Posts Tagged ‘ndigbo’

IGBO, MARGINALISATION AND VICTIM MENTALITY

January 15, 2018

As the race for 2019 general elections is getting set, political zones, vested interests of different shades and colours, races and tribes are directly and indirectly mobilising for the all important exercise. Ambitions and aspirations are being articulated towards achieving future relevance.

From all indications, Ndigbo seem to be gearing up toward our usual political trademark – delusion and shadow chasing. One can discern from body languages, actions and inactions of the Igbo political elite that Ndigbo in PDP are not prepared to upgrade their near traditional second fiddle political ambition.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) few weeks ago concluded its elective convention where the position of the National Chairman was thrown open to all the Southern states. The Igbos in PDP did not consider it expedient to vie for the post. Attempt in most cases is no crime but can be recognised as a matter of seriousness and commitment. Instead of any show of interest in the exalted position, we know that Ndigbo in PDP are anxiously angling their usual noncompetitive and most of the time useless positions as “deputies”.
In the words of Dim Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu, “The Vice President, in Nigeria political setting, is merely a political vulture who waits to feed from the carcass of The President, if he dies. But in Nigeria, a president never TRULY dies. That leaves the Vice politically castrated”.

We keep on crying and blaming others for our self inflicted political woes but refusing to demonstrate seriousness when it matters. We always fail to realise that a victim mentality is a prolonged form of self-destruction, a.k.a suicide. Those individuals and their zones who attempted getting what belonged to every member of the PDP from the South will command respect and regard than those who were nonchalant and timid about their right. Byron Katie said, “As long as you think that the cause of your problem is “out there” –as long as you think that anyone or anything is responsible for your suffering –the situation is hopeless. It means that you are forever in the role of victim that you’re suffering in paradise”.

In every political contest like any human contest, a winner must emerge. But history records those who are part of the culture of competition in the electoral process. It is the civilisation of electoral competitiveness that yields dividends in democratic process. Sitting on the fence waiting for the second fiddle position is therefore a lazy approach to politics. And this is the bane of Ndigbo in PDP.

The victim mindset dilutes the human potential. By not accepting personal responsibility for our circumstances, we greatly reduce our power to change them. The constitutional framework allows individuals, states, and zones to attempt anything aimed at ensuring competitive democratic processes. What you get as a nonchalant party man/woman is a meaningless and useless gesture from an equal partner. Ndigbo should not be repeating the same thing all over and be expecting different results.

The second fiddle (Deputies) ambition is no longer feasible if we must stop the perceived marginalization of Ndigbo. Rochas Okorocha has in the past contested twice in the primaries against Buhari. He is respected and acknowledged as a faithful party man, and when he talks APC listens. Ndigbo must choose to deal with injustice humanely and break the chains of negative thoughts and energies, and not let themselves sink into them.

To our numerous “Deputy infested” Igbo political elite in all the political parties, make it a New Year resolution to reject this lowly selfish political ambition. It makes you a dog in the manger; it renders you impotent. Politics is about the greater good for the greater number. But your selfish ambition of deputy positions is seriously retarding the political and economic progress of Ndigbo. The time to beat a retreat and change is now!

–         KRESTAN UKAH WRITES FROM LAGOS

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NDIGBO: CHARITY BEGINS AT HOME!

October 29, 2017

It is common in this part of the world for people
not to accept responsibility for majority of their
actions. They therefore are always pointing at
other people or giving lame excuses. But the truth
remains that problem identification is very key in
problem solving. We must strive earnestly
therefore to identify our problems and seek
genuine means and approaches to have them
solved because every knowledge is of no avail
where understanding is lacking.

Dim Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu (Ezeigbo
Gburugburu), said that the First Republic
produced three major actors – two realists and
one dreamer. Unfortunately, the dreamer was from
the South-East. While the realists focused on
developing their regions, the dreamer was
claiming to be a Nationalist and we know better
now. Ironically, the South-Easterners are still lost
in the euphoria of Nationalism and their region
had remained far behind other regions in terms of
development and political consciousness.
Sadly, the worst network of roads in Nigeria can
be found in the South-East inspite of their heavy
presence and committed involvement in party
politics. They occupy different positions in
different political parties but it has not translated
to siting of projects that would better the region.
The Onitsha Port is there in name, Port Harcourt
port which is nearer is expensive while they
continue to clear goods from Lagos port. They are
always placated with some Federal appointments
which had only bettered the lot of the appointees
and their families and not the region. We are
always holding the shortest end of the stick and
are seen by others as only good enough materials
for campaign and propaganda, which can be used
and dumped at will.

Prof. Chinua Achebe said, “It is a taboo and
disservice to the Igbo Nation if we cannot transfer
our language and culture to our children.” It is
now very difficult identifying our people because a
good number cannot communicate fluently in Igbo
language. A study group predicted that our
language will become extinct in the nearest
future. What are we doing about that? We are
rather even becoming more English than the folks
from United Kingdom by not allowing our children
to communicate in our native tongue. Without
apologies, Pentecostalism has helped kill our
language and culture. Our people now change
names at will, making it more difficult for proper
identification; many no longer give their children
Igbo names. Many parents in the present
generation cannot speak or write Igbo language
not to talk of teaching their wards.
Elie Wiesel said, “There may be times when we
are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must
never be a time when we fail to protest”. Among
the regions in Nigeria, the South-East has the
least number of states. Our involvement in the
polity has only been limited to appointments;
even ethnic minorities are now stronger, more
respected and considered. May be many of our
people do not understand the implication of
having lesser number of states. It means we are
being cheated in the distribution of national
resources. It also implied that we have lesser
number of representatives in the National
Assembly, lesser voting power, and lesser voice
since democracy is a game of numbers. It should
bother us as a people and thereby push us to
speak with one voice and have it addressed in the
genuine spirit of equity.

The Biafra-Nigeria civil war should have taught
our people lessons. Our people lost lives,
properties and investments in different parts of
the country and had to start all over again after
the war from the scratch. Should such take place
again today or another pogrom, our people will
lose even more. In Abuja and other major cities,
our sons and daughters invest heavily on hotels,
plazas, and properties. Yet the same people
cannot boast of a piece of block in the South-
East. How long do we suffer this amnesia and
keep developing other regions at the very expense
of our own region?

How many people from our region think about
investing in the media and education? How many
radio and television stations are located in our
region? Is it that we do not understand the role of
the media in development and dissemination of
information to the rest of the world? The number
of media houses in just one state in South-West
for instance outnumbers the ones in the whole of
our region. The same in the educational sector.
Other regions are seriously looking to improve
their educational sector and are building more
schools while we have more children out of
school. Most editors of our dailies are from one
region and they keep shaping opinions of the
whole nation. Our people presume the Northerners
are disadvantaged yet they are more informed as
they stick to their transistor radios while our
people (traders and artisans) read only sports
newspapers devoid of national issues.

“The penalty good men pay for indifferences to
public affairs is to be ruled by evil men” – Plato.
If we genuinely love ourselves, we must spare
thought for the next person. It is rather absurd to
ask everybody to pay the same levies in our town
meetings and associations; It is a form of
oppression for the less endowed. Oppression of
the poor by the rich in our region is at the root of
kidnapping and other crimes. Ndigbo – the horns
cannot be too heavy for the head that must carry
them. It is time to look homeward! Charity begins
at home!

Alinnor Arinze A.