December 8, 2015 – Northern Youths Send A Message Of Peace To Pro Biafra Agitators “Honour Ojukwu Legacy”
As far as every meaningful and patriotic Nigerian is concerned Biafra is a long forgotten issue. Thus, any attempt to remind us of the ugly past is a mockery of our intellectual existence as well an attrition of the collective patrimony of the Igbo extraction in particular.
In his address at a seminar on No Peace Without Reconciliation, No Progress Without Peace. Titled ‘Democracy and National Interest’ in a paper presentation of March 10, 1998. Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, former leader of the Republic of Biafra stressed the following.
“It is my intention to speak the truth. I consider it my patriotic duty to give to my beloved country the benefit not only of my experience but also of whatever little I have learnt in this university called life.
Whatever I say should be considered in the context of one who strives to teach not as one who strives to lead. Let me stress that after experiencing the futility of war, I am more than ever opposed to violence and to war. I believe, not only, that Nigeria is big enough for all our needs but, further, I believe that we are lucky and blessed to be Nigerians. It is true that none of us ever had the opportunity to choose whether or not to be Nigerian we all found ourselves Nigerians. It is also true that finding ourselves Nigerians, we all wish to find fulfilment, pride and honour in Nigeria. I believe therefore that no Nigerian is more Nigerian than the other.”
With this quote we hope every true Igbos would appreciate the humongous sacrifice and legacy Chief Ojukwu left on the map of peace enrichment in Nigeria. The remorse in his speech clearly shows that he regretted ever embarking on such a wasteful frivolity, given the account of damage suffered at both ends.
It also attest to the fact that development only thrive in the atmosphere of peace. His confidence in the Nigeria system and love for true democracy was further put into test in 2003 and 2007 Presidential Elections respectively when he contested in both occasions. Even though betrayed and rejected by his own immediate constituency, we mean those he laid down his life and fought for as election results later demonstrated, his courage and indelible mark can never be erased from the history book in relation to peace, unity and Nation building.
POLITICAL BIAFRA ON ACCOUNT OF ELECTION DEFEAT:
When PDP and Jonathan led-government was in control no one remembered Biafra, no youth ever raised a placard on why the East-West Road need to be fixed, why the Ogoni Land need to be cleansed, why the second Niger Bridge need to be genuinely built, it is on record that the Transformation Ambassador of Nigeria (TAN) told the whole world that all is well with Nigeria, the rebasing of our economy shows that we are number one in Africa, notable Igbo sons and daughters occupied the prestigious positions at the federal level but all these changed with the emergence of President Muhammadu Buhari less than 7months and much more disturbing is the cry of marginilization that followed suit. However, if rewarding section of a country with Federal appointments would amount to development and transformation of their immediate community, then the Igbo communities under Jonathan would have recorded the highest giant strides in history but this is not always the case as these individuals only think of themselves and rather loot our collective existence to red alert. So heartless that they hardly remembered their people until they are caught in cobwebs of corruption charges, the usual rhetoric of a politician.
SUSTAINING OJUKWU’S LEGACY:
It is unwarranted for any individual or group of persons to refer to Nigeria, the most populous black Nation in the entire universe as zoo simply because he or she is dissatisfied with the ways and manners the Nigeria structure is built upon. In fact this single act is criminal and tantamount to treasonable felony which is punishable under our laws. With every sense of humility the Igbos are the most industrious and hardworking individuals anywhere in the world. Their quest for prosperity and ingenuity cut across every human endeavour and should not by any means relegated to background because one Kalu the founder of Radio Biafra is in detention for his misguided utterance.
This young man in the name of Kalu is rebellious and lacks every moral decency and can never be a true reflection of an average Igbo youth, as we all know the Igbos are respectful, resourceful and successful in whatever circumstance they found themselves. In fact they are the most spread ethnic groups in Nigeria with their business presence every nook and cranny of the country. To an average Igbo, time is money and should not be wasted on frivolity, his belief- system of having the capability of fending for himself without having to wait for government remains his endearing gift that distinguished him.
To many Nigerians, Kalu and his Radio Biafra remains the greatest scam of the highest order as disagreement between MASSOP and IPOB is a clear demonstration that this agitation is nothing but exhibition of frustration, a well-grounded selfish and cruel manifestation of evil agenda on account of God knows what. No body can be Biafra in a true sense of it than the late Ikemba of Nnawi and the Gburugburu of Igbo land himself, the same way no mortal can be more catholic than Pope. It is on this premise we appeal to those protesting for Biafra to eschew violence and shield their sword for peace and rapid development.
The words of elders are words of wisdom but the bastardization of ethic and moral values due to poverty and parental neglect is becoming a major impediment to our peaceful coexistence. Ordinary the elders or Kings are supposed to be revered because they are the custodian of peoples’ culture and value but what do we see here in Nigeria of today? The youths are becoming restive and gives no regard.
Notwithstanding, we still appeal to the youths to toy the line of peace and listen to the words of wisdom since the Ohanaeze, all the South/South and South/East Governors, the entire Senators and House of Representatives and well-spirited individuals from these regions have all kicked against this recent waves of agitation in the land.
Have you ever asked yourself this hard question as to what mission to fulfil on this planet? And if the answer is to become someone’s slave then think- twice because your deserved much more. It is a pity for you to lay down your own life for no just course.
Those inciting violence and hate speeches outside Nigeria are true enemy of Nigeria, you can not possibly seat in your comfort zone and ordered people to ask for war and if truly you have any interest to protect why not come to Nigeria and quietly do that. Ironically, no single politician would ever allow his son or daughter to engage in whatever form of massive gathering, be it chanting solidarity songs, in rallies or protest to drive home whichever demand. Of course our politicians are very smart when it comes to this kind of game, what they usually do is to deploy their ill-gotten wealth to engage the jobless and vulnerable individuals in the society to embark on this deadly mission.
Interestingly, their children are not even here in Nigeria and if by any means you saw any of them around, the best jobs in the land are reserved for them, leaving the qualified hopeless and jobless.
Taking laws into your hand and constituting yourself into nuisance by causing havoc in the land can not be tolerated in whatever standard because Nigeria operates by laws. Whereas, whatever grievance anyone has against this government there are constituting authorities at various levels to handle such matter, starting from Local Government Areas, the State up to the Federal level and this explains the role of our representatives across board.
It is the right of every Nigerian to demand for good governance and accountability from their leaders at all levels but when this rare privilege is ignored or abused only to focusing on federal led- government calls for major concern.
Our dear brothers and sisters of Igbo extraction, peaceful coexistence is the only way out of this temptation since Nigeria is one-indivisible entity because in unity we are like a broom.
THE NEW ORDER:
When it is no longer business as usual there is tendency for resistance to change and this is exactly what we are witnessing with the wave of activism and unending protest in the name of God knows what. The truth of the matter is that since those specialised in act of terrorism, arm robbery, oil bunkery, female and child trafficking, cultism, 419ners to mention these vices are already frustrated by the active security apparatus, fighting back through whichever means becomes inevitable.
CORRUPTION FIGHTING BACK:
Must our politicians always sow the seeds of discord among us?
In terms of corruption the bond between Nigerians across divides is overwhelming. Interestingly the Hausas, Igbos and the Yorubas are more united when looting our collective wealth, except exposed by the EFCC you hardly hear of any disagreement amongst but when a politician failed an election or lost out on the sharing of National cake he or she quickly resort to diabolic means of religious, ethnic, tribal and premodial sentiment in order to seek public sympathy. More than anything else the looters of our treasury would be happier to see this kind of distraction so that government would have little or no time to probe them and with looted fund in their hand they are desperate for any measure to frustrate the government of the day.
Unnecessary heating up of our polity at a time when PMB is meticulously peddling Nigeria on a strong footing with global acceptability in relation to our battered image should be condemned in totality.
However, Peaceful protest as a way of registering one’s discontent is acceptable norm anywhere around the world but here in Nigeria the outcome in most cases are usually bloody because its rule of engagements are strickly not followed and often hijacked by the vandals or the power that be.
If we may asked, who is the greatest looser in all of these? Certainly the youths with their emotional investment. Whilst, we say NO to radicalism! We say NO to gullibility! We say NO to myth! We say NO to stereotype! And yes to peace and unity.
Long live President Muhammadu Buhari (PMB)
Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria
Long live Northern Youths Intellectual-Advocacy Forum (NYIF)
About the author:
ABDUL YAHAYA ORUMA, President, Northern Youths Intellectual-Advocacy Forum (NYIF) [email protected]