Between 1900 and 1914 (when Northern and Southern Nigeria were amalgamated) there had been twenty-one British military expeditions into Igboland.
In 1928 for the first time in their history, Igbo men were made to pay tax – they were a subject people.
This attempt to take over political control of Igboland met with resistance and cultural protest in the early decades of the twentieth century.
A nativistic religious movement sprang up (the ekumeku) which inspired short-lived but feverish messianic enthusiasm.
The rumours that the Igbo women were being assessed for taxation, sparked off the 1929 Aba Riots, a massive revolt of women never encountered before in Igbo history.
The Igbo never gave the colonial masters breathing space.