Business professor Dr. Chinyere Egbe shares a personal analysis of the Nigeria-Biafra war in his latest book, Elephants, the Grass, and a Teacher: Recollections and Reflections on the Nigeria / Biafra War, published by Anew Press.
The book’s title represents the groups that shaped his experience during that time. The elephants represent the privileged, the grass the masses, and the teacher represents his father, a celebrated teacher, who, both by his presence and even his absence, saved and shielded his family from annihilation. In the book, Egbe shares the moment his family narrowly escaped being killed.
“After my siblings and my mother were tied up to be executed by Nigerian soldiers in early May in 1969, one of the soldiers discovered a photograph in which my dad was pictured with the very battalion commander who had sent them to go and arrest the entire family,” said Egbe. “Moreover, one of the division commanders in the war was also in that same picture.”
The Nigeria/Biafran War, which began in 1967 and ended in 1970, began following the attempted secession of the southeastern provinces of Nigeria. The book challenges decision-makers on both sides of the conflict to view the choices made during the war through the lens of their opponent.