The case for Oduduwa and Arewa Republic (s) is no better than Biafra’s case. The one advantage both have over Biafra is their possession of natural borders. However, nations are not built by border possession alone. It takes more – like who among the Ijebus, Egbas, Ekiti, Oyo, Ilorin… will lead? Where will the capital city be located? As it is today, the typical Lagosian considers himself to be superior to his hinterland brothers and his hinterland brothers consider him flaky.
For the North, sadly, extreme religion does not great nations make. Too many examples abound: from the Roman Catholic dominated Latin America to the Islamic nations of the Middle East. Because after the eradication of all the so called non-believers, the surviving believers still need education, jobs, health care and other basics that are currently lacking. Restraining women from coming out hasn’t helped too. How then will the Arewa nation provide these services for itself?
Sadly, this analysis leaves unnamed the ‘over 200 tribal groups’ that are not the main tribes: Ibo, Yoruba or Hausa. It exposes the arrogance of the ‘main tribes’, and their assumptions that a pre -1960 status is ‘re-creatable’. Unfortunately, no Tiv man considers himself Hausa, nor does the Rivers person consider himself Ibo. Also, none of these groups who have now tasted ‘freedom’ will willingly return to ‘bondage’. Why? Each tribal group views the other with suspicion and rightly so. Each tribe seeks only its own to the detriment of others. Yet, there are poor and marginalized people of every tribe.
People have said that the North is unfairly represented in government. Whilst that may be true, let me tell you something my father once told me in frustration. After years of buying NDA’s forms and sending to his home town and he realized that the people were not interested, my father said,
“you can’t win the lottery if you don’t buy tickets”.
How many intelligent people applied for government positions after graduation? We were too interested in the high flying jobs, forgetting that no matter how high we flew, just one bad government policy could bring us down.
If I were to speak from my marriage analogy from this post The Case of Biafra 1,
long before there’s a divorce or a marital breakdown, there’s a communication breakdown. One or both parties stop listening. Regardless of how valid the other persons’ position is, it is ignored often with malicious intent. So if we accept that for years we’ve been ignoring each other, and that now we need to listen, communication might actually be restarted. Let’s not act like a bitter spouse who thinks they are the only ones with a valid point because a bad marriage has no innocent party. Even the seemingly innocent could have done something earlier!
According to some marriage counselors, some of the red flags are: continuously threatening divorce, failure to value the others’ contributions, and failing to see from the perspective of the other party. So when we, ndi igbo
, say we are marginalized what do we really mean? I ask because we more than any other tribe KNOW THIS NATION. I, for example, was born in Kano, schooled in Zaria, and live in Lagos. It is rare to find Northerners or Westerners with Nigerian experience like us. And for all the marginalization by the North, there is nowhere as poor as that region. Yet we’ve kept quiet, thrown our faces in the other direction (which one concern us?), and sent our children to school.
One reason history repeats itself is the failure to study history. Nigeria has been said to be a geographical expression, so too is Biafra, Oduduwa, and the Arewa Republic. To be a great nation, people need to be welded together by strong ideologies, vision and love for one another and the nation. This is currently lacking in every Nigerian region.
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This article was first published on 18th July 2017