I was monitoring a discussion on development of Igbo Land when a Nairalander Abagworo made an interesting contribution. He said Igbos shouldn’t move their businesses located outside Igbo Land to Igbo Land but should rather reinvest 80% of the generated profits of those businesses in Igboland. See what he said below and my analysis:
Even without moving our businesses from Lagos, Abuja, Kano etc. it is enough to move 80% of our profits to Southeast. Imagine if our yearly profits from other parts of Nigeria is 3 trillion and we use 2.5 trillion to invest in Southeast what we can achieve in 5 years.
What we do is to reinvest 95% in our host communities which ordinarily is a good gesture but it rather attracts envy than appreciation. The Northerners and SWners generally invest 80% at home and their host communities feel more comfortable.
Uche Ogah for example has a money spinning Masters Energy in Port Harcourt but is investing most of the profit at his hometown of Uturu. That way the Rivers people are happy with him for providing job opportunities and for equally not buying up all their land with the profit he made there. A typical Igbo man would have reinvested his entire profit at Iwofe and in that process breed jealousy.
Following his advice will make Igbo businesses follow the multinational company model where countries like Britain and Netherlands send out their companies (like Royal Dutch Shell) to open shop in the developing world and then repatraite a large volume of the profits to their home countries. What do you think of that model? Hit or miss?
I personally think Igbos are like Jews and not every Igbo would be able to return to Igbo Land to resettle. Just as not every Jew has returned to Israel. But there should be a high level of reinvestment and commitment to Igbo Land by Igbos in the diaspora, so that Igbo Land can be a base and a launching pad for Ndigbo.
There also needs to be an acceptable ratio of Igbos in Igbo Land as opposed to those outside. That can more easily be achieved by making Igbo cities more attractive, and reintroducing Igbo moral values that are being fast eroded.
But for that to happen, the current disturbing practice of some criminaly minded Igbo Judases grabbing lands of others and kidnapping needs to be ended. That is a no no, and has contributed to scaring of many Igbos in the diaspora from returning home.