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The peaceful protests achieved its purpose, hoodlums aside

By Chima Christian

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I was at City FM Onitsha today, at the invitation of Onitsha Chamber of Commerce, to reflect on the progresses made through the #EndSARS campaign and where we go from here to ensure the momentum garnered does not come to naught.

To be sure, the peaceful protests achieved its purpose. Through it, we shook the foundations of this nation and got the attention of the often unperturbed Nigeria’s political elite.

We are now following through on the promises made. We are also mobilizing and getting into the important work of building political and civic engagements that will deliver the long term aspirations of #EndSARS campaign.

It is always gratifying to see the kind of interest advocacy groups like Onitsha Chamber of Commerce have in this matter.

I thank Chinedu Nwonu, Vice President, Public Relations, Onitsha Chamber of Commerce for hosting the conversation.

The price for Nigeria’s greatness has been fully paid by the innocents who laid down their lives for this cause. We will persist until we take delivery of the purchased item.

Nigeria’s morning will come.

Abakiliki Scapegoating Worse Than Adeyinka Grandson’s Bigotry

I have continued to curate thoughts and speeches even as Anambra continues in its efforts to clear the debris and rebound from the destructive energies of last week.

And I must say that I find a troubling thought pattern that needs to be addressed immediately.

Governor Obiano said last weekend that “over 85% of the invaders came from neighbouring states.” He has repeatedly and, even more recklessly, publicly claimed that the destructions that visited the state was caused by non-Anambra indigenes.

This is the same claim he made when Python Dancers shot and killed IPOB agitators not so long ago. He conveniently ignored that a lot of Anambra’s youngmen are sworn IPOB loyalists and claimed the agitators that turned violent after the military gunned down some of them were “miscreants from neighboring states.”

This thinking resonates with a lot of people in Obiano’s Government. But they are hardly alone in this faulty, if not bigoted, thinking. A lot of Anambra people, including the super educated and exposed bunch believe and openly say that what happened in Anambra last week was caused by “Abakiliki people.”

Let’s look at the facts. In one of the social media videos I watched documenting the destruction of a police station in Ihiala, not only were the hoodlums speaking Anambra Igbo, they were speaking highly concentrated Ihiala dialect.

Another example, in one of the videos I saw documenting the destruction of Area Command, Nnewi, there was a particular guy attempting to break down the gate of the facility with a pick axe. Those who grew up in Nnewi will recall that particular type of axe is seen in almost all low-income households as it is a popular tool for picking fire-woods. That is not the type of axe cultists use because its length and weight makes it very difficult to conceal. So the referenced guy lives probably within 5 – 10 minutes walking distance from the police station. When police are ready to do their investigations they should study the self-made videos the arsonists posted, then indentify and triangulate their locations.

We know the people who caused these destructions. We know our people have a hand in it. Some of us even cheered them on at the early stages. Abakiliki people are now the fall guys.

I agree with Mcginger Ibeneme; after seeing our own brothers and sisters on video and slme of us even joining the violence ourselves, we are now claiming that Ebonyi people are the ones causing violence in our state.

I don’t understand how we can in one breath claim Abakiliki people are responsible for the carnage in Anambra while at the same time calling Adeyinka Grandson and others blamimg Igbos for what happened in Lagos bigots. It appears we now feel our own bigotry is justified but when it is done against us we shout the loudest

If there are people who shouldn’t throw stones, it is us who live in glass houses.

I understand some people making the unfounded claims about “invaders from Abakiliki” are shocked by the barbarism displayed last week. They don’t believe our people can behead a police officer, for instance, and then dance with his head. I say to those people “you know so little about contagion effect and what people can do in a turbo-charged atmosphere.”

Despite our relatively low unemployment rate, we still have a large swathe of unemployed and underemployed young people who are so angry and frustrated by the state of affairs. Until we routinely address those issues, they will not hesitate to seize available opportunities to exact what they understand to be vengeance on the state. What happened last week was terrible bit it will be naive to assume that we’ve seen the full destructive capability of our misguided young people.

Please let’s educate ourselves and stop the bigotry already.

The people who took Oba of Lagos’ staff of office are not Igbos. We know this, just as we know that the people who almost burnt down Anambra State are not Abakiliki people. The earlier we stop living in denial, the better.

Happy #EndSARS!

Chima Christian

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