Leadership Training For Igbos

By Ikenga Chronicles March 30, 2020

Leadership Training For Igbos

— By Ozodi Thomas Osuji, PhD


This material is written in an attempt to help those aspiring to leadership roles in general and in AlaIgbo in particular; the aim is to help them to understand what leaders do and for them then to know what they are getting into and do what is expected of them or get out of the leadership arena.

Leaders are not those who are merely trying to get social attention, those who want to gratify their egos need for prestige and admiration by occupying exalted social positions.

True leaders are men and women who are motivated by fire in their belly, by desire to do something they believe needs done, what in their estimation serves public good. They are not motivated by money although if money comes to them so be it. Their primary motivation is what they want to accomplish for their people. They see a problem and want to solve it. They are the answer to problems not the problems themselves.

As we look around the Nigerian scene, we see that Igbos from 1960 when Nigeria obtained its independence from the British to the present, have been ruled by Fulani’s, Hausas and Yoruba’s. Except for a period of six months in 1966 (January 15 to July 29) when Igbo military officers were briefly in charge of the Nigerian government, Igbos have been ruled by other Nigerians. This side lining of Igbos, those who with Yoruba’s fought for Nigeria’s independence, does not sit well with Igbos.

Many Igbos quaff about their intolerable situation; some of them want to do something to change it. Members of the Indigenous peoples of Biafra, IPOB, are doing what they believe they have to do to attain independence from Nigeria. They have a radio program in London, England. Their leader, Nnamdi Kanu uses that radio to rain down abuses on the leaders of Nigeria. He calls Nigeria the Zoo, Lugard’s cage and unprintable names.
Clearly, what these folks are doing alienates many Nigerians and they receive opposition rather than support for their stated goal of seceding from Nigeria. The more they abuse Fulani’s the more Fulani’s who control the Nigerian military encircle Igbo land with their Nigerian army. The Nigerian military is now everywhere in Alaigbo, and anyone who makes pin is arrested or even goes missing.

Apparently, Fulani’s understand the nature of terrorism and effectively employ it in controlling Nigerians.

Terrorists understand that human beings are motivated by desire to live and, as such, fear harm and death. If you randomly kill a few people the rest of them would fear for their lives. Out of fear of harm and death many human beings would allow you to tell them what to do.

Terrorists arouse fear in people by intimidating them to accepting the goals and objectives of the terrorists. Apparently, Fulani’s came all the way from Guinea and used terrorism to intimidate Hausas to allowing themselves to be ruled by Fulani’s.

Since 1804, the beginning of Uthman Dan Fodio’s jihad, Hausas have been ruled by Fulani’s. Apparently, Fulani’s want to extend what they did to Hausas to all of Nigeria, intimidate Nigerians to allowing themselves to be ruled by Fulani’s.

Through the activities of Boko Haram and Fulani herdsmen, Fulani’s are, as we speak, trying to intimidate Nigerians by randomly killing Nigerians all over the country.

There are eleven million Fulani’s in Nigeria and, so far, they rule 150 million Nigerians. They have accomplished what not even the Afrikaans apartheid regime in South Africa did not accomplish, a minority ruling the majority. Apparently, Fulanis seem to believe that they can do so indefinitely!

Apparently, because they are Africans their domination of other Africans is to be accepted; black colonialism over blacks is to be accepted and when it is whites who colonize black folks, we are to decry it!

It is delusion disorder, a psychosis to believe that one should rule other people in perpetuity; it is obvious that if Fulani’s believe that they have a right to rule other Nigerians that they are mentally ill, they are psychotic.
No human being, singularly or in group has a God given right to dominate other groups and expect them to accept such an unnatural situation.
And the funniest aspect of this outrageous situation is that Fulanis are the most backward group in Nigeria. In terms of Western education, they lag behind other Nigerian groups. Here then we have the most uneducated, and backward group somehow cherishing the delusion that they have the right to rule those who are by far more educated than them. Apparently, as long as they have a preponderance of military weapons, they seem to believe that they are going to get away with this outrage. They will not; they are merely guarantying massive destruction of their people.

If there is anything, we know for sure about human beings it is that they do not like other people to rule them. People do not like to be caged and when caged seek escape.

Another thing we know about human life is the inevitability of change. If Fulani’s were really wise, they would seek a rearranged Nigeria and have each ethnic group have relative independence within the political structure called Nigeria.

After hundreds of years of English rule of the Welch, Scotts and the Irish they have restructured Britain and devolved power to those three ethnic groups.

Failing to restructure Nigeria and have each group have a sense of relative independence makes the conflagrative end of Nigeria inevitable.
Consider that many Igbos are beginning to understand nuclear physics and biological warfare. I know Igbos who are angry enough at Fulani’s that were they in possession of nuclear weapons and or biological weapons would not hesitate for a second using them on Fulani’s. If that is the case what makes Fulani’s believe that they can get away with the outrage of ruling Igbos? They are merely calling for their future destruction.

One does not understand what makes human beings so stupid that they are always looking for trouble instead of seeking to do the right thing. As Fela Kuti said: “trouble de sleep Nyanga de wake am”.

The right thing is a social situation where all are equally represented in the governing of the land. But drunks and madmen do not understand man’s capacity to destroy man and they go tickling the tiger’s tail.

There are many ways to achieve the same objective of freeing themselves from the rule by Fulanis. There are adult and realistic ways of accomplishing that goal and there are juvenile ways of trying to accomplish that goal. Infantile behaviors, such as negative name calling does not accomplish useful goals.

If the goal is propaganda, to paint the supposed enemy in negative light, there is a better way of doing it. Even Joseph Goebbels, the Nazi Propaganda minister knew better than to insult those who could fight and kill him. If you denigrate folks you make them lose self-esteem and social face.

People are narcissistic animals, each of them wants to be admired and seen as having worth. If you degrade a person, he is more likely to feel narcissistic injury and to assuage his pricked vanity feel angry at you (narcissistic rage), rather than allow you to continue insulting him; out of anger he attacks you, even kills you in an effort to assuage his injured vanity.

Insult a person and make an enemy of him. Given human fragile egos, praise people and they become your friends.

There are many ways to skin a cat. If you want to boil a frog in hot water, you do not throw it into an already boiling hot water, if you do so it would try to jump out. You put it into cool water and then start slowly boing it and by the time it realizes what is going on it is too late for it to jump out for its freedom.

This paper is aimed at helping would be leaders learn a thing or two about leadership so that they become more adult and efficient leaders, managers and supervisors and, hopefully, are more able to attain their goals and objectives.

This paper is a kind of manual on leadership. If you want to be a leader do what it asks you to do. If you desire more detailed information on leadership matters you can read some of my books and articles on leadership. However, this paper is a standalone paper on leadership.
Although this paper is not construed as an academic paper, I added a bibliography on leadership for your further reading on the subject.


Let us look at what many observers of leadership phenomenon said about it; some of these leadership attributes are synonyms of each other; we will, nevertheless, put them down; if you find them redundant so be it.
Leadership is written on by many people and each of the writers write what others write in his own language hence the seeming repetition of terms. Actually, there is no one good text book on leadership; there are many books on the subject, of course, each a variation of others. You can find the below descriptions of leadership attributes in many books. Where necessary sources would be cited but where the definition is self-evident no authority is cited.


Leaders posit visions and inspire people to embrace those visions and work for their attainment (Bass, 1996). Visions are ideas, dreams of where one wants to go, what one thinks ought to be done.

Some visions are idealistic and others realistic. It is difficult to ascertain which is idealistic and which is realistic.

Realistic visions are those that in the world as we know it can be implemented whereas idealistic visions are wooly and other worldly and not attainable in this world and even if you attain them, they seem imperfect, not ideal and the goal post is extended and folks pursue the new vision of perfection.

Perfection is never attained in the imperfect world we live. As Barack Obama said, perfection is the enemy of the good.

Good leaders posit attainable and doable visions; grandiose leaders pursue unattainable visions that sound good but are not attainable. The ability to distinguish between idealism and realism makes for good leadership quality (Bass, 1990).


Leaders motivate people to work with their vision; leaders coach people to accept the postulated vision.

To find out how difficult it is to motivate people, try getting your child to do what you ask him or her to do.

Only some human beings have the ability to get people to follow them to the direction they want to go. Motivation depends on many variables, including the leader’s personality, tone of voice and charisma. It is difficult to tell what makes some people able to motivate others but what is self-evident is that some people have the intangible ability to motivate and inspire others (Blake, R; Mouton, J. 1964).

Nnamdi Azikiwe, a young Igbo man came back from the USA in 1933 and through his speeches and writings motivated Igbos to aspire to obtain western education and they did so. Azikiwe was a motivational leader.
His actual tangible accomplishments were sparse. Obafeme Awolowo, on the other hand, was a doer, not a mere talker. Awo, for example, gave Yoruba’s free education at the elementary school level and paid for untold number of secondary and university bursaries of his people. But Azikiwe relied on his peoples supposed republican nature for each Igbo to give his children education and those who cannot do so fell by the way side.
The sagacious Awo realized that if you do not help most children to go to school, that uneducated ones hence unable to get jobs ones would become criminals. Criminality is now a way of life for those Igbos left behind in the struggle to attain Western education and jobs.

Leadership includes ability to have foresight; Awolowo had foresight of what would happen in a future with a few educated and wealthy and many poor persons. Thus, he injected some socialism to his capitalist world. If you do not have some socialism, such as publicly paid education for all, health care for all, you are going to have a chaotic world infested with brigands, as is the case in Nigeria.

Some leaders are mere motivators whereas some combine ability to motivate and doing things in their persons.


Leaders guide people to follow the direction of their vision. Guidance includes actual hand holding of those being guided, providing counseling for them and speaking and writing in such a manner that folks follow the guide offered them. This manual on leadership, for example, is meant to guide would be leaders in Alaigbo and elsewhere in Africa. See Fred Fiedler, 1967.


Leaders have the ability to speak with power and authority. Power is the ability to get people to do what ordinarily they would not want to do; ordinarily, authority inheres in positions in organizations and societies but in the case of leaders they speak with invisible authority so that people obey them as if they were given the authority to tell people what to do.
Harold Lasswell (1936), in his several books on political science distinguished between power, authority and influence. He defined “Politics as Who Gets What, When, How”; power determines who gets what and when in the human polity.

If you listen to what your state’s governor said that you should do, and do it, you did so based on his authority, the power given to him by the society that elected him. On the other hand, there are those not occupying social and organizational positions who people listen to and do what they ask them to do, such persons have power and authority in them, authority not given to them by society. See Fussell, 2002.


Leaders tend to control the people’s behaviors; control of behavior means that the people behave in such a manner that their activities lead to the attainment of group and organizational goals. In an organization people cannot just go every which way they want, doing their own things; they must only do what the organization asks them to do, what leads to attaining organizational goals (Gardner, 1995).


Whereas the quality of leadership is not synonymous with management, yet, leaders have the ability to manage people and the organization’s resources to get them to be dedicated to the attainment of organizational goals. They also supervise people and make sure that they behave in such a manner that their activities lead to the attainment of organizational goals (Hackman, 1996).

Supervision, in management theory, is the first step in the ladder of management; supervisors are head or lead workers, they have learned how to do a job well and help others to do their jobs, supervise them, reward those who do their jobs well and fire those who after several instructions still do not do their jobs well.

Generally speaking, supervisors do not deal with the financial aspect of organizations but make sure that workers do what they are hired to do. It is managers that most read monthly financial statements, provided by the accounting department, and make sure that their departments and or divisions are on budget and if not correct variances (Heifetz, 1994).


An Organization is a situation where two or more people come together to work for their group’s goals. Clearly, some people have to make sure that all persons in the organization work in concert and tandem towards the organization’s goals; tasks must be coordinated so that there are no duplications and or slacking; all must be on board doing what they are told to do so that the organization’s goals are attained (Greenleaf, 1998).


Supervisors, managers and leaders monitor workers to make sure that they do what they are there to do. You must make sure that as long as people are in an organization and are paid, they do what they are hired to do. If you are paid for eight hours work a day then do eight hours work or you are sacked.

Work organizations are not charity houses, all must do their part for the organization to make profits and stay afloat (Greenleaf, 2002).


Leaders orchestrate the activities of the many people in an organization so that they all sing the same tune and work together; this is not an easy task in a world where most people want to do their own things. Try to coordinate the activities of twelve people, the usual supervision span, and make sure that all do what leads to the overall unit’s goal attainment.
Some would challenge your authority and go off doing their own things. The leader is like a symphony orchestra’s director making such that all the fifty or so musicians in a typical symphony play in concert to produce the beautiful music of, say, Beethoven’s fifth and nineth symphonies, that folks come to listen to, if not what would ensue is a cacophony of inchoate noise (Hougaard and Carter, 2018).


Leaders initiate what their organizations do; most workers come to work and do what they are told and paid to do, what their job descriptions specify that they do; they do not actually understand how the many job specifications coordinate to attaining the organization’s goal. Indeed, the typical worker may not even know the mission statement of his work organization (do you, the reader know what your work organization exist to do and do you help it to do so or do you merely look forth to your monthly pay check?)

Leaders initiate actions, decide what needs to be done and get people to help them do it and monitor them to make sure that they do it (Bennis, 1994).


Leaders influence people in their organization to work towards organizational goals and coordinate the tasks and activities that lead to the attainment of the organization’s goals. Influence is like power except that it is done without having the coercive power that those with formal power have.

You can influence someone to do something without having the ability to hire or fire him from a job, or send him to jail as governments do.
Not every person has the intangible ability to influence people; indeed, some people make people walk away from them rather than work with them (Bennis, 1994).


In bureaucratic situation leaders are administrators; here, they administer polices made by other persons. Bureaucratic leaders, for example, although they have the ability to advise politicians by and large merely administer public policies made by the legislative, executive and judicial branches of government (Weber, 1975).
In the USA, top bureaucrats actually come up with most of the public policies that they administer; they advise politicians appointed to head the various government departments and legislators and president and those take credit for public policies. This phenomenon is called the Iron triangle.


Leaders are often in a command role. In the military, for example, officers command subordinates and those must obey and if they do not obey, they may be court martialed and if found guilty shot to death for disobeying a superior officer.

Civilian organizations are generally not based on command for subordinates can quit their jobs any time they like if you try to command and boss them around (Brown, 2015).


Leaders who are perceived to be masters at performing the functions of the organization are generally tolerated if they are domineering and commanding and tell people what to do (Brown, 2012).
Mastery of task is crucial if you want to be a leader. Nigerian politicians are generally perceived to be clowns who do not even understand what legislatures do, talk more working as active legislators, coming up with Bills, shepherding them through committee public hearings and house debates and getting them passed. Some of these bloated legislators could go for years without even introducing one Bill.

One got to be a master at what one does if one expects respect from people.


Leaders at the three levels of leadership: leadership, management and supervision coordinate the activities of many people and work units to make sure that all work in concert towards the attainment of the organization’s goal. Without coordination what you have is chaos and anarchy (Bennis, 1993).


In every work situation, like in every ship there must be a captain, a person responsible for where the ship, organization goes. Leadership by committees do not work well. Thus, the various writings on participatory leadership in work organizations are laid aside (Bennis, 1989).
Work organizations are usually hierarchically with varying degrees of authority at position as you go up the organizational ladder and the ultimate authority in the chief executive officer.


Leaders communicate organizational goals and objectives to the employees, where to go and therefore are expected to be good communicators. In fact, the ability to communicate well is so critical in leadership that it may summarize the entirety of leadership. The manner a person speaks and behaves may make or break an organization, determine whether people follow him or not (Block, 1991).

Ronald Reagan was considered an excellent communicator; his speeches set the tone of the organization, in this case the USA, tell people where the organization wants to go; he influenced the organization’s culture by his manner of speaking; in actual fact, on the other hand, he was a lazy man who came to the office for only a few hours a day.


There are transformational leaders, these leaders transform organizations, take them from one way of doing things to others. For example, in capitalist societies it takes transformational leaders like Franklyn Delano Roosevelt to change the ways America work, get them to embrace such programs as social security which are socialistic without the people knowing that they have embraced different political economies (Bass, 1996).

Lyndon Baines Johnson got his fellow Southerners in the USA to begin to see black people as human beings not the sub human beings that hitherto they saw them as. He shepherded the civil rights Act and Fair Housing Act through a Congress dominated by southern racists.

Is there a transformational leader in extant Nigeria? Who is he? Is stealing public funds transformational?


Some leaders, as Fred Fiedler (1967) said, are action and task orientated, some are emotion oriented. Some leaders and managers are task oriented; they ask: what do we have to do and ascertain it and do it; they may not pay attention to the emotional and psychological needs of the workers. Other leaders and managers pay more attention to the emotional needs of the workers.

Which is better, the task-oriented manager or the feeling orientated manager? Organizations go through cycles and may need one or the other type of manager at a time.

With Donald Trump getting Americans angry at each other and divided, it is clear that after him Americans may need a healer type of president, a calm, nurturing man. The divisive madness of the orange man cannot continue forever.


Some leaders are strategical in the sense that they look for long term strategies to address, where their society should go. Some leaders are tactical, do what adapts to the immediate environment, such as respond to changes in markets, consumer demand (Bossidy, 2002).


There are entrepreneurial leaders who come up with new products and or services that the people desire. Business leaders are acutely aware of what the people demand, what the market desires and come up with them and market them (Anderson and Adams, 2015).


There are mentoring leaders who help people to acquire leadership skills. Barack Obama was clearly a mentoring type leader; he patiently helped young people to learn how to work within the American political establishment (Anderson and Adams, 2019).


The term transactional leadership is used in different, often contradictory ways. To transact is to exchange things of value, you give me something and I give you something of equal value. In this sense leaders and those they lead exchange something of equal value. The people select a leader who does something of value for them and he too gains some value in the transaction.

However, in reality the term transactional leadership is often used negatively. For example, Donald Trump is considered a transactional leader. He is in government to maximize what is in it for his businesses and in the process gives his political base what they believe that they desire, low taxes, no social security when they are old, no health care, that is, give them poverty, but they do not know it; in other words he is manipulating his supporters ignorance and lack of awareness of what serves their interests (Machiavelli, 1513).


Here, the leader arrogates all power to his self or to his clique and does what he believes is good for the group or business and does not entertain opposition to his dictates. Some businesses are run by dictatorial bosses. Some human politics such as China, USSR, Cuba, North Korea are run by dictatorial leaders (Hobbes, 1651).


This type of leadership is found mostly at graduate school seminars where students talk about ideal world where all participate in running businesses and polities. It does not enter the real world (Drucker, 1993).
In the real world an individual or individuals start businesses and hire those who would help him accomplish his goals and objectives and does not have time to listen to school boys who have not started any business but talk about the utility of committee leadership.

Human experience shows that if you wait for a group to initiate and do something it either would take years to be done or it will not be done at all. It takes ten bureaucrats to change one light bulb.


This type of leadership is part of graduate students talkfest but does not exist in the world. Laissez faire means every person doing what he likes. If you allowed people to do what they like anarchy and chaos would ensue. There is always guidance pointing to the direction folks should be going (Drucker, 2006).


Fred Fiedler talked about tasks-oriented leader, this type of leader is action-oriented leader who sets objectives and use men and material to accomplish them (Fiedler, 1967).


Fred Fiedler (1967) also talked about relational leaders. Women tend to emphasize relationships whereas men tend to emphasize task accomplishment as condition for being allowed to hang around.


The Japanese business leader tends to treat his workers like he is their father and do for them what he believes is good for them and they in return work hard for him (Ouchi, 1981; Osuji, Convergence of Western and non-Western management styles, 1983).


In his seminal book on politics, The Republic, Plato evaluated the various forms of government and showed their merits and demerits. In monarchy one-man rules. The king has total power and claims to rule by divine rights, that is, the people did not select him to rule them, God, he said, selected him to rule(and since folks do not see that God of his he is the one who projected his wish to rule the people to God asking him to rule the people). He does as he likes.

Aristotle, Cicero, Marcus Aurelius (180 AD) Machiavelli (1513), Hobbes (1651), John Locke (1688), Jean Jacque Rousseau (1760, ) Charles Montesquieu (1754), Madison, Hamilton and Jay (1787), Proudhon (1840), Fourier (1808), Karl Marx (1882), Jeremy Bentham, (1811), John Stuart Mill, 1859 posited their ideas on government, some advocating rule by strong men and others democracy.

I am consciously leaving out Oriental writings on organizations and their leadership primarily because they are couched in religious language; if interested visit the writing of Confucius, Lao Tzu, Gautama Buddha, Shankara and others. Africans do not have pre-Western writings on organizations and their leadership, and to the extent that they now have some they are gleaned from their studies of Western organizations and leadership.

In Aristocracy leaders are selected from those who showed exceptional qualities usually in warfare and other areas that society determined useful.
The American judiciary, especially the Supreme Court is aristocratic in the sense that the judges are supposedly selected on merit not popular vote.
In Oligarchy a few rich folks control the government. Contemporary Russia is unabashedly oligarchic. The USA and most western nations are also oligarchic but are quiet about it. It takes a billion dollars to campaign for the US presidency. The average American makes less than forty thousand dollars a year and can hardly pay his mortgage and car notes what more run for political office. America is ruled by the rich either directly or the rich who finance the run for political offices of those seeking political offices. In office the office holders are beholden to the rich; they serve rich interest groups and seldom poor folks (Brown, 2012).


At business schools and public administration schools’ students are taught the various types of management styles. Managers make assumptions about human nature; how they see people determine their management style.
Some managers see people as lazy and self-centered and, as such, need to be supervised closely otherwise they would not be on task. They are disciplinarian managers.

Other managers see people as well intentioned and would do the right things if they are respected and loved.

Douglas McGregor (1960) talked about what he called theory X (disciplinarians) and Y (laissez Faire) type managers. William Ouchi (1981) wrote about what he called theory Z type managers. He borrowed heavily from Japanese management style to posit his Theory Z type manager. Here, the work organization is kind of like a family and the managers treat their workers paternalistically, as their children, look after them, both on the job and outside the job.

At UCLA, I was influenced by Ouchi’s theory Z although by nature I am a task-oriented person, you either do the job that you are hired for or you are out; I have no time to baby sit you.

Which type of manager and or leader is more productive? The jury is out. You decide for you and take the consequences for you; as for me, I show you how to do the job and leave you to do it and if you do not do it well I have no qualms letting you go. I am not your mother; I am very draconian in nature and behavior. See, Beck, 2003.


Organizations, social, political and business have organizational charts. These charts show the positions of the people and their functions in the organization (Christenson, 2016).

The simplest organizations are business organizations. These have a hierarchical structure. At the top is the chief executive officer, aka president. He is usually hired by a board of directors. The Board of Directors are elected by the shareholders in the corporation. The president is hired to run the business on the day to day for the shareholders. The directors meet with the president once a month; the president gives the directors information on what is going on in the business.

A typical corporation has one president and about five vice presidents: Vice president finance, vice president marketing, vice president productions (engineering and manufacturing), vice president human resources, vice president government relations and son on.

The various departments are broken into units, each unit with a manager. At the lowest level is the work unit which has a supervisor. Reporting goes from the bottom to the top and supervision goes from the top to the bottom.
American university organizations generally have a president (who reports to a board of regents), then vice president for academic affairs, vice president finance, vice president human resources and so on, then are the deans of the various schools, such as liberal arts, sciences, engineering, medicine, law and so on, then are the various departments with their chairs (supervisors) and the faculty, professors who are the direct workers, teachers.

The organizational chart of a typical government department is headed by the director of the department (who reports to a secretary appointed by the, president or governor or city mayor). Heads of departments are supervised by the political appointees, the minister, or secretary. Below the director are the deputy directors, each heading a division of the department.

In the British system which Nigeria has, you have a minster as the head of a ministry, the minister supervises the permanent secretary, who supervises his deputy permanent secretary, then are the under secretary, principal assistant secretaries, the senior assistant secretaries, the assistant secretaries, and below those administrative staff is clerical and technical departments; technicians range from engineers, medical doctors and so on.
The organizational chart of the government itself is the three branches of government: legislature, executive, and judiciary. In the lower legislature are the members of the House led by the speaker; a president leads the upper House; at the executive branch is the president and his staff; at the judiciary is the chief justice and his associate justices and a mass of judges at the appellate courts and district courts and of course non judicial staff that implement the law (including police and prisons).

In political organizations such as the US Republican and Democratic parties are the two parties National Committees. Each party has a state committee led by a president; the presidents of the various state committees form the national committee who are led by a national president. Below the state level are the county and city committees each with its own president.
American political parties are decentralized. European political parties are centralized. The Labor and Conservative parties in Britain have national party secretariats. Each party has a chair person who pretty much works as the president of something like the US business organization. The chair is the head and he reports to the central committee of the party, a kind of Board of Directors of the party and they run the party.

In non-governmental organizations the organizational structure tends to look like a typical American business organization, with a central committee, a president, vice presidents, secretary, treasurer, publicity secretary and so on. See, Brown, 2007, and Bregman, 2018.


In the USA African American and other minority run organizations generally do not have strong financial management capabilities. Often the finances of these organizations are construed as belonging to the president of the organization, the leaders commingle their own money with the organizations moneys and spend them without accountability to anyone else.

IPOB, for example, probably does not have strong financial management skills? The leader probably does not keep good records of the organization’s moneys (not long ago were reports in social media of abuse of the organization’s finances). That should not be the case.

Such organizations should have financial departments that are run as business organizations. In a typical US business organization is an accounting department, those who work as accountants and accounting clerks, and book keepers.

One or more bookkeepers does the daily journal of the department. She follows the generally accepted accounting principles; she records every penny that comes into the organization in her daily journal.

The Daily journal records are transferred to the clerks doing cash receivables and cash payables; every penny received and spent each day is recorded and accounted for. Accounts receivable and payable are balanced each day.

Each business organization has an annual budget that tells the reader how much the organization expects as its annual revenue and its annual expenditure. The annual budget is broken down into monthly statements on expected revenues and expenditures.

Each month the chief financial officer or controller prepares a monthly financial statement for the entire organization, the president and Board of Directors, and for each unit, department of the organization.

These monthly financials tell the reader how much revenue each unit and the entire organization brought in every month and how much was spent and what is the variance between planned monthly revenue and expenditure and actual revenue and expenditures.

The Budget’s expenditures are broken to recurrent expenses, such as wages and compensations, benefits, rent, stationaries and so on.

Annually, the finance department and the president prepare an annual report for the Board of Directors; this gives a summary of how much money came into the organization, how much was spent and how much is left as profit.

Assuming that there is profit the financial officer working with the president and board of directors decide what to do with it, invests it in the business, in other business, such as buying stocks in other business, and so on.

My goal here is not to teach accounting 101 but to remind the reader that managers and leaders must know something about finances and accounting. Give a seasoned manager the monthly financial statement of a business or any organization and he can tell you whether it is fiscally healthy or not.

If you are a leader please take a couple classes on accounting and corporate finance, understand budgets and keep a good eye on the organization’s moneys.

We all know that in Nigeria the governors, chair persons of local government areas and the president and legislators essential steal most of the moneys of the governments. They are able to get away with this theft because they are not monitored by those who understand accounting. See Brown, 2017 and 2018.


It is interesting that despite the fact that human society has always had leaders, the formal study of leaders and leadership is actually a recent phenomenon. I scored the literature on leadership and most of them were written in the twentieth century, actually in the mid to later part of the twentieth century.

The ancients wrote on politics in general. Plato and Aristotle wrote on Greek politics. Cicero, Seneca, Marcus Aureoles wrote on Roman Politics.
During the renaissance Nicollo Machiavelli (1513) wrote on what shrewd and astute politicians, leaders should do to manipulate the masses. His book, The Prince is still a must read for all aspiring politicians.

After Machiavelli there was a lull on writings on politics until the seventeenth century. Thomas Hobbes wrote his Leviathan in 1651 and talked about how human beings in the state of nature are mere predatory animals, each looking after his self-interest and all at war with each other and the strong take from the weak and life was nasty, brutish and short; to procure safety folks formed government.

What kind of government? Given his negative view of people, Hobbes advocated an authoritarian government.

After the English civil war in 1688, John Locke in his Second Treaty on Government advocated a limited government, a government chosen by the people and does what the people ask it to do.

In France Jean Jacque Rousseau in 1760 wrote Social Contract in which he said that government is legitimate only if the people selected it and it obeyed the people’s general will.

Charles Montesquieu, another French man, in 1754, The Spirit of Laws, wrote in admiration of the English Government where powers were divided into the three natural functional areas of government: legislative, executive and judicial and the three are in adversarial relationship and this war supposedly prevents any one of them from becoming tyrannical.

English utilitarian thinkers such as Jeremy Bentham (1811), John Mill and his son, John Stuart Mill (1859) saw government as doing what gives the people pleasure not pain and therefore must do what serves the common good.

Then came the industrial age where social relationships were rearranged. Folks left their villages to go work at factories and factory towns became massive urban centers. Charles Fourier (1808), Joseph Proudhon (1840), Robert Owen (1849), Karl Marx (1882), and Frederick Engels and others wrote on what is now called socialism and communism. Here, the workers collectively own the means of production and set up committees to govern themselves.

Can the workers really govern themselves? What did the Scottish political economist, Adam Smith (1776) say in his famous book, The Wealth of Nations? People are naturally selfish and work hard when they pursue their self-interests. Goods and services are best allocated in society if each person pursues what is good for him. The sum of demand and supply is the best allocator and distributor of goods and services in a polity, not some committee siting down somewhere in Moscow and deciding how many cars are to be produced, the most realistic economic structure (John Maynard Keynes, 1998).

It is difficult to visualize a communist society where the masses decided everything. A mix of capitalism and socialism seem the middle ground.
As noted, the formal study of leadership is a twentieth century phenomenon. The same goes for business. In the past folks studied some kind of economics, folks like Adam Smith, David Ricardo, Thomas Malthus wrote on what they called the political economy.

It took the twentieth century for folks to start the formal study of business. In his several books on management and leadership, Peter Drucker (1999) talked about how there were no business schools as late as the 1930s and his efforts to get universities to recognize business studies as legitimate studies.

There used to be what was called commercial schools where third-rate students studied book keeping, and may be accounting but seldom such serious subjects as finance and management. The formal study of management is, believe it or not, a post second world war phenomenon.


The study of business and political leadership is s recent phenomenon. It takes hundreds if not thousands of years for a discipline to really become objective.

Studies in leadership tend to be infused with the writer’s opinions. Though efforts are made to be empirical and observational the fact remains that we have not had sufficient time to study leadership and management for the field to be as solid as, say, physics (the formal study of physics began in 1543 when Nicolas Copernicus challenged the geocentric view of the universe with his heliocentric view, then Galileo in 1610 and Isaac Newton in 1687, with his three laws of motion and gravitation formalized the study of motion and physics).

What needs to be done is for organizations to evaluate their leaders’ styles and see if they are accomplishing the goals of their organizations and if not change them. No one form of leadership has proven to be applicable in all situations or is better than others.

What we have are folks expressing their opinions on what seems to them good leadership. Leaders help businesses and societies to accomplish goals they want accomplished. Evaluate the various leadership styles and whichever one enables your organization and society to attain its goals are good for you.

I wish that I could recommend one leadership style but I cannot do so for not one leadership style serves all situations well.

Sometimes we need brutal dictatorships. Africa probably needs benevolent dictatorships to modernize it, as Lee Kwan Yew did in Singapore. However, when modernized Africa probably needs the US type oligarchy masquerading as democracy.

There is nowhere in the world that the mass of the people actually govern themselves. In a world where people have different levels of information and knowledge it is difficult to see a peasant governing a technocrat with trained and working experience in an area of life.


Meritocracy, technocracy are the modes of certain types of leadership situation, whereas in certain situations you need Otto Von Bismarck type iron fist to drag the people to a direction that is good for them, in others you need a Metternich negotiator type leader and yet in others you need the folks who simply have technical knowledge of the specific task environment (Hemphill, 1949).

In situational leadership, the needs of the situation dictate the leadership style adopted. Democracy is not good for all situations; democracy is over rated. See Bullock, 1952, 1992; Max Weber, 1920; Clark 1994; Chrislip, 1994; Collins, 1994; and Covey 1992, 1990.


To lead is to be out front with an idea of what needs to be done and asking people to join one in doing it. A leader has an idea, concept, thought of what he wants to do, generally, what he believes is good for him and for members of his group. (Drucker1989, 2001).

A leader has a dream, a vision, a goal, an objective of what in his opinion needs to be done. He passionately believes that his view is what needs to be done for the good of the group. He has passion, enthusiasm, motivation and generally is committed to doing what he believes is good for the group (Gardner, 1995; Glacel, 1996; Harvey, 1996; Heath, 2013, 2017).

Of course, what he believes is good for people may not be good for them. It is for people to decide whether what the leader wants to accomplish is good for them or not. If they decide that what he wants to do, where he wants to take them to is good for them then they follow him and if not, they leave him to wallow in his dreams (Heifetz, 1994).

Many mad men have ideas on how to lead organizations; normal folks leave them to wallow in their fantasies. Sometimes people follow mad men such as when Germans followed Adolf Hitler and he led them to ruin. See Hitler, Mein Kampf, 1925; Hughes 1995; Kouzes and Posner, 2017.

Normal leaders generally have ideas that appeal to the people’s interests. They somehow tap into what the people need, their aspirations (Ladkin, 2011).

For example, many Igbos in Nigeria resent their obvious second-class status in Nigeria and seek either a restructured Nigeria that empowers them in their neck of the woods or they want out of the country. A good Igbo leader taps into the aspiration of his people, he understands what they want done for their good and is out front doing what it takes to take them to their promised land, the land of milk and horny.


The quality of being a leader, or leadership is intangible. Some say that it is born with the leader and some say that it is learned. It is probably both. See Lencione 2002, 2004, 2010,1998,2000,2016, 2007,2006, 2012.

What is self-evident is that right from childhood some people tend to sense what their cohorts want done and lead them in doing it. A ten-year-old boy leader knows that other boys want to play so he goes and gets some soccer ball and gets the other boys and they go play. He assigns positions to the other ten boys and they choose an opposing team and play with them. He is acting as a leader.

The boy who organizes a soccer game probably has self interest in doing what he is doing: he likes to play, but more importantly he has social interest in mobilizing the group to play, he wants to offer the other boys what to do, an activity.

The leader has a self-interest in his leadership activity but more importantly he has public interest in doing what he is doing (Kouzes, 2016).
All human beings have self-interests and social interests; the goal is to combine them in a decent manner so that all feel benefited by the activity the leader initiates.

Most people are aware of when they are used by other people to do what serves their personal interests but not group interests. Good leaders are generally perceived to be doing what serves the group’s interests. They have that intangible something, some say, spiritual quality that makes those around them to feel that they are totally devoted and committed to what they are doing for the group and that they do it for group interests. They tend to be self-transcending, and self-sacrificing; they work twelve or more hours a day for the group whereas the regular Joe works eight hours and does it for what is good for him, and if it is for a work organization he wants to be paid for his labor.

Leaders serve public good and people perceive them as such. You cannot make yourself come across as serving social interests, you either have that quality in you or you do not; you cannot fake it (Loehr 2003).

Once people perceive you to serve their group interest, they tend to follow you to the ends of the world and indeed do not mind doing what endangers their lives, even dying for the attainment of the group’s good. But if you are a self-centered so-called leader and you are trying to serve your good at the expense of social good, people know who you are and may not follow you to the point of sacrificing their lives for the goal attainment you want to attain.
Consider what passes as leaders in Nigeria. Most of them are in it for what is in it for them. They seek public offices for self-gain, money, wealth; they mouth nostrums of serving public good. At the slightest appearance of danger, they run away.

Emeka Ojukwu saw his people killed all over Nigeria and rightly wanted to do what is good for them. But the desire to serve his narcissistic interest was so overwhelming that when his personal life was threatened, he ran away. He abandoned his soldiers at the battle field and fled to the Ivory Coast. He was a fake leader. If he was in the British or French or German or American military, they would try him, even in absentia, find him guilty and eventually shoot him to death. He was a coward and not a courageous leader; a courageous leader lives and dies with his soldiers; Ojukwu had told his people that Nigerians are coming to kill them, by abandoning them he left them to be killed by Nigerians. His true name is General Ogba Oso (the general who runs away from the battle field).

Nnamdi Kanu, like Ojukwu, sees his people relegated to second class status in Nigeria and talks about how to extricate them from that unacceptable situation. That is a leadership role. Then the Nigerian soldiers came to get him, in operation python dance, and he fled to go save his life. He is a self-centered person. Of course, he is doing a useful job talking about the plight of his people. But he is not a true leader. A true leader does not abandon his people; he lives and or dies with his people.

Political and military organizations need heroes. Heroes are those who died, or did death defying duties for their group’s needs. If you fight for your group to the point of sacrificing your life for it your group members will remember your name to the end of time as their hero (Kottter, 2002, 2018).

Igbos at present do not have heroes who sacrificed for them. Obviously, they need martyrs and heroes to motivate their people to fight for worthy group causes. These would be Igbo leaders must learn to stay and fight to death or at least surrender in person and take the consequences of their actions. Running away from the battle field is cowardly and is not going to make you a hero of the people.

Every group needs heroes, names that make the people feel proud; most Englishmen are proud of Winston Churchill; most Frenchmen are proud of Napoleon and de Gaulle; Most Germans are proud of Otto Von Bismarck; most Americans are proud of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln; most Ghanaians are proud of Kwame Nkrumah; most black Americans are proud of Nat Turner, Frederick Douglass, Thurgood Marshall, W.E.B. Dubois, Booker T. Washington, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, Huey Newton, Stockley Carmichael and others, Most Africans are proud of Nelson Mandela, Jomo Kenyatta and Kwame Nkrumah (are Nigerians proud of Azikiwe, Awolowo, Amadu Bello?).

Leaders are men and women who have goals, who set objectives that they and their group ought to be moving towards. Their goals and objectives are not cavalier to them; those goals and objectives make the difference between life and death for them. Their goals give their existence meaning and purpose; they fight for their goals and are willing to die for them. They totally dedicate their lives to their goals and objectives. See Kofman, 2018; Denning, 2010; Fairholm and Gilbert, 1991.

Their commitment is so palpable that you can metaphorically see it oozing out from every pore in their bodies. People can see that they are really devoted to their goals and are not just talkers or flim-flam shysters trying to make a buck.

They so completely identify with their goals that you, a bystander, cannot help but feel affected by their energy and want to join them and help achieve their goals.

Leaders have action plans, that is, step by step things that they want to do in other to achieve their overarching goals and objectives (Collin, 2001, 2009; Christensen, 2016; De Pree, 1997; Dreher, 1996).


Goals and objectives in our world are generally attained through the auspices of people and money. Thus, leaders seek and gather people who would work with them to attain their leadership goal. Good leaders attract folks willing to work with them to achieve their goals. See Hesselbein and Shinseki 2004; Goleman, 1998; Groves, 2019.

Generally, leaders tend to have excellent interpersonal skills, they work well with people and get along well with people; you must be close to people to know what they really desire, their aspirations and work with them to accomplish them. If you do not have good social skills, human relationship skills you had better go acquire them if you want to be a leader of men working towards achieving a goal. See McChrystal, 2015, 2018.
In our world goals need money, capital to achieve them. Leaders work to procure the finances needed to attain their goals. They understand money and how to get it. Once you obtain money you must expend it wisely and appropriately, hence the need for good accounting and budgeting (Nair 1994).

In our extant world if you want to be a good leader you may want to have the equivalent of a master’s degree in business administration.
Most MBA programs are two years in duration; many business schools have what they call executive MBAs; those are geared to those who have full time jobs and come to classes in the evenings and on weekends (some do it online, too).

MBA programs comprise of course on business/corporate finance (where and how to get money to finance business activities), accounting (keeping records on money in and money out in the organization and budgets) , marketing (who do you sell your goods and or services to, target market, demography and why should they buy them, whole selling, retailing issues), human resources (who works for your business, skills set, education, compensation needs), general management principles, production (how to produce what you produce, mostly engineering issues), contracts, customer care, labor relations, ecommerce and other subjects. A good leader is also a good manager. See Montana 2008; Miner 2005; Moore, 1996.

The difference between a manager and leader is that leaders generally set organizational goals and managers may not do so but identify with those goals as if they are their personal goals and help attain them. Nevertheless, not all managers are leaders. Leaders are rare in any human society whereas management can be trained for.


There are general leadership skills that regardless of the field the leader is operating in he must have those skills. However, those skill sets are applied differently in many areas of leadership needs.

There are political leaders, business leaders, education leaders, music leaders, leaders in science (physics, chemistry, biology, astrophysics, geology), leaders in medicine, engineering and other areas. Whereas all these different types of leaders have overall leadership skills each applies it to his specific industry; the nature and demands of the industry shapes how leaders in them manifest their leadership skills. See Murray, 2000; Newby, 2017, 2019.

Leaders in the world of politics behave differently from leaders in academia. Presidents of universities are subdued and not as flamboyant and attention seeking as political leaders; education leaders tend to be those who understand systems and how to work them, networking. A university president must schmooze with governors, legislators, business leaders and others who fund his university. He must quietly influence them to give him the money his university needs to exist.

In his book, Bureaucracy, Max Weber (1975, delineated not only general leadership types but shows how bureaucratic leaders behave differently from political leaders. Bureaucrats are hired on the bases of merit, through examinations and promoted on the basis of knowledge whereas political leaders may not know much but their social skills and charisma disposes people to elect them for political offices.


The military is actually one of the best arenas from which leadership skills are acquired. Officers are given men under them (a lieutenant has about twenty two soldiers in his platoon, a captain has about one hundred soldiers in his company, a major or Lt Connell has about one thousand soldiers in his battalion, a colonel or brigadier general has about three thousand soldiers in his brigade, a major general or Lt General has about ten thousand soldiers in his division, a four star general may have several thousands, even millions of soldiers under his command).

Military training trains young men to understand goals and objective and how to use men and materials (military equipment) to achieve them. You are given a hill, goal, to capture and you use the level of men under your command to capture it. And in serious armies you must capture it or die trying to do it. Military and political leadership skills overlap. Hence Tsun Tzu (The Art of War) and Carl Von Clausewitz, on war said that war is politics by other means.

Training and battle field experience harden soldiers to kill, and trains them on the weapons and equipment they need to kill with. Make no mistake about it, soldiers are trained killers. We are not talking boy scouts here; we are talking trained assassins by a different name.

In as much as this piece addresses itself to those trying to lead Igbos out of Nigeria it is necessary to say that Nigeria has a military composed of army, navy, airfare, coast guard and police. Altogether there are probably half a million Nigerians bearing arms for the state called Nigeria. These folks are trained to kill for the territorial integrity of Nigeria. If you challenge that territorial integrity their duty is to kill you. Make no mistake about it, the Nigerian military exists to preserve the territorial integrity of the geographical entity called Nigeria.

All leaders of government like to keep their states intact. Those in power seldom relinquish power voluntarily. Nigerian political leaders and their military will kill you if you challenge their sovereignty and territory. Calling Nigeria, the zoo and other put down names is not going to give you the independence that you say you desire.

Therefore, you had better train militarily if you want to struggle for Alaigbo’s independence. If IPOB members are serious freedom fighters their first order of business is to go train for the military. They should disappear into the bush somewhere in Nigeria or outside Nigeria and train militarily.
It takes about three months (nine to twelve weeks) to train as an infantry soldier (boot camp). It takes at least two years to train as a lieutenant in the military.

At the US West Point (army), Annapolis (navy) and Air force officer training at Colorado, British Sandhurst it takes about four years training, post-secondary school to train officers.

And as one progresses in the officer career additional trainings are offered. The point here is that soldiers are well trained killing machines, their goal is to kill enemy soldiers. If you are going to challenge them you must get trained or shut the hell up.

Mere talking (Igbos engage in imanjakiri and Eko Okwu were they deliberately insult people) does not make one a soldier; Kanu ran away when they came for his behind; if he was a trained soldier, a committed freedom fighter, he would have disappeared into the bush, along with his men and given his would be killers a fight for their money.


IPOB is not going to go toe to toe with the Nigerian army for it does not have the manpower and equipment (tanks, planes, war ships etc.) to do so Therefore, it cannot really have frontal fights with the Nigerian military.
But it can go train for guerrilla warfare. Here, it trains on how to destroy infrastructure in the land and kill the enemy in asymmetrical warfare.
These folks should go get military training and get the money to buy necessary guns to equip their guerilla army.

The Vietcong, a guerrilla military defeated the French at Dian Bianphu in 1954 and the Americans at Saigon in 1975. There are books on asymmetrical warfare.

And before these folks embark on military struggle with Nigeria, they must do all of us a favor and prepare for it. This means making sure that they have the millions or billions of dollars they need to buy military weapons; and they must make alliances with foreign countries who would supply their weapons.

The Americans could not have defeated the almighty British army in 1781 if the French army and navy had not fought with them. The last battle at York town was largely won due to the French navy’s destruction of a British army on its way to relieve General Cornwall’s encircled army.
Igbos must have a political and diplomatic wing, men trained in international politics and men who have some intellectual gravity, heft and have them negotiate with some world powers for support before even they shoot the first shots. You do not fight modern wars with sticks and machetes or with belief in juju enabling you to win. You fight with modern weapons.
Above all before Igbos embark on this journey, they need to train a guerilla army of at least a million soldiers. All those unemployed Igbo youths are certainly going to be willing to train and die for Alaigbo. Do not start a war unless you have what it takes to prosecute it.

Igbos must also understand that guerilla wars last decades, sometimes up to fifty years. The Southern Sudanese fought from 1956 to 2010. You do not fight for three years, 1967-1970, and give up and then talk as if wars are won in short amount of time. South Africa began its war with white settlers in 1910 when the African National Congress was founded. Independence was won in 1990, eighty years later.

The Fulani’s may seem to Igbos like a bunch of illiterates but they understand how to fight and kill people and they will enjoy killing Igbos; calling them insulting names make no difference to them, in fact, it embitters them and make them more determined to kill Igbos; confront them only if you are prepared for them, if not bite your tongue and plan for a future inevitable showdown with them.

Alaigbo is either in a restructured Nigeria or is an independent country; we all know that Fulanis cannot be allowed to dominate Igbos much longer but this time let Igbos do it right. They cannot make Ojukwu’s stupid mistake of starting a war he did not prepare for, a war he did not train adequate soldiers for.

Consider, Nigerians had over 270, 000 soldiers and Ojukwu embarked on his quixotic war with less than ten thousand soldiers. He actually made his foray into the Midwest and Western Nigerian with less than a battalion, 1000, of rag tagged soldiers. He needed, at least, 250, 000 soldiers to invade the Midwest and Western Nigeria, an army large enough to hold the land conquered.

Did that Ojukwu boy actually go to officer training school? Was he even a trained infantry soldier? He needed, at least, 500, 000 soldiers and appropriate weapons to give his secession a shot at success. See Oatley, 1994; Rohr,2011; Roberts, 1995.


You can tell a lot about a people’s culture, social and political, by observing them at meetings. When Igbos gather at meetings you see most of them wanting to talk. Each of them is motivated to talk regardless of whether what he has to say is germane to the topic at hand or not. He feels compelled to just say something to make his existence and presence acknowledged.

What they say about American Indians all wanting to be chiefs seem to apply to Igbos; most Igbos want to be chiefs; each wants to be the boss and does not like other people to boss him around. When they think that a particular person is dominating the discussion, is the boss, they feel particularly a need to tear him down, to bring him down so that he does not dominate them.

For an overview of Igbos see Victor Uchendu, Igbos of Southeastern Nigeria, 1965.

This chaotic and anarchic behavior at meetings is probably rooted In Igbos past political culture. Igbos did not develop beyond village and town social organization (a few Igbos, those that adjoined groups with feudal social organizations and had kings, such as the Edo, Edos had Obas, learned to have kings of sorts, called Obi, but that notwithstanding it is appropriate to say that Igbos had no kings, Ezes). See Njaka on Igbo political culture, 1974.
The male members of the village gathered and talked about their village issues. They jointly solved their problems. Beyond this rudimentary village legislature, if they needed executive functions, they selected a man or a few men to implement their decisions. If judicial functions are required, they met and judged ensuing cases; in effect, every Igbo adult male was a legislator, executor and judge. See Chinua Achebe, Things Fall Apart, 1994.
The Igbo political culture was a kind of rudimentary participatory democracy, which was possible in the small social milieu that precolonial Igbos had but not feasible in larger social milieu. Larger social settings require delegation of authority to representatives.

Madison, Hamilton and Jay, in the Federalist Papers (1787), in making an argument for federation in the USA, presented an unsurpassed argument as to why representative democracy is what is needed in the large country called USA. In on Representative government and On Liberty, John Stuart Mill (1859) made the same argument.

Perhaps, it was because all Igbos participated in solving their village affairs that to the present, they all like to speak up at meetings? Their meetings can drive you up the wall, it is cacophony of folks jabbering noisy nothings. If you are the quiet type you feel an urge to walk right out of the bedlam.
Contrast this madhouse like situation to how folks from Confucian cultures (China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam and other Asian countries) behave at meetings. At meetings people sit quietly and do not feel compelled to talk and only talk when it is absolutely necessary to do so.

Speaking up is not act of leadership but can best be seen as bravado, talking to seem alive and present. Leadership inheres in having something to talk about, something to do that serves collective interests. The leader has a vision of what he believes is good for the group.

In the Igbo world most people probably do what they do because of the Igbo concept of “Iwa Anya”; here, speaking up is designed for one to seem bold and recognized as powerful. Indeed, many Igbos would go out of their way to bring down the person who has an idea on what to do. How dare him tell them what to do! Thus, they destroy each other. See Njoku, 1990.
It is correct to say that there are not too many leaders in the contemporary Igbo world.

This obnoxious phenomenon is transferred to Igbo businesses. There are three forms of business organizations: sole proprietorship, partnership and corporation.

Most Igbo businesses are sole proprietorships; this is largely because the Igbo knows that if he tries to partner with other Igbos that they would devote most of their energy to trying to tear him down, destroy him and take over the business. If it is a corporation where many people are involved, invariably some egotistical Igbo wants to drive others out and take over the business, even though he may not have a clue on what the business is all about and does not understand that businesses run on vision and drive and passion of the founders.

If you destroy the person with the vision, and do not have vision and passion for the business, by removing him you destroy the business. Unless, of course you are so stupid to believe that the leader you removed would have the same enthusiasm to follow your visionless leadership?
Each type of business organization has its merits and demerits. Businesses run around sole proprietorship tend to die with the death of the proprietor; most Igbo businesses die when the owner dies. Where is today the far-flung businesses of Odumegwe Ojukwu?

Corporate businesses tend to survive the death of the founders because they tend to recruit professional managers to run the businesses and their death makes no difference to the continuity of the businesses. Bill Gates and Paul Allen left Microsoft to professional managers. The same is true of Apple computers and Google; these high-tech businesses are likely to be around hundreds of years from today (unless what they produce are no longer demanded by the people).

The average Igbo is too egotistical and foolishly proud to accept that other people can do somethings better than he does them and, as such, he is not willing to relinquish authority to professional managers.

A more realistic aspect of the Igbo desire to run his business by his self is that he knows that his fellow Igbos are more likely to rip him off, to steal from his business and make it go broke.

Igbos have serious issues in organizational and political leadership. Their self-centered individualism is a problem. Clearly, Igbos need to be re-socialized to work in groups and work with each other and accept the leadership of the person with the vision and not attempt to destroy him so that all live as mediocre, visionless clowns. The Igbo need to transit from self-centered behaviors to social interest serving behaviors.

Igbos need to internalize a different political culture and social behavior patterns. Their present behavior pattern, a product of their village-based world, their lack of developing writing and lack of development of Igbo wide political organization must be corrected.

The era of making corrupt African big men, thieves who are made chiefs of the village just because they have money, their leaders are not what modern Igbos need in political leadership positions. There needs to be different patterns of leadership recruitment in Alaigbo.

This time Igbos must recruit leaders who actually have dreams and visions of what to do to modernize Igbo land. Igbos no longer need folks without political and economic ideologies for their leaders. At present they mostly recruit “Ogaranya”, rich men, thieves, as their leaders regardless of the fact that such persons do not understand a thing about the modern economy.
In the recent past, Igbos like other West Africans, engaged in the nefarious practice of capturing and selling their people into slavery. Those who made money from that iniquitous trade presented themselves as big men, See Olaudah Equiano, 1789.

Igbos now need to produce leaders who actually see it as their duty to develop their people instead of selling them or exploiting them. See Smock, 1971.

Out of curiosity one may ask: can Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of IPOB, discuss the writings of John Maynard Keynes, micro and macroeconomics, capitalism, socialism, mercantilism, corporatism, fascism and other political economies?

Talking jazz is not what modern polities need. Igbos need persons with the equivalence of MBA and or law degree to lead them, not the noise making riff raffs that they have had in the past.


Those who agitate for Biafra appear to include non-Igbos. They include those that the British government had included in what was called Eastern Nigeria, such as Efik, Ibibio and Ijaw and Ogoja people. Those people became part of the Igbo world by historical accident not because they consented to join with Igbos to form Biafra. It would seem to make sense for the Biafrans to ask those people whether they want to be part of Biafra or not.

If they are not asked and they are seen as Biafrans is this not as arbitrary as the British logging Igbos into one country with Hausas, Yoruba, Fulani’s and Edos? Would those people be happy about the new situation?

Clearly, many of these people do not get along with Igbos and it is a waste of time trying to force them to do so. They have their reasons for not getting along with Igbos. It is not for us to get them to change their minds. Let them be.

For now, let us operate under the assumption that what these folks mean by Biafrans are Igbos. Even some Igbo speaking people do not want to be seen as Igbos.

Ikwerri and Anioma (Delta) Igbos these days consider themselves as not Igbos. Even though they speak Igbo language and share in Igbo culture they take offense if called Igbos. This is an interesting development.
Some persons attribute their desire to be seen as not Igbos as due to the fact that Igbos were defeated during the civil war and, as such, are now seen as powerless in the geographical space called Nigeria. These peripheral Igbos are said to want to make union with non-Igbos, such as Ijaw and Edos and Ishekiris and Unrobos believing that they would be more empowered and better served than the now pariahs called Igbos. They appear to be doing well, after all Igwe Ocha, aka Port Harcourt is the capital of Rivers state and invariably an Ikwerri man is the governor of Rivers state, a state that includes non-Igbos, and Asaba is the capital of Delta state, a state that includes non-Igbos and as we speak an Igbo is the governor of Delta state.
Whatever is the, motivation behind these Igbos denying their Igboness we proceed with the assumption that they are Igbos. Whether they like it or not they are Igbos and when other Nigerians begin killing Igbos, they would kill these Igbo denying Igbos. During the civil war, Nigerian soldiers killed Asaba Igbos at Asaba, they killed Anioma folks in Northern Nigeria and so on. When the dust settles Igbo denying Igbos will embrace their Igbo identity.

For our present purposes, Alaigbo stretches from Igwe Ocha, aka Port Harcourt to Agbo, from Arochukwu to above Nnsuka. Whoever speaks Igbo language is an Igbo, period.


The more salient issue is the fact that Igbos tend to look down on Igbos from different clans. Anambra Igbos tend to look down on Owerri Igbos. Indeed, they used to use the word Onye Igbo derisively, as a put down in referring to Owerri folks as Igbos. They would claim to be Edo, Bini, implying that to be associated with Bini is to be superior to Igbos. Binis had an empire before the coming of the white man in Nigeria; apparently that makes them superior to Igbos whose social organization consisted of their village or town organization only.

Clearly, there are animus between the various Igbo clans. Each of these clans have a different dialect of Igbo, dialect that other Igbos may not even understand. Anambra Igbo, Owerri Igbo, Wawa Igbo, Orlu Igbo, Okigwe Igbo, Afikpo Igbo, Abakalike Igbo, Ikwerri Igbo, Anioma Igbo, Umuahia Igbo, Ngwa Igbo. These various Igbos do not understand each other and more importantly do not necessarily get along with each other.
As the white missionaries tried to do, all Igbos obviously have to speak a central Igbo language and make an Igbo town their capital.

All Igbos agree that Owerri is the heart of Igbo land. Anambra people are a mix of Igbo and Bini, Umuahia Igbo are a mix of Igbo and Ibibio, Ngwa Igbo are a mix of Igbos and Efik people, Enugu people are a mix of Igbos and Idoma people, only Owerri people are unadulterated Igbos.

Even British colonial masters made Owerri the capital of Igbo land and so it must remain if Igbos do not want cleavages in their land. Further efforts to make non-Igbo heartland towns Igbo capital risks intra ethnic conflicts. If that continues Igbo land could degenerate to the likes of Somalia.
In Somalia all Somalis speak the same language yet they could not all unite as one country. In South Sudan there are different tribes such as Dinka and Nuer and those are at each other’s throats.

Igbos must unite to avoid the fate of other African tribes and countries ripped apart by tribal conflicts. Take a look at the Congo Democratic Republic and see the level of conflicts and wars that ravage that unfortunate country.


Igboland needs a constitution that is realistic to the people. They need one state status or one country status.

They need one unicameral legislature of about one hundred members, not bicameral legislature for that is a waste of money; they need to be divided into about one hundred counties (districts). The counties are composed of towns and cities.

Each county would have eleven-member county councilors with a county chief executive and a county court system with branches in most towns.
Each town must have a town council of seven members with a town mayor and a town magistrate court.

At the state capital would be the unicameral legislature, a governor or president and a state high court, supreme court, composed of thirteen judges with one the chief judge. Cases would be appealed from town courts to county courts to the state high court. See Van Wormer et al, 2007; Collins, 2011; Leonard, 1992; Kofman, 2013; Spears, 1998.


Igbos are fiercely independent so they need a capitalistic economy. Nevertheless, there are certain things that need to be done collectively. Thus, the state must finance schools from elementary school to secondary school and universities. See Willink and Babin, 2015; Zenger and Folkman, 2002.

About thirty percent of children have what it takes to go to universities so the state must make provisions for thirty percent of those who begin elementary school each year to eventually go to universities. The rest go to vocational schools where they learn useful skills that the economy needs.
The state also needs to pay for people’s health care. These are funded by the people’s tax dollars.

Clearly, folks must pay taxes with which their states run. Taxes are inevitable in the modern polity. The individual must count on paying, at least, thirty percent of his annual income to state income taxes.

There are other forms of taxes, such as sales taxes, not to exceeds ten percent, property taxes not to exceed a few thousand dollars per house or undeveloped land a year, value added taxes, business taxes and so on.
Cities and towns generally generate their income from property taxes and sales taxes. With that money city functions, such as providing and maintaining roads and schools are paid for.

Whereas the state pays for schooling and health care for all, private schools and health insurances and hospitals must be encouraged if for no other reasons than to give competition to state schools and hospitals. People need competition to continually improve the quality of their services.

What we are talking about here is robust mixed economy, a judicious mixture of capitalist and socialist economies. That is simply the only realistic option available to modern societies, to go for one or the other is unrealistic.


The level of bribery and corruption in Nigeria is so much that one wonders how this could ever be possible in a country of laws. Just about everything done in Nigeria is done through bribery. You bribe the police to get him to allow you to drive on if he stops you, you bribe to pick up a form from a government office, you bribe government officials to get anything done, you bribe judges to even have a hearing on your case, and bribe some more to get a favorable ruling; politicians essentially exist to steal from the government. The governors see money allotted to their states by the federal government as their private moneys, the legislators at the federal level even if they have not passed any law in years collect obscene salaries, perhaps the highest in the world, this is in addition to other gratuities like houses, cars and money for what they call constituency services, each of them collects at least a million dollars a year; and this is in a country where the minimum wage is less than three dollars a day. It is an absurd situation.
There are no working hospitals so the big cheese has to go overseas for medical treatment. When these garbage in human form are going somewhere, the streets are closed to other traffic so that the garbage may be ferried to their destinations where they do nothing but eat and drink, get fat and have diabetes, strokes and heart attacks and die as they should.
Nigeria has the culture of self-centeredness; the culture of impunity; every person is in it for his self and nobody serves the public. Yet these self-centered politicians actually expect the masses to praise them, give them attention and the funny part of it is that the brain-washed masses instead of stoning them to death do in fact admire them. The musicians sing their praises, praises for screwing them.

This culture of self-centeredness is difficult to behold without asking why the people tolerate it. Are all Nigerians so cowardly, so desirous of living that they cannot pick up arms and remove those who miss rule them and if they die from fighting so be it.


Poverty is everywhere in Nigeria. Even folks who have jobs may go for a year without been paid by their employers. The idea is that if you do not like it resign and they have many others to employ. Unemployment is probably over 60% of the population. Yet the people have no shame. They consider themselves as human beings despite not doing what even monkeys can do for their species. This is amazing.

Are Nigerians human beings at all? Perhaps they are not human beings, perhaps they come from a different planet and we take them as human beings? How can these people have no conscience, no sense of sympathy for the poor people and no desire to help their poor? Their hearts are made of stone. They are truly living in the continent of darkness and have dark souls, if at all they have souls.

Young people go to schools, universities included and graduate and are unemployed for years. They keep hoping for the government to give them jobs and the government does not give them jobs and do not create an enabling environment where private entrepreneurs create jobs and employ people. People are all over the place doing nothing. Even those who graduate in the sciences, especially the applied sciences do not have jobs. Indeed, medical doctors go for six or more months and are not paid (those who can run to the West, get additional education do obtain jobs in the UK, Canada and USA and Nigeria does not care for their brain drain and loss, even as they have shortage of medical doctors in Nigeria.

Nigerian hospitals are death traps. If you are sick you have to bribe to be seen by medical doctors and treated, bribe to be admitted, and bribe for medications. This country has collapsed. It is not the habitation of human beings but animals.

This house has fallen, a British visitor, Maier said in a book by that title; people are living like animals on top of garbage. See Toffler, 1990; Vroom, 1988,1973, 1973.

The wonder is that despite the refuse on top of which they reside they do not all get diseases and die off. Actually, their life span is around fifty; the people live with numerous diseases, they are disease vectors, literally germs transmitting agents.

Many young people have taken to criminal activities to survive. There are robbers everywhere. They stop you and either take money from you or even take your car. Some kidnap folks and hold them ransom until money is paid to them or they killed their victims (some of those victims did not do anything to help the poor around them, perhaps they deserve to be kidnapped and or killed?)


Given the desperation in the land IPOB and its leaders present themselves as the solution. They primrose to get Igbos to a place where they can develop and attain the level of the Asian tigers in a generation. Naturally, the hurting Igbos believe them. A hungry man believes in any one who promises him food; wave a false magical wand and hungry folks flock to you.

The problem is that IPOB is composed of school flunkies and has no economic plan nor do they have political ideologies that would enable them to develop the country. Like their fellow Igbos and Nigerians, they seek public office to become the next big men and get their own share of the national cake.

Hopefully, through this writing we can transform these fellows to become dedicated leaders, not those who fleece their poor compatriots and at the slightest sign of danger run away and go to London and from there make empty school boy noises about what is wrong with Nigeria.

Can we do anything to help these people. Can they change and behave like human beings and do what they have to do to behave like civilized people?
We must have hope for as Jesse Jackson said, when men lose hope, they become living dead folks and soon succumb to diseases and alcohol and drugs and die.


Whereas many areas of Africans lives need improvement, this paper concentrates only on the question of leadership. The idea is that if Africans produce committed leaders that they would drag Africa from the shithole, according to Donald Trump, it is at present to a modern state with work and food for all. See Schultz, 2010; Senge, 1990; Spears, 1998; Spencer, 1841; Tittlemore, 2003.


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