Nigeria Needs Ethnic Self-determination for Its Constituent Nationalities – by ‘Toyin Adepoju
Nigeria needs ethnic self-determination and break up into smaller nations, not even restructuring and certainly not the present nonsensical arrangement can ever work in meeting needs of the citizenry.
The country is a farce, created by a colonizer, and run largely by soldiers of fortune.
Right wing Islamists as dominate Northern Nigeria cannot coexist peacefully with anyone else. Their only condition for peace is that they dominate you and do what they like with you, such as killing your people anytime they wish.
These right wing Islamists are the most consistent power bloc in Nigerian history and their presence as a dominant force within the nation means the country can only grow at the pace of these largely feudal and medieval characters because they are prepared to do anything to maintain their dominance, with terrorism being their major tool in creating fear and destabilization, from mob and group murders to threats of violence to coups and organized terrorism.
Within a nation that has no collective identity, no shared sense of history or shared values, what will you get? A culture of everybody for themselves and their cronies, which Buhari is displaying in full glare in his ethnoreligious agenda in spite of the trans-ethnic coalition that brought him to power.
The culture of everybody for themselves and their cronies is the core of corruption. Corruption is, therefore, an expression of the absence of cohesive identity and vision in the contraption of a nation. This fact is manifest, among many other examples such as the defense of Boko Haram in the first two years of its 2011 escalation, in the defense of Abacha by Buhari and even by some other Northern Muslims, with Buhari declaring Abacha never stole, even as these figures day and night castigate what they say is the corruption of GEJ’s govt.
The SW followers of APC thought they could ride the Northern Muslim bandwagon into Aso Rock, but they are in Aso Rock as if they are not there.
Zik will never be a hero for Yoruba people. Awolowo will never be a hero for Igbo people. The Sardauna will never be a hero for Igbo or Yoruba people. Neither Zik nor Awo will ever be a hero for the Muslim North. The Muslim North’s almost mythic figure Usman Dan Fodio will never be a hero for most Yoruba people and certainly never for Igbo people. Of these figures, Zik and Awo will have some meaning for members of the smaller ethnic groups; less so for the Sardauna and most likely not for Dan Fodio, who is likely almost alien to many from those demographics, while the people of Benin trace their own contemporary history to interaction at a state level with the outside world well before colonialism and before then, to a line of kings and a proud empire. The various Edo peoples, the Cross River peoples and numerous others all have their own proud histories. From their resistance to colonialism with Jaja of Opobo to pre-colonial international trade, among many other historical foundations, most or all of which might not be part of the Nigerian project in which disparate people were forced into a nation without their consent.
The welding of a nation by force is not working. All the ethnicities should decide how they want to move forward. Its more realistic to be a small giant, as many developed countries are, than to be a lumbering and directionless behemoth, regressing decade after decade.
Those ethnicities who wish to be on their own or form national coalitions should do so. But to insist on this current nation, perhaps even in the name of so called restructuring, looks to me like looking for more of the vampirism represented by legally entrenched blood sucking manifest in ridiculous incomes for politicians and the recurrent terrorism flows from the Muslim North – the latest being state-supported Fulani herdsmen militia and random murders of Christians in the North.