• Short Summary

    REPORTERS AND CAMERAMEN THIS WEEK MADE THEIR FIRST VISIT TO UMUAHIA SINCE THE FORMER CAPITAL OF THE BREAKAWAY EASTERN NIGERIAN STATE OF BIAFRA WAS TAKEN BY FEDERAL NIGERIAN FORCES.

  • Description

    REPORTERS AND CAMERAMEN THIS WEEK MADE THEIR FIRST VISIT TO UMUAHIA SINCE THE FORMER CAPITAL OF THE BREAKAWAY EASTERN NIGERIAN STATE OF BIAFRA WAS TAKEN BY FEDERAL NIGERIAN FORCES. MORE THAN TWO WEEKS AFTER UMUAHIA'S CAPTURE, THE CITY WHICH ONCE HAD A REFUGEE-SWOLLEN POPULATION OF SEVERAL HUNDRED THOUSAND IS DESERTED EXCEPT FOR FEDERAL TROOPS AND AN ESTIMATED 60 CIVILIANS.

    THE ROADS ABOUT THE CITY ARE LITTERED WITH WRECKED VEHICLES AND LEADING INTO UMUAHIA IS A BRIDGE WHICH WAS DAMAGED IN THE FIGHTING. NEAR THE TOWN ARE SOME RAILWAY WAGONS SEIZED FROM THE NIGERIAN FEDERAL RAILWAYS AT THE OUTBREAK OF THE WAR.

    UMUAHIA'S QUEEN ELIZABETH HOSPITAL, ONE OF THE BIGGEST IN NIGERIA, LAY DESERTED, WITH A NEWLY-BEGUN EXTENSION TO COPE WITH WAR-WOUNDED ABANDONED AND MEDICINE BOTTLES SCATTERED ON THE GROUND. BEDS AND EQUIPMENT WERE CLEARED AWAY IN THE DAYS OF FLIGHT BEFORE THE CITY FELL.

    THE BREAKAWAY STATE'S "GOLDEN GUINEA" BREWERY WAS ALSO ABANDONED AND CRATES OF BEER WERE PILED ABOUT THE BUILDING.

    FEDERAL TROOPS ARE BILLETED AT THE EVACUATED HILL-TOP HEADQUARTERS OF SECESSIONIST LEADER LIEUTENANT-COLONEL ODUMEGWU OJUKWU, WHOSE TWO UNDERGROUND CONCRETE BUNKERS ARE EMPTY AND DESERTED. ONE OF THE BUNKERS IS EQUIPPED WITH AN OFFICE AND AIR-CONDITIONED LIVING ACCOMMODATIONS.

    ALSO EMPTY WERE THE CITY'S MARKET STALLS. NEARBY WERE A NUMBER OF WRECKED AND ABANDONED CARS.

    THE WHOLE CITY IS IN FEDERAL CONTROL, BUT BY WEDNESDAY (7 MAY), FEDERAL TROOPS HAD PUSHED SOUTH ONLY A FEW HUNDRED YARDS (METRES) PAST THE CITY'S OUTER LIMITS. FROM THE WEST OF THE CITY, REPORTERS WERE TOLD, FEDERAL TROOPS HAVE MOVED BETWEEN TWO AND THREE MILES (THREE AND FOUR KILOMETRES) ALONG THE ROAD TOWARDS ORLU, THE BREAKAWAY STATE'S NEW ADMINISTRATIVE CENTRE.

    THE CITY WAS SAID TO BE QUIET, BUT FEDERAL TROOPS FOUGHT DEFENSIVE ACTIONS AGAINST SECESSIONIST COUNTER-ATTACKS.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA6IW5SFLTXLKJH42NZ0YCMWWVJ
    Media URN:
    VLVA6IW5SFLTXLKJH42NZ0YCMWWVJ
    Group:
    Reuters - Including Visnews
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    08/05/1969
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:01:51:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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