We will begin by asking a few pertinent questions. The questions will be directed to the people within the south side of the Sahara to whom we shall refer as black Africa. We will avoid using the word Sub-Sahara in reference to these people in this essay because the eminent and revered professor and scholar Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe has written an excellent paper on that topic and argued that it could be derogatory when used to address the people living on this side of Sahara. See http://re-thinkingafrica.blogspot.com.
Now the first question is do black Africans really have to wait for someone else to think for them as a race? Is a thing right only when it is someone else that says it is right? Are Africans deliberately trying to prove true that they can only find in them the rectitude or courage to say the truth only as an echo rather than originating the sound? This disturbing trend tends to show in every aspect of black Africa’s existence; religion, culture, politics and government. Are Africans really incapable as a race to know what is good for them? Or are the people incapable of living, acting and talking honestly? Is it true that as a people they are incapable of being sincere? These questions are far from being mere idle ramblings. It is only important that black Africa should find answers to these and many more questions because its salvation might very well lie in finding sincere and honest answers to them.
We will also like to know if it is lack of confidence in self or boldness to tell the truth that is holding back the people’s leaders in this part of the world from stating publicly and plainly the fact that the black African map is in an urgent need for redrawing. The present map was drawn by outsiders, the colonialists who drew it as it would suit their business purpose at the time, more than a century ago. The map was not engraved in stone nor is it considered a holy writ. So when they left it was expected that the indigenous people would have done the right thing by undoing the obnoxious and odious fabrications. But after more than half a century that these colonialists left why are the people still so afraid to undo what had been done to the detriment of the people and merely for the administrative convenience of the European imperialists?
In the recent time the news media have been buzzing with various discordant opinions about the need to divide Nigeria into different countries because the Libyan ruler Maummar Gaddafi said so. It is a shame that as a people Africans are trying hard to give credence to the feeling that black Africans are incapable of thinking for themselves. Has it not all along been very apparent that that is the only sensible thing to do? Nigeria has never worked and will never work because the contraption is fundamentally wrong and can never be fixed. So, does it not really feel so embarrassing to some that they have to wait to sing the chorus of this Arab man who only is stating what has been true all along? But what is even more embarrassing is that some pathetic ones are still so fuzzy in their thoughts and are trying harder still to continue gambling with the people’s lives and destiny by maintaining that Nigeria should still remain together. These ones are still trying to sell their half truths and blatant lies to the people. They still continue to proffer the same stale and ineffective solutions to the incurable sore (Nigeria) by saying if only the “leaders” can do this or that, maybe eliminate corruption, conduct a free and fair election, etc then all will be well and Nigeria will magically begin to work.
But life is a more serious business than all these deceitful and self-deluding antics and fraudulent “academic” rhetoric as being bandied around by these soul-less goons. People’s lives and future are too important for these charlatans to continue to toy with indefinitely just because they are selfishly bent on making themselves acceptable to the dishonest and fraud mongers and mass murderers (Nigeria) so that they can be invited to come and partake of their vile table of cannibalism.
The human society can be generally and loosely divided into two groups, the able or firm group as against the infirm or feeble group. Children, the physically and mentally challenged individuals and the very old fall into the second group and they must depend on the first group to cater for and provide all their needs. The first group, the capable ones must decide, think and provide for the incapable ones what they the able ones consider to be good and right for the others. The question is where do black African leaders fall in these groupings? And to direct the question very pointedly, where does Biafrans fall in these groupings?
So many things unfortunately tend to prove right the assumption that the black race does not know what is good for it and cannot do anything right even for its own benefit. Nigeria typifies this assumption very perfectly, the only significant infrastructures in that country are those left by the colonialists. Since they left nothing new has been added. Many people will want to jump on this to refute it but we can only say good luck. But for argument sake let us mention just two examples, such basic projects like railroads and electricity or power supply. The most pathetic aspect of it is that not only is Nigeria incapable of building new ones it does not have the capacity to maintain those left by the colonialists. Now let us not forget that these colonialists built these structures with very little resources and with less or inferior technology compared to what is obtainable today.
Why would anybody still argue against the disbanding of Nigeria when it is a known fact that it is a failed state. Check out the Failed States Index and see for yourself. Among others, the basic functions of a country or state are to provide water, power and security for the population. But in Nigeria, every individual provides his own water by digging borehole or well, his own power by buying a generator and his own security by providing burglary proof homes, bullet proof cars and buying his own gun. The rule of law and justice of course belongs in the gutter. So, of what use is the state when every individual is a nation unto himself?
The Igbolis and Biafran elite have no excuse for exhibiting this level of fear and selfishness as they shamelessly do today. That a war was fought and lost does not entitle anyone to succumbing perpetually to defeatism. The reasons for the fighting are still as valid as they were before the Biafra War. The Biafran elite are failing in their responsibility which first and foremost is to work for the welfare of the people they lead. And freedom is the only welfare that the people desire and require from them.
A leader of the people must be pragmatic and capable of thinking for the people he is leading or else he is not worthy to be called by that name. If they should continue to allow themselves the often lame and luxury excuse of fighting and running away in order to live and fight again then that means that a life after a fight is only justified if they fight again and again till they have achieved their first goal of going to war. Life becomes useless and undignified when a people had gone to a just war and lived and still continue in slavery and timidly continue to accept that degrading state.
So, this naturally leads us to this inevitable point which is that the enslaver can be forgiven and actually justified that he continues in his practice of enslavement while the slave who remains in slavery and loving it cannot be forgiven. This is simple enough to reconcile because for the former there are benefits he is deriving while the slave has everything to lose and if he dies in the process of freeing himself, the difference it makes will be counted to his honor instead. Arguably we can safely conclude that the life of the slave is worse than his death if he continues to accept his position as a result of fear.
The truth is that as things stand today, the life of the Igbolis and the rest of Biafrans is worse than their death so long as they continue to live in Nigeria. As long as Biafrans continue with this arrangement they will be insulting and disgracing the sacred blood and memory of the over 3 million Biafrans who have so far been murdered by Nigeria only because they were born Biafrans. What more excuses have the living Biafrans got? The rest people they are dealing with in the present Nigeria are also men as they are and so they are expected to use the same means the oppressor uses in subjugating them to extricate themselves. What does the oppressor use? Force? Then use force for force. Do they use tricks and deceits? Well, in as much as Biafrans must not and cannot deal in lies and deceits but they must find a way to meet them on their own grounds. Maybe start by exposing and telling them to their face how ugly and stinking their acts are and how well you understand their dishonest games. Show them that you can outwit them. It’s easy to do if you had the interest of your children’s future at heart.
This next question is actually screaming for a satisfactory answer, do the Biafrans who are living today feel embarrassed and regretful for their people to have initiated the fight for their freedom? Do those alive today feel sorry and apologetic and sincerely believe they made a mistake and so will no long pursue their first cause to the end? But the truth is that Biafrans no longer have excuses to continue to accept defeat after nearly half a century of enduring and bearing that stigma of shame. Any existence without freedom (that is the liberty to live life on your own terms and dream dreams and go on to pursue them without fear) is the worst kind of existence, it is worse than death.
Did anybody tell you that you were wrong to have fought to save yourselves in the face of annihilation? Have you come to believe the person? Well, if indeed you were told that, that is a lie and this is the truth, you were right and will forever be. That was and still is the noblest act you have ever done. You were right to have taken the initiative to save your people from death and destruction and tried to secure their property. But can’t you see today that the goal has not yet been accomplished? You have not secured yet the lives and properties of every Biafran everywhere, so your job has not been completed. You can only give up if you are honestly and sincerely convinced that you are fighting an unjust cause. But you yourself know and the rest of the world knows that the Biafra War was and is the war of freedom and self-defense and as such is justified by every standard.
It is a war for others, your children, your weak ones and you who are strong, the elite must continue to engage in it till it is won. Or are you about to convince the world that the Igbolis are incapable of any selfless act and cannot endure long in the face of hardship? Look at it, the Liberian war lasted for more than seven years, the Ethiopian and Eritrean war lasted for decades, the Sudan and Southern Sudan war was on for so many decades and now Southern Sudan will be getting their long deserved freedom by next year, 2011. All you need to win at the end of the day are honesty, sincerity, consistency and organization. The intensive part of the Biafran War only lasted for a mere 30 months and the casualty was so heavy, 3.1 million. But the Biafrans of today have no excuse you are wasting the generations and the future of your children by continuing to wait. Freedom does wait, you must chase after it to snatch it. You cannot love your life so much and expect any good thing out of it. Your life is worth nothing if you cannot provide for your children and the weak ones among you who naturally cannot take care of themselves.