NIGERIA AND THE POLITICS OF 2019

If any party is serious about fostering significant inclusiveness of the East, they will present an easterner - a core easterner - eith...



If any party is serious about fostering significant inclusiveness of the East, they will present an easterner - a core easterner - either as the presidential or vice presidential flag bearer in 2019.

My friend, please don't come preaching national integration without a factual premise. If there's any one powerhouse that deserves a dominant position at the helm of the country's affairs, it's got to be the Igbos. A lot has happened in the course of our collective history providing substantial grounds for the emergence of a core eastern political figure. If you know this country's history too well, you would have realized that this one group has suffered at the hands of ethnic supremacists and have had their prospects and ambitions crushed by marauding vipers, especially saboteurs from within.

Take a tour of history and find the inherent missing links. No, this has primarily got nothing to do with Biafra, but may be interwoven in order to substantiate the logic. You see Westerners have had their fair share of the top position, albeit under the aegis of just two men for a combined duration of ten years or so. The Northerners have enjoyed close to four decades of power with nothing to show for it. In fact, evidence that abound today show that their leaders only enriched themselves and consequently pauperized their own people - the same people they claimed to have represented. The South minorities have also enjoyed this privilege with little or nothing to show for it. And whether the SS representative was allowed to fulfill his destiny is talk for another day. I'm particularly concerned about another issue entirely.

You see, what I find most worrisome is how those who ought to be pushing for Eastern representation at the federal level are the same ones engaging one another in shameful political slugfest. In those days, the likes of Sir Louis Mbanefo, Michael Okpara, and Mbonu Ojike etc. were known to have used their positions to push for significant (not dominant) national representation of their people in various capacities. Their people had the knowledge, expertise, ambition - you name it. But in my own opinion, they lacked the most important thing, a collective sense of engagement and political power play. This detriment has arguably resulted in concurrent colossal losses of eastern representatives at different points in time too. Unfortunately, it seems as though the ill-meaning eastern political figures are those who climb on to relevance at the expense of their well-meaning tribesmen.

In recent times, the likes of Chuba Okadigbo, Adolphus Wabara, and Anyim Pius Anyim blew golden chances to pursue a veritable cause for their people and this resulted in what could be a perpetual loss of the Senate Presidential seat customarily reserved for a core easterner. Evan Enwerem and Alex Ekwueme were perhaps the only ones who left a good mark at the top, though some vengeful warlords succeeded in rubbishing their names to a point where you might even begin to doubt they were ever decent in the first place.

Now, I hear Rochas Okorocha is in talks with El-Rufai for a joint party ticket in 2019 and I just wonder what the Ohaneze intend to do about it. Rochas, in my own opinion, is only trying to take advantage of an emotionally docile ethic group to pursue his selfish agenda. Ask me what he's done as a state governor and I'll tell you he's done absolutely nothing worthy of national, let alone global recognition. Argue with your conscience in that regard. Besides, looking in the direction of Orji Uzor Kalu, Andy Uba and other political amoebas for hope is just another way of volatilizing a malignant cancer. All are of no good. None of them means well.

Who then would be a good representative from the core east? Well, your guess is as good as mine but I choose not to mention specific names in this regard. Look around you, he/she is staring you right in the face but your misguided partisanship will never allow you see the truth for what it is.

What's in it for me and why am I so concerned?

I believe it's only a core easterner that can bolster the activities of Africa's own China and appreciably set Nigeria on a journey out of unwavering dependence on oil. Eastern Nigeria is Africa's own China. Not Nigeria, I mean the whole of Africa. All these politicians in babariga and slinky suits discussing the commercial prospects of the East are only paying lip service to what we already know. A lot more goes on in those integral areas than we already know. The East is a goldmine. It's a hub. It would become a billion-dollar habitat if given the right attention and activity - both of which can only be triggered by having a well-meaning core easterner at the helm of affairs.

Am I in support of the Biafran movement? Not in the least. Reasons? First, it's an amorphous movement that could potentially plunge the region into full-blown internal political crisis if care is not taken. If they can find the right leaders and representatives, then there might be profound support for the movement. Secondly, Nigeria needs the East perhaps more than it needs the oil. If Nigeria were to be the true commercial capital of Africa, the prospects - if not all of it - lie in that region. While Yórùbàs may have the theoretical knowledge of everything on account of their erudition, the Igbos are the masters of practical. LITERALLY. And in science, practical is all you need to achieve results. In fact, some theories can be formulated after chance practical have proven successful. This is where the Igbos comes in.

If I was asked to describe Nigeria using the human body, I'd say the Yórùbàs are the brain (administrators), the Igbos the heart (energy pumps) and the Hausas the internal organs (tools required for optimal function). We need one another more than our selfish heads fail to realize.

In conclusion, I purposely omitted Nnamdi Azikiwe from the third paragraph for glaring reasons, provided you're familiar with Nigeria's history. I've mentioned this before and will mention it again, apart from being a largely ceremonial president and a figurehead, the great Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe got no single chance to demonstrate his capabilities as a national leader. In short, he disintegrated in this form:

Zik of Africa

Zik of Nigeria

Zik of the Eastern Region

Zik of Onitsha

Zik.

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Damzy.


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