I have reiterated on countless occasions that a nation where her citizens do not have a collective notion regarding what is wrong and what is right is really in trouble. While this does not translate into being a zombie nation either, truth is that people must agree that a crime is a crime no matter the contexts and who has committed such.
So we cannot agree who is responsible for the ban on Nigerians from immigrating to the United States by the Trump administration. No one is responsible for anything in Nigeria until we set up a committee to look up the reasons, and then a panel to look at the report of the committee and we are still where we are. The PDP says that it shows where APC has brought us to, the APC said that it is a result of how PDP managed Nigeria.
Again I am sure very few of us would have missed the Nigerian with a Muslim and Christian name, we hear he is from Bauchi, and his occupation is bomber, he attempted to set off an IED during a local church service in Kaduna state, when he was caught, he said he was Mohammed, when he was taken to the police he said he was Nathaniel, he was a once upon a time frustrated wanna-be pastor who even went to WOBI (a Living Faith run Bible School).
Permit me to add, it was later discovered that the IED wasn’t eve really IEDs but some crude local ‘Bisco’ as we call it in local parlance; in fact fireworks!
It was shameful as we were reeled with the police asking him ‘identity’ questions rather than tackle the crime. For the man that asked the questions, and the way the answers were tailored, it was obvious that as usual, even the criminal had played on Nigerians who already were on each other regarding the faith and ethnicity of the culprit.
Why did he want to blow up the church, how did he make the bomb (sic), who taught him, what was the motive, how many have you made, was he alone, what should concern us, is it that he is Muslim or Christian or the fact that innocent Nigerians would have been lost if he had succeeded, why does it matter to us that while poverty and want, unemployment and gross lack of infrastructure hunts and haunts us we are still predisposed to inconsequentials such as tribe, faith and religion.
Now that Nathaniel is same as Ibrahim, please can anyone confirm for me, I hear that his traditional name is Amadioha, aka Sango? In 2020 we are still a balkanized people, not along lines of development but across faith; and conversations are still filled with vile when Shiites and Sunnis talk. When Christians’ talk, it ultimately ends as a Pentecostal versus orthodox, when Pentecostals talk, it boils down to; are you living faith or redeemed, how deeper is your deeper life. I asked a friend recently if Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) was Sunni, Shiites, Wahabi, Salafist etc. if he was just Sunni Hanafi, Sunni Maliki or Shi’i Imāmī Shi’i Zaydi, Khariji Ibadi or Sunni Ẓāhirī, well I am sure that Jesus Christ is Anglican (sic).
Identity is good, it sure does serve its own purpose and can also be a springboard for development but that is in the absence of class exploitation. Do we not find it disturbing that a legislator comes on the fall of the house on national TV and social space to praise his non-depleting libido, what tribe, an ethnic group of faith is his foolishness.
The US Visa Ban affects Nigerians, not a section in the real sense, it is punishment because a nation of Christians and Muslims, of countless ethnic nationalities, cannot simply get it right when it comes to national identification, cannot get it right in her own immigration laws, uses third parties for her national security and cannot protect citizenry.
Why is the narrative that Christians are being killed not really critically looked at? Why is it that the president labelled dead Nigerians by faith? Why is that Nigerians irrespective of faith cannot hold hands and fight the hydra-headed dragon that is pushing us to the abyss.
Have you gone to Rwanda, do you have a TV Box, maybe you should watch Hotel Rwanda, or Sometime in April, or maybe we should see that video that circulated late 2019 where the Nigerian forces and Boko Haram were exchanging rocket fire to understand that we are carelessly carrying gun powder near fire, and fuel and hoping that; nothing do us.
So when our elites steal our money it is neither Christian nor Muslim money when they travel to Dubai with our sisters, and daughters turned to slay queen to partake of the loot, they have neither tribe nor religion. When Nigeria wins a football tournament there are no sides, but when we lose a match, we hear if not that foolish Hausa goalkeeper or how did they expect to win when they put only Igbo players.
Who has any religion ‘epped’, have our Imans, Prophets by their powers stopped Lassa fever or invented drones that can stop Boko Haram, when will Igbo rainfall on Nigeria such that we all have the business sense of Igbos, is it possible that the common street kindness of the Fulani, Hausa or Northern Nigerian translate to peace for the region.
Islam has not tackled our culture infested almajiri crisis, nor has Christianity stopped the greed and pursuit for wealth through rituals and voodoo. Show me a Christian, and I will show you his herbalist, show me a Muslim I would show you his Bo’oka.
I tell Nigerians that until, and unless we are ready to have Presidents that are not products of zone or religion until meritocracy is the reward for handwork, and mediocrity is punished for what it is until a Nigerian gets into the bank and requests for Islamic currency or Christian money until we expunge the archaic definitions that tie crimes to persons’ origins and faith, until and unless we again look at the nuisance that catchment area, indigenization, federal character has come to mean, we are still a long way off, the distance—Only time will tell.