environments carries with it an occupational risk. When I was imprisoned, without trial, it was as a result of a position I took as a citizen. Of course I used my weapon, which
was writing, to express my disapproval of the [Biafran] civil war into which we were about to enter. These were people who’d been abused, who’d undergone genocide, and who felt completely rejected by the rest of the community, and therefore decided to break away and form a nation of its own. Unfortunately, the nature of my imprisonment meant that I couldn’t practise my trade because I was in solitary confinement for 22 months out of the 27, and I was deprived of writing material. So I had to somehow break through the barriers, smuggle in toilet paper, cigarette paper, scribble a few poems, pass messages outside. I was able to undertake exercises to make sure that I emerged from prison intact mentally"