By Sunny Igboanugo
Reading through the letter of my dear sister, Ngozi Chimamanda Adichie to Joe Biden, the only plausible conclusion that I could make of it, is the popular adage of the mother hen, when the kite takes its chick away. It says the hysteria in flapping its wings, running around, and shouting at the top of its voice, is for the world to hear its voice and not for the assailant to have pity and drop the baby or the hope for help.
Of course, our Joe, or Sleepy Joe, as Donald Trump would call him, would definitely read the letter. It would be part of the “briefings” his appointees on African Affairs, who have their eyes permanently glued on Nigeria, would file. But you can be sure that the issue of interest to him, would be completely different from the details Ngozi laboured to present. No, that would be a waste of time. You would be surprised that apart from enjoying the elegant prose and beauty of her language power, they would focus on the nuances rather than the substance of the issues she raised. It would not be about changing their mind in anyway, but to update her personal dossier. If not before, she has become a person of interest henceforth. She would be further trailed and profiled to determine how her actions and inaction would affect the US interest going forward. That’s the best her letter could attract.
I would be surprised if Ngozi, my sister does not understand that the people she wrote that letter to are not far ahead of her in piecing together what happened in the 2023 Nigerian general elections at whatever level. Every detail of that exercise, had already gathered, studied, analysed, and filed to Washington, well in time before Nigerians woke up to the reality. In other words, there is nothing they didn’t know or still don’t know.
So, outside shouting so that the world will hear her voice, there is nothing that letter will achieve. Absolutely nothing! America, just like their counterparts across the world, are fully on ground. You cannot even take it past them that they are not neck-deep or hand-deep into the construct that birthed that exercise, described aptly as the worst election in the history of Nigeria.
I’d rather charge my sister, Ngozi with the hysteric shouting of the mother hen, than accuse her of being naive, because, apart from being one of the richest minds that has come out of ala Igbo, Nigeria, Africa, and the world, she, as a citizen, stays close to them and could easily perceive the stench of their breath more than me.
Now, why does anyone believe that the US would want to help Nigeria, or indeed, Africa, secure a thriving democracy in which the votes would count, and leaders would emerge freely out of people’s will? What would be the endgame of such a conduct? Wouldn’t that be suicidal and a complete betrayal of the legacy their forebears handed down to them?
Do you know what would happen the day, Africans began to elect their own leaders through credible process? Let’s start with Nigeria. It would mean the reduction of bad behaviour in governance if not complete eradication of same. It would mean that politicians would have something to fear from the polity. It would mean that portfolio-bearing foreigners would no longer come into the country, spread few dollars to the gatekeepers and have access to the top ogas in power, who would equip them with the power of ingress, to enable them insert hoses into the ground and begin to siphon the riches of the land.
It would mean that a whole shipload of oil, would no longer disappear from the creeks of the Niger Delta. It would mean that oil companies would no longer create multiple pipelines to tube the oil away leaving Nigeria with only a fraction of what they actually produced.
Yes! It would mean the disappearance of the Abachas of Nigeria and his mates all over Africa, who ferry catches of dollar-filled bags to America to deck their banks, would no longer have the chance of getting close to the public till because a vigilant and effective electorate will check them.
I could imagine the faces at the White House as they study that letter, as they zero in on her persona. How dangerous would she be to the US interest? Could this be another troublesome, irritant African? Who could best handle this? In fact, the next American you see in the local Abba market in Dunukofia Local Government Area of Anambra State, might not be a tourist coming to see how local marriages are conducted. He might as well be there to pick the minutest information on the Adichie family that would further help to profile their daughter.
How would anybody seized of good knowledge in global affairs and international politics particularly the relationship between the West and Africa believe that countries like the US would favour stability of a nation like Nigeria, the most influential and most important African nation. The day that happens would signal the end of the slumbering of the sleeping giant. Africa would wake up. How could the lion be gazing at an antelope with good intention? That is the question. The West would always want Africa for dinner.
Indeed, I pitied Peter Obi, Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate, when he was telling his compatriots, to the hearing of these people, how he was going to transform Nigeria from consumption to production.
Of course they knew he was not bluffing. He governed Anambra, arguably the most difficult state in Nigeria not only without borrowing a kobo throughout eight years but with such success. If anything, his leaving behind a princely N75billion without stealing it, must also have helped to give him out as not a typical African in power. Because a non-thieving African, is a danger to the Western interest, it won’t be difficult for them to figure out what to do. He must have given them the jitters with those utterances issuing from his mouth.
Obi would be naive not to know what he was standing up against. But how else could he sprung it. How could he have connected with Nigerians particularly the youthful population, for whom he represented their future. Indeed, for as long as he toed the line ditching the old way, it was like shooting himself in the leg. Surely, he couldn’t have thought that those stealing Nigerian oil would go to sleep, hearing him say that the stealing would stop from the first day he takes office as President.
He couldn’t have thought that giving hope to the millions of youths in the North, who form the bulk of Boko Haram, Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP), and the bandits who go on rampage, kidnapping, killing and maiming people, to engage in productive ventures would be good music or earn him loving kisses from vested interests. What then happens to the syndicate they represent?
Didn’t he realise for instance that mouthing his popular mantra of transforming the vast areas of land in the North into serious production hubs for agricultural goods, would mean that the bandits in Niger and Borno, including Sambisa Forest would be forced to disappear?
Besides, apart from making Nigeria self-sufficient in food and therefore no longer a dumping ground of such items, many of them Genetically Modified, in the first place, what happens to bullet and guns the terrorists in those forests carry and their sources? That angle is also important.
It doesn’t have to take the wisest man on the earth to realise what the end-game would be. In fact, the moment there is no longer strife in Africa and the Middle East, where brothers continue to kill one another under the supervision of the suppliers of those guns and bullet, the result would be obvious. Nobody will buy the weapons anymore and that source of income will dry up. So, what happens to the factories that produce them? Are their owners going to eat the guns and bullets?
The moment you transform Sambisa from an axis of terror and a habitat for gunmen, mostly youths fed on drugs and other intoxicating substances, to a hub for the production of fattened cows that would produce fresh meat and rich milk, equivalent to what comes out of Holland or Australia or produce rice in such quantity that you no longer have to look towards China or Thailand, you not only make food available locally, but you also export to earn foreign exchange, which would set off a string of positive chain effects, and ultimately lead to the ultimate end of becoming a world power.
Would they watch you create that transformation? Who wants Nigeria as a world power. Who wants an African country as world power? That’s not even where it ends. The fact that the lion is a violent predator, which devours its prey with mindless brutality, doesn’t mean it has no right to food? Don’t those behind the syndicate stealing Nigerian oil deserve right to opulence and luxury – to own the latest yachts from the proceed their crime and cruise around the world? What does it mean even if millions die as sacrifice? Aren’t they even being benevolent by just mere stealing? Didn’t their fathers do worse by ship-loading your fathers to work in their sugarcane fields?
Now, who didn’t know that Bola Ahmed Tinubu, presented himself as the worst of the three major candidates in the 2023 election? He was the one without a clear identity, who just happened on the scene, without details of birth, parentage and education – all buried in mystery. He was the one who uttered incoherent and unrecognisable mumble-jumble at rallies, was the one who would raise his walking stick, while the National Anthem was being sung, the one to be supported by aides at the back, to prevent him from falling, who dodged debates and avoided interviews – he was the one who, against the run of play, chose to present a Muslim-Muslim ticket and above all, the one tainted with stories of dealing in drugs – one of the highest crimes in the world. Yet he “won.”
If you are still at sea as to the reason for this miraculous triumph over the others, it means you’re a learner. It means that you believe that those who killed Patris Lumumba and replaced him with Mobut Sese Seko have suddenly disappeared or changed from whom they are. It means that you believe that Congo DR, the richest country in the world in terms of mineral resources has remained a killing field till date because their people love the sight of blood.
It means you believe that Muammar Gaddafi, who made every Libyan practically walk on pure gold, was killed by his compatriots, because “he was killing his people,” as Hilary Clinton, Barack Obama and his NATO forces who, with glee, bombed down some of the world’s most renowned histories and forced the once thriving and robust enclave into a shadow of itself with fiefdoms of fighting warlords on hand to finish the job, told you. Then, your name is, Sorry.
So, my dear sister, Ngozi, hara wa, nne. Ebezina. Wipe your tears! We know how you feel. But we also know that where you’re looking for help, is where the predator is actually lurking behind the grass. The State Department wouldn’t have issued the congratulatory message in the first place without the say-so of Biden in the first place. That he’s not given his personal endorsement yet, is all part of the game. Pretend that you care. But go for the kill.
Don’t also worry yourself about the UK. Julius Malema, the South African activist, put it clearly, recently. The Pounds is the strongest currency in the world today, because of the gold backing. England has the highest gold reserves in the world without a single goldmine. How come? That’s the catch! Figure it out. If you thought the worst has again happened, think again. Haven’t we seen worse?
We know Tinubu didn’t win the election. So, you’re not alone. So, fichaa anya, nne. There is still one place to run for shelter – A Just God! You never know what He’s thinking. For His ways are not our ways. Don’t forget, He’s still the author and finisher. Ya diba!
…Sunny Igboanugo, A Respected Journalist Is Also The Publisher Of Whirlwindnews.Com.Ng