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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Why some people hate to travel to their villages

Written by Azuka Onwuka
~The PUNCH, Nigeria. Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Azuka Onwuka

The main reason many people don't like to travel to their ancestral homes is because they don't have their own house. That is also the reason many fear to retire to their village when they are old. Many people don't like leaving their comfortable apartment (or mansion) in the city to live in a room in the house of their father or, worse still, their brother.

And houses at home are not built like those in the city where the toilets, bathrooms and kitchen are all inside the apartment. In the village, if you are pressed at night to empty your bladder, you have to step out of the house to do that. Nothing scares children like coming out at night in the dark to urinate. When they look at the plantain or palm tree close by, they feel they see a man with a knife there or an "ojuju."

Then for women, the worse thing for them at home is having to share a kitchen with another woman. They don't want anybody to monitor what they cook or eat. They also don't want the embarrassment of having to be cautioned for singing too loudly or closing the door too loudly. No parents want to be told to warn their children for playing too roughly or making too much noise. Any of such is seen as an insult. Such parents will usually murmur to themselves something like: "I don't blame you. Is it not because I'm staying in your house?"

So, anytime the man in the city remembers that he has to travel home, he postpones it with one excuse or the other. Even if he has to travel, he gets home on Saturday and leaves on Sunday. That way, there will be no time for any quarrels with anybody.

Anytime he tells the wife that they have to travel home, the wife discourages it. Even the children are not eager to go home.

Rather than face the truth, the blame is placed on witches and wizards at home who will kill them or steal their destiny and all the evil people at home who hate their progress. The other excuse is that "that place is so backward and boring."

But one of the easiest things a man can do is to build a house. Yes, that is no joke. If you are lucky to have a parcel of land inherited from your father, then, it is very easy to have a house there, no matter your income. As a child growing up at home, I watched cobblers, palm wine tappers, carpenters, labourers, and poor widows build houses of their own, while some relatively comfortable people - especially those working in the cities - had no houses. How did they achieve it? They stopped waiting for the right time: they just started!

A house is a house whether it is a one-roomed apartment or the 828-metre-high Burj Khalifa in Dubai. If your income is too low to afford a mansion now, leave the central part of your land for that mansion and build a small house by the edge of the land. It could be a three-roomed house. If that is still too big, build the so-called boys quarters of two or three rooms with a sitting room. It is done on a straight line. But ensure that the toilets, bathrooms and kitchen are all enclosed, so that nobody has to go out at night to urinate.

So, where will the money come from if you earn about N50,000 a month? Don't worry. There is no law that states how long it should take to complete a house. If you have about N10,000 to buy a trip of sand, buy it and drop it on the land and continue with your life. When you have raised enough money for 10 bags of cement, engage a local person to start moulding blocks on the land. When the blocks are dry, let them be stacked and covered with a tarpaulin. Continue moulding the blocks in batches until you get about 500 to 1000 blocks, de pending on the size of the house you want to build. Start saving money for the foundation.

Once you have done the foundation, you will not want to spend money on any other frivolity until the house is raised. Once you reach the lintel, you won't like to see your house beaten by rain and sun for long.

By the time you know what is happening, you are a landlord. You will be pinching yourself repeatedly to ascertain that it was "poor you" that built such a house.

When you have a house of your own, once in a while, you will like to go home to rest from the noise and stress of the city. When the schools' long vacation comes in June, you may even want to take your holiday then so that your children will spend some longer time at home. Unlike before, your wife will be the one asking you, "Darling, when shall we travel home?"

The Igbo had that big problem until the 1966 pogrom in Nigeria made them to flee from parts of Nigeria to their towns and villages. Many big men in Kano, Kaduna, Ibadan, Lagos, Port Harcourt, and so on scampered to their hometowns and villages to be faced with the shock that they had no home of their own.

They and their families had to manage a room in the house of a brother or father. Like a proverb says: "Treat a guest like a king the first day; next day, give him a hoe to go to the farm." Soon after the warm reception, the returnee squatters saw that there was nothing as good as living in one's house. Strife and quarrels began among the wives, brothers and cousins. That the returnees had no access to their money made matters worse.

Those who even had uncompleted houses fared better. They found tarpaulins or abandoned corrugated iron sheets and used them to cover one or two rooms in the house and moved in there, to avoid the insult caused by squatting in their relatives' houses.

After that humiliating experience of a big man losing all he had and becoming a squatter, a new orientation sprang up among the Igbo: Before you start building houses all over Nigeria and the world, go home and build a good house. Even if rats and cockroaches live in such a house without paying rent, anytime the owner has a reason to return home alone or with his family, there is a place to live in comfortably.

Many have even gone to the extreme of building castles in their hometowns that become so huge and lonely and difficult to clean when they have to spend one or two days at home. Such people prefer to sleep in hotels when they make such short trips back home to avoid all the trouble of cleaning and loneliness in such mansions. But it is better than someone who has no place to call his own.

If every urban dweller erects a house in his or her village, that community many see as "undeveloped" will become a developed place. Many towns and villages have developed their communities that way and such places are no longer seen as "remote and rural places." The bent dry fish that we love so much was not created bent. Someone bent it

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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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