Isolationism bane of Ndigbo politics

By Uchenna Nwankwo

 

PRO-Biafra Movements, Ohanaeze and the Future of Nigeria, is a controversial work that will undoubtedly elicit reactions from both admirers and detractors.

The fourteen-chapter book highlights the anti-Igbo policies that revived Igbo separatism in post-civil war Nigeria; the proliferation of neo-Biafran movements, and its possible deleterious consequences for Igbo land; the limits of neo-Biafranism; role and problems of the umbrella Igbo organization, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo; and the need for restructuring Nigeria, and allowing the federating units of the country to control their resources and progress at their own pace.

The book begins with an insightful analysis on the “unjust peace”, and its ramifications that caused the re-emergence of Igbo separatism in the last twenty years. At the end of the civil war, the Igbo ‘embraced Nigeria and scattered all over…Nigeria”, which was a powerful pointer that they had no lingering intent for secession.

But the federal government, especially the Muhammadu Buhari governments (military/civil) and some Nigerians did not reciprocate this Igbo goodwill. As a deliberate policy, series of federal governments discriminated against the Igbo in government programmes, investment and developments.

And the massacre of the Igbo in Northern Nigeria, which was the trigger of earlier Igbo attempted secession, still occurs periodically.

So, just like the unjust peace imposed on post-World War I Germany and its devastating economic effects produced radical political movements, like the Nazi Party, in Germany, the anti-Igbo polices of a series of federal governments and the continued periodic massacre of the Igbo in Northern Nigeria engendered post-civil war Igbo separatist movements.

The first of these neo-Biafra movements was MASSOB, but subsequently MASSOB splintered and a few other neo-Biafran movements sprouted; there are now about five of them. Although the different groups have the same basic goal of secession of the Igbo from Nigeria, their methods and ideologies differ.

The author laments the possibility of an internecine conflict in Igbo land resulting from conflicting interests and ideologies of these different secessionist groups. The author took an incisive view of the current issues of troubling dimension to the Nigerian State – the agitation for self-determination/separatist movements in the East.

He noted that while these movements were initially modelled after Gandhi’s civil disobedience principles, some are becoming more militant and vociferous hence the danger of the national security apparatus to contain the movement by brute force as demonstrated lately as well as the possibility of using the containment of the agitation as a ruse for another pogrom against the Igbo. Nwankwo sees the agitation and even the call for a referendum, which appears to be the main thrust of the strategy of the pro-Biafra movements for Biafra’s resurgence as rather weak and ineffectual.

To the author, the issue is not to prove through a referendum that Ndigbo want to opt out of Nigeria. The issue really is what the attitude of the rest of the country towards current Igbo separatism is. The author appreciates the Igbo desire to have a country of their own, Biafra. However, he realizes that “Biafra as defined by Ojukwu half a century ago is not realizable today. “For one thing, it is not favoured by the so-called Eastern minorities, for whatever reason, and cannot be forced down their throats.”

Accordingly, Nwankwo argues that the solution to the problem is for Ndigbo to abandon the isolationism of old which spelt doom for them in Nigeria. He argues that Ndigbo must try to rebuild the alliances forged by the United Progressives Grand Alliance (UPGA) in the First Republic because what the situation calls for is the mobilisation of a winning majority from the motley of Nigerian groups and ethnicities.

He is happy that Ohanaeze is already working in that direction through its involvement with the move for “handshake across the Niger” being organised by the major socio-cultural associations in Nigeria. He also reminds us that the real problem in Nigeria is the clash between Egalitarianism and Feudalism/Jihadism which has turned Nigeria upside down. And that unless Feudalism/Jihadism is defeated in Nigeria no meaningful change, be it Restructuring or Separatism, can be effected.

In other words, that the burning differences in Nigeria are more ideological than ethnic or religious, and should be tackled as such. In effect, that ethnicity and religion are often used as instruments for the protection of cherished and entrenched interests, say, the feudal culture. In the above regard, it would appear that the author sees the solution not in territorial separatism but in self-determination within the context of one Nigeria, that is, in the aggregation of more and more Nigerians in the fight to defeat feudalism.

To the author, it is the achievement of this goal that will create opportunities for the revamping of the Nigerian state and the concomitant restructuring, return of true federalism and even possible mutual agreement on separatism.

Consequently, the book reads like a double-edged sword. It could become the Handbook or Roadmap for the achievement of Nigeria’s disintegration or the emergence of a brand new Biafra that would be distinct in size and content from Ojukwu’s Biafra. Indeed, the book wittingly or unwittingly presents us with the idea of the only way a new Biafra can be secured! On the other hand, this book could stultify separatism of any hue in Nigeria altogether.

Only time will tell! In the author’s estimation, the choice is for us to make!! And the time to make it is now!!! As things are, it is likely that Atiku Abubakar’s liberal, urbane, refined and peaceful disposition might bring the latter option to the fore. But that is if he wins the 2019 Presidential Election! To the author, the Buhari presidency is the new face of feudalism/Jihadism in Nigeria.

President Muhammadu Buhari, he says, is still dead set against the restructuring of the country despite the fact that he knows that more than 75 per cent of Nigerians are in support, and more importantly, that it is the way to go. Such is the way of the feudalists! “That speaks volumes about Buhari’s confidence in the sustainability of the ‘coalition’ of political forces or caucus he has put together, its queer tricky agenda included. But what happens next will depend on the tenacity of the Opposition and their resolve for restructuring Nigeria.

For me, the first thing to do is to immediately pass the state police bill in the National Assembly. That will create the right atmosphere for tackling the carnage in the Middle Belt, and then the pursuit of the total or complete Restructuring Agenda of the country will come next.”

The book advocates for Ndigbo to have a unified sense of purpose. This will demand the reining in of all pro-Biafran movements. It expects Ohanaeze to spearhead this role, but acknowledges the limitations of the apex Igbo organization.

The book recommends the necessary reforms that will strengthen and reinvigorate Ohanaeze so that it will, among other things, provide the Igbo with unified, collective leadership.

Collective leadership The book ends on a somewhat pessimistic note. If in the upcoming presidential election of February 16, 2019 (postponed till February 23,2019), the Opposition wins, and power is peacefully transferred to it, it will result into restructuring Nigeria; and all will be well with Nigeria.

Disturbingly, President Buhari has repeatedly demonstrated his disregard, and sometimes, disdain for court orders, guidelines on federal character and public opinion.

What if in his derision for an electoral verdict, he refuses to relinquish power to a victorious Opposition or rigs the election ab initio? This will most likely plunge Nigeria into a serious conflict; possibly a civil war and a total collapse of Nigeria. If these happen, Igbo land with its splintered and rudderless leadership will be in dire straits.

There will be confusion everywhere as the governors, a gamut of Igbo socio-cultural organizations and the multiplicity of neo-Biafran movements will all want to assert their authorities and flex their muscles. This scenario is deeply worrisome. Therefore, it is imperative that the reform of Ohanaeze is expedited so that it can give Ndigbo the needed unified leadership, especially in times of national emergencies.

The book is the work of an independent-minded deep thinker with an uncanny insight into the subterranean strides at ethnic hegemony and religious irredentism that have plagued Nigeria from times preceding her independence, the place of the Igbo in Nigeria, and problems of Nigerian unity and politics.

It is an immense contribution on the discourse of the Igbo question, Nigerian unity, ethnic hegemony, and constitutionalism in Nigeria.

It will be a useful companion for journalists, and students and devotees of history, politics and current affairs.

Shawn Solomon Elliot

Shawn Solomon Elliot is an Associate Political Writer and Reporter with Naija Gist and Gossips e-Newspaper. Shawn Solomon Elliot is a NCE graduate in Economics and Social Studies College of Education, Ekiadolor Benin city, Edo state. A Diploma in Computer Science. And also a graduate of Political Science and Public Administration from the University of Benin..... Email:Solomonelliot4real2010@yahoo.com, twitter:@Soloenzo0147, Facebook: Prince Shawn Solomon Elliot

19 thoughts on “Isolationism bane of Ndigbo politics

  • Feb 27, 2019 at 10:12 pm
    Permalink

    some times its a pain in the ass to read what people wrote but this web site is really user genial! .

    Reply
  • Feb 28, 2019 at 9:13 am
    Permalink

    Normally I do not read post on blogs, but I would like to say that this write-up very pressured me to check out and do so! Your writing taste has been amazed me. Thank you, quite great article.

    Reply
  • Feb 28, 2019 at 12:28 pm
    Permalink

    Oakland’s entire offense has been devastated by injuries.Running back Darren McFadden remains sidelined with a sore hamstring, while fullback Marcel Reece has Fjallraven Kanken Sale been limited in practice with a knee injury. David Ausberry, the projected starting tight Wholesale Vans Shoes For Sale end, never played a down in the regular Cheap Shoes Australia Free Shipping season and Seattle Seahawks Apparel Clearance was placed on Cheap Jerseys Store injured reserve in late September.

    Reply
  • Mar 1, 2019 at 12:16 am
    Permalink

    – Further easing expected -Wednesday’s figures were far below the government’s 2014 inflation target of 3. In this kind of cases Business course of action mapping exhibits the missing hyperlinks that may possibly have resulted in slag, misplaced possibilities and missed credits or invoices. And the district authorities pay attention: A lot of their suggestions have been adopted, such as building bike sheds and planting more trees.The increased tourist arrivals, which is by about 18

    Reply
  • Mar 1, 2019 at 11:30 am
    Permalink

    “I see a lack of confidence Wholesale Jerseys China at times and that goes with Kanken Bag Sale UK the lack of success,” he said. “You’re always Air Max 90 Skor trying to do more, but I think our guys are battling. We need some things to happen that would help our confidence. Stitched Arizona Cardinals Jerseys So we’ll keep working Fjallraven Kanken Backpack Cheap to get that done.” ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) 鈥?Knowshon Moreno gave the Denver Broncos one more reason to smile Monday even as he

    Reply
  • Mar 1, 2019 at 5:38 pm
    Permalink

    Campbell was Adidas NMD Shoes Cheap examined on the sideline Cheap Yeezy Shoes For Sale before he was carted to the locker room, his head slumped as he was Benson Mayowa Jersey driven off.In Adidas NMD China Wholesale the first NFL Jerseys China half, Campbell left for one play after aggravating a rib injury.

    Reply
  • Mar 1, 2019 at 9:39 pm
    Permalink

    The Cambridge-educated Jutting pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter in a case that gripped the financial hub. Reasons To Buy
    • Quickly enhance your understanding of "The E-LAND Group"
    • Gain insight into the marketplace and a better understanding of internal and external factors which could impact the industry. There will also be last minute van rental deals on the market with some accommodation companies, especially those people situated around airfields or ot

    Reply
  • Mar 2, 2019 at 11:56 am
    Permalink

    of historic and literary values. Also he said that moves have since been made to start a series of work with contemporary writers,Cheap Shoes For Sale Online, moreover a number of them have since had their work published.He noted that in the past three years in excess of 60 books have been published; something he believes has been taken for granted.“It is a remarkable thing that

    Reply
  • Mar 2, 2019 at 11:53 pm
    Permalink

    Following a 6-10 march to mediocrity Kanken Bag Sale UK that left the franchise spinning its wheels while Andrew Luck and Indianapolis zoomed by in pursuit of AFC Cheap Shoes Nz South power Houston, Tennessee gutted the roster in hopes of Aron Baynes Jersey rebuilding on the fly.The early returns on the 20 new faces 鈥?13 free agents plus seven draft picks Hydro Flask Water Bottle Wholesale 鈥?are promising. They’re also meaningless. For all the good things coach Mike Munchak saw dur

    Reply
  • Mar 3, 2019 at 6:00 pm
    Permalink

    Receiver Julio Jones (knee), linebacker Sean Weatherspoon (knee) and cornerback Asante Samuel (thigh) are listed as Cheap Shoes Wholesale China Free Shipping questionable, too.Free safety Air Force Scontate Online Thomas DeCoud Adidas Stan Smith Clearance (knee) Hydro Flask ?terf?rs?ljare and defensive tackle Peria Jerry (knee) are listed Cheap NFL Jerseys as probable.

    Reply
  • Mar 3, 2019 at 9:39 pm
    Permalink

    MISSING MARSHALL: It’ll be interesting to see how often Marshall is targeted in light of his comments. He had five passes thrown his way and caught four for 30 yards and a touchdown. The Saints were blanketing him, and that Stitched Baltimore Ravens Jerseys created opportunities for Jeffery, who set a franchise mark with 218 yards. So do the Giants double up on Marshall? If they do, does Cutler force some passes to him or look more to another receiver Rams Jersey Super Bowl such as Jeffery? Anot

    Reply
  • Mar 4, 2019 at 3:58 am
    Permalink

    “They have a great quarterback across the way, maybe the best ever. But No. 9 played pretty well today,” Cowboys tight end Jason Witten said. “He created Discount Nike Shoes Online a lot of plays, made a lot Cheap Air Max Online Ireland of throws. Probably the best game I have seen him play in a long time, if not the best.”You want to make plays at the end Cheap Nike NFL Jerseys of the China Jerseys game to win the game,” Witten said. NFL Jerseys Cheap Authentic “That’s the disappointing part be

    Reply
  • Mar 4, 2019 at 1:28 pm
    Permalink

    “Injuries are a part of the NFL and you’ve got Autentic Hockey Jerseys Outlet to deal with them,” Smith said. “Everybody has to deal with them. Our guys understand it’s an opportunity Adidas Shoes Clearance Sale for somebody else David Robinson Jersey to step up. We’ve done it many times already this season. It’s not going to be any different than any other week.”Jones Cheap Nike Shoes Free Shipping leads the NFL with 41 catches and ranks NFL Jerseys Cheap second with 580 yards receiving. He mad

    Reply
  • Mar 5, 2019 at 11:43 am
    Permalink

    Useful info. Lucky me I discovered your web site unintentionally, and I am stunned why this accident didn’t happened earlier! I bookmarked it.

    Reply
  • Mar 11, 2019 at 6:13 pm
    Permalink

    I really wanted to type a brief remark to be able to appreciate you for some of the superb tricks you are placing on this website. My considerable internet research has at the end of the day been rewarded with reasonable ideas to write about with my friends and classmates. I would tell you that many of us readers are very much blessed to be in a fabulous community with very many perfect individuals with interesting guidelines. I feel truly blessed to have encountered the weblog and look forward to plenty of more awesome minutes reading here. Thanks a lot once again for a lot of things.

    Reply
  • Pingback:Google

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *