November 26, 2017 Elijah Ogidi-Olu 0 Comments

Those who have gone house hunting in Nigeria would understand this scenario – Have you ever gone house hunting, and you see things like “No Pets”, “No Bachelor/Spinster”, “No Huasa/No Igbo/No Yoruba”? Does seeing “No certain ethnicity” make you feel somehow? Cos you’re damn right if you guess it makes me feel somehow.
You know, I’m sometimes like "What the heck is this?!" I can’t even get total freedom to make certain choices in my own country again?
Now, I’ve heard cases of university admissions being given first to undeserving natives of a region, before merited candidates from other regions are considered. I’ve heard where the owner of a company decides to employ a less qualified applicant from the same ethnic group, and drop a more qualified candidate from a different ethnicity.
I’ve had the opportunity to listen to one or two well-educated older citizens, who strongly believe that we were not supposed to be a country. I’ve heard them discuss how we would be better off if we took the bold step as a country and just went our separate ways. To this set of experienced intelligentsia, Nigeria is simply too diverse to be unified.
According to them, a country that is home to two hundred and fifty different ethnic groups, joined together by "Oga Lugard" who was probably hyped by the uncanny intelligence of his babe – Flora Shaw, just can’t work. You know, she probably just downed a cup of coffee, looked over the whole region, and Boom! Eureka! – “The area shall be called Nigeria!” she exclaimed.
But have we taken a look at other countries all around the world and realize that there are almost no country without diversity in ethnicities? Have we taken a thorough look at other countries and seen that we are not the country with the highest number of diverse ethnic groups who refer to one region as Home? Do we know that breaking another country out of this present one wouldn’t solve any problem?
See, I believe the problem we have isn’t the fact that we were forced into coming together as one nation (probably against our will). I believe the problem we have is simply the refusal to rise above our ethnic differences and work together as one unit; one country. The refusal to see that house hunter, that job seeker, that neighbour as first of all, a fellow human, then a fellow Nigerian.
To all those vehemently preaching division, fighting tooth and nail to break out, here is my simple logic why it’s a silly idea.
If for instance we split into our ethnic groups and we went our separate ways, soon the “Them Mentality” which we have now would set in again. Then the Yoruba stops seeing a fellow Yoruba and starts segregating “Ijesha” from “Ekiti”, “Egun” from “Ijebu”. The Igbo starts segregating the “Ohuhu” from “Nsukka”, “Middle Belt” from “Mbaise”. The Hausa start segregating the “Arewa” from “Zazzangaci”, “Daura” from “Bausanchi”… and so on. Trust me, that’s what would happen.
So next time, when you want to support those crying for a split or those who see their tribes as “We” and others as “Them” understand that the problem is simply with our mentality as a country, and it’s time we stop that sh!t and see ourselves for who we truly are – fellow humans, and fellow patriotic Nigerians.

Pause and think.

Mature Minds Talk.

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