Do They Know Our History of Independence Day?
Across the length and breathe of Nigeria today, there will be inspiring speeches about the great strides we have made under an APC Federal government.
There will also be fireworks across the streets to welcome and celebrate the fine moments when in Race Course, Lagos, the union Jack came down slowly and reluctantly, in grumbling but choice-less reverence of the splendid and promising green-white-green flag of Nigeria.
And it needs to be noted again that Nigeria was announced the giant of the African continent on arrival.
Yet, I doubt seriously, how many youths of this nation that know the fact that it was a mere mistress of Lord Lugard who concocted the name “Nigeria,” from probably a sensation she may have felt while driving or strolling along the River Niger Banks.
Because Nigeria may jolly well mean: people of the Niger Area. I nevertheless feel sure also that many of our youths do not ko
the first newspaper ever published in Nigeria was called Iwe Irohin, a Yoruba title but edited by an Englishman named Reverend Henry Townsend in 1859. In fact only a few Journalists of this generation, know this groundbreaking date in the journalism profession.
How many youths of today, even know that Lokoja and calabar, respectively, used to be capitals of our blessed nation, before Lagos was chosen, bearing economic expediency in mind.
I was in Port Harcourt for a week for some consultancy jobs, and also to execute a couple of interviews, and I was privileged to speak with Prince peter Odike JP., the APC Deputy Chairman for Rivers State. It was a very profound dialogue.
As it were, we had explored and trashed quite a number of burning national issues such as the IPOB and Nigeria Delta Militants menace, and also the issue of whether President Buhari was truly enthroning nepotism in our polity.
I could see from the tone and direction of his candid statements, that he is among the number who could still break a neck to prove President Buhari’s integrity. He also seemed to respect former President Jonathan, even if he wished he hadn’t condoned so much corruption in his administration. And I really admire and respect Prince Odike, because unlike most Niger Delta elites ever so evasive on the issue of the rightness or otherwise; of the fearful activities of the militants. I can say faithfully that Odike spoke from his heart and exuded uncommon courage at times like this.
And more pointedly, I sought to know too, whether this president harbored a perennial and irrepressible hatred for the people of South-East and South-South of Nigeria’s deeply divided polity.
Still on why we need to urgently restore the teaching of history in our schools, I am always amazed to hear people who should know ,many times engage in the sophistry that the coup that sacked our first Republic, was led by an Igbo officer-Chukwuma Kaduna Nzeogwu. When it was actually led by a Yoruba officer named Ademoyega, who dependable sources; allege that the coup eventually came to a halt, essentially because Major Ademoyega, assigned to lock down Lagos, failed to deliver on his promises.
To really skin out every piece of meat in that interview, I have decided to run it as part two of this series started today.
Please keep a date next week!