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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The induced Yoruba-Igbo prejudices

By. Ben Ogu
- Rev. Fr. Ogu is a Catholic Priest.

A certain religious woman has a burning ambition to solicit for and liberate with little or no cost, those who cannot afford the services of a Lawyer or those unjustly imprisoned and abandoned. But she had a scare of her life the first time she appeared and introduced herself as Rev. Sister Barrister in the court. They could not reconcile the contradiction and strangeness. Perhaps nothing could irritate people more than a priest writing on the politics of the supposedly mundane. But that is only to be expected and not be surprised at in an environment where politics meant to be a vehicle for serving and liberating the physical realm. But it is obvious too, that politicians would hardly be persuaded with the semantics and linguistics of the scripture more than the language of politics.

Reading Dapo Thomas' view entitled "Igbo presidency and the Yoruba example," in The Nation and The Sun of July 21, 2013 and previous Yoruba writers on the Igbo political destiny, I could not but in a sense of urgency write in appreciative complement and corroboration. In recent years I have come to appreciate the Yoruba collective personality and their sympathy for Igbo issues. I can't but simply jettison the induced Igbo-Yoruba prejudice and aversion previously fanned by the political struggles of late Nnamdi Azikiwe and Obafami Awolowo, occasionally recycled by the Olusegun Obasanjo's vindictiveness and the hurriedly misconstrued late Chinua Achebe's "There Was a Country". For me, it is unfortunate and simply naive to conclude offhand that the Yoruba and the Igbo hate themselves and are enemies based on the past two elder statesmen. While appreciating the peculiarities of every socio-political group, intellectual honesty should admit of the Yoruba political superlative superiority over the Igbo, though the peacock of self-deceiving ego of the Igbo could rebuff this.

Yet, it stands incontrovertible that the Yoruba stands a tested virile political maturity than the Igbo and since after the war, have always been sympathetic, objective and candid in their analysis and assessment of Igbo political epilepsy the way no Igbo has ever done. I agree with Dapo on his assertion that "the Igbos are responsible for whatever humiliation they are suffering today within the Nigerian state, not because of the civil war but because they are deluded by the misconception that their economic power alone can make them relevant. They must understand that their economic power needs to be feasible only through a political revolution that they need to undertake with dispatch". Permit to me to add that even the claim to economic power is pure fantasy and superficial. The sooner they realize that what they actually have is the power of "buying and selling" which is as precarious and powerful as the errand boy's power, they would certainly look for power.
But Dapo regrets that "...most Igbo businessmen that could be counted upon to undertake this revolutionary agenda are government contractors who may not be ready to sacrifice their economic interests and political influence for an Igbo national cause. They are likely to succumb and kowtow to an vindictive government that may find the pursuit of their political agenda too antagonistic. With this kind of attitude and ennui to the Igbo cause, it is doubtful if the Igbos can come out of this political gridlock". The level of Igbo political inertia can best be felt in the fact that they can no longer feel, conjecture or write about it, having been rather so naturalized and acclimatized to it, that the feeling is so lost to fatality that only others can now feel for them. But certainly, the dead hardly feels dead but the living mourns in pain. The saying is then true that it is the mad man's brother that is blushed by his nakedness since the lunatic is unconscious and insensate of feeling ashamed. What a tragedy and calamity of a race. And the Yorubas are the brothers that now feel the Igbo shame and debacle and sympathize with them. But such an existential retardation and paralysis as the Igbo of present generation only questions the existential relevance of the living and equates him with the dead.

When the ancient Israelites slept into subordination and servitude in the hands of the Egyptians, God raised Moses in the symbolism of the blaze of fire which inclusively implied, not only the Israelites' suffering but also figurative of Moses' mission. Excusing his weakness in speech, Aaron was loaned to complement him and when the tribulations of the journey cut short his destiny, Joshua came on board to take them to the destination. It is to say the least, that for the Igbos of this generation to survive in their present political intertia they need nothing less than undaunted risk takers like Moses and Joshua. Such must not be men of soft texture, the chemistry of mean and food loving Esau, prone to the sale of birthright for stomach right or apologists as abounds in Igbo land today.

Such a collection like Moses and Joshua must not be found in the pedigree of faint-hearted men, susceptible to intimidation and easily cowed by criticism and blackmail. A driver of the Igbo political destiny that should measure after the progressive Yoruba, must, like late Odumegwu Ojukwu, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, be dominated by a sense of collective domestic destiny and more than a passing sensitivity to native consciousness which must relegate and sacrifice personal and individualistic priorities for the common Igbo patrimony. Like the late sage, Chief Awolowo and the entire Yoruba, they must not be addicted to the fancies and fantasies of the Nigerian nationalism and its enslaving tantalization. Unfortunately, the contrary is the case with the Igbo political elite.

While the Yorubas would always go for one of their own, protect and preserve their own, the Igbos are known for the penchant for the destruction of their own The spirit of Chief Awolowo and Abiola still live on after many years of demise. What an ingenuity and proficiency the Igbo elite exhibit for desecrating and stifling their own and never learn the example of the Yorubas!
The irony in the Igbo fate is that those who try to raise their level always find themselves in the Jews-Jesus metaphor of people killing their saviour. Experience shows that any Igbo who has ever attempted to identify his patriotism with the Igbo as Awo did always meets with domestic hostility, stiff aversion and prejudice from his people and the Federal government.

Whether for Igbo presidency or any other venture, the Yoruba example is too tall and unimaginable example for the Igbo given their apparent lack of patriotism to the Nigerian projectWhat the Igbo have are governors and leaders who can sing the eulogies of the president and presidency and reconcile conflicts in PDP in order to remain relevant in PDP even when they are irrelevant to their people. The Yorubas have passed this trade in servile sycophancy because their interests transcend personal exaltation and they know that their identity, relevance and right are not derived from marginal grafting to another but from the statutory dictates which does not need a stooping slavishness to have. Dapo perhaps stirred their conscience But they need first to nurture the Yoruba political discipline, courage, native patriotism, and a common voice.

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I am an Igbo, I was born an Igbo, I live the life of an Igbo, I come from Igbo, I speak Igbo, I like to be Igbo, I like to dress in Igbo, I eat Igbo food, my heritage, culture and tradition is Igbo, my parents are Igbo.

Am sorry I cannot help it if you hate my lineage. Am sorry I cannot help it if you detest Igbo, am sorry I cannot help it if you hate me because am Igbo. Igbo is who I am, my name is Igbo and I must die an Igbo.

You see Igbo as a threat, why? You call Igbo rapist, criminals, ritualist, prostitutes, kidnappers. You attribute all negative vices to represent Igbo? Why do you do that? You do because you feel threatened that Igbo might outrun the rest of the tribes. Why do you hate Igbo and despise us? You do that because we are creative, enlightened, hardworking, industrious, genius, intelligent, smart, rich, beautiful and amazing. But its difficult for you to admit it because you feel jealous of my race.

Igbo do not own politics, Igbo do not control the economy neither do we control the natural resources and the common wealth of the nation. You do, we don't and yet, despite the fact that you own everything, we still remain one indispensable race that has outshined the other race in all ramifications.

You fear us because you want to exterminate and annihilate our race, you deny us many things and yet we are stronger, richer and mightier. You fear us because we are everywhere. You fear us because no matter how rural a place might be, when Igbo steps in, they turn it into a Paradise. We have our own resources, which lies in resourcefulness, we do not bother you and your control over the polity, but yet when we cough you and the other race begin to shiver.

Am proud being an Igbo, am proud of my heritage and culture. Igbo means high class, Igbo means independence, Igbo means hard work and strength, Igbo means riches, Igbo means resourcefulness, Igbo means self belonging, Igbo means self esteem, Igbo means pride, Igbo means swag.

Udo diri unu umunnem.
# IgboAmaka
# AnyiBuNdiMmeri

Michael Ezeaka

This is beautiful poetry ...

In response to Alaba Ajibola, the Babcock Lecturer Hate Speech against Igbos.


In Igboland women live apart from their husbands and neither cook for them nor enter their husband's quarters when they are in their period. They are seen as unclean. Even up till today such practice is still applicable in some parts of Igboland especially by the traditionalists. Before a woman can enter the palace of Obi of Onitsha, she will be asked if she is in her period, if yes, she will be asked to stay out.

Leviticus 15: 19-20
When a woman has her monthly period, she remains unclean, anyone who touches her or anything she has sat on becomes unclean.

An Igbo man's ancestral heritage, called “Ana Obi” is not sellable, elders will not permit this. If this is somehow done due to the influence of the West the person is considered a fool and is ostracized by the community.

1 Kings 21:3
I inherited this vineyard from my ancestors, and the Lord forbid that I should sell it, said Naboth.

Igbos have practiced the taking of a late brother's wife into marriage after she had been widowed until the white men came. Now it is rarely done but except in very rural villages.

Deuteronomy 25:5
A widow of a dead man is not to be married outside the family; it is the duty of the dead man's brother to marry her.

In Igboland, there is a unique form of apprenticeship in which either a male family member or a community member will spend six (6) years (usually in their teens to their adulthood) working for another family. And on the seventh year, the head of the host household, who is usually the older man who brought the apprentice into his household, will establish (Igbo: idu uno) the apprentice
by either setting up a business for him or giving money or tools by which to make a living.

Exodus 21:2
If you buy a Hebrew slave, he shall serve you for six years. In the seventh year he is to be set free without having to pay you anything.

In Igboland , the yam is very important as it is their staple crop. There are celebrations such as the New yam festival (Igbo: Iri Ji) which are held for the harvesting of the yam. New Yam festival (Igbo: Iri ji) is celebrated annually to secure a good harvest of the staple crop. In the olden days it is an abomination for one to eat a new harvest before the festival. It's a tradition that you give the gods of the land first as a thanksgiving.

Deuteronomy 16:9
Count 7 weeks from the time that you begin to harvest the crops, and celebrate the harvest festival to honor the lord your God, by bringing him a freewill offering in proportion to the blessing he has given you. Celebrate in the Lord's presence together with your children, servants, foreigners. Be sure that you obey my command, said the Lord.

In Igboland it's a tradition that the male children are circumcised on the 8th day. This tradition is still practiced till date.

Leviticus 12:3
On the eighth day, the child shall be circumcised.

In Igboland, there is a practice known as "ile omugwo ". After a woman has given birth to a child, a very close and experienced relative of hers, in most cases her mother is required by tradition to come spend time with her and her husband. During which she is to do all the work of the wife, while the new mom's only assignment to the baby will be to breastfeed. This goes on for a month or more. In the Igbo old tradition, at this time, the new mom lives apart from her husband, would not cook or enter his quarters.

Leviticus 12:1-4
For seven days after a woman gives birth, she is ritually unclean as she is during her monthly period. It will be 33 days until she is ritually clean from the loss of blood; she is not to touch anything that is holy.


The Igbo tribe is in a serious problem and danger of extinction for the following reasons:

50% of Igbos are born outside Igbo land. Meaning that those children are not likely to live and work in Igbo land and cannot speak Igbo language but foreign language (Yoruba, Hausa, French, English).

40% of Igbos girls between the age of 25 & 45 are single with no hope of marriage because 35% of Igbo boys live overseas and they have all married white ladies.

75% of Igbo youths leave Igbo land every year in search of opportunities in Yoruba, Hausa land or overseas.

85 % of Igbos have family houses and own investments outside Igbo land. They strongly believe in one Nigeria but failed to know that NO Yoruba or Hausa man has a family house or investment in Igbo land.

Igbos are the only people who believe that living outside their land is an achievement.

Igbos are the only tribe that celebrate their tradition outside their land e.g. Eze Ndi Igbo, Igbo Village in America and this is because they have family homes in foreign lands.

Igbos have failed to know that the children you have outside Igbo land especially overseas will never think of living in Igbo land. So what happens to the properties you are building for them when you are gone?

Igbos are the only tribe who see their land as a place to visit or a tourist site than a place to work and live.

Igbos are the only tribe who instead of promoting and appreciating their culture through movies and documentaries they have sought to ridicule it by portraying rituals, killings, wickedness, love for money and other social vices which were not originally inherent in our culture thereby cursing more harm than actually promoting their culture.

Igbos are the only people who without hesitation believe their history and description when it is told or written by an enemy or a foreigner. E.g. that you do not love yourselves or that you love money.

Igbos are the ONLY largest tribe on earth who fought for their independence and failed to achieve their freedom after 40 years.

Igbos are the only tribe who fails to honour their brave heroes and heroines especially the innocent children starved to death during the Biafran war.

Igbos are the only tribe who embraced their enemy after a bloody civil war and subsequently become slaves.

Igbos do not find it necessary to teach their own version of history to their children.

Igbos fight for marginalisation in Nigeria but has no collective strength or teeth to bite.

Igbos how long are you going to fight for your relevance in Nigeria?

How long are you going to fight for a functional airport, rail networks and other structural establishments that underpin sustainable development?

How long are you prepared to wait for your enemy to guide you to your destiny?

Oh Igbos!
Where are your leaders?

Unfortunately, none of them live and work in Igbo land. If you wish to save the future of your children, your identity, your generation and your race then you need freedom and that freedom is Biafra.

Ukpana Okpoko gburu bu nti chiri ya!

By Chime Eze

The Igbo: We die for causes, not for personalities

Written by Emeka Maduewesi

~on fb. 28th September, 2016.

The Igbo will never die for anyone. We will not even riot for anyone. But the Igbo will die for any cause they believe in because the Igbo have a true sense of justice and a determination to obtain it.

The Igbo will not riot because one of their own lost an election. Operation Wetie was the Western response to a massively rigged 1965 election. The Yoruba doused fellow Yorubas in petrol and burnt them alife. Properties were burnt with occupants. The Igbo will never do this.

In 1983, the Yoruba went on a rampage again over the massive rigging by NPN. Lifes were lost and properties destroyed. The riots were over personalities.

Contrast that with Anambra State where Chief Emeka Ojukwu was rigged out by his own NPN, who also rigged out Chief Jim Nwobodo. The Igbo did not protest because the goat's head is still in the goat's bag.

In the North, ba muso was the battle cry when Sultan Dasuki was imposed on the Sokoto Caliphate. The riot and protest lasted for days and crippled economic activities.

The Igbo will riot over issues and causes. The Aba Women Riot was over Tax. The Enugu coal mine riot was about conditions of service. The Ekumeku Uprising was over British colonialization.

Those of "Ekumeku" ancestry - Umu Eze Chima and Umu Nri - were at the forefront of the struggles for Nigerian independence, with people like Dr. A A Nwafor Orizu and Chief Osita Agwuna serving prison terms. Any struggles the parents could not conclude is continued by the children by other means.

The Biafran war was a response to the genocide. The war in fact was brought upon us. The battlefield was Eastern Region. The war ended in 1970 but the issues and causes were not resolved. That is where we are today.

The Igbo will also jointly rise to fight evil in their midst. They did it in Onitsha in the 1980's, Owerri in the 90's, and with Bakkassi in the 2000.

The Igbo will not die for any man. But the Igbo will stand by any man who symbolizes their cause and their pursuit of justice. Even if the man dies, the struggle continues, and like the Ekumeku warriors, the children will pick up the baton from their parents.

This is the Igbo I know, the Igbo I am, and the Igbo we are. This is my story. Feel free to tell yours.


"My boy, may you live to your full potential, ascend to a dizzy height as is possible for anyone of your political description in your era to rise. May you be acknowledged world-wide as you rise as an eagle atop trees, float among the clouds, preside over the affairs of fellow men.... as leaders of all countries pour into Nigeria to breathe into her ear.

But then, Chuba, if it is not the tradition of our people that elders are roundly insulted by young men of the world, as you have unjustly done to me, may your reign come to an abrupt and shattering close. As you look ahead, Chuba, as you see the horizon, dedicating a great marble palace that is the envy of the world, toasted by the most powerful men in the land, may the great big hand snatch it away from you. Just as you look forward to hosting the world’s most powerful leader and shaking his hands, as you begin to smell the recognition and leadership of the Igbo people, may the crown fall off your head and your political head fall off your shoulders.

None of my words will come to pass, Chuba, until you have risen to the very height of your power and glory and health, but then you will be hounded and humiliated and disgraced out of office, your credibility and your name in tatters forever...”


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