The 1967-1970 anti Biafra pogrom is one that can never be forgotten, especially on a day like this.
While one would never preach for a sense of closure over that particular genocidal onslaught against Ndi Igbo, it must however be advised that theoretical remembrance, especially one done with heart filled with bitterness, vengeance and utopic pursuits can never profer the very critical solution to those socio-political and economic injustices and atrocities that ab initio necessitated our just demand for the independence of the defunct Biafra from Nigeria.
Fourty nine years after the outbreak of that disastrous military confrontation, a lot of things have changed. Global politics and economic activities have so advanced that interdependence between nations and peoples of the world, made possible by globalization seems more fashionable than ever.
Loud agitations for political independence seem to have diminished, and lost the kind of attention and support it used to draw from actors in international political scene, possibly because advanced countries of the world now think less of the natural resources of other countries which hitherto propelled their involvement in advancing such agitations for independence.
Oil, gold, silver, diamond and other natural resources, though still occupy places of prominence, yet have ceased to be seen as a desinderatum by many advanced and proactive nations who have now made, and continue to make giant strides and break new grounds through science and technology.
Agreed that certain policies that affect certain sensitive facets of our socio-political and economic lives are consciously screwed against the very enterprising Igbo nation in the Nigerian state, yet we must avoid the assumption that political/geographical independence is a panacea for economic independence.
Economic prosperity, is and will remain a creation of sound political ideology that must have passed through the process of practicality or experimentation.
Like Late Kwame Nkrumah once enjoined Africans that, “Seek yee first political power and every other thing shall be added unto you”, the thought that our yet to be corrected political blunders in Nigeria which have become a recurring decimal can be corrected overnight in an imaginary Republic is to live in a world of perpetual deceit and estructive delusion. An unchallenged traitor would remain a traitor no matter the amount of goodwill shown to him, and no matter who he’s dealing with it. The difference will only be the magnitude of his threat.
We must show that we are discerning and intelligent enough to know that the enemy within is the worst enemy. We must also show the sincerity, seriousness and capacity to confront and defeat these internal enemies.
Our rare uniqueness courtesy of the commonness of our Igbo language and near overwhelming dominance of the Christian religion makes our quest for political survival less cumbersome if we can think outside the box. That’s to say that we have very little things that might divide us.
Rigidity of ideology, arrogance and hostility of disposition can only scare our would-be allies. Provocative rhetoric has never been the best strategy for the actualization of a noble objective like the type we seek. It only leads to suspicion and isolation.
We have what it takes to strategically and effectively negotiate and reintegrate ourselves into the mainstream of the Nigerian politics. We are too big and too blessed to suddenly turn to the weeping child of Nigeria.
Even with the too many political hitches confronting us, yet we aren’t the worst economically in the comity of geopolitical zones, which means we can also channel our economic survival ingenuity and strategy into crafting a sound political arithmetic capable of turning things around for us politically. This would turn around to herald a super economic boom.
At this moment, we do not have the instruments of political power in our hands, therefore increasing the demand for secession without first proving our mettle for result oriented internal political cohesion is not only blunderous, but highly suicidal, and must be discouraged.
We have got the Land of the Rising Sun which we presently occupy as our geopolitical zone. No body can chase us away from this land, and no body is trying to stop us from tapping the abundant blessings therein. Nothing stops us from regionalizing our economic and political activities with whatever acrues to us from the federation. Nothing also stops us from exploring and exploiting those natural resources that fall within our constitutional reach and using same to better our region and the lots of our people.
There’s also no law that stops us in the South East from carefully sitting down in a conference hall to think out policies and programs that would help identify and develop the abundant Igbo brains that are capable of caterpolting us to eldoraldo through science and technology.
We love Israel so much, and we’re the self acclaimed Jews of Africa, so what stops us from embracing the Jewish unbroken spirit of camaraderie and unequalled resilience devoid of complaints and blame game?
The more we carelessly and loudly call for the fall of the “zoo” theoretically, the more the ground plot to resist and decimate us increases, but the more we dedicate our time and energy advancing our collective well-being as Ndi Igbo with possibility of huge success, while paying less attention to the utterances of the pro/anti One Nigeria agitators, the more unattractive “One Nigeria” would become to its desperate apostles.
We have got no other place to go to, except where we are right now, and here we are, lies our Regional Greatness, Our Economic Boom, our Political Freedom and our Biafra. In this territory begins and ends our Biafra of the Mind which Odumegwu Ojukwu propunded.
We should not forget that where we are going is actually where we already are, thus we should strive to give it our best.