As the piece from Dahiru Yusuf Yabo clearly shows, those who salivate over an ill thought out restructuring option may indeed be looking at only one side of the coin. We now have a chance of knowing what “Restructuring” means to our compatriots in the North. To the referenced article’s writer, Restructuring simply means itemization of a long list of goodies to be rendered on a platter of gold to the North before they would begin to consider the possibility of tampering with the status quo.
In the interim, stance of the North is “No to restructuring and no to resource to control and no to true federalism, without getting our shares of economic infrastructural development as done to the South”, whatever that is supposed to mean. I hope this provides a pre-taste for those who believe that if only Ndiigbo would restrict their demand to “Restructuring”, the end game shall be a slam dunk. well, there should now be enough reason to induce a second. thought on this matter.
The Igbo are setting themselves for a rat race to nowhere, for the foreseeable future, if Ndiigbo peg their quest to just restructuring the Nigerian nation state that exists today. Perhaps, those who insist on self-determination for all indigenous ethnic nationalities of the Lower Niger, to which Alaigbo belongs, as the sole object of the future we seek are on the right path. A restructured Nigeria as an outcome from current impasse can’t be bad at all. But it wrong for Ndiigbo to inextricably tie ourselves to the process which our fellow compatriots, particularly in the Arewa North, don’t even appear to understand its meaning.
Ndiigbo are better-off adhering to the Lower Niger Movement’s paradigm which can be explained thus:
1. Derive the Carter of Relationships among the 6 major ethnopolitical nations of precolonial Lower Niger territory which guarantees local political autonomy and resources control, irrespective of the numerical and land-area size of constituent parts. Use the charter, after being ratified by constituents in a plenary session, as basis for deriving the Constitution for the emergent Lower Niger Federation.
2. Diligently work toward preparing the constituents of the Lower Niger for a UN-monitored Referendum that shall be predicated on the new constitution.
3. Derive common strategy for protecting lives and properties of constituents of the Lower Niger, in a unified fashion, in today’s unitary Nigerian state pending any subsequent developments, including the so-called Restructuring.
It is noteworthy that, as a counterpoise to the “Quit Order” issued to Ndiigbo to vacate the Far North, a coalition of Niger Delta militant groups have now issued their own quit order to Northerners living in or owning businesses in the Lower Niger.
If this is not the evidence that the Lower Niger Movement’s template is being adhered to by the Eastern minorities, it is awfully hard to find what else can be. REGIONAL SOLIDARITY FOR EASTERN HALF OF SOUTHERN NIGERIA IS THE BEST TOOL FOR BUTTRESSING THE IGBO STANCE IN WHATEVER RESTRUCTURING OR NEGOTIATIONS THAT MAY LIE AHEAD.