Which Way, Nigeria?

What happened yesterday was even worse than what I had imagined would happen. I’m still recovering from the shock.

Here in Nigeria, the presidential elections were held yesterday, and like most people predicted, there was a serious display of terror and violence.

I knew this would happen, though. Everyone here knew that that terrorist who’s presently gallivanting around the country, calling himself the president wouldn’t go down without a fight — a fight that nearly cost the life of some of my friends and relatives yesterday.

A fight that cost the life of a nineteen-year-old university student and several others yesterday.

I shouldn’t really be surprised since I knew full well that blood would spill yesterday; I knew that violence would erupt in many parts of the country. I just didn’t know that this use of violence would be targeted at a particular set of people — the Igbo people. My tribe.

The violence my people saw yesterday reminded me of the dark ages: that time during the Nigerian-Biafran war when we Igbos were segregated from the other tribes of the country, treated like vermin, chased back to our hometowns, and massacred there by the Nigerian soldiers.

I hadn’t been born that time, so I was fortunate enough not to witness that painful era. Oh, but my grandma and uncle witnessed it. Their stories and the historical novels I’ve read have given me a glimpse of how much we suffered back then.

We were reminded of this suffering and discrimination yesterday when a majority of us Igbos weren’t allowed to vote. Some of us who protested against this unfair treatment were battered, stoned, and heavily wounded with sharp objects. Some were even gunned down when a fight broke out.

Of the ones who were lucky enough to vote, some had their ballot papers burnt by some thugs who represented the present ruling party.

(This unfair treatment towards the Igbos mostly happened in the polling units in the southern states where the Yorubas chiefly reside. It happened in some Northern states, too.)

The Yorubas (well, most of them) tried to silence us because they were scared that if we Igbos take an action with one accord and speak with one voice, we would surely make a difference and a positive change in the country’s affairs. They were scared that our votes would put them on the spot, and so they tried to stop us from voting, thinking it would make us feel disorientated.

But what happened yesterday only made us Igbos stronger as a tribe.

Throughout last night, my family and I kept phoning some of our relatives who reside where the violence was at its hottest. We were happy to know that they are all right, but their complaints about hearing gun shots and frightening screams still made us feel uneasy.

A polling unit was just opposite my house, and a fight broke out there yesterday afternoon. Even though it wasn’t as serious as the ones I’ve just narrated, it was just as terrible.

You know what vexes me the most? It’s that the media (television and radio) are covering everything up! They keep saying that yesterday’s election was free and fair, and that it was the best that Nigeria has ever held. It makes me want to pull the newscasters by their ears and pull out all their hair!

It’s only social media that’s telling the truth. As everyone is sharing their experiences on social media, as everyone is informing others of what’s happening in their environment, we are all aware of what’s going on in different parts of the country. We are all aware of how divided we are as a people.

I’m just sad and worried right now. I’m worried about what would happen when the results of the elections are announced tomorrow or the day after. If the southerners and northerners aren’t happy with the results, will there be a bloodbath? Will they take out their anger on us again? Will we be attacked?

How long will we keep treading this path of disunity?

Which way, Nigeria? Which way?

21 thoughts on “Which Way, Nigeria?”

  1. I cannot click the “like” button? Where is the “sad” button? Where is the “angry” button? Where is the button to show how disheartening this is? If I clicked “like” it would be because I am grateful for your courage to report this. I appreciate hearing the Truth from one who is there and brave enough to report the situation as it truly is. I have you and all of Nigeria in my prayers. I pray that God will help you find a path toward unity. Heaven knows, we all need to tread that path. No country is immune from disunity. Certainly we are suffering a divided nation here in the USA, too. God bless you, Obinna. I am so sorry for the loss of your friends and kinsmen.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you so, so much! I appreciate the concern and encouragement. I’m aware of what’s happening in your country, and I also have you and your fellow countrymen in my prayers. It’s just sad how divided the world is today. In almost every country, people are suffering in the hands of those who they elected to guide them and make life easier for them. This is pure wickedness. I only hope things get better in my country, yours, and the rest of the world in fact. God help us. And God bless you too, my friend.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It is so sad to be reading this and I can’t imagine what you are feeling in the midst of all of these. I really truly hope that things change asap and we never experience things like that anywhere in the world.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Betul. I’m really appreciate the concern. I’m just lucky that I don’t reside in those areas where the violence was at its hottest. I’m safe. I feel for my kinsmen who lost their loved ones yesterday. I hope things change for the better very soon. Thanks again!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Terrible. I so sorry to read this. I have no social media and I don’t follow the news, so I had no clue.
    I also come from a country (Bosnia) which is destroyed by it’s own people. And this how others judge you. What they don’t want to find out that a large part is still incredibly warm hearted.
    And I am sure this is the case in nigeria as well! Hope it will be resolved soon in some way!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Andrea. 😊
      It seems that most countries are facing this harsh reality. While I want to scream at the Yorubas for treating us so unfairly, I can’t do that. I know there are good Yoruba people, lots of them even. It’s just the ones that are in power and the masses who are blinded by hatred and ignorance that are the problem. So, I can’t judge the entire tribe based on the mistakes a majority of them have made. I hope that we become united as a country soon, and that this issue is soon resolved here in Nigeria and in other countries that are facing it. Thank you so much for the encouragement!


  4. 🤔 Hmm. That sounded like a day of chaos.

    The reason why I pressed the “Like” button is that you mentioned this to the world via your blog when in fact this was covered up by the mainstream media.

    It is time for the people in the Northern and the Southern regions of Nigeria to unite.

    Do enjoy the rest of your day, Obinna.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The media is very corrupted in this age. It’s almost like its conscience has been bought.
      I don’t even trust the news when it gives its weather forecast. If I can’t trust it with this, I can’t possibly trust it to stay calm when it tells us that all is well, knowing fully well that people are being killed every day by a government that has no regard for their lives. It’s a sad reality.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. It was really bad. I felt so sorry when i heard what happened. I pray that God’s will be done in Nigeria. I’m also happy to hear that the election was free and fair in some other part of the country. It’s well!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That is truly tragic! I am so sorry to hear of this and I cannot begin to imagine how you must be feeling. The very fact that violence and bloodshed were expected breaks my heart. It is sickening that this happens, sickening that the media do not report it in truth but it is from the brave people who see it, live it that the rest of the world learns what is really happening.

    You are in my thoughts. Blessings to you in this dark time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the support and encouragement, Ari. I really appreciate it.
      I just hope that the dust settles very soon, and that we learn to accept each other, regardless of our differences. The world would be so much better if we weren’t bent on tearing each other apart. I pray we become united as one in the nearest future. Thanks, again! 😊


  7. I’m sorry about your experiences Obinna and that of many other Nigerians residing in Nigeria. As a nation in itself.. we really ought to unite. We are far too divided and tribalistic.. it’s always ‘us Vs. them’ when truly we are all one. We need to be careful of this tactic of ‘divide and conquer’ because it’s the oldest trick in the book and us Nigerians are falling deep in the gutter for it. As a Yoruba myself.. I would hate to be generalised based on the actions of another Yoruba. Nevertheless.. May God bless Nigeria is all I can say 🙏🏾

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I understand your position jare. We Igbos too have our bad side, and I hate to be judged for the mistakes our ancestors made. I also hate to be judged for the wrongs that a majority of us are doing. This is why I’m not discriminating against the Yorubas. This would only make me not too different from those thugs who were responsible for Saturday’s attacks.
      I just pray we become united and learnt to put aside our differences. God help us.
      Thank you so much for everything. 😊

      Liked by 2 people

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