If you are superstitious, you may point to the Igbo genocide as the cause or curse of the current Fulani herdsmen killings, rape and abductions going on virtually all over the country. As the Bible commands, ‘Thou Shall Not Kill,’ and one understands that the Koran also teaches, ‘If you kill one of God’s children, you kill all of God’s children.’
But in Nigeria, thousands of innocent citizens’ blood was used as a foundation and no one cares to ask the question, why? We can only understand a bit of what is happening in our land today by just looking back, especially to what Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe relentlessly condemns as the foundational genocide of post-colonial Africa, the Igbo genocide. People did not just kill one or two or three of God’s children, which is bad enough, they killed millions of innocent citizens just because they are from a certain part of the country. As people always say, God is not asleep, and so, it is no surprise what is happening today.
If you think that Nigeria is the only country suffering from those atrocities, perish that thought. All the countries that facilitated that genocide have apparently also been cursed: the Soviet Union has vanished from the world map and its successor, Russia, continues to battle insurgents in some of its regions; the UK, which sold arms to kill innocent people is about to be dismembered, given the impending vote for independence by oil-rich Scotland, which will probably be followed by Wales and Northern Ireland, all of which already have their devolved governments; and Egypt, which provided the air force pilots that bombed Igbo women in market places during the war has also welcomed the chickens back to its own roost as the same officers trained by Mubarak, when he was the commander of the air force college during the Biafra devoured him.
What goes around comes around also in northern Nigeria, where the pogrom against the Igbo started and in the Middle Belt, where most the killings took place when train-loads of escapees were waylaid and slaughtered; things have never been the same.
General Gowon who presided over that genocide has gone around the country asking people to pray for Nigeria. I wonder what kind of prayers Nigerians pray for their country without admitting that genocide has been committed against some people.
When Chinua Achebe tried to heal the wound in There Was a Country, before he died, the unrepentant blood-thirsty tyrants that were still alive and their phantom ‘intellectual’ lackeys pretended to be offended by the objective truth and went on boasting that the genocide against the Igbo was justifiable. Gowon’s initial ignorant comment was that he ‘did not know if Achebe will be getting a penny from that book’, a baffling response from someone who holds a doctoral degree from a top UK university.