Hard Talk; The Ugly Tale Of Violent Crisis Beleaguering An Evolving Nation (1) By Tersoo TeeCube

NigeriaIt is evidently true that those who ignore history do so at their own peril and to buttress this fact we have to acknowledge the cataclysmic challenges bedeviling us as a nation did not start today or in the recent past. The necessity for understanding this phenomenon that has made peace elusive to us is basically due to ignorance.
Without whipping up sentiments, I boldly state that this entity called Nigeria was ill conceived and created against the collective wish of her inhabitants whom mostly had nothing in common needed to establish a viable bond. Till this day, the causes of hostility, animosity and intolerance that ensure a harmonious and prosperous nation does not thrive, regrettably, persists amongst us.
My claim is further substantiated from findings.
According to historical records, Sir Ahmadu Bello, the Sardauna Sokoto and Premier of the Northern region, while commenting on the amalgamation of southern and northern protectorates, referred to Nigeria as “the mistake of 1914” while his western counterpart, another prominent politician, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, argued that: “Nigeria is not a nation; it is a mere geographical expression. There are no ‘Nigerians’ in the sense as there are English or Welsh or French. The word ‘Nigeria’ is merely a distinctive appellation to distinguish those who live within the boundaries of Nigeria from those who do not”. (West African Pilot, 1947)
Nevertheless, Awolowo advocated federalism as the only basis for equitable national integration.
More convincingly in 1952, Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa addressed the Northern House of Assembly saying “The Southern people who are swamping into this region daily in such large numbers are really intruders; we don’t want them and they are not welcome here in the North. Stating since 1914, the British has been trying to make Nigeria into one country. But the people are different in every way, including religion, custom, language and aspirations. We in the North take it that Nigeria Unity is only a British intention for the country they created. It is not for us”.
Sir Balewa, who later became Nigeria’s first Prime Minister, simply stated that “Nigeria existed as one only on paper. It is still far from being united. Nigerian unity is only a British intention for the country”.
Today, the aforementioned leaders credited with making such truthful and incisive statements are no more alive but their memories remain highly revered across the different divides of this appellation’ called Nigeria.
Their legendary political sagacity and ideology is still being tapped into by their various followers, who seek to keep their glowing memories and legacy alive. But the pertinent question we need to ask ourselves is, were they right in their individual assertions that Nigeria was far from being united and has anything changed since then till today? Have we proven them wrong by our actions and utterances today?
Until we are sincere with ourselves by admitting to the fact that our unity is upheld forcefully under the forces of corruption, greed and hypocrisy, which is against the wishes of our diverse people, there are no concrete reasons to suggest otherwise that we are united by mutual respect, love, tolerance and the need for harmonious co-existence that is of economic value to all in fairness to guarantee our continued peaceful co-existence.
Max Siollum, a famous historian and commentator on Nigerian politics and government issues stated in his Book ‘Oil, Politics and Violence’ that “The British carved the country into three regions (according to the three major ethnic groups) broadly corresponding to the location of these largest ethnic groups, hemmed in between them were approximately another 250 disparate ethnicities. Some were millions strong and others had only a few hundred members. Most of these groups had nothing in common with each other outside of their mutual suspicion and hostility”.
He went further to state that “the general outlook of the people in the north and south is so different as to give them practically nothing in common and to make physical confrontation between them a virtual certainty. In summary he opined that the ethnic groups in Nigeria have made it virtually impossible to have any commonality of purpose. Here I also ask with unpretentiousness have we proven his assertion wrong”.
© TersooTeeCube
Follow me on Twitter @teecube_t3rsoo
Instagram @teecube_tersoo


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here