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Friday, August 22, 2014

Nd'Igbo and the N45 trillion blackmail

Written by LEWIS OBI

The Igbos don't mess with strangers in their midst. In their towns and villages, in their cities and homesteads, they don't hurt strangers. It is not being nice. It is simply in their own interest. It is an abomination to do otherwise.

Igbo customs and traditions insist on the protection of the vulnerable. Who can be more vulnerable than the stranger, the visitor, and the wayfarer? Disputes have to be resolved in his favor. You just have to cut the visitor a slack even when he inadvertently breaks the rules. He is pardoned for his lack of information, for his ignorance and for not being familiar with the customs.

In spite of the massive erosion which has swept through Igbo land not just its landscape but also its customs, the theology behind the protection of strangers is stated and affirmed at every place where two or three Igbos are gathered and a kola nut is presented.
'The kite must perch. The eagle must also perch. None shall obstruct the other... The guest shall bear his host no ill will. When he departs may he bear no bruised back... blah blah blah.'
Igbos are forced to listen to these principles endlessly. It is so boring because you hear it so many times. It does not vary. It does not change. The message is simple. Don't mess with strangers. You cannot hurt visitors. You are obliged to protect him. She cannot be mistreated. If he is, there will be consequences.

When Igbo elders overhear outraged youngsters threaten tit-for-tat for what happens to Igbos in Northern Nigeria, they are tempted to think the youths are ridiculous were the subject not deadly serious. You received body bags from Kano, Kaltungo or Kaura Namoda, so you want to send some body bags, too? How do you do it? First, you cannot shed a stranger's blood in Igbo land. It is a sacrilege, an abomination. And it is personal. The repercussions are scary. Elders will cite instances of thriving families that were wiped out, their lineages obliterated.

Many will dismiss it as superstition. It just might be. But its non-superstitious effect is that Igbos go everywhere, to the remotest confines of the globe, without fear. And the reason is they trust they would be well treated if they behaved themselves. They do not expect to be hurt or attacked or victimized without cause. If the 'guest bore the host no ill-will, he will depart without a bruised back.'

By the way, the Yorubas seem to share the same aversion to shedding the blood of innocent strangers depicted in Soyinka's The Man Died. Area boys and Idumota and Alaba TRADERS may have a brawl. But a brawl is the next thing to wrestling, which is sport. Auto parts dealers at Ladipo may have a tug of war with officials of the Lagos State Government.

But it never goes beyond the usual, age-old competition between Igbos and Yorubas with the verbal stereotyping, a scuffle here and there.
Sometimes it is difficult to know where Hon. Femi Fani-Kayode finds the facts to support some of his extremist prognostications.Could it just be coincidental that in July 1966, in Lagos, Lt. Col. Yakubu Gowon readily betrayed his Supreme Commander Johnson Aguiyi-Ironsi whereas in Ibadan Lt. Col. Adekunle Fajuyi chose to die to protect his guest, Gen. Ironsi?

History has not recorded noteworthy incidents when strangers' blood was shed in Yoruba land in 60 years.
On the other side, the Northern parts of Nigeria seem to have a totally different rule of engagement. And on 18th of July old ghosts were raised when the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) issued a warning to the Igbos that they (Igbos) stood to lose N45 trillion worth of properties if special identity cards were issued to Northerners living in Igbo land.
The exact origin of the identity card controversy is murky. The best that can be reconstructed is that the Imo State Government, following the discovery of huge bombs in Owerri, felt it would be prudent to distinguish innocent Northerners from Boko Haram terrorists by issuing ID cards to the former.

Apparently, representatives of the Northerners who live in the South-South and South East took the issue to the ACF, an organization dedicated to protecting the interests of Northerners in Nigeria. The Deputy Secretary-General of the ACF, Engr. Abubakar Umar, tried to reassure the visitors. No cause for alarm. Igbo INVESTMENTS in Kaduna, Kano and Jos alone amounted to N45 trillion. "If the table turns it could be disastrous as the INVESTMENTS may suffer for it, but we are praying for understanding."
He further explained (more of a confession) that Yoruba and Igbo people in Jos lost N480 billion and N410 billion INVESTMENTS respectively in the 2011 post-election violence and that the South-South people also lost N996 millions in the same crisis.
"We know these statistics, we have these statistics, so we expect the Igbo to treat our kinsmen, our brothers and sisters in the East as kings and queens in view of the fact that they (Igbos) have more investments in the North than in the East. Take Abuja, the FCT, for example, the Igbo occupy 73 per cent of the land, so these are some of the reasons they should be everybody's keeper in their place."

Igbos would be merely amused by Engr. Umar's advice on how to treat sojourners. After all Enugu, the Coal City, elected a Northerner as the city's mayor - and actually re-elected him! Again, ordinary Northerners do not covet other people's hard-earned property. Ask the Igbos who fled before but returned after the war.

The computations of Engr. Umar might be right. Politicians who thrive in politics of cleavage invent and use such figures for political blackmail, often to advance their personal interests. Igbos who put down N45 trillion in Kaduna, Kano and Jos do not think like Abubakar Umar.
They came with a different thought process. Most of them are ordinary men and women who think nothing of politics in their daily lives, who are simply trying to make a living. Engr. Umar thinks N45 trillion is a lot. It sure is. But as impressive as the figure sounds, Igbo custom and tradition would rather prefer that not one more drop of Igbo blood be shed in Kaduna, Kano or Jos - not for N45 trillion, not for N100 trillion.

The trouble with political people like Engr. Umar is that the moral dimension is often lost to them. But most issues tend to be moral before they become political. When you lose sight of the former, the latter is always troublesome.

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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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