This message is something that I would like to share with every Nigerian and anybody that cares to listen really.
I hope you find it to be challenging and thought-provoking.
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Come October 1, we will be celebrating fifty five years of independence from the Brits.
We’re celebrating fifty five years of being able to claim that we are in charge of our own destiny.
When I think about what this means, as a Nigerian, there’s one thing thing in particular that comes to my as mind as boundlessly important.
And that is the concept of unity.
If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that my dad and I are pretty close and we talk politics quite a bit.
The other day, during one of our discussions, he shared something interesting with me.
He said that when Nigeria was created as one nation, one of the things people wanted to see was whether we could stay together for 100 years.
Needless to say, we have succeeded in staying together for over 100 years.
This is a big deal.
It is a very big milestone.
So as we celebrate our independence, the main message I just want to put out there is that it is crucial for us to continue to stay together as one nation united.
I’ve heard a lot of people see very nonchalantly that Nigeria should be split up.
They believe that Northern Nigerians should form a separate country. Eastern Nigerians should do likewise, and so should Western Nigerians.
This line of reasoning is usually supported by two facts.
- We’re all so different
- We didn’t get any say in the Berlin Convention or any of the major decisions concerning how the country was put together.
While I acknowledge both of these facts, there is another side to the coin as well.
#1. There are more things that make us similar than there are things that make us different.
Besides, if you look at other countries, you’ll see that the leaders there pay money for diversity. You’ll find companies investing hard cash into diversity.
So, in my opinion, being different in and of itself is not a valid reason to split a country.
Difference in itself is not bad. What’s bad is when one person says my own difference is better than your own.
My hair is curly so it’s better than your own that is straight.
I don’t agree and I don’t believe that we should continue to speak these words of disunity and separation based on the argument that we are different.
#2. The high price of choice.
Regarding the second point about not getting a choice about our borders, I have to wonder if people truly understand the price of this luxury.
If history is anything to go by, countries that had the luxury of choosing their borders did so with the blood of their citizens.
So in saying that we didn’t get the chance to choose our borders, I think it’s very important to also acknowledge that by not choosing our borders, we managed to avoid a lot of death and wars.
And can I just also mention that this is something that happened over 100 years ago?
I’d say it’s time to move on.
It’s time to face forward.
It’s time to understand who we are as a people.
It’s time for us to embrace each other.
It’s time for us to live in unity as one Nigeria under God.
If you have any thoughts to share on the topic, leave a comment below. I always respond to all of my comments.