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We have a very long way to go! (3)

By Ebele Orakpo

‘There is a saying in Igbo that a well-travelled man is wiser than a grey-haired man. You don’t just sit in the comfort of your zone or state and believe all the trash about others. These guys are just playing politics, using us to make themselves relevant. Nigerians should be wise. The ordinary Hausa, Igbo, Yoruba, Efik or Ijaw man on the street does not give a hoot where his neighbor comes from because the two are going through the same deprivations,” said Ada.

Narrated James: “An Igbo guy who lives in Kaduna told me that all the talk about religion and ethnicity is just politics. He said the traders in their market are so close that most times, they forget they are of different religions and tribes. He said if his Hausa neighbour wants to go to the mosque, he leaves his keys with him and whatever he sells, when he returns, he hands over the money and the keys and that is what happens when he goes to church or travels.”

Living in hometown

Said Ada: “There is this Hausa family living in my hometown. The two children were born there. They call the landlady grandma and she treats them as her grandchildren. In fact, they speak Igbo better than some so-called indigenes. Mind you, these children had never been to the North. So tell me, will it be fair to tell them to go back to their state? For God’s sake, as far as they are concerned, they are from Anambra State.

We should stop all this nonsense and face the major issues confronting us. Why should we allow politicians to keep distracting us so that as we fight one another on the basis of religion and ethnicity, we will have no time to ask them to account for their stewardship. I really felt sorry for this country when I read what Femi Fani-Kayode, an ex federal minister, not a South-West minister oo, had to say. It’s really sad. If an ex-minister could think and talk that way, what do you think of the common man on the street?”

“My own thinking is that all this is foolishness. None of us brought anything into this world and when we leave, we go with nothing,” said James.

Replied Austin: “That’s not true. Some are buried with their wealth, I’ve seen such happen.”

“Of course, only for some smart alec to go and dig up the whole stuff to go and enjoy his life. I heard the story of a man who died and as the coffin was about to be lowered to mother earth, his close friends decided to do something for him to make his life in the great beyond more comfortable. The Yoruba friend placed about N100,000 plus some tubers of yam in the coffin, his Hausa friend placed N300,000 in the coffin.

They then turned to the third friend, an Igbo man and asked him to do something. He brought out his cheque book, made out a cheque for N2 million and collected the N400,000 dropped by the other two, saying the man will cash the cheque when he needs to replenish his foodstuff,” narrated Iyke. This elicited laughter.

“Like I keep saying, this is God’s world and God’s land. We are all visitors here. We brag we own the land, the buildings and all the fineries, no problem! But remember that God owns each and everyone of us and whatever we think we own,” concluded James.



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