"This New Nation called Nigeria, should be an estate of our great grandfather, Uthman Dan Fodio. We must ruthlessly prevent a change of power. We use the minorities in the North as willing tools, and the South, as conquered territory and never allow them to rule over us, and never allow them to have control over their future." ---Sir Ahmadu Bello, Sardauna of Sokoto in THE PARROT of October 12, 1960
"The conquest to the sea is now in sight. When our god-sent Ahmadu Bello said some years ago that our conquest will reach the sea shores of Nigeria, some idiots in the South were doubting its possibilities. Today have we not reached the sea? Lagos is reached. It remains Port-Harcourt. It must be conquered and taken." --- Mallam Bala Garuba in WEST AFRICAN PILOT, December 30, 1964.
One of the greatest maladies of ignorance is to be ignorant of one's own ignorance. I am not aware whether the Nigeria's Vice President is aware of the context in which he is operating or not. If he is not aware, it would mean that he is inflicted with this malady of ignorance. If he is, then it means he is playing the game the best way he thinks it ought to be done.
Either way, he would not be able to change the fact that he remains a VP in an estate of the grandfather of the late Sardauna of Sokoto, Sir Ahmadu Bello who was also a former Premier of the Northern Region. When Sir Ahmadu Belllo made the above statement in 1960, he knew what he was talking about. With the connivance of the diabolical British colonialists, he was able to put machineries in place to achieve his objective of turning Nigeria to the "estate" of his grandfather.
In 1957, Ahmadu Bello undermined and stood very virulently against the independence of Nigeria. He did not think that his Fulani people would be able to control the destiny of Nigeria the way and manner they deem fit. As a result of this the Western Region and the Eastern Region were granted self governing status. But the plan to hand Nigeria to Uthman Dan Fodio's grandchildren commenced immediately after that.
It would be recalled that as a result of the elections of 1954, there were 162 seats in the Nigerian National Assembly. Out of this, the South has 83 seats and the North has 79 seats since this was based on population. But because Ahmadu Bello was afraid that his kinsmen would not be able to effectively compete with the rest of the country and dominate it the way he envisaged, he refused to allow Nigeria to have independence. After the West and the East received self governance, the British overlords, in order to assuage his fears and put Nigeria in his control, created in 1959, 312 seats for the Nigerian National Assembly without any election or new Census. Out of this 312, the North was allocated 174 in the anticipation of the Parliamentary Political System being put in place for Nigeria's independence. This effectively put political control of Nigeria in the hands of Ahmadu Bello and his stooge, Tafawa Balewa who in 1950 said the following as quoted in TIME MAGAZINE of October 10, 1960:
"There is no basis for Nigerian unity. It is only a British intention for our country."
The events since 1960 flag independence have since confirmed that Nigeria is the estate of Uthman Dan Fodio. Rather than a republic, Nigeria is a sultanate. Efforts of the other ethnic groups especially in the Southern part of the country to be masters of their own destinies have been flagrantly undermined and frustrated using the minorities in the North as the tools over and over.
The statement credited to Ahmadu Bello above was made just 11 days after Nigeria's so-called independence. Soon after that, the process of taking up the whole country as an estate commenced. In 1962, the Balewa government organized another census "by headcount." Historical records show that the preliminary results of that exercise gave the South "a clear majority." A "supplementary count" was "immediately taken in the Northern region that turned up additional 9 million persons" reportedly missed in the first count. The questions are: (1) How could such an exercise miss 9 million persons? (2) How could there be supplementary headcount in one part of the country to the exclusion of the others?
The controversy that trailed that 1962 fraud by Ahmadu Bello and his stooge in Mohammadu Ribadu gave birth to a repeat exercise in 1963. The earlier figures released for the 1963 census was 60.5 millions. But when this was not able to meet the demographic variables it was arbitrarily reduced to 55.6 millions. No scientific or demographic explanation was given as to how that figure was reached. Out of this figure, the North was allotted 29.8 millions and the South 25.8 millions!
In 1973, the Military wing of the Uthman Dan Fodio estate organized another census and came up with 79.8 millions. Out of this, the North was given 51.4 million (over 64%) and the South was given 28.4 millions. This figure means that the Northern population in the throes of the heat radiating arid desert increased in 10 years by almost 70% (that is if we accepted the 1963 census in itself), while the South in the comfort of the rain forest, increased by woeful 5% in the same period of time. Since then they have been creating states and local governments in the North to the disadvantage of the South. They have also been using these states to siphon resources to the North to the disadvantages of the people in the South.
There have been a lot of other incidents that one does not need to go into their details here but which have shown that Nigeria is a conquered territory or if you like the inherited estate of the grandchildren of Uthman Dan Fodio. The fact that they have ruled Nigeria for the most part and have only allowed their stooge in Olusegun Obasanjo a return trip to power on their behalf is the most important proof of this control of Nigeria as their inheritance. The reluctance to allow the present Vice President, Jonathan Goodluck to take over the presidency is just another of the evidences that the taste of the pudding is in the eating. Is it not instructive in the light of the above statement by Ahmadu Bello that it is Andoakaa, a minority from the North that is in "the front and back" of frustrating the "legitimate" assumption of power by a Southerner called Jonathan Goodluck? A "willing tool" just like Ahmadu Bello planned and envisaged?
All the efforts that have been put in to deny VP Jonathan the "legitimate" acquisition of power is part of the credo laid down by Ahmadu Bello. It is not by mistake that the motto adopted by the Sokoto State is "BORN TO RULE." This kind of arrogance was what informed the statement credited to Maitama Sule at an Arewa Forum in Kaduna as he made case for the permanent political rulership of Nigeria by the grandchildren of Uthman Dan Fodio. He spoke in Hausa Language and it was translated as follows:
"Everyone has a gift from God. The Northerners are endowed by God with leadership qualities……"
It is not by mistake that the last road bordering the sea in Lagos is named Ahmadu Bellow Way. It is not by mistake that Musa Yar'Adua refused to handover VP Jonathan. It is not by mistake that when the Arewa Consultative Forum complained about the ownership of the Commercial Banks in Nigeria in February 2009, then Mallam Falalu Bello, the Managing Director of the Unity Bank came out in March to say the following:
"It is indeed in the interest of the South-westerners and South-easterners for some affirmative actions to be taken to redress the situation, else there will be no real peace in this country moving forward."
Then Mallam Lamido Sanusi appeared on the stage in May through June 2009 to put this in practice under the guise of cleansing the banking sector of corruption. I was wondering where he was in the Shehu Shagari era when the Prince of Wurno, Shehu Malami was asking the Yola Branch Manager of the Union Bank of Nigeria of which he was then the chairman to open the bank vault around 2.00am and reportedly took millions of naira he spent at the birthday party of his friend Bamangar Tukur who was then recently "selected" as the Governor of Gongola State after accumulating astounding wealth as the Chairman of the Nigerian Ports Authority
It is my belief that all those who have been commenting on this Jonathan Goodluck problem and asking for the constitution to be followed are addressing the wrong problem. They seemed not to understand what is going on here. How can anyone expect those who own the estate not to do what they wish and will with their inheritance? The have forgotten what history has taught us and of which example abound. Fredrick Douglas put it clearly in his 1857 speech as follows:
"This struggle may be a moral one; or it may be a physical one; or it may be both moral and physical………. Power concedes nothing without a demand…..it never did….and it never will….."
Unlike the people of Ilorin, the people of Jos are not willing to lie down and just accept such a ridiculous and preposterous affront. The Berom have made up their minds that they would not be slaves in their land. The Beroms have sworn that any attempt by the minority Hausa/Fulani to appropriate political power in Jos and the environs through the use of the Federal might would continue to be resisted by all means. They have followed their promises with concrete actions and the riots that have been occurring in that vicinity are the products of political liberation struggles of the Berom and resistance to the settler Hausa/Fulani political domination. Hopefully, someday the people of Ilorin would wake up and claim their birth rights from the Hausa/Fulani rulership in Ilorin.
Without any iota of doubt, it is clear that the understanding of the country called Nigeria by its constituent units is very different. Why some see it as a collective Republic, others perceive it as their conquered territory and or an inherited estate of their great grandfather, Uthman Dan Fodio. To this end, the way and manner it was being handled is patently different. This is one of the reasons that I am of the view that we need to break this country up. Doing so would mean liberation for the other ethnic groups from the conquest of the Hausa/Fulani oligarchy.
It is up to the rest of us if we want to remain conquered in Nigeria and continued to be treated as second class citizens or even slaves if it suits the conquerors as such. Just like Eleanor Roosevelt, wife of President Franklin D. Roosevelt of the US once said, "No one can make you a slave without your consent." It is up to the rest of us, if we want to remain in slavery or not. This is because according to Fredrick Douglas once again:
"Find out what the people will submit to and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them; and those will continue until they are resisted with either blows or words, or both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress……."
|The ancient desert city of Kano|
By ‘Remi Oyeyemi