It is no longer news that there is an unprecedented upsurge in the migration of southern Nigeria professionals over the last 5 years. The best brains in Southern Nigeria are leaving in droves, while those that have not left are making all necessary arrangements.
They are making enquiries about the process involved from those that have succeeded in leaving. Some people may argue this is not uniquely Nigerian, that universally, people have always migrated around the world.
One such persons compared our experience to the children of Israel during their migration from Egypt to the promise land. He failed to recognize the difference i.e. that the children of Israel were migrating from a foreign land to the land which God has promised to them. In the present case, southern Nigerians are migrating from their God given land into foreign lands, at a scale which outstrips universally acceptable ‘natural rate of migration’.
We are seeing a situation where gainfully employed professionals, who can boast of all the good things that life has to offer, pack up from their homeland, sell off every asset, take their families and just leave; to foreign lands, without a thought for what vagaries may come their ways in the new countries.
About 2 years ago, (October 13, 2019 precisely), I wrote an article for Thisday Newspaper, with the title “Vanquishing the South to Elevate the North”. At the time, I could not have imagined that the destruction of the southern economy and the lives of its people would come as soon as it has.
Even as we speak, some still do not realize that the decimation of their fortunes was a well orchestrated and executed project; which was concocted at the highest level of the northern oligarch. For the avoidance of doubt, let me restate, that the plan from the outset, was to “liquidate” the economy of Southern Nigeria and render its people in dire straits.
The conception, lifted directly from the Turkish’s Ottoman Caliphate playbook was programmed to use monetary and fiscal constraints to impoverish the Southern population, intent to trigger a run for survival. The migration we are witnessing now is a direct result of the careful implementation of the “Turkish Model” for the ultimate aim of ‘Islamization by conquest’.
It is bewildering to see politicians from southern Nigeria feign ignorance and join the fray of 2023. One wonders if they are so blinded by the allure of office and the grandiose lifestyle it bestows as not to appreciate the scale of threat their communal lands is under. What manner of people would allow immediate, even transient gains to rob them and their entire communities of entire ancestry?
I mean, can they not see all the maneuvering aimed at seizing communal lands and be supplanted with Fulani from all over Africa?
The trio of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, Chief Sunday Igboho and Dr. Obadiah Mailafia (of blessed memory) saw these coming.
By calling it out, Dr. Mailafia, a fine gentleman, paid with his life. It was for the same reason Chief Sunday Igboho’s house was invaded and his associates murdered. Mazi Nnamdi Kanu shouted himself hoarse for years, warning against what is now at our doorsteps. He was maligned, demonised and labelled a war monger.
While the immediate solution for the Southern professionals may be an escape from the jihad which has now arrived, the question is: Do you hope to someday return to your ancestral land? Would the ancestral land even be there to return to?
Perhaps, some of us may have thought the retired Navy Commodore (Kunle Olawunmi), who made that startling revelation a few weeks ago was being flippant! The man told us they are planning to ‘Talibanize’ Nigeria.
He should know; he was in the military for 35 years, and not just as a fringe player, he was part of the Intelligence team!! So, while the professionals in Southern Nigeria may presently exercise the option to “activate Plan B” (borrowing the phraseology of Pastor Paul Adefarasin), it is wise to give some thoughts to the duration of your stay in exile (for that is what it has become). Fast forward through the generations, might your offspring then have to rely on ancestry.com to trace their lineage?
While the above rhetorical questions may appear overstretched, Southern Nigerians must reconcile themselves to the fact that what is before us in this Jihad, is a mimic of the Afghanistan episode.
I imagine most Southern-Nigerians reading this and muttering: “GOD FORBID, IT IS NOT OUR PORTION”.
They forget that the same God allowed us to experience Buhari; allowed the manipulative replacement of all service Chiefs by Fulani; allowed the slaughtering of all those Christian souls in Southern Kaduna; allowed the brutal killing of all those Benue and Plateau people. Can somebody remind them that the same God did not forbid the murdering of 3 million Biafrans between 1966 – 1970. They need to be reminded that it is the same God, which they worship that the Christians and moderate Muslims in Afghanistan worship.
There is always a twisted irony to life; most of those now scampering abroad were at the forefront of the campaign for a Buhari presidency in 2015 and 2019. I personally know a few of these ‘migrants’, who against all entreaties and better judgement, insisted Buhari was the best thing to happen to Nigeria. Majority of them were the most strident agents of One-Nigeria.
Some were sold the dummy that a Buhari presidency was a win for them and their religious affiliation; that it would elevate their religion to enviable height compared to the other religions. One such persons, with whom I had a heated debate against a Buhari presidency in 2019 is now at the forefront of the call for emergence of Oduduwa Nation.
Even now, some are still naïve as to what the self determination movement represent. Ask a “One-Nigerian” his justification, you are likely to hear things like: “We are better together as a big populous country” or “Our Unity is our Diversity”
I always then ask them, what is the population of Iceland, Finland, Norway and Switzerland. I ask them the population of United Kingdom, Austria, Belgium, Canada and Australia? Then I go further to ask them if they prefer to live in these countries with smaller population or to live-in populous Nigeria? I bring it closer home by asking them the population and the land area of Dubai, which has become the choice vacation destination of our politicians and celebrities.
When middle belt of Plateau, Benue and Southern Kaduna was being massacred, Southern Nigeria pretended these were events happening in far-away lands. Now the chicken has come closer home and everyone is activating Plan B.
Maybe if we had heeded the Yoruba proverb: “iku to n’pa ojugba eni, oowe lo n’pa fun ni” (the death of one’s close associate is a proverb for all his/her friends that death is a debt we all will pay someday!); perhaps we could have averted this calamity. We all pretended it was their thing, even after Dr. Obadiah Mailafia warned us.
It is disheartening to observe that while Southern Nigerian Diaspora population are agitating for emergence of more homogenous nations out of the ashes of dismembered Nigerian, those in the homeland are blindsided as to the essence. Some even berate their diaspora friends and families for “trying to incite violence in Nigeria”. The most ludicrous argument is that those abroad are frustrated and that it is the frustration that is propelling them to agitate. How laughably absurd.
The truth is, Southern Nigerian ‘Diasporans’, who, by the way are becoming weary, fatigued and disillusioned by what seems like a brick-wall to their agitation, can better appreciate the level of “shit” in the “hole” of where they call home. Most can afford not to ever think of returning, if they chose to.
No matter how this agitation ends, it has become evident that this is a watershed-moment, a redefinition of the relationship between the Fulani and the rest of Nigeria.
I will round-off with this exchange I had with a High School class-mate of mine recently. She had posted a quotation which read:
“In 1963 Yoruba betrayed their own son Pa Chief Obafemi Awolowo, also in another 30 years later, 1993 they betrayed Chief MKO Abiola, 2023 is another 30 years, would you betray Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu to lead Yoruba 2023 mandate” (sic).
The below was my response to her post, with a slight modification:
“Much more important than the betrayal these personalities may have suffered, is the reality that the Fulani, supported by the British would never allow a smart southerner, one who they perceive to be independent minded, to take over the rulership of Nigeria.
Britain is fleecing Nigeria and has been doing so from the very beginning.
They have an understanding, an agreement with the Fulani; they will help the Fulani to retain control of Nigeria (just as they helped them to win the Biafran war).
In return, the Fulani will grant them unfettered access to the choicest portion of the resources of the land.
Any southern president, who genuinely intends to break the yoke of British/Fulani suzerainty over the Nigerian people will have his aspiration truncated. Such a leader will not serve the interest of the British nor the Fulani.
Obasanjo and Jonathan were unfortunate puppets; they could never act against the interest of Britain nor of Fulani.
I do not say this to diminish these ordinarily outstanding individuals, not by any stretch. They both parade excellent credentials, some of the best academic qualification of people that have led Nigeria. They would not be incompetent ordinarily, contrary to what media narrative would suggest and spin public opinion to believe. In terms of education, they both have PhD, (even though OBJ acquired his PHD after he left office, which does not take away from his erudition). Despite these values, they could not help being lackeys for the Fulani and their British enablers.
Obasanjo’s first coming as a military Head of State was thrusted upon him, with a promise by T.Y. Danjuma and Shehu Musa Yar’adua to protect him. He did not want it because he feared for his life. He was more or less cajoled.
In his second coming, he was in prison and they made him an offer. He accepted their offer because he did not have much of a choice. He was supposed to be the reconciliatory candidate to assuage the Yoruba for the murder of MKO Abiola, plus he was someone they knew they could use.
Chief Obafemi Awolowo and Chief MKO Abiola were personalities who would not be cowered by British or Fulani bravado. They were independent minded, principled of sort, and to borrow Chief Dele Momodu’s phrase, “they had balls”.
You see, my dear sister, it is superficial, even simplistic to think it was just the southwest that worked against the presidential ambition of Chief MKO Abiola and Chief Awolowo. There were unseen hands behind the scene that manipulated the political process against them. Those same unseen hands have not withered…they are still waiting in the wings.
The dismemberment of the unworkable union is what we must hope for and tenaciously pursue. It is our only escape route.
Some people will argue against these positions, but when it is all said and done, passage of time vindicates.”
One last question for Southern Nigerian leaving en-mass to seek refuge in foreign lands; a yoruba proverb says “ile laabo simi oko” which colloquially translates to “Home is resting place after returning from farm”. The Ibos have equivalent saying which goes: “Alusia anata ulo zuo ike” OR “Alusia abata ulo zuo ike”, (depending on which accent you are speaking with).
With Fulani having taken over your lands, where is the “ile” OR “ulo” where you hope to someday come and rest when you return from this long journey to the “farms”? Let’s ponder over that question.
Officer of the Canadian Armed Forces lives in Ontario Canada.
He can be reached at [email protected]