Bishop of Nnewi Speaks on Igbo Marginalization

Mar 05, 2020

Bishop Ndubisi Obi and wife

By Odogwu Emeka Odogwu

Right Reverend Ndubuisi Chukwuka Obi, Bishop of Anglican Diocese of Nnewi, Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion has said that any Igbo man expecting anything from President Muhammadu Buhari is wasting his time.

Bishop Obi recalled that Buhari said it at the beginning of his government that nobody should expect him to share the national cake equally among those that voted for him and those that did not vote for him.

He therefore said any Igbo man expecting anything big from Buhari's government was wasting their time.

'Look at the way he went about his appointments; he doesn't care. All his security chiefs are Muslims. All of them are of the Hausa/Fulani origin; he doesn't even care! He does his own things the way he feels. This is the first time in the history of Nigeria when we are having a president who is surrounding himself with only people from his tribe. He doesn't care about what you say about federal character or whatever. Marginalization in Buhari's government is so open that even the blind can see it and the deaf can hear it. Unfortunately, there is nothing you can say about his action that will make him change. For now, we can only bear with him for the next three years when his tenure will expire,' the bishop said.

Speaking to newsmen on national security, Bishop Obi said the Security chiefs should be removed as they had failed Nigerians.

His words: 'Every sensible Nigerian will align himself with that option. They should be removed; that is the best thing to do now. Looking at the spate of insecurity in the country, the natural thing is to re-jig the security architecture and bring in fresh people. When new people enter, they would like to impress the country. You will see them going all out to change the tune of the music. By so doing, Nigerians will believe that Mr. President is doing the right thing; but this issue of adopting lackadaisical attitude towards the entire thing shows that the person at the head doesn't understand what he is doing.

The Anglican Bishop of Nnewi lamented that 50 years after, the problems with Nigeria that led to the unfortunate civil war remained.

'I will advise you read the Ahiara Declaration, 1969. There, you will see the issues in contention. All those issues are still there. In fact, they are worse today than they were those days. Ojukwu was a prophet; he saw what would happen if this entity called Nigeria would be allowed to be. For this country to succeed, Nigerians must sit together, look at the entity called Nigeria with every sense of patriotism and think out how to move it forward. The best is to allow every component part to be on its own and fashion out ways of developing on its own pace. Nigeria should be restructured in a way that the component parts will be allowed some autonomy like what we had when we had Eastern, Western Northern and Mid-Western Regions. That is the way Nigeria will work. Let every part run its own affairs; then, have a figure head at the centre which will coordinate the general affairs. Anything short of that will continue to fail,' he said.

On the kidnapping and killings targeted at Christians, Rt Rev Ndubisi Obi, the Anglican Bishop of Nnewi Diocese said there was both general and organised insecurity in Nigeria.

'In general insecurity, anybody could be a victim. We've seen Muslims and people of other religious backgrounds attacked and killed as a result of insecurity in Nigeria. We also experienced organised and orchestrated insecurity in Nigeria. This particular one is targeted at Christians. What we experience in Nigeria today is what I will call government backed, organised and orchestrated insecurity aimed at annihilating Christians in Nigeria. One major problem is that in the face of all these insecurity in the country, the body language of Mr. President does not show any readiness and willingness to stop the threat. With that, one may be tempted to believe that the presidency is part of the problem.

'When you consider what the president is doing with the service chiefs, how he has been giving deaf ears to the general outcry for him to sack the service chiefs, you will only understand that there is an orchestrated plan to deal with innocent Nigerians. It is only in Nigeria that what is happening now in the country will be allowed to continue. Go to Niger, Cameroun, Chad and some of these African countries; once there is any attack on the military base of their country, they will quickly change their Chief of Army Staff. But look at Nigeria.

'Recently, the House of Reps summoned the security chiefs, but they only sent their accountants, instead of personally honouring the invitation. After that, the Speaker of the House of Reps and the Senate President met with Mr. President over the issue of insecurity. At the end, what came out of the meeting? Look at the way Christians are being attacked, kidnapped and killed here and there,' the bishop said.

He said that with most of the things happening in the country today, one would only but believe that there was a well organised and systematic plan to wipe out a particular religious group.

'When people who foresee what would happen tomorrow fought to stop the re-emergence of this government in 2019, many people did not understand. The other day, Pastor Adeboye and some of them were carrying placards in protest over insecurity in the country. What kind of useless protest is that? Were they not the people that were instrumental to the emergence of the present government in the first place?' he queried.


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