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Last Updated: Wednesday, 24 October 2007, 09:12 GMT 10:12 UK
Wole Soyinka Returns to Biafra
First broadcast October 2007

Wole Soyinka

During the Biafran war 40 years ago, Wole Soyinka was a high profile campaigner speaking out against the human rights abuses that were spiralling out of control in Nigeria.

It was here that some of his most emotive and haunting poetry was written. In this two-part series, Soyinka is going back to revisit Biafra and to meet again the people he tried to help.

Programme One

 Listen to the programme

Wole Soyinka was thrown into jail without trial for allegedly supporting those who wanted to break up the country. He was imprisoned for 26 months and in solitary confinement for 22 in Lagos's high security prison.

In this programme he retraces his steps on his fateful journey to Enugu, where in 1967 he met the leader of the Biafran separist movement, Odemugwu Ojukwu.

After a reunion with Ojukwu, Soyinka will return to Lagos and the scene of his incarceration, the infamous Kiri Kiri jail.

It is hoped that he will also meet with Yakubu Gowon, the military leader who imprisoned him 40 years ago.

This will be a voyage of reconciliation and hope with Nigeria's Nobel Prize-winning author.

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