Africa proverb says, “ a chick that will grow into a cock can be spotted the very day it hatches”, meaning you can easily foresee the future of something through the character and telltale signs it shows today.
The overwhelming drums of discord emanating from various ethnic juggernauts call for a holistic analysis of the federation by Statesmen Response Team (SRT) with the sole aim of tackling the severe hate parasite infesting deep into our national horizon by dousing tension and calming frayed nerves in the interest of peace, development and national cohesion.
Breaking the shackles of conflicts needs commanding efforts of unbiased or sincere moderator(s) early enough in a fight or preferably before a fight. The dearth of moderators early in conflicts results into hullabaloo, leaving on its trail tears and blood. The consequences of wars whether commissioned or non-commissioned wars are far reaching and breeds sores of vengeance in the aftermath. It is despicable to have such clamors at this globally revered and spiritually rewarding month of Ramadan-a symbol of love, empathy and compassion for one another.
The three groups to be calmed are: frayed nerves (people who feel really cheated whether in race or on personal grounds.), vulnerable frayed nerves (the jobless tools waiting for the ticking time bomb to explode to cause mayhem), and the most dangerous of them all; the green snakes under the many green political grasses (people ready to stoke crisis for political calculations.)
Statesmen with bedrock of consistent principles, moral compass, vision and who possess the abilities to build consensus across divides are needed at this crucial time to change the policies, laws and the nation’s course of history, which have made various ethnic groups revolve around the long years tradition of suspicion and fragile peace through defining what made us and emptying what might have marred us.
According to Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, “violence has never been an instrument used by us, as founding fathers of the Nigerian Republic, to solve political problems. In the British tradition, we talked the colonial office into accepting our challenges for the demerits and merits of our case for self government.
“After six constitutional conferences in 1953,1954,1957,1958,1959 and 1960, Great Britain conceded to us the right”. Dr. Azikiwe stressed that no single drop of either British or Nigerian blood was shed for it. Without unity of purpose, according to Julius Nyerere, there is no future for Africa. And Nigeria being a major brand in the African continent must make peace within to muster the moral courage to sell African ideals. But unrepentant politicians who have, over the years, funded and encouraged arms proliferation and consequently helping to itch the idle but armed hands presently curse us.
The members to make the statesmen response team must not employ threats, adverts, propaganda, slick advertisements, and PR campaigns because all these tools are for despots or the defeatist points of a threatened set, but rather employ the historical and biological perspectives in the sweet memories of our productive ethnic partnerships from the successes of our enduring food supply-chains, which have helped increase nutrition, the gains inherent in our diversity as evident in the event of Festac 77, our crossed marriages, our number etc.
Analyzing what is right or wrong or who is waxing or waning is needless and obstructive to achieving peace.
If we don’t stand for something, we may fall for something involuntarily. When Rome boils, every body loses because as hunger is felt by a slave so is hunger felt by the king.
Akinola Iwilade writes from Lagos