At the time there is stern condemnation of the activities of Boko Haram in the north east and the Kaduna killings in the northwest of Nigeria, the Southeast has swallowed the bait set for it by its enemies. O how impatient is this set of people who are dexterously creative but full of acclaimed ‘common sense’. How have the Igbo allowed themselves to undermine the political scheming that has almost given them the presidency of Nigeria – which is actually all they clamour for – come 2023. Why should the Igbo be like the proverbial tortoise who took the challenge of living in the sewage pit (tempting condition) for seven days, only to give up after the sixth and half days? Must we continue bargain for political compensation or relevance through violence in this modern age?
I must say this without fear; it is only President Buhari who can tolerate all these distractions. History holds is clear that if these were to be during the era of former President Obasanjo, the story would have been different. I rate Obasanjo very high in the area of ensuring unity of Nigeria, the supremacy of national constituted authority and the ability of the national security apparatuses. Though that was the new democratic era, who dared Obasanjo’s democracy? Odi, Zaki Biam and the untouchable members of the National Assembly – the saints – had no guts to dare Obasanjo who only applied the ‘stick and carrot’ measure in dealing with the Niger Delta militants because of national huge investments and interests.
Recall that many Nigerian pessimists had planned mass exodus to seek exile in different countries. The Nigerian security operatives had made moves to restrict external movements of this set of people. But surprisingly, President Buhari ordered free movement of any citizen, irrespective of backgrounds. So, why the Igbo have remained with this feeling against Buhari is inexplicable in the modern age where freedom of religion is a global phenomenon.
There are still speculations that the Boko Haram is a creation of both Nigerian and non-Nigerian hands. The byword that a thief does not operate in an area without an insider is relevant. Some critics have claimed that Boko Haram was primarily staged to destroy the North by reducing the population and destabilise its rising economy. It was also claimed that the past government wanted to use it to stage-manage the past general re-elections in its favour.
No wonder, up till today, despite the revelations by the past government that Boko Haram are in the government, no single person has been convicted for the death and destruction of lives of innocent Nigerian citizens and their properties in the northeast.
Before the 1967 civil war that crushed the economic powers of the Igbo in Nigeria, they were lords in all the major cities of Nigeria: Lagos, Port Harcourt, Kano and more. They excelled and still excel without the political leadership they claim is their problem. The progress of a people invariably attracts the envy of others who would plot dangerously for the fall of the prosperous people. Take an instance in a family or a community or any given place; the prosperous have the greatest enemies. Do not mind the fake smile on the faces of human beings. With all these progress and dominance, the Ibo with the ‘common sense’ that is difficult to understand by other humans coexisting with them cheapishly allowed themselves to swallow the first bait. They lost everything by that mistake. But being very hard working people, they regained some of their lost economic strength and relevance within the shortest time.
Now Nnamdi Kanu came to the scene. The Kanu’s IPOB said Nigeria is a zoo and must be destroyed. This is a bad qualification that can be given to a sovereign nation. They declared anybody an enemy who stood against their demand to break up Nigeria. Kanu began to set up Biafra security agencies. Kanu declared that election will not hold in the Southeast zone starting from Anambra State because it belonged to Biafra. These actions were absolutely tantamount to crossing the boundary. There was no limit for Kanu. He disregarded all persuasions from the Igbo leaders: the political, the religious and the traditional alike. He condemned and called them cowards and infidels. Even Kanu’s father and family members were proud of him. Haba! Where are our parental civility and upbringings? Proud of a son who disrespects and insults elders! The whole world saw it all. And Nigeria allowed him to fill his cup by himself. Video clips are there as evidences of the evil plots and activities of Kanu.
Many people do not understand what IPOB really represents. Unlike the Niger Delta militants who, though were not agitating for secession, had a cause and properly utilized the media through one Cynthia Whyte to be heard, the IPOB dangled from agitation for restructuring to the call for referendum to secede from Nigeria. There are several groups countering themselves without distinct direct and clear demand.