Board Secretary of the Igbo Canadian Community Association (ICCA/Umunna), Mr Chris Nsoedo, recently lamented the uncomfortable state of the Igbos in Nigeria.
In a report published on Daily Post, he noted that Igbos are being made to feel unwelcome in Nigeria, almost 50 years after the Nigeria Biafra War.
“It is so sad that 47 years after the war Ndigbo is being treated as if they being tolerated and do not belong to the union called Nigeria.
“Yesterday it was attack on Ndigbo while voting, today we hear of their places of businesses being invaded and we see how the government unapologetically disenfranchises Ndigbo from government with disregard.”
He therefore called on Igbos to embrace the concept of BIANU, which is all about Igbos developing Igbo Land.
But investing in Igbo Land is currently an exercise that frequently bring sighs of regret to many who venture forth. Of course, the Igbo businessman is the most venturesome in the works, as there us no country on earth where you will not see an Igbo mab engaged in one profitable venture or the other. But what is good can be great. How can the good become better and even great?
By removing the obstacles to
Obstacles To Development Of Igbo Land
Igbos Should Speak Up Against Marginalization
For Igbo Land to develop, Igbos have to map out and practice a coherent strategy of speaking the truth to power whenever their interests are being put in jeopardy.
For instance, why did the Federal Government totally ignore the airports in Asaba and Owerri as official diversion routes after Enugu Airport was closed recently?
These are neighbouring airports that would have comfortably absorbed the diverted traffic from Enugu Airport. But the two Igbo airports were ignored without regard to convenience of Igbo Land based passengers or the effect on the economy of Igbo Land itself. And no one is really talking about it!?
Have we heard Ohaneze, Aka Ikenga and other leading Igbo groups conduct a sustained media campaign that would compel the Federal Government to change course and consider these two airports? No, we haven’t.
Igbo newspapers, blogs, radio and television stations whose voices should be strengthened are being ignored.
O di egwu.
Reduce Unemployment To Reduce Crime In Igbo Land
If we are really serious about developing Igbo Land, we should tackle insecurity.
If a place is insecure, it would be difficult to get people to invest there.
So, rather than buy your 10th car, why not use that money to empower someone who can become an employer of labour?
What are you doing with 10 cars? Why not use part of your money to empower others to become employers of labour, so that more jobs would be created?
This will give our youth more income opportunities and reduce crime in Igbo Land.
Igbos Need To Start Speaking Up Against The Stealing Of People’s Lands In Broad Day Light
Closely related to insecurity is the rising trend of blatant disregard to property rights in Igbo Land. Igbos, we need to speak up against such injustice wherever it is occurring in Igbo Land right now.
That is, if any person’s land is stolen from them, the whole of Igbo Land should speak against such brazen disregard for property rights.
There are many sad cases where people just wake up one morning and take over other people’s lands just because they feel they can bribe their way through.
No investor would like to invest in a place where his property can one day be fraudulently taken over by others just like that.
But it is happening today in Igbo Land. People’s properties are being seized by others just like that.
So, if we want Igbos in the diaspora to invest in Igbo land, Igbo governors, senators, igwes, bishops and other leaders should condemn the stealing of people’s lands in broad day light wherever it occurs in Igbo Land.
Igbo Leaders should be seen to be doing everything legally possible to force people who have stolen other people’s lands to hand them back to their rightful owners.
We should not wait till it gets to us before we speak out.