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« How Arrogance of Power Predicts the End of the World | Main | Obasanjo’s Economic Program Failed: Analysis of the 2006 Index of Economic Freedom Report »

August 21, 2006

Ndigbo / 2007 and Echoes of the Civil War

by Lawrence Chinedu Nwobu (Dundalk, Republic of Ireland) --- In an article titled “Igbo and the presidential seat” written by Mobolaji Sanusi and published in the vanguard of the 30th of June.Mr Mobolaji did a very honest analysis of the current political quagmire vis-avis the current struggle by different ethnic groups to succeed President Olusegun Obasanjo.

I must admit that I agree with the general direction of his analysis, the only aspect that I disagree with, is the insinuation that Ndigbo tried to secede before, and as such the North may not be favourably disposed to an Igbo presidency for fear that the Igbo, once given power may want to secede again.

I have before now noticed a particular trend, where some commentators have insinuated that it took Southern Americans who also fought a civil war, 100 hundred years to come to power, therefore Ndigbo should also wait a hundred years. (Will we still have Nigeria by then?) There is no greater lie than this. President Andrew Johnson from Tennessee who took the reigns of power after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln in 1865, immediately after the end of the American civil war, is from the secessionist Southern America. Nigerian ethnic tigers, born to rule merchants, and status quo revisionists, are now also undertaking a revision of American history in their desperation to keep Ndigbo out of power.

In the first place, the American civil war, which was a war between those who wanted to continue slavery, and those who wanted to abolish slavery cannot in any breath be compared to the Nigerian civil war, which was a war brought about by the genocidal massacres of erstwhile Eastern Nigerians in Northern and parts of Western Nigeria. The outcry, activism, and even threats of secession that followed the annulation of the June 12 elections by the Yoruba, and the ongoing insurgency by the Niger-Delta militants peeved by long years of injustice has shown and proved beyond all reasonable doubts, that if any ethnic group had faced the kind of onslaught Ndigbo faced in the 60’s with the large scale massacre of her citizens, they would also have opted for secession as a means of self preservation and defence.

Unlike multi ethnic Nigeria, America at that time was a largely homogenous society in race and religion, as Americans are mostly grouped by race, and at that time the Black Americans who were still mostly slaves were not in contention in the power structure. So unlike Nigeria, it could safely be concluded that America’s civil war was actually fought between the same racial group who disagreed on the continuation or abolition of slavery.

The post civil war politics of America is also clearly different from that of Nigeria. While Nigeria engaged in robbing Ndigbo of their property in the name of “Abandoned property” in a supposed one Nigeria, and institutionalising the containment and Apartheid policies of marginalisation of Ndigbo, and the balkanisation of Igbo land proper. America engaged in a real political and structural reconstruction period which genuinely resolved most of the constitutional issues. Unlike in Nigeria, there is no record of the marginalisation of Southern Americans in the military or professions. Indeed the chief of staff of the American armed forces right after the civil war was a Southern American. True federalism and electoral democracy continued right after the civil war with each state reserving the absolute right to develop at their own pace.
All Americans North and South post- war, continued to enjoy equal opportunities based on merit to government positions. There are as yet no reports or evidence that the American leadership developed schemes to contain the South, or denied the South infrastructure as has been the case in Nigeria.

The perception that it took South Americans 100 years to get to power is naked lie, used by ethnic tigers in Nigeria to seek to maintain their destructive status quo hold on power. Even if it is true, that Southern Americans were prevented from coming to power on account of the civil war; pray why have the ethnic tigers neglected all the positive aspects of the successful post-war politics of America that was free of the marginalization or containment of any group? Why have they neglected the technological feats, agricultural abundance, sophisticated infrastructure, the rule of law which are the hallmarks of American society, only to dwell on the negative perception of preventing the South from getting to power in a 100 years because it suits their primitive and base tribal agenda’s?

Lawrence Chinedu Nwobu
Dundalk, Republic of Ireland

Posted by Administrator at August 21, 2006 09:19 AM


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