United Bank Africa

Of Ndigbo, Politics Of The Heart And The Need For Expedient Politiking

By Nnamdi Ekweogu
The game of politics in Nigeria is not straight-jacketed. As a matter of fact, Nigeria’s brand of politics is abnormal, extremely fluid and viciously couched. It is a game of wits, albeit with unconventionally rules and filled with all forms of bizarreness when played. Simply put the brand of politics we play here is not a game of romance, but that of “war and devilry”.
It is imperative to bring this up to speed among Ndigbo, especially the youths and emerging politicians. Agreed that the civil war set us back. But we were able to pick up the gauntlet at the speed of light and forge on. Nine(9) years after the war our son Dr. Alex Ekwueme emerged the VP, the 1984 coup ended it. When IBB emerged as the HOS, he picked another son of ours, Ebitu Ukiwe, as his CGS, which is equivalent to VP. But that’s it, for over 51yrs and till this day we are yet to smell the seat of President and VP respectively.
For a very long time Ndigbo have been playing politics with their heart rather than using their head. We are too fair-minded to a fault. We care, love and warm up our hearts to people easily without minding or finding out how these people view us.
In 2010-2011, with all our heart, body and soul, we massively threw our weight behind GEJ, that’s because our culture abhor injustice. But did we bother to find out if the Ijaws and the other minorities felt same or would do same for us? We were so carried away and ended up being at the receiving end of that administration. And we got burnt and still getting burnt for that venture. Fair Enough!!!
Ndigbo play politics with their heart that’s why whenever an Igbo politician cross-carpets to say; APC we blow hot, bring down the roof and threaten fire and brimstone. While forgetting that these politicians need to go to that party and collect our own National Cake. Fair Enough!!!
IPOB came with Biafra thru massive use of ICT, we must commend them for reawakening the political consciousness and awareness among Ndigbo, who hitherto cared less about politics. Fair Enough!
But instead of focusing on a strictly homogenous country made up of solely Ndigbo and Alaigbo, they reduced themselves to beggars to the Ijaws, Urhobos, Idomas, Igalas et al., What did the entire Igbo Nation get from such trip? Insults, gloatings, taunts and all. These guys failed to know that a Local Govt like; Mbaise has more Graduates than each of the entire minority Nations they’re being beggarly for. They failed to understand that Alaigbo as a country has the highest number of Professionals, Industrialists and Billionaires in the entire Africa, they failed to know that we have the highest number of Lawyers in Africa and SANs in Nigeria, they lacked the idea of knowing that we have the highest number University students outside our region after the indigenes of each of those regions and 95% of students in the Universities in Alaigbo. They failed to know that we have the largest deposit of Onshore Oil and Gas in the entire sub-region and so on….!
There’s a popular Igbo clich√©; “O bi na-ala a gaa oshi aja”. Which freely translates to; “A man that lives in a palatial and expansive land dotted with exotic mansions but went to steal sand and bricks from his poor neighbor”
What do the Igbos want from the Ijaws and ors and their swampy land that has been completely devastated by the Cowboys mining oil and gas? Where will Biafra get more than $500bn to clean up such an environment? Just a little part of Ogoniland according to the UNEP report will gulp more than $30bn. May be we didn’t think about this because we were thinking with our heart rather than using our head.
As we all know 2019 is fast approaching, rather than think and reason with our head some of us are still mentioning GEJ and events that played out between 2011-2015. While others are aligning, having nocturnal gatherings and sharing the “national cake” and all. For example; The Deputy National Publicity Secretary of APC is an Ijaw man (does this ring a bell)? ¬†Even if we want Biafra, we will not enter such a country empty handed.
Finally, we should have at the back of our mind that Nigeria is not a normal country, therefore every form of tactics should be applied in this political game of “war and devilry”
. Ekweogu contributed from Port Harcourt.