The Amalgamation of Nigeria Was A Fraud- A rejoinder!
I read recently Chief Richard Akinjide, SAN, former Attorney General and Minister of justice during the Shagari "fair weather" administration between 1979 and 1983, account on how "Lord Lugard and Britain's amalgamation of Northern and Southern Nigeria since 1914, is the reason Nigeria has refused to grow and develop. But I beg to disagree with the respected legal luminary and elder statesman.
There is no lesson to be taught any Nigerian by the likes of Akinjide and would not even bother read the gibberish he spews out there and some are applauding him.
Yes the amalgamation of Northern and Southern protectorates is a "fraud," but which colonised country is not a fraud or a "merger" of unequal, incompatible bedfellows? Is it in Rwanda- where Tutsis where lobbed together with the Hutus- causing one of the worst genocide in human history that was not a fraud or in Ghana or Cameroon or India or Indonesia or Brazil or Malaysia or Hong Kong that incompatible peoples were merged together? And why is it that others like Malaysia, India, New Zealand, Indonesia, Brazil are forging on and catching up with the "colonialists" Europe in economic advancement and social development, Nigeria and Africa continue to look for excuses, 51 years after the colonialists left our shores?
I tell you what? The likes of Akinjide are the biggest fraud! Was it not same Mr Akinjide who was the author of "Twelve-two-third" which gave an "inconclusive" election to Shagari in place of Awolowo, his kinsman's protestation that a second election should be called for the two front runners to determine the presidency in 1979 presidential elections? Was it not him who did all the somersault and magic of "Legal mathematics," contradicting renowned world class mathematician, late Prof Awojobi of the University of Lagos on what 25% of two thirds of Nigerian state means and Obasanjo as compliant as ever gave it to him and Shagari? So na today you know say Lord Lugard gave it to the North to "dominate" the East and West?
Who wants to know whether the "population of Sahel Savannah and northern desert is more or less than the coastal states of the South? What happened to appropriate and accurate census figures necessary for proper planning and decision making at all levels of government? In this 21st century, after over 50 years of manipulation and rigmarole by the likes of Akinjide, Nigeria cannot count its people, from Local government to state and to National levels! It's been estimation and doctored figures in every census and electoral registration to suit the nuances of local, regional and National warlord and kingmakers, for which Akinjide is an accomplished member of. Why can't they use Biometrics, finger printing technology- used in catching criminals for fun in advanced world, including Britain, to get the exact number of Nigerians and eligible voters, in a provable, scientific manner to avoid all these "hullabaloo" about whether the population of one state or region is bigger or lesser than the other as we have always done for 50 years plus and still arguing unnecessarily? Every election in Nigeria, safe for the June 12, 1993 one, is rigged right from the voter registration stage and then thumb printing to match "written results" are done on election date! That is the only way PDP would rule for 60 years uninterrupted and Akinjide know so because he has been part of the cabal that has ruled (call it ruin more appropriately) Nigeria since 1960 to date- now more by his prot├ęg├ęs and proxies! They don't want proper elections of one-person-one-vote but love imposition of inept and corrupt nincompoops as leaders they can manipulate and control from the side. Mr Akinjide these are greater "fraud" than the amalgamation of North and Southern Nigeria by Lord Lugard and UK. How could you be coming out now, fifty full years after the British left you to govern yourself come out and still be giving excuses of mistake which you don't need more than ten years to rectify? Is your brain made of dust? Why is amalgamation of only Nigeria an issue when even the Osagyefu- the great Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana and Africa- wanted "United State of Africa?" Is Nigeria bigger than the US or the EU countries that now want to be one? Why can't we explore and exploit the advantages of our big size and diversity instead of magnifying our weakest links to the detriment and disadvantage of all? So you want me from the South, to now start exchanging currency before I buy my "Nama" meat from the long-suffering Hausa-Fulani Malam, who trekked all his way from Birnin Kebbi to sell cows to me, fifty one years after Lugard's "fraud?"
They and their ilk spread across North and South, East and West and Niger Delta- the likes of IBB, Obj, Alams, Ibori and Igbinedion are the fraud that have held Nigeria down and continue to incapacitate and decimate the peoples from making progress, not Lord Lugard or British who have no hand in who milks Nigeria dry the most-m ministers or senators and their private sector cronies! As the man- Richard Akinjide- claimed, he has been part of the problem since 1959, before independence, and continue to be till date as he has handed the mantle to his sons and daughters, one of which I understand is GEJ's minister of the Federal republic. Mr SAN, are the Armajiris, the Northern beggars-some of whom walk on all fours- the Cattle rearers from the north who trek with their cows from Kaura Namuda to Ibadan, Obiaruku, Kwale, Asaba and Warri the problem of Nigeria, created by the north? Are these not worst victims of the oppressive cabal of which you have been part, as is the jobless Niger Delta youths-some forced into kidnapping and Armed robbery, just as Boko Haram is trying to fight back the oppressive system? I see the Boko Haram as Nigeria's modern day IRA equivalent in Nigeria's shake up as the "Irish Rep Army" did in the settlement of the British domination and colonization of Ireland before settlement was agreed.
No, you have no lesson to teach me or any discernible Nigerian for that matter. It's not enough to blindfold, obfuscate the truth and confuse people in your memoirs about the North been England, the West of Nigeria -Wales, and the East-Scotland, by the creation of Lord Lugard. Are you aware that both Scotland and Wales have their parliaments and Scots don't pay the expensive university tuition fees English home students pay, nor do they pay for medical prescription charges as people in England do? Leave Lord Lugard and the British out of your problems, which are largely your creation. Yes Britain committed atrocities in merging incompatibles, for their economic interest, but that is smartness; you don't blame them for looking after their interest, do you? US, Germans and French people did the same and still do to protect their economic and political interests, or what do you think the US, France and NATO are doing today in Libya? Are they interested in the economic well being of the average Libyan, with all those $1million per bomb thrown to decimate Libya's infrastructure at will? Please Mr Akinjide "no teach me nonsense" I no buy I beg!
By Tony Ishiekwene