By Gwiyi Solomon
Indeed, Ndigbo have no regards and respect for constituted authorities in their own lands. Probably, our long aged practice of liberalism and freedom, in terms of choice of where to pay loyalty, liberty of expression and flexibility in association is heavily taking a toll on the supposed oneness and adulation to the regional powers, Nigeria is known with.
Without equivocation, no tribe in Nigeria will decimate its own regional power in the manner an Igbo would do. I can recall the threats by a monarch in Lagos, back in 2015, where one Oba Akiolu had threatened that should Gov. Ambode lose his election, the Igbos in Lagos would be thrown into the Lagos lagoon. And nobody breath a hooth; not even the Yorubas.
Of course, doing so in Yoruba land will amount to an aberration and arnomaly. It will no doubt negate their regional integration policy, which their “Ahmed Tinubu” is championing and steering its ship with every zeal and zest within his arsenal.
During the Raji Fashiola era in Lagos, Ndigbo were again, deported and dumped at the Bridge head in Onitsha in the wee hours of the day, with outrage across the country; and the only accompanying statement we heared from the Governor was that the deportees were “destitutes”.
And the question remains: how long are we going to continue playing the second fiddle in a country where we have given and invested our fortunes for it’s survival? Ndigbo have given and sacrificed more than anybody, any tribe could think of in the development and unity of this conflagration called “Nigeria”.
Never in my life have I seen a tribe so disorientated, balkanized and politicized with disdain and outright negligence for its own constituted authorities, lost of its collective values and aspiration Like ours.
Our younger generation in Igbo land, as represented by one Mbani Charles, in his opinion piece, with the caption overleaf has lost its compass and regional developmental manual. We are fast losing our identity and power as one of the three tribal tripod upon which the Nigerian Nation stands.
Were Charles Mbani to be a Northerner, probably with this scathing and disparaging opinion targeted at the sultanate, such as he has freely expressed against his own descendants and ancestry, Ohaneze Ndigbo, the Igbo Nation’s apex body, with the caption – “Nwodo, An enemy of Ndigbo?” published on the 23rd of April, 2019 in the Vanguard Newspapers, Charles would have been groaning in pains as a mob could have eaten him up for desecration of the sanctity of their highly revered throne.
But Ndigbo are civil and senile. They are educated and groomed to accommodate dissident opinions irrespective of it’s implications and dangers; even at the worst and most provocation, they are ever calm and receptive.
Examples abound of unwarranted and unprovocative invasions such as we have experienced in Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s house, where a group of unarmed young men were killed with impunity; and then the Port Harcourt rally for president Trump and a lot more, where more souls were committed to mother earth instead of addressing their grievances.
There were cases of lopsided appointments in the president Muhamadu Buhari’s government; where the interests of the Igbo as a nation was heavily threatend during the Last four years; we had the issues of headsmen’s brutality across Igbo land, and many more other cases such as exclusion of the zone from rail-way projects as made public by Senator Eyinnaya Abaribe, abandonment of the Enugu Onitsha express road, the Niger Bridge moonlight tales etc.
These injustices and many more are what Chief Nnia Nwodo, President of Ohaneze Ndigbo is fighting on daily basis without appreciation from people like Charles Mbani; eapecially each time you watch and follow his speeches at Chatam House in London; press briefings and television coverages across the world.
Since his emergence as president of that oval office in the region, Chief Nnia has been a revelation in the entire East. He bestrides the ohaneze apex office as the colossus he is; working 24hours a day and even defending the indefensible.
He fights from all fronts and fires from all cylinders in defence of people who are considered annihilated and conquered as a region.
His only tango with the other tribes is that Ndigbo, for the first time in their history has fielded their best in terms of brilliance, intelligence, experience and wisdom, to steer their ship to the Canaan of their dreams.
For the records, Ndigbo like the Afenifere and the Northern elders forum’s adoption of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, Nigeria’s former VP as their candidate in the 2019 elections was nothing but a reflection of the general interests of the tribes involved.
We did not just adopt “Atikuobi” as our choice, we voted according to our collective decision which Chief Nnia’s stance during the last election epitomises. So, whoever is suggesting like Charles Mbani expressed in his opinion piece that we have shot ourselves on the foot by that singular decision is on a long journey to nowhere.
Finally, Ndigbo are resolute in their decision. We made it clear in 2015 that we had no better candidate than the former president Goodluck Jonathan; and we have even made it clearer in 2019 that Buhari was not an option with 80% of our block votes. No regrests. Whatever the outcome, so be it.
Gwiiyi Solomon Writes from Uzo Uwani, Nsukka Senatorial zone, Enugu state.