Ndigbo!  Change the narrative of victims’ mentality, By Echefuna’ R G Onyebeadi

Posted by News Express | 14 October 2021 | 431 times

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•Part of Igboland during a recent sit-at-home exercise



True, Ndigbo are endangered species in today’s Nigeria. There is no gainsaying the fact that, Ndigbo of whatever breed, have suffered unimaginable neglect, marginalisation and even exclusion where it mattered most in recent times.

The situation Ndigbo find themselves in today’s Nigeria is pathetic enough; but a cursory look around will also reveal that Ndigbo are not alone in these catalogues of woes. There is hardly any tribe in Nigeria today that is comfortable with the status quo safe, perhaps, only one.

Virtually, all the ethnic nationalities have become separatist agitators based on several inequalities, injustices and unfairness they have continued to experience in virtually all spheres of human endeavour in their own country safe, perhaps, only one, which has arguably continued to reap where they did not sew. But, who is to blame really if not the collective indigenous peoples of Nigeria to which Ndigbo is a prominent part of?

Why continue to wail and lament when you can actually pursue, overtake and recover all that the palmerworms, locusts, cankerworms and caterpillar had illegitimately deprived you?

If we recall the giant strides of Ndigbo in all spheres of human endeavour, from virtually zero level immediately after the “civil” war from 1970 to date, Ndigbo cannot but give glory to God Almighty for His great benevolence.

It has been rationalised that the greatest undoing of Ndigbo ever since - which they have failed, refused and/or neglected to come to terms with is - the seeming inability of the collective Ndigbo to be strategic in all ramifications.

Ndigbo have all it takes to point the way and, indeed, lead Nigeria to become a land where milk and honey flows ceaselessly and effortlessly, but very deficient in strategic positioning in thought and in deed.

Ndigbo have the human capital and tremendous resources in abundance to determine whatever happens in this country Nigeria, but the actual political power continues to elude them for what looks more like the greed of a few, inadequate historical reflections as a precursor to needful actions, nonexistent strategic planning and lack of foresight by those in privileged positions to appropriately cease the moment and chart better course of peace and progress for Ndigbo and the country.

It will be recalled that despite all odds, Onye Igbo became an elected vice-president of Nigeria for more than four years only a few years after the genocide and mass murder called “civil” war.

It is also on record that, another Onye Igbo became a military vice-president of Nigeria briefly during the military junta of General Ibrahim Babangida.

Ever since, it has been an upward movement for Ndigbo safe for political power at the highest level and their coming to terms with the real power game.

Experience has also shown that, the more the obstacles, persecutions, deprivations and such like, the greater the triumph of Ndigbo. But, how Ndigbo Gburugburu have been able to translate their hard-earned triumphs to benefit their own and/or in the overall interest of Ndigbo in particular, and the country in general, is a different ball game altogether.

Isn’t it possible for Ndigbo to turn their present travails and trials into triumph?

Safe for the position of President/Head of Government of the Federation, which was last held briefly in 1966 by Onye Igbo in the person of Maj-Gen Johnson T. U. Aguiyi-Ironsi, is there any prime position in Nigeria today that Onye Igbo has not occupied at some points in time since after the "civil" war?

 Just name it – Vice-president (both elected and appointed), Senate presidents, Speakers of House of Representatives, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Justices up to Supreme Court, one-off Coordinating Minister (a kind of Prime Minister), Ministers of Petroleum, Finance, Police Affairs, National Planning, Energy/Power, Works, Transport, Aviation, Economic Development, Information, Housing, Science and Technology, Labour/Employment and Productivity, just to mention a few, including Inspectors-General of Police, Armed Forces Service Chiefs, Director-General of DSS, Military/Civilian governors and, so on and still counting.

Yet, Ndigbo continues to point at others, safe their own, for their woeful situation.

Make an Igbo person an ordinary Assistant assisting an Assistant Personal Assistant, and pronto! He/she becomes an inaccessible “big man/woman” who must be worshipped even by his/her own siblings, not to talk of others.

Yet, the crocodile tears of Ndigbo are not in want for their self-inflicted injuries. Ndigbo continues to point accusing fingers to the so-called “illiterates and backward people” who knows and understands what real politics and power game is all about for their self-inflicted wounds.

Just imagine what has been playing out in the South-east in recent times: real leadership vacuum has created lawlessness everywhere.

Isn't it the height of insanity for an armless “bloody” civilian to confront armed personnel of government just for a pseudo clap of graveyard bravery?

What sense does it make to start destroying the self-efforts infrastructural facilities in Igbo land, which were facilitated by Ndigbo themselves to which governments at various levels had failed to put in place?

Why continue to kill your own people and destroy your homeland economy just to prove an irrational point to your adversaries that you are angry, and then turn around to start crying of being victims?

What has happened or is happening in Igbo land today that isn't happening even in worst dimensions outside Igbo land for which Ndigbo have failed to err on the side of caution?

Isn't it a man who fights and run away that lives to fight another time?

Isn't it the so-called “weak” persons that point to the graves of the so-called “brave,” “mighty” and “powerful”?

Just imagine the indiscriminate pedestrian-sit-at home order that hurts the very soul of Ndigbo, which is being executed by miscreants and/or some half-baked uninformed educated illiterates?

Ponder over this: Which will hurt the perceived enemies of Ndigbo more - to sit at home in Igbo land and cripple the entire homeland economy of Ndigbo, or to boycott the goods/products/services of their perceived enemies for which the blood/lives of innocent Ndigbo are continually wasted on the streets daily?

Which sit-at-home would have been more effective than that which keeps Ndigbo away from Idumota, Alaba, Apo, Dedei, Karimo, Kano, Sokoto, Katsina, Kaduna, Borno and other such markets outside Igbo land, even if for just one hour?

If the so-called sit-at-home were carried out during the Operation Python Dance and similar operations allegedly to suppress Ndigbo, would those beating the drum for pythons to dance have found victims which were sunk in mud waters?

Isn’t it an irony to shoot yourself in your feet and then start crying of being victims that are crippled by others?

Ndigbo, there is a time for everything under the Sun. There is a time to fight and a time to make peace. There is a time to attack and a time to make a tactical retreat. There is a time for talking and a time for action.

Talking the talk, mostly within and among Ndigbo, without reaching out to other stakeholders, and without walking the talk, can hardly ever produce the desired outcome.

It is about time this general victim mentality of Ndigbo is introspectively revisited by all concerned to liberate Ndigbo from mental slavery.

Let Ndigbo start to change the narrative of their self-imposed victim mentality.

Let Ndigbo use their tongues to count their teeth.

•Echefuna' RG  Onyebeadi, Professor of Engineering Economics and United Nations Fellow, is the Inegbse of Oligbo Kingdom.

Source: News Express

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