There Must Be Some Goodness In Nigeria

Posted: June 14, 2013 in Uncategorized

By Benjamin Obiajulu Aduba

I have been on Nigerian websites for a few days. In all these times, there seems to be a competition to identify what is wrong with the only country we have. The competition also calls for the identity of who is responsible: the tribe and the individual. One would think that as we evaluate the country, that the evaluators would say what is wrong and give a nod to what is right and ipso facto give a little complement to those who have made the right decisions.
The nod is completely absent and the round about complement to the tribe and individual comes grudgingly from those who are merely defending the blame placed on their tribe and their tribal chieftain. The few extremely small acknowledgments of the good in the country seem to come from a handful of people like Mr. Nwosu and Mr. Kassim and one or two others. Sometimes I wonder if the
se are real people for when they give the nod, strong tornadoes with winds gusting over 300 MPH is sent their way. They are called names and we are told of their sordid pasts and how they are prostituting themselves for some crumbs from the masters table.
They seem to survive for I still read them.
I believe that many things are wrong with Nigeria. I also believe that in order to solve a problem one must recognize its existence and its magnitude. But I also happen to believe that in other to affect the best solution one must also recognize that which is good. For then one would only remove what is bad while holding on to the good. To do other wise we may throw away the baby with the bath water.
The evidence of what is good can be seen by the fact that there is still one Nigeria since 1960. This one country has survived a civil way, many army led coups and, and many corrupt leadership. There must be something good that is holding us together. There is even more interaction between citizens. I went to visit my sister this past weekend and my sister was hosting a room mate of her
days at ABU, a Nupe woman. She came from Nigeria. They graduated over two decades ago and have kept in touch through marriages and children. They know each other’s family very well.
I am God father to three Yoruba children and my family has Yoruba in laws. There are business partners of all possible combinations. They are living together in many cities and towns and villages. They are not held together by evil machinations but by love and good will. There must be some goodness in all of us.
There must be good in the system that makes such relationships work.
I will venture to hypothesize that what is wrong with Nigeria may be the educated elite among also. Those who hold some kind of PhD in some exotic field. These people have seen the world and liked the progress being made in their fields of specialization and bemoan the fact that Nigeria is not South Korea. They become jealous and antagonistic to the country that gave them birth. Both the
jealous and the antagonistic outbursts are good if only they would channel them and communicate them in
a friendly language. Their outbursts make many of us not to pay the attention they are seeking. Many of them sometimes see only goodness in their ethnic units and nothing but evil in the other ethnic groups. Many seek the salvation of “their people” and wish doom on all others. The Igbo have a prayer: “ugbogiri zoro m; zoro nwunye dim m”, a loose translation is May good harvests come to me and to my husband’s other wife.
We all know about “the other wife.” The reason for the payer for good harvest wish to the other wife (the enemy) is because if both have good harvest the ‘wife’ would enjoy her rich harvest in peace.
Nigerians could do well to learn this Igbo prayer and pray it so unceasingly.
Benjamin Obiajulu Aduba
Boston, Massachusetts
June 14, 2013


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