By: Reno Omokir
Sadly, Nigeria is a country, but she is not a nation. The Southwest is a nation. The Southeast is a nation. The core North is a nation. And we have several city states in the North central and the South-South. But as a whole, we are not yet a nation.
The 2014 National Conference afforded us the opportunity to be a nation, but it was rejected by those who believed it would affect their hegemony. It was a very shortsighted vision to reject it, and time is proving this assertion right.
We either become a nation, or we face demolition. We can only pretend for so long. Ethnic jingoists, like Buhari, Nasir El-Rufai and Bola Tinubu, will continue to appeal to ethnicity and religion, because those are the things that get you power in a country. And those, like Peter Obi, and Sule Lamido, who make appeals to good governance, and the rule of law, will be scoffed at as if they were speaking Swahili in Tahiti.
Do you doubt me? Okay, what is the Nigerian dream? The single greatest desire of the masses of the core North is to have an Islamic way of life governed by Sharia. The volksgeist of the Southeast is to achieve Biafra, where they can pursue a purely egalitarian way of life. The national identity of the Yoruba of the Southwest is to have a meritocratic secular society, of live and let live.
The three main ethnic nationalities desires cannot all happen simultaneously. In fact, they are contrary to each other. And that is why there is turbulence. Because these are competing ideals, and can two walk together unless they be agreed? It was that agreement that the 2014 National Conference was looking for.
In the midst of such turbulence, the worst thing that could have happened was introducing an incurable tribalistic, and nepotistic bigot, like Buhari, as President.
Buhari detests Igbos. Anyone who is telling you that he loves the Southeast is delusional. He himself has said so privately to a number of individuals, some of whom have testified publicly to this fact.
Not even the January 15, 1966 coup and the July 29, 1966 counter-coup has done as much damage to our efforts to forge national unit