The Reverberating Echo Of A Distant Drumming — By Mogaji Gboyega Adejumo.

By Ikenga Chronicles October 30, 2016

The Reverberating Echo Of A Distant Drumming — By Mogaji Gboyega Adejumo.

Down the memory lane of a sonorous proverbial kind.And here again, as another year rolls by, happy to share this piece. If ever I am caught, reading any of my old posts, surely this post will be one of such. The difficulty in writing is not to write, but to write what you mean; not to affect your reader, but to affect him precisely as you wish.

One year after, the import of this post of a year gone by already, looms nearer than ever. And as 2017 approaches, it becomes important more than ever to revisit its salient points.

Holding on to deceit as a weapon is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else. At the end, you are the one who gets burned.

These are very interesting times. Nothing really might have changed, yet everything is somewhat a replication–recycling if you will–of the way we do things.

I often wonder, why is it that anytime we truly try to make an effort at moving forward, we end up substituting an evil with a different evil far more sinister than the one we are trying to run away from. To arrive at this postulate, I am wont to have to take you back, some may not have been there then, but can still follow.
It may have started sometime in the 60s perhaps the 50s but certainly many will remember the drumming on radio in the 70s heralding the reading of the news of the day;

Dín Dín Dìn Dìn Dín Dín, Dindíndín Din Dìn! (the drumming is repeated, 3 times and variedly interpreted thus):

T’Olubadan ba ku tani o j’oye!;
Ko s’olosi ni bi, lo s’ile Keji!;
Ninu ‘koko dudu lati n’ se ‘be!

In each of these interpretations, the answers are fairly easy, the statements are however, difficult!

The Ibadan chieftaincy succession plan is fairly sacrosanct as to who becomes the next Olubadan. The fortunate person clearly would not be associated as living in any one homestead, one would just have to look elsewhere. Grandma’s pots were pitch dark from the fires of the stone stoves and firewood flames, but therein lies the sumptuous and tasty stew and soup. At the 3rd repetitive drumming, we then gather round the redifusion boxes, radiogram or any other device where the newscast could be heard from. Those were the days of glorious journalism, when the news were to be believed and relied upon as representing the truth!

And so we gathered, date, January 15th 1970. One could not but notice the tinge to the voice that came over the radio, there was no trivia as the announcement came – -The Nigerian Civil War has now ended!

There was an unprecedented jubilation all over Ibadan and yet the not so easy anxiety over those of our relatives, friends and acquaintances who may not be coming back as a result of a 30-month war that led to the death of over a million Nigerians. Our cook and steward, Jimoh had joined the Army, but never came back. Oroyo, our Igbo tenant in my maternal granddad’s shop at Akure never made it too.

It was a gory tale that started with the January 1966 coup d’etat planned by the 5 majors and the counter coup of July 1966, wherein the Commander-in-Chief Major General Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi  Ironsi and Brigadier Adekunle Fajuyi were both killed.

What followed were reprisal attacks in the North against the Igbos and the killings of Northerners in the South Eastern part of Nigeria.

Subsequent efforts by the OAU and Gen Afriffa of Ghana at finding peace between Gowon (then Head of State of Nigeria) and Ojukwu (Governor of Eastern Nigeria, and later Head of State of the secessionist state of Biafra) in Aburi, Ghana failed.Then all out war.

President Andrew Johnson of America received the surrender of the Rebel armies of the South on August 20, 1866 to signal the end of the American Civil War. Curiously, both President Andrew Johnson and General Gowon both echoed the same sentiments, at such different occasions ending both civil wars– that both countries would be able to survive yet another civil war. American history is rich and illuminating.It is the history of a people who have consciously determined that they would rather live together but with the liberties of all the federating units to be of FOREMOST CONSIDERATION! This singular determining factor has kept the American federation together. And the lack of such has led to the break up of the Soviet Union, arguably.

Only the deceived will not agree to the grave and precarious situation of the Nigerian federation as it is presently manifesting – 45 years after the Nigerian Civil War. Fresh agitations are springing up from the same land of  “The Rising Sun” that formed Biafra and setting grimly through the nationalistic reverie of the Yoruba toward an Oduduwa Republic.

Nigeria, we have a problem.

To dismiss these clear and present agitations as mere expressions of a disgruntled few in both lands of the “Rising and Setting of the Sun” , is to continue to sit on a seemingly dormant volcano.

Sadly the last election was fought with great emotions and divisiveness that pitched tribe against tribe, religion against religion and Nigeria is the loser.

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