Tribalism is not our problem. Tribalism and religion are artificial problems created by selfish leaders for their own personal interest.
There are only two major tribes in Nigeria. The Elites and the Masses. Once you make lots of money, you belong to the elite tribe. When you are a commoner or suffering, you belong to the tribe of the masses. If you are an elite, and you need more power, or elective position, you sow seeds of tribalism and religion among the masses, so as to sway their emotion for your personal victory. This happens at both the national and state level. Unfortunately, after the election when they have won and joined their “sworn enemies” to drink and party, the gullible masses continue to fight each other.
Even smart people who belong to the masses, sometimes will sow seeds of tribalism and religion among the masses, and then the masses will carry them up until they belong to the elite class. It is a classic strategy used over 3000 years ago in the art of war. A commoner who aspires to sit with the elites, could stir up powerful tribal or religious sentiments, such wave if properly utilized either by shedding blood or destabilizing the elites, carries the commoner to the elite class. But once there, he immediately mingles and makes peace with the elite tribe, and turn his back on the same masses that helped him get there.
Youths are the worst victim of this powerplay, they kill each other, call other tribes unprintable names, do terrible things and sometimes, even lose their life, thinking they are fighting for their right, not knowing that they are fighting for the personal welfare of someone, whose own children are probably safe in America or London.
So youths, don’t hope on the government. If you don’t have a job, create one. There is abject poverty in the south as well as the north, whether Ogoni or Maidugri. At the same time, there is massive wealth in Lagos, Onitsha, Nnewi, Aba, Kano, Abuja, irrespective of zone.
Whatever your hand finds to do, do it well and never remain idle. No job is too low for an idle hand, or else the devil will find work for you. As you become independent, and grow your capacity, do not lose hope in Nigeria. We are the largest economy in Africa and soon the world will fear us. Western powers, don’t like big economies that threaten them, America will do anything to break China, but China is wise to resist that. China has 1.6 billion people, we have only 170 million, and we are talking of breaking.
China has 5 major religions which are Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Islam and Christianity. Nigeria has only 2 major religions, Christianity and Islam. Yet we claim that religion is our problem.
America, the strongest economy is comprised of every tribe in the world, since they accept anybody from any part of the world. Yet they are united and extremely patriotic. Nigeria has only 3 major tribes, and we claim tribalism.
Think clearly and deeply, and you will realize that empowering yourself is the best course of action, not fighting each other. And once the youths are empowered, they can begin to take back their future from the hands of the old and corrupt generation that has been blinding Nigerians with hatred, while looting all her resources. Sani Abacha’s loot is still stashed away in Switzerland, did he use it to develop the north? Those that stole billions under GEJ stashed it away in foreign banks, bought expensive toys, jets and foreign homes, are they using it to develop the south? Now the ones stealing currently, including the “grasscutters”, are looking for Ikoyi apartments, abandoned houses, and pit toilets to hide it, are they using it for the youths in their tribe? NO!
Youths shine your eyes! Don’t always fall for this tribal, religious sentiments over and over again. Nigeria is bigger than these corrupt elites. They are the problem, not the poor masses.
Akin is the author of the book "THE INTERNET: a town square for the global village.
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