I weep everyday for the youth of this country; especially those that fight everyday here on nairaland, most of them find it extremely difficult to neither afford internet data nor eat good meal; some go to bed without food most of the time. The hatred is so much that a blind man can easily see the wide division amongst the youth of this country on ethnic divide, especially the youth of Igbo and Yoruba extraction.
Our purpose as the leaders of tomorrow should be to change our country and make it a place we will be proud to call our home, and not to wage internet war. We should be ready to demand for explanation from our leaders.
I was angry when I came across an extracts from Major Emmanuel Ifeajuna’s (1966) Indictment. On the state of Nigeria before January 15 1966 coup and why they struck.
“The scene had become so corrupt and confused that while an official could be sacked if is rumoured that he talked to a girl friend of a minister or official, he could lose thousands of pounds without query being issued him to answer. So we kept asking ourselves; where lay our salvation? How could a structure be so diseased? Corruption and inefficiency were not only visible everywhere, they were accepted as the way of life.
Politics had become the best paying profession ….Then there were the ‘good time’ women, the camp followers. An incompetent secretary could get appointed on a fabulous pay with quarters as a matter of priority because she knew some minister or Alhaji.
They went around openly offering themselves for trade for the highest bidder, for any job. When corruption was criticized more corruption appeared. When it was said that salaries were too high for a particular group like the legislators who met only 64 days in the year, their salaries would be raised. When people cried that there were too many ministers, they would appoint some more. On 14 January, the eve of the coup, more ministers were appointed .They used the army to terrorize the population.
They prostituted the military institution, which should be sacred to our people. And they expected that we should go on slaughtering our own people for a few criminals to stay in power.
By 1945 our people would say “I am a Nigerian, I come from Kano”. But by 1960 they would say, “I am a northerner. I come from Kano.”
So events in Nigeria drifted. Those who should have directed the affairs of the state left the destiny of our people to course of events.
And the people started to lose hope, even in God. They would ask themselves,” Is it not unlucky to be a Nigerian?”
It is quite ironical that the motto of the country reads ‘Unity and faith’. Unity? Yes. We should watch together. But faith? Faith in what or whom?
In what could Nigerians repose faith in their country as ruled by the rotten regime? Was it in the thugs who operated and paraded the streets in full view and often with the co-operation of the police?
Was in the corrupt politicians? If faith meant faith in God, then it was appropriate. It meant that by some justice those who did evil would pay for it straight away. We fully realized that to be caught planning, let alone acting on our lines was high treason. And the penalty for high treason is death.
We knew. We were well aware of our actions; and we were well aware of the consequences. We could not leave 55 million people to live in the ever present chaos caused by a bunch of hooligans, and we believe we were right.
For a time an army may obey a bad leader blindly. But if the army is worth the name, then the civilian, elected leaders must watch what he does with his power, what he does with and to his people.
The duty of the army is not just to protect a government. It is to protect a government in so far as that Government’s interest are those of the nation….a soldier has a right to protect a nation from the mischief of an irresponsible government. A soldier’s first duty is to his people, to his nation. It does not mean that one has to disobey the government or his comm