The Blind Leading The Blind By Tochukwu Ezukanma

By Tochukwu Ezukanma

Recently, Ralph Uwazurike, the leader of the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB), called for a one day sit-at-home. I was deeply disturbed that people, especially at Onitsha, heeded his call. But then, the masses barely think, and consequently, are susceptible to political manipulation. No wonder, Adolf Hitler once told an aide, “never worry about what to tell the people because you can tell them anything and they will believe, and the bigger the lie, the more believable it is to them”. It also partially explains why the masses, irrespective of their number, strength and righteous anger, cannot get anything done, unless, they are directed strategically, that is, led. Ralph Uwazurike is an uninformed dilettante that is strategically misdirecting the Igbo masses.

I once met Ralph Uwazurike. He was in Washington, DC with Chukwuemeka Ojukwu for the opening of the Biafran “House”. Eager to assess this then emergent secessionist activist, I listened to him very attentively and observed him very closely. After the event, I penned my opinion of him, “Uwazurike is not a sober and reflective crusader on a planned mission with carefully articulated strategies and objectives. He is an impetus man dabbling recklessly into an issue with potentially momentous consequences. He lacks both charisma and oratorical flourishes. He is neither a scholar nor an intellectual; a philosopher nor a deep thinker; a sophisticate nor a cosmopolite. He is a homespun boyish looking man, with an air of arrogance or the self-importance of a parvenu gloating in his new found prominence.”
They were to cut the tape, declaring the Biafran “House” open. They were about four hours late. Tired of waiting for them, Prof. Elekwachi of the Biafran Foundation proceeded to cut the tape and declare the Biafran “House” open. About 30 minutes later, Ojukwu, his wife, Bianca, and Uwazurike arrived.

Ojukwu spoke first. He apologized profusely for their lateness. Uwazurike made no apology for his lateness. Evidently, not happy that the Biafran “House” was declared open before their arrival, he said, “you could have gone ahead and done whatever you wanted but whatever you did in the absence of Ojukwu and I was useless”. I was stunned and offended by his bare-faced imprudence. I though it was insensitive and insolent. Even, if it was the President of the United States of America that kept his maids and houseboys  waiting for four hours, he would have been polite enough to offer them an apology, no matter how understated.

So, who is this boorish upstart thrust into the limelight by prattling his neo-Biafran nonsense that thinks he could keep more than 100 men and women, some of them older than him, waiting for more than 4 hours and not only refuses to apologize for his lateness, but also, had the temerity to term whatever they did in his absence useless. I was dismayed by his delusion of grandeur and false feeling of indispensability. He continued, “Initially, I did not know what I was doing, but, as democracy allows self expression, I decided to express myself”. So, I started talking about Biafra, and as people started listening to me, I continued.

I believe that up till now, he still does not know what he is doing. He needs to stop “talking about Biafra,” and first of all, endeavor to know what he is doing. He needs to be tutored on the history of Nigeria and her social and political temperament, the strengths and weaknesses of the Igbo nation, and the principles of Nonviolence (which, according to him, informs his activism). And then, the absurdity of his neo-Biafranism will crystallize to him.

Nigeria is not breaking up because the generality of Nigerians, who despite their vociferous denunciations of Nigeria for her multiple woes, are committed to a united Nigeria. The early attempt to create Biafra was the pipe-dream of an arrogant, selfishly ambitious despot, who in his studied disdain for reason and caution scorned the advice of his father and Nnamdi Azikiwe and railroaded his self-appointed Consultative Assembly into assenting to his secessionist bid.

Unlike the masses that were whipped into a paranoiac frenzy by Ojukwu’s propaganda and falsehood, the politically perceptive Igbo were opposed to Biafra. Like Sir Louis Odumwgwu Ojukwu (before his death) and Nnamdi Azikiwe, the Igbo political class was opposed to Biafra. However, intimidated by Ojukwu’s broad-stroke labeling and chastisement of anyone that disagreed with him as saboteur, they grudgingly conceded, “you can declare Biafra at your earliest possible convenience” It was not a heartfelt, firm endorsement but the reluctant consent of an intimidated Assembly.

Since those nightmare days when the Igbo defeated, battered and tattered stumbled out of the last vestiges of Biafra, we have made enormous progress across the whole spectrum of the Nigerian social life and gained the respect and confidence of other Nigerians. Uwazurike is undermining the credibility of the Igbo. He is portraying the Igbo as subversive, unreliable and troublous elements and implacable, irredeemable rebels.

Igbo land is landlocked with large tracts of infertile land and a population density three times that of Yoruba land. But countervailing these disadvantages are the Igbo’s admirable qualities of courage, determination, hard-edged work ethic and enterprising vigor. Our boundless resourceful energies and effervescent entrepreneur spirit are unyieldingly spilling beyond the confines of our regional borders, and have thus, driven us to every nook and cranny of Nigeria. Operating within an expanded frontier – one Nigeria - is to our advantage.

Although MASSOB operatives are sometimes armed and violent, Uwazurike professes that he is guided by the principles of Nonviolence Civil Disobedience in his struggle for the actualization of his Sovereign State of Biafra. To appreciate the incongruity of this method with the Nigerian political environment and his agitation for Biafra, he needs to read the writings of major proponents of nonviolent protest: David Thoreau, Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr.

The Igbo masses, like the masses, universally, are not politically savvy, and therefore need to be directed strategically. The man, Ralph Uwazurike, arrogating to himself the role of directing them, admittedly, does not know what he is doing. Is that not a classical case of the metaphorical blind leading the blind?

Tochukwu Ezukanma writes from Lagos, Nigeria.
maciln18@yahoo.com
0803 529 2908

 

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters

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If you are an Igdo man as you

If you are an Igdo man as you said, When Last did you visited your Father`s Compaund. FOOL You Mr Yoruba Tochukwu.

Blind leading the blind

My brother, no one own Nigeria and as such we should fight whatever injustices we perceive . I do not begrudge Ojukwu for whatever decisions he must have taken during the Biafran saga, but this Monkey- Uwazurike(an Imp) who doesn't even know where he is going-I wonder why the govt have not poisoned him in jail.
Take a look at MASSOB in onitsha-are they not a bunch of thieves exhorting money from hardworking iBook business men like me? Why would the idiots demand I pay for any consignment I offload in my homeLand?
God Punish una!!!

Biafra

My brother, no one own Nigeria and as such we should fight whatever injustices we perceive . I do not begrudge Ojukwu for whatever decisions he must have taken during the Biafran saga, but this Monkey- Uwazurike(an Imp) who doesn't even know where he is going-I wonder why the govt have not poisoned him in jail.
Take a look at MASSOB in onitsha-are they not a bunch of thieves exhorting money from hardworking iBook business men like me? Why would the idiots demand I pay for any consignment I offload in my homeLand?
God Punish una!!!

Certainly this must be one of

Certainly this must be one of the impostors (Internet madrassa) that have specialized in using Igbo names to create confusion in the internet. They are either using igbo names to stoke hatred, serve personal interests or ingratiate themselves to some vested interests. He could as well be same person as Deri or Dele.

HOW MUCH WAS THIS NON-ENTITY PAID?

The writer does not deserve any reply however he is living in kuku-land.The writer should go and settle his dislike of Ralph through other means but the unshakable reality is that Ndigbo are very much behind Ralph.
Biafra cannot be wished away unless we all settle down to draft a peoples constitution with the consent of the whole ethnic and religious components that make up Nigeria.
In other words,as long as equity is not supreme and subjugation,marginalisation,corruption and the usurpation of natural resources by a select few who claim to be more Nigerian than others prevail,the concept of Biafranism will ever be sustained.
Lastly, democracy is not just elections,it means freedom of expression and the right to self determination,if the man in say,northern Spain,Scotland,Texas,etc can freely express his ambition to an autonomous political existence,why not the man in SE Nigeria or SS Nigeria?

If this writer is actually a

If this writer is actually a Nigerian, let him tell the young Igbo school leaver seeking admission into the unity schools of his one Nigeria why the following cut-off marks were fixed:
Anambra - 139
Imo - 138
Enugu - 134
Lagos - 133
-
-
Ogun - 131
Osun - 127
-
Zamfara - 4
Taraba - 3
Yobe - 2
The Igbo society is republican and permits self censorship, but it is no license for this individual to mislead the public because he has some axe to grind with Ojukwu and Uwazulike

Blind leading blind....Uwazurike and his ilk!!

God bless you Tochukwu. The sooner we as Igbo people get the chip off our shoulders and stop trying to rewrite history to make up for our own self inflicted deficiencies and instead start to exult in what we do have and bring to the table (and marketplace), the sooner the rest of the country will start willingly making room for us.
You have called a spade a spade & quite courageously I might add since we are a people who believe in "glueing together" right or wrong. We are the economic engine of Nigeria, our innovativeness and creativity is propelling Nigeria to heights that make everyone proud BUT we have a problem. We refuse to let the ghost of Biafra die and instead we are trying to force, bully, guilt trip others into accepting our own version of events. As for me and my house, we are moving forward and not living in a manufactured past.

Typical igbo nonsense!

Sometimes I marvel at the idiocy and poor judgment of some igbo people who think they are smart but end up showing brazen stupidity! What does this writer hope to achieve by this drivel? Why must this writer stand before his people and begin to spew venomous ashes aimed at bringing them to contumely but which, at the end of the day, would be blown back to the sender? I really pity the restless leg and arm syndrome of this writer who, finding nothing else to write about to project his people in good light, turns to pounding out macerated products that carry only stench and putrescence. Anybody who decimates his people in order to gain a foothold on a path to progress usually finds that the bodies of his victims provide slippery and stumbling blocks that make any movement impossible. If the writer wants to show his writing prowess, better he emulates his older kinsmen of the pen who have made their people and the entire Nigeria proud! This writing has described this writer vividly!

An Objective Opinion

Tochukwu, you the man. The Ibos are generally well educated people, but too often they use their skills in a convoluted manner in order to serve a selfish interest. But this write-up was spot on. The majority of Ibos don't realize the reason most of them are doing so well is because of the huge market, composing the entire country, they have available for their trading. They think they would still have access to all that when forced into Biafra. Nigeria is the best thing that has happened to the Ibos.

"The early attempt to create

"The early attempt to create Biafra was the pipe-dream of an arrogant, selfishly ambitious despot, who in his studied disdain for reason and caution scorned the advice of his father and Nnamdi Azikiwe and railroaded his self-appointed Consultative Assembly into assenting to his secessionist bid." I sure have a problem with this paragraph. the writer refuses to inform his readers that b4 ojukwu declared Biafra, that more than 30,000 igbos had been killed in a country they called theirs all because some pple tagged the Nzeogwu coup an igbo coup. Okwuchukwu Ezeanyika tell me the sense it would have made, staying under a country that has done nothing than wipe out ur kingsmen and drove the remaining one to the east. Am sure you can see where Nigeria is headed to after 40yrs? I just don't know what to call pple like you sincerely.

The writer will hear from the

The writer will hear from the Biafrans and he should be ready to stay in Lagos or North forever together with the entire members of his family, Biafria does not need him to be restored, lest I forget listen to tonights broadcast at www.radiobiafia.co or www.biliehumanrights.org or indigenouspeopleofbiafra.org.
Time 7 pm Biafran time

The writer will hear from the

The writer will hear from the Biafrans and he should be ready to stay in Lagos or North forever together with the entire members of his family, Biafria does not need him to be restored, lest I forget listen to tonights broadcast at www.radiobiafia.co or www.biliehumanrights.org or indigenouspeopleofbiafra.org.
Time 7 pm Biafran time

committed to one nigeria?

Your personal hatred for Ojukwu and Uwazuruike, for whatever reason, is showing here. It's ok.you're fully entitled to that.

However, to say that Nigerians are fully committed to one Nigeria is quite laughable. Do you live in Nigeria at all? With BH fighting to enthrone Sharia? With indigenes and settlers all over the country, after nearly 100 years of amalgamation? With the religious crises?With quota system everywhere? Did you see the unity schools cut-off marks? Is that your "one Nigeria"?

A country committed to integration cannot, at the same time, promote policies and politics of division.

Is this writer Akaliogeli?! (5)

You talk about the Igbo not being politically savvy. Is that not the Igbo persona? Are you going to change your personality and become what God did not create you? While a Yoruba Brigadier Ogundipe could serve as Nigeria's High Commissioner in the late 1960s and a Colonel Adebayo, as Military Governor of the West under their junior officer, Lt. Col. Yakubu Gowon, no Igbo man or woman would do so. Is it a crime? And I refer to the Igbo persona prior to the war and not the present Igbo bastardized and turned to beggarly existence. In BIAFRA we will reclaim the values for which the Igbo are known and we will really go to work.

A food for thought, Mr. Ezukanma: There are more Igbo university graduates in the Diaspora than within Nigeria. True or False? Bye bye-o with your one Nigeria. God give me BIAFRA any day and we will go to work with the willing and mission, WE LIVE FOR OUR CHILDREN AND THE NEXT GENERATION and not CHOP-I-CHOP, which is Nigeria's! END.

Is this writer Akaliogeli?! (4)

You talk about "Igbo land...with large tracts of INFERTILE (emphasis mine) land..." Have you heard of the country called ISRAEL? The people of Israel turned DESERT land into the greatest agricultural showpiece the world has known today. The Isrealis are now extending their expertise to other countries such as Colombia where a group of them succeeded in helping local farmers grow potatoes in a harsh desert environment.

And do you have any modicum idea about the geography of JAPAN? In that country, you cannot travel more than 150 miles by land without meeting water and they had more mountains than level ground. The people went to work. That is what we will do in BIAFRA. Japan leveled the mountains and sand-filled sections of the ocean and rivers around it and built towns, homes, factories, industries, airports, et al.

Is this writer Akaliogeli?! (3)

The best dress shirts I have worn were made in Aba by Aba tailors and if you care to know, some of my shirts were purchased for US$200.00 but they do not compare in production quality to those I purchased from Lagos traders that were made by Aba tailors.

The US AGOA enactment was promulgated to assist the growth of the economies of sub-Saharan countries by exporting relevant goods into the US at duty-free rates. The US authorities have repeatedly advised Nigeria to expand the products they export instead of confinement to oil and energy related products. But the FGN would not create enabling environment for the Aba tailors to thrive and ensure they take advantage of AGOA because it will benefit the Igbo!

Is this writer Akaliogeli?! (2)

Was Nigeria he talks about not the same country whose leaders in 1970 took over the schools in Igbo land from the missionaries to punish the Igbo and thereby unwittingly bred citizens who are today anti-religion and godless who went into universities and became cultists, killers and rapists? Is this not Nigeria which ensured that rather than PRODA be left as an independent agency to harness the patents of BIAFRA'S Research and Production (RAP) turned it into an agency of the Ministry thereby ensuring that it only exists on paper and no more?

He talks of Igbo land being landlocked. Probably he has not heard of the country of LESOTHO with a population of slightly 2 million that is sandwiched within South Africa. That country produces dress shirts and trousers sold in the United States and not only brings multi-million dollars into the economy but also as a consequence creates thousands of jobs.

Is this writer Akaliogeli?! (1)

I asked the question in the caption whether the author of this piece is Akaliogeli because I do not want to label him as such and use such words as Ofeke and Efulefu. Reading through his diatribe one could easily discern that he has an axe to grind with both Dim Ojukwu whom he found difficult to address respectfully and Uwazurike. He made no pretenses about his disdain for the two and that is his albatross, not mine.

My grouse is his view, which I disagree vehemently with, that the Igbo continuation of existence in Nigeria rather than in an independent nation augurs better for them. My profound view is that the Igbo, with their entrepreneur spirit, existing as a nation where they are not hampered by petty political squabbles serves them far better than continued presence in Nigeria. Does the writer not realize that the world is now one global village? Does creating BIAFRA mean that the Igbo will cease to be seen in what remains Nigeria? Certainly No!

Akpos1 Unmasked

@writer, thanks for the insightful piece and, most importantly, for revealing the true identity of Akpos1.

Wow!! What a nice and

Wow!! What a nice and wonderful write up. Well, the thing that is making things difficult for our people to understand things like this, is their obsession by sentiment. These people are using a portion among us (illetrates and ignorants ones), to gain their wordly needs in the name of political revolution. While they are not taking part in the actual struggle. Well, i hope those concern will learn something from this article.