And so it doesn’t make sense, and it is in no way intellectualism when scholars play on our intelligence by writing and saying that Nigeria is the creation of the British or the mistake of 1914 as they often refer to it in books, articles and journals. What these scholars are trying to tell us unintelligently is that every ethnic and religious group should have its own country if we understand them correctly, since their claim is that we share nothing in common and remember we have more than 300 different ethnic groups, meaning about 300 countries out of this landmass. They argue that no single group is identical in Nigeria, and even those that seem to have some similarity tended to disagree most, either within the north or south. All the same if we are to look at things objectively without sentiment, even if we grant that the British have a hand in our creation we must not call it a mistake, for it is now a reality, and it is we Nigerians that will work it out because our differences have been exaggerated by agents of imperialism disguising as scholars in a deliberate attempt to manipulate and exploit us.
From what we have learned from the history of Nigeria since independence, our inability to develop or grow as a nation may be attributed to two major factors: the first is lack of focused and patriotic leadership which gave birth to corruption and nepotism and the second is what we were made to know as petrotiasis (over dependence on oil resources); but even this can be linked to the problem of leadership. It is indeed unfortunate that the nation never had the opportunity of having the right leadership that will take the nation out of the woods. The path to growth and development has never been an easy one but we have been privileged to have models to copy from.
Throughout Nigeria’s history no government ever showed the determination, vision and ability to chart the right course to growth and development except probably for the Murtala and Buhari military regimes that showed some determination in that direction. But we Nigerians are such a luxurious people and would not want to go through hardship which is the price for development. And so it is up to us Nigerians to either embrace our country or allow it to collapse. Even the militants in the Niger Delta would not have been fighting if our leadership was right and just; it is not resource control, and it is certainly not Biafra, but the right leadership that will chart the right course, and I argue that it is also not democracy either.
Gamawa writes from [email protected]