Nigeria in Pieces

Nigeria

When Sir James Goldsmith in his book, The Trap, predicted in the mid-1990s that the nation called Nigeria will disintegrate in a similar manner to how Yugoslavia did, many Nigerian intellectuals dismissed it but with tacit concerns. They and many more were far more certain of the, reality or illusion, that Nigeria’s oil wealth would hold the nation together with firm unity regardless of the internal strife, differences and cleavages encountered between various “interest groups” and “ethnic groups” as predicted most notably by Claude Ake. However, Ake did imply that the end of oil may be the end of Nigeria. With major changes in the international oil market are both Goldsmith and Ake correct in their predictions?

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Origins of an Opintar

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“Bird’s got something to teach us all; About being free, yeah; Be no rain… Be no rain…” – Gil Scott-Heron, from the lyrics, I Think I’ll Call It Morning

I proclaim myself an Opintar sometimes, yet with constant agreement. Many think Opintar is a fun name. Or of vernacular because they cannot google it. Or the vanity of one gnawed by rough illness many times. It is none of these. Opintar describes my lot in life and my compass. Opinterity is the closest I know to being emancipated and joyous. Yet it is not remarkable because of the uncertain internal costs.

I joined two organisations and fraternities that exhort messages of ‘liberation’ of man and society’. What a joke! They are autocratic cesspools, baiting members through polite evil, chicanery, and racketeering. Are such groups different from the oppressive families or nations plaguing our world? Unwitting outsiders baited by pretences of merit rush to say yes, but they’re wrong. Where you live and what you belong to counts. Life isn’t always oppressive or evil. Oasis of liberty and decency exist here and there. Semblances of freedom are what we pursue to thrive, but its germ rests within us. Continue reading

The Ontology of the African IV: The Antinomy

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The claim to being knowledgeable and intelligent as well as acting in denial of knowledge and intelligence, simultaneously, is as Antinomy of an unusual kind. Knowledge is power only when it is usefully and unarguably applied. Is knowledge power to the African? The mental dynamic of the derisory ontology of the African is a perhaps fortuitous acceptance or nefarious imposition of an irrepressible “Antinomy”. Simply put, it is the acceptance of the African that the non-African has done better in and for the world and can only bring about more good. Such is twinned with the recognition that Africans have done very well in and for the world and can only do worse or nothing. It is a self-defeating belief that some gifted Africans “transcend” by way denial and demonstrating their exceptionality and ‘non-Africanness’. The contemporaneity of this Antinomy is neither extreme nor false. Africa’s past glories and excellence are as relevant as the one-time vivacious Mongol Empire is to the present-day Ulan Bator. Let us stick with today.

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