BY ROBERT OBIOHA
Concluding part of Bamiduro’s piece and others. Yes, the Igbo have been wronged but the wrong is our mutual fault, it is our mutual responsibility. The Yoruba is not an enemy of the Igbo as I believe the Igbo is not an enemy of the Yoruba. There are many detribalized Igbo as there are many detribalized Yoruba; I am thoroughly de-tribalized.
I have supervised 11 PhD candidates in a foremost Nigerian University but located in Yoruba land; only two are fellow Yoruba; the first and the best is an illustrious Igbo; he is my brother, my friend, my colleague, my benefactor. There are others and I dare confess that it is the Igbo among them that I love and cherish most.
I feel like crying and confused when there is an occasion like this, somebody recalling events to sow seed of animosity between two brothers when we have a common enemy of our faith, our freedom, our common heritage and beliefs and a common enemy that are threats to our essence and our existence.
In sum, these are times for the Igbo to make friends not enemies; to repair and not to destroy bridges, to be tactical and calculating not to be careless and superficial, to be circumspect not to be reckless. That great race has suffered deprivations. I have argued that there should be one more state in the South-East to remove imbalance in our zonal structure; we should have more appointments of men and women of Igbo extraction as heads in critical arms of government and military or paramilitary; there should be greater attention paid to erosion in the South-East.
But the revered Achebe has not allayed the fears of many that the Igbo want power only to avenge perceived wrong, to correct injustices done to their race, to prosecute programmes and policies of exclusion, and probably proceed to the Hague to seek posthumous trial of Awolowo whom they hate and accuse of being the architect of all their woes. Igbo problem has always been the North but they have always found the Yoruba a convenient scapegoat.
This is a stance that would not help anybody, Igbo, Yoruba or even Hausa/Fulani. It is a great achievement that the Igbo could come back from that war to be where they are now in industries, commerce, the economy, etc. It takes a great mind to achieve so much. But the achievement is not only because the Igbo are what they are, a resilient race. It is also due to the cooperation of neighbours particularly the Yoruba.
They should give the neighbour the acknowledgment. Prof. Bayo Bamiduro. Bob Obioha, I salute you for this fine lecture. The truth can never be eclipsed. Whether those deceitful fellows accept it or not, Achebe simply retold the story of the banality exhibited in the bid to exterminate the Igbo race. I was not surprised that a Femi Fani-Kayode would rise in defence of those that committed the war crimes whom Achebe recalled in his account of the war. He is a typical ‘oti mkpu.’ When Obasanjo and Atiku were embroiled in a battle of supremacy, it was the same Femi Fani-Kayode that nominated himself as OBJ’s praise singer, and rained invectives on Atiku.
So nobody should join issues with FFK. As you mentioned in passing, I’m looking forward to the year when the main actors in that war of genocide will face the ICC. The fact remains that as long as the major butchers in that obnoxious war have not deemed it fit to say sorry to the Igbo nation, but rather delude themselves with the mirage that it is all past, the wounds of the war will still remain fresh in the mind of every true Igbo son and daughter. Beam Truth.
Your comment on this issue is commendable. Thanks for your well written treatise. How I wish the Yoruba folks should learn to criticize rationally without insults. It is Chief Achebe’s right to put things as he saw them, more so when he was a major player. Once again big thanks to Mr. Obioha. Emstev. Hello, I just read your piece on Achebe’s book. Your research was in-depth. The truth must be said at all times… genocide against a tribe. Well done. Chris Ike Anyanwu. Good day Mr. Robert, I have just read your write-up entitled, “The heat over Achebe’s war memoir.” It was superb and timely.
Please how do I get the new book and The Trouble with Nigeria by Achebe? 08039535662. Your article published in The Sun of October 19 on Achbe’s new book was fantastic. It is an epic of the matter. ‘Nwa beke.’ Really, for God’s case why the noise from those individuals? One of them even wrote in his reaction, ‘The war has just started.’ What war? Come war they will never go to the front.
I hope he never meant the kind of war I am thinking about. Thank you my friend. A. Inneh, UK Dear Robert, please help by stopping this ‘war’ among the Igbo and Yoruba ethnic nationalities as a result of Prof. Chinua Achebe’s recently published book, There was a Country. For those of us who saw the war, it is sad reminding us what we passed through in Biafra for over three years. My prayer is let us forgive those who offended us and forget the past, then commit the whole thing to the hands of God, who is the judge to do His will.
I pray that elders from the two ethnic groups should come together as they were before politics of divide and rule was introduced to them by the colonial masters. From all indications, the Igbos of today knew where they can stay and sleep with their eyes closed or open. Let there be peace in this country. O.B. Asonta, Orlu, Imo State.
You do yourself a great service when you allow your page to carry such a piece as appeared today (November 2). Odia Ofeimun, Lagos. Robert, I did read your defence of Prof. Chinua Achebe who could have made whatever point he wanted without attempting to humiliate Awolowo. Unlike other people, the Yorubas have leaders and value them. But some people are bent on creating enmity between the Igbos and the Yorubas whose support is clearly needed to make Igbos’ presidential dream a reality. Akinloye Ayinla, Agbado Lagos.
Hi Bob, More grease to your elbow. I read with delight the matured reaction of Prof. Bayo Bamiduro on your article, “The heat over Achebe’s war memoir.” I enjoyed his reaction because he wrote as a matured mind unlike the bolekaja critic and politician, Ebenezer Babatope, who enslaved himself to Abacha when other wise Yorubas rejected the dictator’s government.
Please let the professor remember that the late Gen. J.T.U Aguiyi-Ironsi was in power for only six months for him to have released the imprisoned Chief Obafemi Awolowo. Simeon Olua. Simpson Ventures, National Stadium Complex, Surulere, Lagos. On Jonathan’s prayer project Sir, do the Americans and the West pray? It is clearly an outdated fashion and Nigeria is about the only country that offers prayer as panacea to her multifaceted monstrous problems. Jonathan will get it straight if he frees himself from the gridlock of those obviously deluded spiritual contractors and the numerous political charlatans feeding fat on his naivety.
He should simply start working and stop praying.. Adebayo Ademola, Isashi Lagos. Thanks for your wonderful piece on Jonathan’s one year prayer project. Please give us more things like that. Chief Ehenemba, Warri. God is God. He is neither foreign nor local. He is omni-everything.
He can change everything because all things are His. The heart of the king (leaders) is in His hand. We need serious prayers for Nigeria. Prayers change a lot of things, QED. Iheanyi Obasi. The question the piece asked is important: if regionalism was the best political arrangement for the country, why did the First Republic collapse? The problem is that the bourgeois class does not want the status quo to change so its members must try to confuse the exploited. The way out is not regionalism.
What the exploited should do is to take power so that that they can build a society where no man is oppressed. The bitter truth is that Nigeria is a class society: the rich and the poor. Amos Ejimonye. Isuikwuato, Abia State.Your write-up on regionalism was great.
The mistake Atiku made was to remain Obasanjo’s running mate in his second term bid. If he had stayed behind Ekwueme, he (Atiku) would have been the president now. Unitary government was a product of Gen. Aguiyi-Ironsi regime after the failed Major Chukwuma Kaduna Nzeogwu’s coup.
That was one of the reasons he was toppled by gen. Yakubu Gowon. Yet Gowon created states to avert secession by Eastern Region under Lt.Col Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu. Regional government still remains the best for Nigeria. Rev. Monye J. Gold. I read your article on Atiku and regionalism.
People like Atiku should please excuse us. He had the ample opportunity to bring these lofty ideas to bear on the polity while they held sway. Eight years was enough to actualize these brilliant ideas. Sunny Coco, Isuochi.Sir, with due respect, why didn’t Atiku canvass for this regional autonomy when he was with OBJ especially during their first tenure when he appeared to be more powerful?
Don’t be deceived, politics is a game of deceit. Politics in Nigeria is fraud. Believe them and you will believe anything. 08076449754.Obi, I like the way you write. Tell them and God will teach them a lesson. U.C Newi. Bros, I support your views on regional autonomy because I believe that it will encourage economic integration more than creation of weaker states.
Hammer it well so that it can be endorsed. 08069846048.Congratulations on your excellent and insightful article in the daily Sun of September 14. May God bless you abundantly. J. Agba, Benue State. Top of Form Bottom of Form Top of Form Bottom of Form Top of Form Bottom of Form Top of Form Bottom of Form