Monday, August 7, 2017

ON THE ANTI-IGBO SONG POSTED BY SAHARA REPORTERS - Maiwada Dammallam.

For some inexplicable reasons, Sahara Reporters seem to be veering off the track of ethical and consecutive journalism into something undefinable with each passing day. It's quite unfortunate that the prolific and fiery SR, a very reputable online magazine that used to be a frontline warrior in social activism should find it worthy to discard professionalism and patriotism in favour of cheap and divisive kind of journalism by propagating unverifiable inciting materials which may unleash a dangerous mayhem that could set Nigeria ablaze for the second time. 

One will expect SR, an entity considered by many as a reliable source of information, to exercise caution and restraint while enlightening or entertaining the public if not for the sake of its reputation at least, for the sake of innocent people who will pay with their lives any unleashed misadventure. Having arrived this far, I also expect SR to keep its objectives in tandem with the noble objectives of journalism that has always being to build not to destroy; something that earned it the listening ears of the people that will bear the unpalatable results of irresponsible journalism from whoever. 

One is left wondering what SR intended to achieve by promoting abusive and divisive material in as socially volatile, religiously fragmented and ethnically divided society as Nigeria is especially at a time when all hands should be on deck to work for the realignment of the wobbly wheels of the Nigerian vehicle to help put it back on track and keep it on course. 

For so many reasons SR shouldn't be caught peddling cheap materials that are known to be the common bond between 'roadside loggers' and pseudo-intellects. SR has a reputation to protect being at the very top of the business of cyber-journalism in Nigeria. By being careless with its methods and ethics, SR is only putting Nigeria at risk but it is also putting its exalted position of envy in the cyber-community on the line. For instance, without this, nobody will ever think SR lack the capacity to assess and accurately predict the dangers of provoking ethnic hatred in a multi-religious, multi-ethnic and multi-cultural polity like Nigeria. SR couldn't have come this far without knowing a bit about Rwanda, Somalia, Sudan or more closely, the Nigeria that's yet to completely heal from a similar misadventure.

I don't want to believe the lessons of the pogrom of the 60s that left Nigeria soaked with the blood of the innocents were lost to SR or anybody to expect any benefit out of a repeat that could be more destructive with a more populated Nigeria and cheaply accessible more advanced war techniques, weaponry and large army of unemployed and adventurous youth. That the SR crew are safely in New York, the USA far away from the theatre of both the previous and next rounds of carnage should not give them anybody any false sense of immunity. Wars are like earthquakes, they could unleash tsunamis thousands of miles away from the epicenter. Even more, being mostly Nigerians, the SR crew would not be totally immune to the result of their reckless kind of journalism. They have folks back home in Nigeria who may not be spared the results. Having said that, let's review the trickery of the said audio clip that's childishly being traded as the war drums of the Northern Nigeria. 

To begin, if you actually believe that the North, home to 4 living former Presidents, 2 living former Vice Presidents, countless former Governors, countless former members of Nigeria's highest ruling bodies under different dispensations, incumbents Deputy UN Secretary-General and OPEC Secretary-General, with also in store an assorted collection of intellectuals, bureaucrats, technocrats, internationally acclaimed businessmen, seasoned politicians, globally respected journalists, dexterous and respectable social activists, would have no voice to speak but the voice of some half baked 'struggling to survive' Kennywood entertainers working in a one room studio with obsolete musical equipment, know that you are a case worse and more pathetic than Wike, Fayose and FFK combined. 

Alluding to any relationship between the North, its political ambitions, position and mindset to the rather unintelligently scripted anti-Igbo song was a serious disrespect to the region coextensive to the embarrassing disrespect Nnamdi Kanu has been subjecting the South Eastern region for the past few months. The North will never sink this low even if it will choose the option of idiocy to decide its position and enhance its socio-economic and political relevance in Nigeria. 

For anybody to assume otherwise, to put it nicely, I can only say some heads need to uninstall the nonsensical dogmatic beliefs about the North they are operating with and install the hard fact that the North, besides not being stupid as could reasonably be proved by its historical participation and contributions in building Nigeria, has never being scared of being an independent region. If by any chance, the idea of the North being a liability has registered deeply with some people, the most intelligent question to ask themselves is, why did Northern Nigeria supported the continued existence of Nigeria as a single entity when the Biafra of Ojukwu offered it an excellent opportunity to opt out with its groundnuts pyramids pointing to sky majestically like the Giza pyramids of Egypt? People that choose to believe the hogwash about a hypothetical weak, futureless and scared Northern Nigeria should know that they are doing so at the expense of logic, provable historical facts, scientific projections and their intellectual makeup.

It should be noted that the North's respect for the continued existence of Nigeria as a single entity could easily be traced to its understanding of the workings of the modern world and modern techniques of corporate survival despite the unscientific and unrealistic assumption of some confused and misguided Nigerians that the region is a large colony of empty-headed 'Abokis'. That Northerners are tagged 'Abokis' Mairuwas' etc, shouldn't be the baseline on which the capacity and standard of the North should be judged, after all, Bill Gates is still being tagged a college dropout. 

Truly, before Nigeria get it right, some brains must deactivate, reactivate and reboot to function in line with the reality of the day. 

Finally, my heart goes out to the victims of today's church attack in Ozubulu, Ekusigo Local Government area of Anambra state. It's sad that just when Nigeria has begun to breathe the air of respite from the senseless killings that used to be a weekly affair in the immediate past, some people are hell bent on returning Nigeria back to that sad history. 

It's not surprising though. Rather than choose the path of reconstruction to complement the collective efforts of Nigerians which rescued the country from the abyss of hopelessness and senseless destruction of lives, some people seem tied to the technique of seeking for political relevance and economic empowerment by planting seeds of discords to fragment the policy for easy penetration and manipulation. Rather than assist this administration to consolidate the gains of its early days which saw the return of peace and security in Nigeria, these elements are not resting on their oars to take their pound of flesh off the APC administration that they consider a life-enemy for halting a system of 'Owambe governance' that's compliant to their ambitions. 

Ozubulu is a clear testimony that for Nigeria to be safe, all hands must not only be on deck but must do the right thing. The longer we allow private ambitions to rule our collective aspirations, the longer we keep swimming in pain; dying with as little knowledge of why we die as our killers know why they kill.

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