Monday, January 22, 2018


 Written By John Coker
" The Hausa-Fulani has no ideals, no ambitions save such as sensual in character. He is a fatalist, spendthrift and a gambler. He is gravely immoral and is seriously diseased that he is a menace to any community to which he seeks to attach himself ".
- Lord Lugard in a Letter to his colleague, Walter H. Lang on September 25, 1918.
“Under the circumstances of what has been happening in Plateau State, some people just have to die……Any society that refuses to be just and fair shall become a jungle where only jungle justice shall operate……… Indeed, the majority of our killings were carried out in areas where there was strong government presence.”
- Mallam Sale Bayero, Fulani leader and secretary Sultan’s Farmer/Cattle Rearers Conflict Committee boasting as he justified the massacre of the Birom people while protesting the arrest of the Fulani murderers in the Plateau State of Nigeria, quoted in THE SUN NEWS of Friday, March 12, 2010.
Dan Fodio
Some time towards the middle of the second decade of the 1800s (1815 AD or thereabouts), Uthman Dan Fodio was reported to have had a scary dream about his Sultanate empire that he had just built. This dream was said to have saddened him that the empire he had spilt so much blood to build would only last 200 years. As a courageous warrior that he was, Dan Fodio was reported to have summoned the will to interpret the dream make this prediction about the future of his Empire.
According to informed sources, as reported by Adewale Adeoye in The Nation of March 14, 2010, this fear of the realization of Dan Fodio’s dream was what informed the hurried movement of the Capital of Nigeria from Lagos to Abuja. The report said inter alia:
“The source hinted that in the 1970s, Northern leaders of Fulani extraction had met and resolved that the capital of Nigeria be moved from Lagos to Abuja, in anticipation of the prophecy of late Uthman Dan Fodio. He said the meeting was propelled by the dream the then Sultan of Sokoto had that he saw his offsprings, in years to come, being requested to obtain visa permits before entering the Southern part of the country….”
There are a number of deductions that could be made from the above:
1. That the entire Nigeria was and is still regarded as part of the Sultanate Empire of Uthman Dan Fodio.
2. That this is why the Fulani have been exuding this arrogant attitude permeated with the “BORN TO RULE” mentality.
3. That this is why they have always ruled Nigeria as if we are in the middle ages and consider the wealth of Nigeria as theirs to spend as they see fit.
4. That the recent liberation struggles in Birom, Niger Delta, and the rest of the South-West or South-East are being seen as the beginning of the end of the Sultanate Empire by the Fulani people
5. That the Fulani people have been scheming and preparing to get ready for when they would leave or be chased out of Nigeria.
It is this writer’s view that there is nothing wrong if the Fulani have to pull out of Nigeria to sustain and maintain the remnant of their Sultanate Empire. It would definitely serve all concerned very well. But this writer is not convinced that the Fulani would let go very easily, regardless of their palpitation about the dreams of Uthman Dan Fodio. They are going to fight hard. Anyone familiar with their trickery and how they subdued all the fledgeling Hausa States one after the other, using Hausa masses against their kings would agree with this writer.
To this extent, I disagree with Lord Lugard that the Fulani (let us leave the Hausa ethnic nationality out for now), “has no ambition.” The Fulani has ambitions and great ones at that. The Fulani ambition is to always rule others whether they (Fulani) have the capacity to do so or not. The Fulani liked and still likes his empires, at least that of Uthman Dan Fodio has been in place before Lord Lugard ever was born.
It is this inherent ambition that forced the Fulani to develop the methodology to use religion to mobilize the Hausa critical mass against their own Hausa rulers and replaced them with blue-blooded turban-carrying Fulani rulers as Emirs across what used to be Hausa kingdoms. As time goes on, the Fulani sought ways to modernize its means of extending the frontiers of the Sultanate and refined its tool that was used against the Hausa Kingdoms in preparation for the conquest of the ethnic nationalities in Nigeria.
What the Fulani came up with was a different brand of what they did to the Hausa kings and empires. The Fulani concluded that because of cultural and religious factors, it would not be easy to use the critical mass of other ethnic nationalities in Nigeria to be able to supplant the leaders of these ethnic nationalities. So, the Fulani to sustain its ambition to rule and dominate, cultivated corrupt satellites in every ethnic nationality in Nigeria while politically annihilating the true leaders of other ethnic nationalities.
In 1957, during the heated battles for self-government and independence, Sir Ahmadu Bello referred to Nigeria as “The mistake of 1914.” To correct this “mistake” a meticulous plan to dominate the future Nigerian Armed Forces was surreptitiously embarked upon while the British were helping out on the political front manufacturing Parliamentary seats for the North against the South of Nigeria. Thus, barely six months after independence, Sir Ahmadu Bello was able to say with confidence in the Daily Times of May 3, 1961, the following:
“I’m set and fully armed, to conquer the Action Group, AG, in the same ruthless manner as my grandfather conquered Alkalawa, a town in Sokoto province, during the last century.”
The writer would like readers to pay due attention to the words used by Sir. Bello, in this quote. He used the word “conquer” not "negotiate."
Ahmadu Bello executed this desired conquest of the West as he had planned. Though it backfired temporarily as it consumed him a number of years later, but the Fulani sentries in the Caliphate Armed Forces euphemized as the Nigerian Armed Forces along with its surviving civilian wing have adopted Sir. Ahmadu Bello’s method of propping up political, economic and religious satellites in all ethnic nationalities in Nigeria to be able to maintain control from Abuja, Sokoto and or Gobir, the birthplace of Uthman Dan Fodio.
It would be alright, if the Fulani could live with others as others are willing and prepared to live with them in Nigeria and other parts of West Africa, at least. In Nigeria, there have been more than 100 years of evidence that various ethnic Nationalities have accommodated, loved respected and cared for the Fulani in their midst.
There is abundant evidence that the Fulani have been treated as fellow human beings and accorded the same rights that the host have always enjoyed.
But it is very unfortunate that the Fulani has not had the same “live and let live” approach to other ethnic Nationalities in Nigeria.
The Fulani concept of living is that others have to die, so that the Fulani may live. As far as the Fulani are concerned, other peoples of other ethnic nationalities are second-rate slaves to be used, dumped, maimed, raped or killed for the good of the Fulani man. The Fulani see Nigeria as his great grandfather’s inheritance to be toyed with as he wishes and as he wants.
This attitude of Fulani makes him believe that he has to rule wherever he is, regardless of his comparative intelligence and capability to that of his host among other reasons.
Presenting a paper reviewing Paul M. Lewis’ book Ethnologue: Languages of the World, (16th Edition), to a study group in Philadelphia recently, Professor Wola Awoyale, a linguist at the University of Pennsylvania noted that the Fulani are recent immigrants in Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad, Benin Republic, Guinea, Senegal, Niger, Mali and Sudan. The Fulani symbol is the turban, flag, alukimba, mosque and book. The Fulani are “a very creative” people who are often very “tight-lipped, silent and secretive” in their approach. They are very “mistrusting, calculating and patient.”
The Fulani are described as “cold-blooded and ideological.” They are “ascetic, reclusive and tough-minded.” The Fulani places the premium on the role of the mosque in its culture and this is why in all of Nigeria, a Fulani would not be a part of 'Jamaa' (the congregation) where another man of different ethnic stock is leading Muslims in prayers.
The Fulani language Fulfude with its variations in 'Fulah', 'Pulaar' and or 'Pular' are very highly priced. It is their weapon to discuss in secrecy and manipulate and carry out their machinations.
The Fulani will freely learn the languages of others as a means of infiltrating them for economic, political and religious advantages while rarely speaking Fulfulde in the presence of others.
In the same March 14, 2010-edition of The Nation, Baba Oluwide, a former economic consultant to the United Nations (UN) was interviewed. Part of the interview read inter alia:
“To him,(Baba Oluwide) the frequent clashes 'reflects a reawakening of consciousness among nationalities which territories were forcefully taken by the Fulani' adding that it also 'signifies the collapse of the Fulani Empire.'
 He said the 'main cause of the downfall of the Fulani Empire' was the defect inherent in their political and social perspectives which he says celebrates lack of tolerance for diverse culture and a resentment of pluralism of ideas.”
This writer, in disagreement with the interviewee, would not be so swift to sing the dirge of the Sokoto Caliphate or the Sultanate.
While one may agree that there is “a reawakening of consciousness among nationalities which territories were forcefully taken by Fulani,” there is still the need for the ethnic Nationalities in Nigeria to remain vigilant.
It is one’s view that the battle to overthrow the yoke of the Fulani political imperialism/neo-colonialism, economic exploitation and religious extremism is just about to begin.
While it may be true that the Fulani is being haunted by the dream of Uthman Dan Fodio and are making preparations for the D-Day when they would leave Nigeria or are chased out, it would amount to political suicide for the oppressed and enslaved ethnic nationalities in Nigeria to go to sleep, waiting for the time when the Fulani would voluntarily leave Nigeria. There may be eventual negotiations, but this writer doubts it giving the characteristics of a Fulani man.
It is one’s view that freedom is not cheap and neither is it free. There is always a price to pay for one’s freedom.
The Fulani is willing to loot, maim, and kill to hold on to its empire. This suggests that to take it from them, all the ethnic nationalities have to be prepared for every eventuality just in case words and negotiations would not solve the problem.
It would be recalled that the Fulani embarked on ethnic cleansing of the Jukun ethnic nationality in Taraba State in the 1990s. The Fulani are vociferously claiming the ownership of Idi-Araba and yelled: “barao, barao, barao” meaning “thief, thief, thief” on the then Governor of Lagos State, Bola Tinubu in his own State.
The Fulani started a war on traditionalists in Shagamu in Ogun State over the celebration of Oro Festival.
The Fulani have tried to reduce the Tiv’s population by extermination during the First Republic.
The Fulani have tried to emasculate the Katafs in Kaduna before. The Fulani tried to cleanse Zakibiam of non-Fulani blood.
The Fulani have been killing owners of the land in Iseyin and Shaki in Oyo State.
Media reports noted that scores of owners of the lands in Oyo were left “dead, maimed or raped.” The Fulani are determined to wipe out the Birom people of Plateau from their ancestral lands.
The Fulani has just recently killed a policeman in Ekiti State after wounding the owners of the land. The Fulani has an Emir of Ilorin, a Yoruba town.
The Fulani is determined to have an Emir of Jos and possibly Enugu too, very soon
The Nation, in its report of March 14, 2010, also noted the following:
“In many West African countries, clashes between nomadic Fulani and indigenous communities are well known underlining the fact that the challenge is a sub-regional phenomenon.
In Cameroon, Ghana, Mali, Togo and Niger, frequent clashes between nomadic Fulani and land owners constitute a major security problem for national and regional governments.
In the Chad basin, clashes between Fulani and Shua Arabs have led to thousands of deaths, reliable sources claim. Many of the clashes were between indigenous communities and Fulani herdsmen accused of trespassing on native lands and in many cases, attempting to take over the lands by force of arms.”
This shows that the Fulani has a character that is antithetical to the hopes and yearnings of other ethnic nationalities in Nigeria and around West African sub-continent. They are used to taking things that do not belong to them by force.
Exploiting the oil of the Niger Delta in the way and manner it had been for this long is not out of character for the Fulani.
Spending the national resources to which they contribute next to nothing like a drunken “gambler” is part of the Fulani nature.
The Fulani has no capacity to be compassionate where his interests are at stake. Thus the murdering of a Ken Saro Wiwa here and a Dele Giwa there, or another Akaluka here and Oluwatosin there means nothing to the Fulani.
Murdering in a cold-blooded massacre, several Junkun women and children has no meaning to the Fulani.
Wiping out the entire villages of the Birom people does not mean anything to the Fulani. Looting, raping, maiming and murdering innocent and generous Yoruba hosts has no meaning in the consciousness of the Fulani. It is just a way of life.
The essence of bringing this to the attention of the world, especially the ethnic nationalities in the bondage called Nigeria is to let them know what they are engaged with in the struggles to be free and have self-determination. The Fulani is not prepared to negotiate if he is going to lose out.
The Fulani will fight. And he will be ruthless and cold-blooded in the fight.
The only language the Fulani understands is war and conquest. All you need to do is just listen to Mallam Sale Bayero in the quote above.
 Listen to the posthumous voice of Ahmadu Bello echoing from the grave as he uses the words “ruthless” and “conquer” in speaking about his supposed fellow countrymen.
Listen to Mallam Bala Garuba in the West African Pilot newspaper speaking of “conquest” of his supposed countrymen.
Listen to Mallam Falalu Bello (MD, Unity Bank of Nigeria) threatening “there will be no real peace in this country moving forward,” because he feels the Fulani has no control over the resources and means of others.
Listen to Balarabe Musa making a case for permanent rulership of Nigeria by the Fulani. Listen to the Bala Usman of this world as to why no one of other ethnic nationality should be allowed to rule Nigeria.
Listen to the silent yells of Maitama Sule making the same case. Yes, the nightmare of Dan Fodio’s dream may hang like a noose around the Fulani’s neck, but the Fulani would never give up without a fight.
The Hausa people are still wondering how they have become so slavish to the Fulani. They are still wondering how their very valuable heritage has been polluted and dumped for that of the Fulani settlers.
The Hausa are still wondering how the great histories of their forefathers have been supplanted by that of the Fulani to whom they have shown great love and hospitality.
Every ethnic Nationality in Nigeria needs to be aware that the Hausa people are very confused right now. Some of their elites have been incorporated by the scheming and secretive Fulani.
The Fulani are very few in numbers and they have brainwashed the Hausa people to believe that their (Hausa) destinies are tied together with that of the Fulani because of Islam.
The Fulani use the Hausa numbers as a buffer to perpetrate Fulani evils in Hausa name. What they have done to Hausa people is to make them believe in the Fulani as the pathfinders for them (Hausa).
Now, it is the Hausa who is used to fight the Fulani fights and battles. This is what Sir. Ahmadu Bello, taking a page off the book of his Fulani great grandfather, Uthman Dan Fodio, has also done with other minority groups in the North of Nigeria, using them as tools for the Fulani conquest of Nigeria.
As pointed out above, this trick has been extended to all ethnic nationalities in Nigeria and as such one could find among them corrupt leaders who hold allegiance to the Sultanate rather than their peoples.
This writer has his doubts if the Hausa people would ever wake up. Even, if and when they wake up, the benefits of greed and the unabated appropriation of resources for which they have never laboured out of the Niger Delta and other parts of Nigeria would still guarantee the Hausa - Fulani cooperation.
The minority ethnic nationalities in the North are waking up. They are realizing that they are slaves in their own lands. They are just realizing that they have been fighting the battles of Fulani to their own and their peoples’ detriment.
They have just realized that cows are much more treasured by the Fulani than the Birom mothers, Tiv wives, Jukun sisters, Igala children, Nupe brothers and Kataf fathers.
The Fulani is a fiercely ambitious man, contrary to what Lord Lugard is trying to make us believe.
The Fulani would plunder, loot, rape, maim and kill in pursuit of this ambition.
The Fulani would take advantage of the weaknesses of his host and supplant him and appropriate his wealth and means.
The Fulani for the last 200 hundred years has been at loggerheads with every known hospitable host of his, not just in Nigeria but in West African sub-region.
The Fulani ambitions are intolerant of the existence and well-being of others.
This is where one could agree with Lord Lugard – that the Fulani is “seriously diseased” and “a menace to any community to which he seeks to attach himself.”
The ethnic nationalities in all of Nigeria still stand a good chance to be free.
That chance would fizzle and dissipate without standing firm, strong and willing to make the necessary sacrifice that would be required. It is time to repel the Fulani imperialism and or neo-colonialism.
It is time to reclaim our freedom and rights. It is time to seek any means necessary to be free from the bondage called Nigeria.
Cows could not, should not, would not and must not be more important than our daughters and sons, brothers and sisters as well as our mothers and fathers...

Wednesday, January 17, 2018


Last week, the Nigeria Army took delivery of five MFI-15 Safari trainer aircrafts from Pakistan. The MFI-15 were made by Saab of Sweden. If I tell you the story of MFI-15 aircraft you will either laugh or be in shock.
In May 1969, the Biafran

Airforce engineers, with the help of a Swedish mercenary called Carl Gustaf von Rosen, converted Swedish built Malmő MFI-9 civilian trainer aircrafts into what they called MiniCOINS - Miniature Counter Insurgency. They were popularly called Biafran Babies, with capacity to carry significant loads of ordinance.
The converted airplanes were effective. They were used by the Biafran Airforce to strike  Nigerian airfields at Port Harcourt, Enugu, Benin and even Lagos, destroying some number of Nigeria's expensive MiG-17s and Ilyushin II-28s. The first MFI-15, developed from the Biafran design, had its first flight on the 26th of February, 1971.
The success of the Biafran Babes evoked the interest of the original manufacturers. That was how MFI-15, the aircraft that Nigeria imported from Pakistan last week, was born. The Swedish made CKD parts are assembled in Pakistan as the Mushshak.
The first and second pictures are Carl von Rosen about to take off in the Biafran Baby. The third picture is one of the MFI-15 aircraft Nigeria imported from Pakistan. The fourth picture shows the five MFI-9 of the Biafran Air Force at Uli airport in 1969, while the fifth picture shows the five MFI-15 aircraft Nigerian Airforce just imported from Pakistan in 2018.
What Biafra made in 1969 under war conditions, Nigeria is importing from Pakistan in peacetime, 2018.
Now you may laugh or be in shock.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018


In case you are not aware !

Between 1983 and 1985, Peter Onu of Nigeria was Acting Secretary-General of the OAU. At the 1985 Summit in Addis Ababa, statesmen like Julius Nyerere, President of Tanzania, lobbied for his election as substantive Secretary-General. However, there was a major stumbling block to Peter Onu’s candidature: his Head of State, Muhammadu Buhari, was campaigning against him. Buhari claimed: “This generation of Nigerians and indeed future generations have no other country than Nigeria.” But when the crunch came, his allegiance to Nigeria disappeared. In the election of the OAU Secretary-General in 1985, Buhari voted against Nigeria and for Niger instead. He secured the election of Ide Oumarou, a Fulani man from Niger; as opposed to an Igbo man from Nigeria. By so doing, Buhari became the first and only Head of State in the history of modern international relations to vote against his country in favour of his tribe... - Vanguard, February 3, 2015


The article is both interesting and troubling. At first I thought it was fake news. Then, I googled it and found it to be a true account in the book titled – _The OAU: Reality Or Fiction by Ibrahim Daggash, former Head of Information and Communication, Organization of African Unity (OAU); pg 69; ISBN 1-9044722-25-3._
Whilst the refusal of Gen. Mohammadu Buhari to aid the election of his country man to head the OAU in preference to his fellow Fulani from another country (Niger) is a glaring example of this man’s mindset is troubling, most troubling from the Author’s account was his reaction when the vote was tallied and Gen. Buhari found out his country man was defeated. Ibrahim Daggash in his aforesaid book narrated it as follows:
_“What was astonishing, when the vote was in favour of Niger’s candidate, the Nigerian Head rejoiced to such a degree that he was unable to control his emotions. That was a moment I witnessed and was convinced that General Buhary would not last long as a leader.”_

Saturday, December 23, 2017


About the on going INNOSONS  case  with EFCC (should  be GT Bank), the Igbos  are once more being called names and accused especially by some half baked journalists  for ' over expressing  tribal sentiments and crying wolves' .The condemnation by the Deputy senate President and some SE  senators earned  them been singled out as unpatriotic,though many well meaning politicians  from the north also condemned the disrespect of law by the EFCC. As  usual many stories  are trending on the (IGBO) Social  media, especially  many venting their anger on GTBank which they believe is using the EFCC to destroy their  or our (Nigerian)  prime pride in industrialisation.

Well the Igbos or South Easterners may be called anything but what would  you think or how could you behave  when the person doing the arrest or whatever is  imposed on the nation by what may not want to associate with  tribal sentiments or Cabal and occupying a position unconstitutionally(not undergoing due processes ):having been rejected  by the senate, therefore illegally imposed on the nation? 
Did those talking of Igbo tribal sentiments think of this?If they did,may I know their views?
I doubt a real  Igbo person  would be ashamed to accept that he reasons as an Igbo person. I have Igbo origin and I admit that I am also  influenced by the Igbo philosophy or philosophies just like that of the other places I have had reasonable learning process period, i.e  places I have lived including Nigeria which though is still a disappointment but is home to  the most wonderful peoples on earth.
Why then should I be  embarrassed  by the rantings of a culture-less 'EFEKEFE' (nonentities) who wants me to swallow every rubbish as not to be tagged an Igbo sentimentalist. He better look  for his own philosophies and be proud of it.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Adamawa Fulani Herdsmen Attack Town With Helicopter

Adamawa Fulani Herdsmen Attack Town With Helicopter

Adamawa Fulani Herdsmen Attack Town With Helicopter

Information reaching indicate that another community in Adamawa State have fallen under the attack of the vicious Fulani herdsmen. The attacks according to an eyewitness began today’s [December 5, 2017] evening at Lawaru, a community in Adamawa State.
According to an eyewitness statement reproduced below, the community of Lawaru was set ablaze by the legion of Fulani herdsmen who had arrived earlier in the day to the town.
The account stated that a military style helicopter gave the attacking Fulani herdsmen cover as they torched the town. The helicopter was reported to have joined the attack.
See the eyewitness account below:
He Statement Of An Eye Witness From Dong… via Phone…
‘I was at Kwalumo when a friend called me from Lawaru that legions of Fulani herdsmen are trooping into their village. On the phone, I heard some scaring gun sounds that can only be liken to a nightmare from the pit of hell. I immediately dial Klomoso’s Number to help notify Hama Dong. While putting a notice to Klom, I saw Lawaru on flames! It pained me so much knowing my biological mother who went there earlier that day might have been killed!! I ask the guys around to go with me! I wanted to go and rescue my mother dead or alive!!
We went in good spirit with no gun but guts. At Ngodon, We met hundreds of women running into bushes. I saw Sapwada, I asked where are our men? she said she said the vow to die standing!!
I  was provoke the more, but the atmosphere cold me.
Within some minutes, we saw them trooping into Dong. We hide, watching them burn our houses. Under the tree on which I was hiding, those fulanis raped seven girls of 12-14yrs..
Aside that, a helicopter was hovering over, and giving them cover.. At a certain point when we noticed they were running out of arms, We mobilized from bushes to face them. No too long a military jet let loose a bomb on us killing many of us….
As am speaking to U now, most of our men were killed by d four air strikes while children and women by the Fulani…..””


Friday, December 1, 2017



After seeing the few photographs  recently  coming from Libya  and the hypocritical out cry from African countries especially Nigeria I would like us to answer some of  these questions:
  • HOW, WHY AND FROM WHERE DID THEY GET THERE? As we wail and curse Libyans  we ask ourselves and the govt,why,how and from where did they get there? Is this the first time we are hearing of this phenomenon? Is it cheaper for the govt to send plans to cart away her citizens than making  correct educational policies that would mould out prepared, productive  and employable youths to face the present world economic changes ? Why are the victims people predominantly from a particular geographical area ? 
  • IS IT OUR FIRST TIME OF SEEING SLAVES ? Is it not hypocrisy of the highest level to deny we are not all slave mongers? From our Clergy,politicians,civil servants,business people and even to  our Nollywood and entertainment people: the neo-bourgeois  we have been shouting at the Libyans but just take a second and  have a look in your household and around you  now and tell me if  you do not have one or two 'slaves'? Are you not deceiving your conscience with the employment or the  'assisting a relation that would have been in a worse situation' reason? Those Libyan animals have exactly the same reasons like you.  Are you treating him or her  like your child or if employed are you following the govt regulations in time and stipend ? Tell me now are you a slave monger or not? Are we not all Libyans on different levels with different reasons/motives?
  • HAVE WE NOT SENT OUT SLAVES TO WORK FOR US? As we enslave in Nigeria do we (those that have cash)  not send our brothers and sisters to other countries to go and 'survive' there? Do we not sell lands and other properties to send untrained, unskilled  and unemployable people overseas? To do what?  Do we not curse them when they do not send cash ,cars or build houses in their first years overseas  still knowing  that even the hosts and employers do not even boast of such at the same short time? Do we not  NOW in our churches, cultural places and placements  show more apparent respect to those that enslaved themselves more and made money more and quicker for that maatter?
  • Are you not deceiving yourself when you (especially those from the Mid-western states) believe that your daughter with ring worms on her head,without even a complete high school education is going to Italy through the Sahara desert and Mediterranean sea to work in an Italian restaurant?  Can you see now who the slave monger is? He is not the Libyan certainly; that Libyan rapist  is just  a criminal managing the slaves you sent to him.
  • TO BE CONTINUED.........
Chukwubike Okey C (works in the Italian migration services for 16 years) 


OUR STUPID TRADITIONS by Evaristus Ogbechie
There’s no place like home. So goes a very popular saying. I guess whoever coined it, had some degree of positivity attached to it. However, a look at some of the places many of us call ‘home’, will without a doubt get one thinking that this saying may not be valid after all. At least, not for everybody.
After my last trip to my country, Nigeria, I must confess experiencing a reappraisal of my hitherto strong belief, in that saying. I came back to Europe with so many unanswered questions lingering in my mind: What has happened to us as a people? What has become of our national conscience? Why is everyone in such a hurry? Where are we trying to get to? Why can’t we just walk, like all the other peoples of this world? Why have we erased the word ‘patience’ in our dictionary?

Nigeria, today, is a country where everybody blames everyone for all societal ills, and the government for not providing all that she should. All of their needs. Corruption is the most discussed topic in Nigeria, and is of course, condemned by everyone you discuss it with. This should have you thinking that everybody hates corruption in Nigeria. Far from it. Yes, we all condemn it, but only a handful would actually hold back from enjoying the fruits of corruption. If your brother is made a minister, and doesn't bring back home money stolen from government coffers, and you call him a fool. Which Nigerian wouldn’t like to have the president, his vice, or some other high-ranking politician, attend his wedding ceremony, or any other ceremony of the sort? 

In Nigeria, everybody is a ‘born again’ Christian, Muslim, animist, or something. God is mentioned without fear. One gets the impression, that we may all be direct descendants of the biblical Pharisees. I must quickly add here, that there are however, people who are true about their faith. People with love in their hearts. The problem is that religion has become so monetized, that it’s difficult to know where business ends, and true religion begins.
I have come to a humble conclusion, that behind our ‘grab- grab’ attitude; that behind the societal pressure to ‘perform’, which we all feel so helplessly, are our traditions. We celebrate everything from births, to deaths, weddings, chieftaincy titles, anniversaries, promotions, etc. Everyone you ask why we need to spend millions of naira on all of these events, will readily respond, that it’s the demand of our tradition to do so. It doesn’t matter if one can afford to celebrate so lavishly or not. He is expected to do so. It doesn’t matter if he has to steal to do so. He has to do it, like everybody else.
Permit me to say, that it smells more to me, like the demands of consumism and materialism, to do so.

People are encouraged to show off what they may not even have.
People need to boost their egos. It no longer is wise, to blame the meagre-salaried police men, for asking for their 100 naira ‘personal tax’ from vehicles at their checkpoints, and other such places. Considering that a policeman cannot save millions of naira from his salary, and that he has to spend millions of naira in the event of his father’s burial, where do you expect him to come up with such staggering amounts? How can the average politician be honest, when he knows that people would expect him to celebrate in a big way, his his own traditional events? Add the tradition of money being ‘sprayed’, at such ceremonies, and you know how sick our traditions are.
Put a ban, on these stupid traditions, and we would have taken a giant step towards the achievement of socio-economic development in Nigeria. Money, which is needed, to be reinvested in existing businesses, and the creation of new ones, is lavishly thrown away, on the daily.
Why do we put so much pressure to perform on ourselves? Why do we keep inviting stress to our doorsteps? This unending pressure to perform, is the reason we have corrupt politicians, clergymen, armed robbers, kidnappers, cultists, secret society adherents, prostitutes, drug dealers, etc. Ask any one of them why he or she is so desperate, to ‘make it’, and you will hear that they want to get theirs too.
We Nigerians deserve to live better than we are doing presently. We have the resources, and brains to do so. The world is moving ahead, slowly but steadily. We shouldn’t be left behind. Let’s stop behaving like crabs in a basket, pulling each other down. God bless Nigeria.
By Evaristus Ogbechie.

Monday, November 20, 2017



Ikeji or New Yam Festival in Mgbowo is as old as Mgbowo Community. Today, the 16th of July 2017 marks this year's Ikeji or New Yam Festival that heralds the harvesting of new yam in my community. Many families are gathered today in their various ancestral places of meeting called NKORO to deliberate on serious issues that agitate the mind of each family member and to share EKA OKUKU (the wing of fowls) killed to commemorate the festival.

To add impetus to the celebration this year, I dug through my library to share with all my friends and Mgbowo people wherever they may be what IKEJI or New Yam Festival raelly means to the Mgbowo Man as eruditely presented by one of the celebrated Wordsmith of our time in Mgbowo MR. EGBUNA AKPA. Please enjoy.



1.0 Introduction: Man and His Culture 

History and Religion testify to the origin and existence of human beings. However, while history subscribes to the Theory of Evolution to prove the emergence of homo sapiens; that is, human beings as we see and know them today, religion attributes it to the act of creation by God. 

Whichever way we may choose to look at it, the incontrovertible fact is that the world is peopled by human elements who are rational creatures. The rationality of man imbues him with the ability, not only to reason and judge, but also to speak, think, act, discover, invent, and use the materials around him to his own advantage. Also, man is endowed with the innate ability to learn from personal experience, from what happens around him and from what he inherits from his forebears. 

Thus, over the years, human beings have, in tandem with their immediate physical and social environments, evolved systems of beliefs, ideas, behaviour, custom and even artifacts, which they accept and share, as peoples of particular societies. These commonly accepted and shared ways of life are collectively called culture. 

Therefore, we may define culture as the aggregate or totality of a people’s way of life. It includes their language, beliefs and custom, as inherited from their ancestors. Indisputably, a people's culture is their special identity; in the same way as a person's name and habits are his or her identity. 

As a society of homo sapiens, Mgbowo Community has her own beliefs, ideas, dialect and custom, which constitute our cultural identity. One aspect of this culture is the custom of revering and celebrating yam as the king of all crops; otherwise called Ikeji, our New Yam Festival. It is in deference to our collective belief in this age-long traditional practice of our people that we are gathered here today to discuss this extant custom. 

It is expected that, at the end of our discourse, those of us who belong to the outgoing generation will have refreshed our memories of what it used to be in our distant past, while the younger elements will appreciate the wisdom of our forefathers, cling to it and protect our harmless traditional practices from imminent suffocation and death.

 2.0  The Ikeji Festival 
As we observed in our introduction above, Ikeji Mgbowo is an aspect of our people's culture. This custom dates back to the earliest days in our history when yam was treated as being sacrosanct, served as a status symbol, an index of wealth and as an object of title-taking. No other crop, wild or domestic, enjoyed such reverence or recognition among our ancestors. 

It is, therefore, not surprising that they had to translate their regard and respect for this king crop into reality by mapping out a programme of events to celebrate the yam at appropriate periods of the year; namely, during the planting and harvesting of yam. 

The celebration of the new yam at its maiden harvest is called Ikeji, while the veneration of the crop just before it returns to the soil is known as Enwu. We shall examine the relationship between these twin festivals in the course of this lecture. Suffice it to say that both occasions are also used to pray to the gods and ancestors for long life, productive farming, abundant harvest, communal peace, and unity, as well as for individual family favours and needs.
 2.1  Announcement of Ikeji Festival 

Generally speaking, Ikeji Festival, which is the greatest of its kind in our community, takes place in the 9th moon of our local calendar; otherwise known as Onwa Tonnu. In recent times, however, the authority and custodians of the festival have had cause to add or subtract a moon to or from the normal Onwa Tonnu, to bring forward or postpone, by one moon, the usual time or period of the festival. This practice is said to be justified when the weather adversely or favourably affects the growth of the planted yam. 

The custodians of Ikeji Festival have always been the Chief Priests of two of the major deities in Mgbowo, representing Ndi Ali Mgbowo and a representative of Uhuokwe family - Umu Olukaaji in Eziobodo Alechara Village who actually does the announcement. They are: 
a) The Chief Priest of Ali Ihiriho (from Ameta Village); 
b) The Chief Priest of Ali Dulaho (from Imeama Village), and 
c) The Umu Olukaaji Family (in Alechara Village). 

At the emergence of Onwa Tonnu, the three wise men decide when the festival will hold. It is their collective responsibility to announce the Ikeji Day. The announcement is made usually 8 days (or izulambo) into the 9th moon of Mgbowo Calendar year. The Ikeji Day proper falls on the 20th day of the 9th moon or 12 days (izulalo) after the formal announcement. Invariably, it is made to fall on Orio Market day. 
2.2  Phases of Ikeji Festival 
The Ikeji Festival is celebrated in five (5) phases, namely: Itu Nvula, Igbuji Ji, Eka Okuku, Oku Obodo and Ifu Ahia. 
2.2.1  Itu Nvula 
This expression suggests that Nvula (water yam) might be the oldest specie of yam known to, and planted by, our people. Be that as it may, Ilu Nvula is the opening phase of Ikeji, and takes place on the eve of the festival. Since Ikeji is invariably celebrated on Orio Market day, it means that Ilu Nvula takes place on Eke Market day; the day preceding Ikeji Day. 

The main activity of the day is the visit of married men to their fathers in-law. While going on the visit, the married men take with them tubers of yam, cocks, wine, tobacco etc, as presents. Where the father in-law is late, a man can visit and make such presents to his mother in-law. The idea is to share the joy of the coming celebration and further cement the existing bond of unity between both families. 
2.2.2  Igbuji Ji 
This happens on Orio day, the day after the Itu Nvula ceremony. It is the Ikeji Day proper. Activities of the day include men going to their farms to harvest the new yams, cutting the yam, breaking kolanuts and killing cocks, all at the entrance of their compounds. 

Also, the men otter oblation and pour libation on the same spot, while praying to God and the ancestors for good health, peace and progress, and to thank them for favours received, especially the good harvest expected in the year. 

Generally, families stay in their homes to celebrate on Ikeji Day, except the younger male children who may move from compound to compound scrambling for broken kolanut lobes often sprinkled with the blood of fowls. 
2.2.3  Eka Okuku 
This takes place on the third day of the festival; that is, on Aho Market day; hence, Aho Eka Okuku. It is a very important phase of Ikeji Festival because it offers opportunity for male members of each clan in the community to assemble and discuss the state of their clan. Those of them living outside are expected to return for the festival and be present at the assembly. 

Usually, activities of the day begin simultaneously throughout Mgbowo, after palmwine producers have returned from their morning rounds. The wine they bring home is used for prayers and libation. 

Members of each clan assemble in their ancestral hut or house called Nkoro, which is often located in the premises of the eldest surviving member of the clan. To open the meeting, the clan Head, on behalf of all members present and those unavoidably absent, prays to God and the ancestors for being alive to see another Ikeji. He breaks a kolanut, offers oblation and pours libation to conclude the prayers. 

After that, kolanuts are shared, chicken meat (i.e. the eka okuku) is exchanged and drinks are also shared. Then follows the examination of the state of the clan. Reports and complaints are received from those who have them. It could be on disputes between or among members, the inability of a son or daughter of the clan to return to school or to marry due to indigence, or the decline of the business fortunes of a member of the clan, among other matters. 

The issues are discussed and solutions provided, as much as possible. The occasion demands that the truth is told and justice upheld, so that peace and harmony are restored where they have been truncated. Those who need or seek advice or counselling are obliged and, at the end of the session, everyone returns to his home at peace with himself and his kinsmen. 

Apart from the clan assembly, Eka Okuku Day approximates to Boxing Day in the Christian Calendar. It is a day of exchange of visits and presents among relatives and friends. Married women prepare and take to their fathers and other deserving male relations, rich food, the thighs of the cocks, killed by their husbands the previous day and, indeed, other edibles they can afford. Recipients of such generous gestures reciprocate by loading their daughters or sisters with presents in cash and kind, with new yams as part of the gift items. 

Eka Okuku day is generally observed as one of visits, feasting and merriment; it is a day when pounded yam is eaten, often with isasa soup or egusisoup interspersed with okpulekwa. 
2.2.4  Oku Obodo 
This phase of the Ikeji Festival comes up 4 days following the Igbuji Ji ceremony; that is to say, on the izu after Ikeji Day proper. The event of the day involves mostly the younger male members of the community and takes place in the evening at a place called obodo, the village square or playground. 

Earlier in the day, the children gather and stockpile firewood at a convenient corner of the village square. In the evening, they assemble on the square, carrying raw new yams, kitchen knives and bowls or plates of red palm oil often mixed with akpaka (sliced oil bean seeds). 

At the appropriate time, the huge heap of firewood is ignited, resulting in a huge bonfire. The excited children now push their yams into the blazing fire to roast and each guards his own jealously until it is done and ready for consumption. As the blaze declines in intensity and the yams are fully roasted, the children withdraw them, scrape them neatly and retire to their corners to enjoy the meal. After that each child returns to his home, full of joy and tales of what transpired during the oku obodo. 

This is to say that Ikeji Festival takes care of every segment of the population in Mgbowo; males, females, adults and children. It is our community's most universal cultural festival. 

2.2.5 Ifu Ahia Ikeji 
Traditionally, Onwa Tonnu ends 8 days (izulambo) after Ikeji Day. It is the day Ikeji Festival comes to a close with the spectacular outing of the populace in the community market place; hence, the phrase, Ifu Ahia. 

However, with the adjustment of Mgbowo market day from Orio to Eke in the late 1950s, Ikeji Festival now lasts for seven, instead of eight days and ends on Eke market day; a day earlier than used to be the case. 

Activities of this grand finale include the display of masquerades in the market place. Every village adorns and leads its own masquerades to the venue to entertain the jubilant audience with dances and acrobatic skills. The people cheer and pelt the dancers with cash presents. Everyone going to the market for this special event turns out in his or her best attire. 

At the end of the day, the Ikeji Festival is formally over and everybody returns home to wait, nostalgically, for that of the next year. 

3.0 Significance of Ikeji Festival 
Our elders believe that yam is indigenous to our community. This is unlike cassava, which is known to have been brought in from outside through Imeama Village; hence, the expression, "Sam bia gbaa Imeama I'ish;, which you would hear a woman say when she wants to eat cassava foo-foo. 

Today, both yam and cassava are cultivated as cash and subsistence crops throughout Igbo land and beyond but nowhere is the cassava revered or celebrated as the yam. Indeed, apart from the human being and land, yam is arguably the next most revered terrestrial object among our people; and, therefore, must be seen as having great significance, which is why it is celebrated in Ikeji Festival. Thus, we can safely assert that the significance of Ikeji is inextricably intertwined with that of yam as the king of all our local crops. 
For instance: 
* Ikeji is, by far, the most important common festival in Mgbowo and its month (Onwa Tonnu) the most significant month in our local calendar. In those days of Irosh; in Onwa Esaa, a family that could not perform the ritual during the month was free to do so in Onwa Tonnu. 
* Yam is regarded as sacrosanct in Mgbowo cosmogony or tradition. 
Consequently, it is an abomination for any Mgbowo person to steal yam and, if one deliberately uproots a newly-sown yam seedling, one has grievously offended the gods. In addition, a menstruating woman is forbidden from entering yam barn, and two persons don't hold a yam when it is being cut. 
* Yam confers on the "big yam farmer" social esteem, recognition and wealth. 
* It is used in all important ceremonies secular and spiritual; such as marriage, birth, death, and presented as gifts to beloved and important persons. 

Aside from these values attached to yam, its significance is also felt in the impact it has in our people's way of life. For example, 
* Ikeji marks the end of the planting of yam in the course of Mgbowo calendar year. However, if for any reason a man must sow yam anytime between Ikeji and Enwu, he must do so with a knife; not with a hoe. 
* Ikeji authorizes every Mgbowo person to eat new yams for the year, wherever he is. This is to say that no indigene of Mgbowo would eat new yam until our community has celebrated Ikeji Festival. 
4.0  The Ogbu Ebele Ji Title 
We have observed that a great yam farmer is regarded with awe and very high esteem. He is easily a man of means and is most disposed to dine with priests and elders. To further enhance his status in the community, he could decide to take the yam title of Ogbu Ebele Ji, with the additional compliment of Onyiri Umuejonni (conqueror of gluttons). 

The taking of Ogbu Ebele Ji title is a lengthy and expensive business. It lasts for eight days (izulambo) during which rams (ebele), fowls and some other animals are slaughtered in the man's compound. Since he is supposed to have more than enough yams to feed the entire community for the period, nothing is cooked or eaten in his compound except yam and its by-products. 

On the final day of the ceremony, the title -taker's compound is a beehive of activities. People who come from far and near throng the premises and more animals are slaughtered and used for preparing soup and yam porridge to feed the people. Cultural dancers perform but prominent among them is the Ogeji music group, which provides the music for the title holder to dance. 

Finally, the yam deity, (Joku JI) is installed in the man's barn in the form of an earthen bowl (oshiri) and sacrifices made to it with a ram and fowls. From then, the barn becomes a sacred and restricted area, out of bounds for thieves, menstruating women and dishonest men. 

The celebrant has become an Ogbu Ebele Ji, and can join others before him to adjudicate in all cases involving the abuse of yam in Mgbowo. Also, in conjunction with Ndi AIi, they are first to plant new yams after Enwu Festival. 

5.0 Relationship Between Ikeji and Enwu Festivals 

Without delving into the nitty-gritty of Enwu as one of our traditional festivals, I consider it necessary, for a better understanding of our subject, to discuss the relationship between it and Ikeji. In a sense, both festivals have something to do with yam; though, while Ikeji is totally a yam festival, Enwu only serves as a whistle for yam farmers to take off in the race. This is to say that Ikeji marks the beginning of yam harvests but Enwu heralds the planting of seed yams. 
As we observed earlier in his lecture, the sowing of seed yams terminates with the harvest of new yams on Ikeji Day. The ban, as it were, is lifted on Enwu Day and fresh planting can begin the immediate next day; that is, the day after Enwu. 

Another semblance between Ikeji and Enwu is the occurrence of Eka Okuku in both festivals, during which male members of every clan in the community meet to share prayers and victuals, and to discuss issues of common interest. 

The practice, significance and rules that govern Enwu festival should be reserved for another lecture of this nature. 
6.0  Summary and Conclusion 
In this lecture, we have been discussing Ikeji Festival, which we have described as an aspect of Mgbowo traditional culture. I must appreciate the patriotism and foresight of the organizers of this occasion for the opportunity they have given us to recreate our remote and proximate past through this lecture. Coming at a time most of our once-cherished traditional practices have gone extinct, it is incumbent on us to use the opportunity to reflect on the consequences of presiding over the regrettable demise of our own culture and heritage. 

Agreed that Christianity and civilization have dealt stunning blows on most of our local deities and rendered them impotent and anachronistic, why should we sit back and watch while our non¬idolatrous practices are casketed and buried? Agreed that we should not return to the era of killing fowls in order to cure fevers or to the days of idol worship, why have our women stopped the child¬outing ceremony (ifuta I'omugwo) all in the name of Christianity? 

As far as I know, there is nothing fetish or idolatrous about ifuta I l’omugwo and there is no reason why it should be banned. As far as I am concerned, nothing stops us from recovering and restoring our stolen cultural heritage, no matter whose ox we may gore in the process of doing so. 

Our culture is our identity; so, to lose that culture is to lose our very identity and essence. In the good old days, what we may call the golden era of Mgbowo, our people were synonymous with humility, positive pride and ambition, hard work, honesty, truthfulness, reliability and fortitude, among other enviable attributes. They traversed the length and breadth of this country and beyond without let or hindrance; hence, they were known as ogaluzo atu utu. These qualities provided the ladder with which most prominent Mgbowo people climbed to the lofty points of success and progress. 

Today, the reverse is largely the case and we have been paying dearly for our indiscretion in the form of youth restiveness and youth mortality. It seems to me that the solution to this problem lies in turning round and returning to our roots by placing premium on those traditional values that once made Mgbowo Community and her citizens the doyen of humanity on this side of the globe. 

Thank you. 
Egbuna Akpa 
Zonal Director (Rtd.)
National Broadcasting Commission 
South East Zone.



Il massaggio Shiatsu che si effettua tramite la pressione delle dita, dei palmi delle mani e dei piedi e dei gomiti su tutto il corpo, agisce sui punti energetici considerati dall'agopuntura. Stimola la circolazione sanguigna ed il flusso linfatico, agisce sul sistema nervoso allentando la tensione muscolare più profonda, rimuove le tossine dei tessuti, risveglia il sistema ormonale e sollecita la capacità di autoguarigione del corpo.


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