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Author Name: Farouk Martins
Number of articles: 570

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Separatist Fatigue Syndrome: IPOB Is Squandering Goodwill
Author: Farouk Martins | September 18, 2017



The goodwill built by generations that were known for hard work, humility and earned trust Igbo enjoy in their country is being eroded by IPOB, in their pride before fall.  Army have to be careful with Kanu seeking martyrdom. OBJ met Dokubo Asari, which elevated him to a tin god.  

After ridiculing Buhari in sickness, wishing him the worst when he was down, OBJ asked Buhari to meet Kanu. Who does he represent and what bad blood would he discuss, emissaries nko?

As a result, AREWA Youths came out giving son of the soil Quit Notice in their own Country. It is so provocative that it has led to vagabonds taking the law into their own hands. In normal times, this could be glossed over but in the context of what led to Nigerian civil war, the Police should have “invited” over the leaders of the gangs.

When people's fears are genuine, previous harms and damages real, example should have been made out of those irresponsible Arewa youths. Other Nigerians owe the Igbo apology for the way they were treated during that war, since they contributed to building this Country and sacrificed a great deal in the process.

The hurt and disappointment should not be transferred to Igbo children in order to start another war. We must all commit to the process of rebuilding, join together and face ethnic distractors in getting rid of those perpetrating greed and corruption. Open our eyes while we cry not closed and pray. IPOB grievances can be better expressed, not by confrontations and the songs of war.

Though some parents that went through the last war might still nurse physical and emotional scars; not retaliation. Few Igbo neighboring states have not returned properties to owners. Indeed, some Igbo died without realizing their hard work and sweat from those assets. War cry reminds many of us of starving and suffering babies used as politics of negotiations by both sides of the war.

OPC, Arewa, MASSOB and MEND have become activists preying on separation and they have become rich cornering contracts from the Federal Government. More organizations noticed and started their separatist movements expecting to become rich as well. IPOB rivals MASSOB, they have declared MASSOB rich and as a sell out so that they can wrestle contracts away.

We have youths whose lives and hope are being wasted by depending on IPOB shallow promises. On the other hand, are patriotic Igbo that have left home and established in their world biggest market: Nigeria. They just want to be left alone in peace to live their lives. Even those in their states have suffered from the dislocation of their normal day to day business and trade because of either militias parading themselves as local police or Federal Force checking their movements.

This has led to some bloody confrontations and death. We all have Separatist Fatigue Syndrome: sick and tired of demands and threats made by all the militias. IPOB is just the latest and people have had enough; giving up and ready to split the Country along ethnic lines. But ethnic association is just a distraction used by corrupt Nigerians who know no ethnic or kin when sharing our money as loot. Ethnicity is only used as bargaining chips.

When they share their loot in billions, all ethnic leaders and activists are represented. Look, Igbo are not going anywhere. They have invested too much blood, sweat and hope in the Country of their birth. They are just as patriotic and proud as any Nigerian. Actually, they have more investments outside their home of origin than other Nigerians in theirs.

Very few folks will squander all these to follow some leader that just woke up looking for aggrandizement. We all know that anyone looking for attention can wake up and claim to be an activist for separation. Igbo had many sympathizers within Nigeria and the rest of the world. As ruthless as Benjamin Adekunle was during the war, he gave Nigeria's ammunitions to Igbo opponents to open a new front at their Northern border.

They did not. They converged on their relatives in the Mid-West and proceeded to the West until they were stopped at Ore. These were their sympathizers for goodness sake. A continuing case of familiarity breeds contempt in the Mid-West and the West. Unfortunately, this time around, IPOB would not enjoy such empathy within and it is doubtful if IPOB have as many sympathizers as Biafra enjoyed during the last war. IPOB has divided not only Nigerians but the Igbo-Nigerians as well.

While they enjoy the irrational exuberance of some youths that never knew war, others cannot be swayed by their propaganda. IPOB leader has few followers that are resourceful and worthy except those using them as bargaining chips. Therefore, Igbo have more to lose when they separate than other average Nigerians. It puts Igbo comfortably residing outside Igbo-land at a disadvantage.

They have everything to lose and nothing to gain by separating from their biggest market in the world. The mere noises of IPOB create suspicion and doubts on dedicated Igbo-Nigerian. Indeed, most Igbo are proud Nigerians wherever they are. In some cases, they dominate organization and groups representing Nigeria. Nevertheless, IPOB claim to speak for these dedicated Nigerians.

Instead of peaceful rallies, they have instigated provocations and clashes in some states inside and outside theirs, putting law abiding Igbo lives in danger. Many of these youths may not be old enough to know that political alliance in Nigeria is not new. Indeed, Igbo have formed political alliance with the North throughout the history of Nigeria after Independence.

Nobody calls them names for the alliance. What does Igbo want that they never got in their coalition with Tafawa Balewa, Obasanjo or in Jonathan's Administration? Those outside Balewa and Jonathan's Administration never cried for separation. When Ironsi declared Unitary Government, ironically the only people against it were the Hausa or the North.

They have since got used to it, mastered it and used it to their advantage. Whenever the government of the day is not in coalition with Igbo; Nigeria sucks? So far there is only one region that has demonstrated that it could stand on its own without Federal Government in the past. It was not Eastern Region.

There are certain states right now that have been able to generate enough Internal Revenue to support themselves, Igbo states are not one of them. Yet, we continue to hear how they are going to turn Biafra into land of milk and honey.

If outsiders cannot survive within Igbo states and many Igbo could not, show us some evidence of how you can change this equation for the masses you are calling home. Out of Separatists Fatigue Syndrome: they all became repulsive, telling each to go if it wants to.



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