Prior to the civil war that lasted from 1967 to 1970, the Igbo of the Eastern Region were a dominant force in Nigerian politics. Apart from producing the first President, Nnamdi Azikiwe, (although ceremonial), an Igbo man, Nwafor Orizu, was also the President of the Senate. They also held key positions in the private sector and civil service, and dominated commerce across the country.
Fearing Igbo dominance, Premier of the Northern Region, Sir Ahmadu Bello, told the media that he introduced a ‘northernisation policy’ to give northerners the right of first refusal over any government job in the north.
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