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Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa - Politics - Nairaland

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Femi Fani-kayode: Some Hard Questions For The Buharists / Northern Elders Forum: Time For Hard Truths / Ojukwu: Tribute From Chinweizu (1) (2) (3) (4)

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Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Nnenna1(f): 5:31am On Mar 29, 2012
Below is an interview with Chinweizu that dispenses some home truths about where we as Africans and Nigerians are today. I don't agree with a few things but the messages given here are quite true.


Chinweizu in Conversation with James Eze

"It's War For The African Mind"


Chinweizu is the author of the classical works: The West and The Rest of US (1975) and Declonising the African Mind (1987)

Q: Sir I hope you don’t mind my recording this conversation. Some of the things you have already said so far are too exciting for a reporter to pass up.

A: Does this mean that without a tape recorder you cannot do a summary description of a conversation an hour later? If you can’t do that, you couldn’t have been a journalist in Zik’s time because there was no tape recorder then. Can’t you be at a meeting and report the proceedings later if it is so crowded that you couldn’t bring out pen and paper to write?

Q: As a matter of fact I could and I have indeed done it many times before. I don’t know if it would sound immodest to say that I also have a good memory. The fact is that I consider meeting you a privilege and I wouldn’t want to summarize what you have to say but to have it in a format that will make reference to it at a later time possible. I also would like to take direct quotes from you and I wouldn’t want to quote you out of context or paraphrase your statements in a manner that robs them of the vital punch lines.

A: I’ve heard you. The point is, we are discussing a general institutional failure. You yourself can have the best memory in the world, you can still do very good work, but as an institution, something is not being cultivated. And that is the point. The journalism profession in Nigeria today, and probably in most of the world, has deviated from the craft tradition where you are trained on the job. That great tradition is lost and with it a lot of knowledge of how to do things. Now, you rely on Mass Comm Departments to train journalists, but there’s no substitute for learning on the job. Most farmers can still farm because they learn it on the job, because they go through the nitty-gritty under the observation of the elders; and the elders will explain and tell them when they are not doing anything right. Training is based ultimately not on lectures but on that practical hands-on context. Engineers are trained in universities, but most industries regard fresh graduates as raw material. They have the theory, they have the general information, but when they get to the factory floor they have to really bend down and pick up some practical knowledge.

Q: But does that necessarily imply that the design of our education system may have left out some vital loose ends?
A: Do you have an education system?

Q: Well, we have a system in place at the moment even if it does not
qualify as an education system.


A: You have what you dignify by calling it an education system.

Q: Well, it’s perhaps because some of us are products of this system and may not have had the good fortune of knowing how other systems work.

A: Well, the argument is not with you but with those who maintain the system and call it an education system. An education system trains somebody to live in a particular society. That’s what every proper education system does. As somebody recently said in a book: “A Chaga with the education of an Eskimo is, from the point of view of his society, uneducated, as he would be were he to have been exclusively educated in a Western school or university.” Now, if you take an Eskimo who lives in his environment, his ecosystem, and give him the training of an Englishman who lives in a different environment, is that education? You train him to live in English society but he is not going to live in English society. In Eskimo society, he cannot fit in because he has a wrong mentality; his attitude, his notion of his ecosystem and how to exploit it are all wrong. So, he is not educated. He cannot function effectively in Eskimo society because you trained him for English society, which is in a different ecosystem. What we practice here is some version of the English education system. You see the students in all these schools with their jackets and blazers, especially these new ones in Lekki and V.I. What are they being trained to be? What society will they operate in when they graduate? Not English society, not American society but Nigerian society. And they are not being trained to function in Nigerian society or ecosystem. Start with language. Language is critical in any culture. So when you train people in a language that is not the language of their culture, you have not trained them for their culture. This is a very large issue, actually, but the point is that what we call our education system here is basically a miseducation system. We are miseducating our children by trying to train them as if they are going to live in the industrialized society of England, with the traditions of England and among people who think and behave as the English people do. But that’s not the society they are going into. So, on the premise that an education system trains people to live in their own society and ecosystem, what we have here is a miseducation system. Its all crap! People think they are doing a great thing here: They give birth to a child and hand it over to an alien education system and expect that at the end of 20 – 30 years he would come back to be part of them. It can’t be, because they have moulded him differently, alienated him from his culture.


Q: How can a good education system be designed? What are the standards in other societies?

A: The standards in other societies should not interest you because they were designed for their own peculiar purposes. You have to ask yourself what kind of training you need in your own society, and then invent a system to provide it. It’s not something you copy; it’s something you invent. You have to know what you want, what kind of society you want the products to live in. If you haven’t worked out all those things, then you haven’t started, because it’s only when you know the purpose for which you plan to train the next generation that you can invent an education system that will serve your purpose.For a century now, we have not been educating our people for our society and its ecosystem. It started when the British conquered us. So, it’s a great error that has been perpetuated for a century or more. We don’t even train people to speak our languages. Here we are, holding this discussion in English. It’s not your fault or mine. I am just pointing out the cumulative effect of a century of misdirection. It was not the fault of our ancestors directly because somebody conquered them and imposed an alien and alienating system on them. The white people trained people here because they needed clerks to help them exploit us. That’s why they brought their schools. They didn’t bring their schools to help us survive. The people who designed the present system did not do so in our interest. They came here to destroy us. And some of the structures they brought in, we have foolishly adopted as our own and we can’t see beyond our noses to realize that what they have given us is poison, and that we should throw it out and find something else. We haven’t reached that stage in our understanding of our situation. So, we perpetuate the ruinous system the British left behind.

Q: This miseducation, as you rightly pointed out, has been going on for over a century. So, when shall we wake up to its disturbing reality?

A: Well, it’s not in the hands of any other people; it’s in our own hands. The world is moving on. It is when we want to wake up from our slumber that we will wake up. Fela, in one of his songs, told us what to do. He reminded us that, as in other lands, it is the culture of our people that our schools should teach. That’s the basic need. But was he heeded? We blacks haven’t understood that this our imported way of living isn’t a good way. Until we find that out, we’ll keep messing up. But, as usual, we don’t ask ourselves the fundamentals. Take this matter of education, which is our gloss of Igbo ozuzu. In contrast to this education, which is a process of book learning and Europeanization, ozuzu was the process of socializing a child into the Igbo way of life, so he became an adult equipped to behave in the Igbo way, rather than the Eskimo way, the European way or some other non-Igbo way, or even like a wild animal! Unlike this education, ozuzu was specific and appropriate to a cultural context, the Igbo context. It aimed to produce, not just any kind of educated person, but an Igbo person, a well-behaved Igbo person, suffused with the Igbo worldview, and living by the Igbo code of conduct. And I am sure that every other pre-colonial African society had its own equivalent of Igbo ozuzu, an equivalent that was appropriate to its own specific culture. To get back to your point about our waking up, we shall continue on our present ruinous way until we wake up and retrace our steps to our ancestral system of culturally appropriate education, and then develop it. The pertinent question to ask is not how other societies educate but how did our ancestors socialize and acculturate their children for their environment? The answer does not lie in copying how other societies conduct their own training. There’s so much to learn from what our ancestors did. If we find out how we did it in ancient times, we can then adapt from it and make a new version that will serve our new situation. What they did is still relevant. After all, we still live in the same ecosystem as they did. And they mastered how to live in it, which is why we have survived so far. And we should gratefully use their legacy to our benefit.


Q: Now, talking about our ancestors, you are a distinguished black scholar. How valid is the claim that Greek civilization had its origins in Africa, particularly Egypt? And also how true is the claim that these ancient Egyptians from whom the Greeks borrowed the now famous European model of civilization were actually black?

A: The long and short of it is that the ancient Egyptians, those who built the pyramids and all of Pharaohnic civilization were black; and they played a central role in the formation of Greek culture. The evidence of that is abundant. Pythagoras, Orpheus, Homer, Thales, Lycurgus, Solon, Plato, Eudoxus and other famous Greeks that founded the various aspects of Greek civilization went to Egypt to learn. Much of what is propagated as Greek philosophy and Greek knowledge were things they learnt when they went to Egypt to study. There are books on that. Here, for instance, is Onyewuenyi’s book on that (produces a copy of Prof. Onyewuenyi’s The African Origins of Greek Philosophy: An exercise in Afrocentrism).Furthermore, Egyptian influence on Greek civilization was not exerted only through students who took Egyptian learning back to Greece. In addition, by ancient Greek accounts, settlers from Egypt and Phoenicia had, much earlier, either founded or supplied ruling dynasties to such Greek cities as Thebes, Argos, Sparta and Athens. Athens is actually named after an Ancient Egyptian city Sais which was reportedly also called Athenai; and the Greek goddess Athena is a version of the goddess Neith of the Egyptian Sais/Athenai. In addition, many Greek words, (about 25% of the Greek vocabulary, by some expert estimates) are derived from Ancient Egyptian. Greek place names that were derived from Egyptian words testify to what the ancient Greeks themselves said: that Egyptians had colonized Greece in remote times and taught civilization to the Greeks. They also said that Greek religion, including its oracles and mystery rites, was introduced from Egypt. A good popular account of all this is given in the book Black Spark, White Fire by Richard Poe. If the specialist argument interests you, you can look it up in the multi-volume work Black Athena by Martin Bernal.

On the matter of the color of the Ancient Egyptians, Herodotus, whom the Europeans call the ‘father of history’, said that the Egyptians were black. In fact Cheikh Anta Diop has an essay, “Origin of the Ancient Egyptians,” in which he quoted about ten of those Greek and Roman writers who lived during the first six centuries after the whites had overrun Egypt. They all say that the ancient Egyptians were black. People who went there and saw them with their own eyes, said that the ancient Egyptians were black. They were still a black population even centuries after whites had overrun them. In contrast, those claiming today that the Ancient Egyptians were not black have not produced even one ancient eyewitness report that says the Egyptians were anything other than black.

The bottom line is that Ancient Greek civilization was a daughter of Egypt; and that the Ancient Egyptians were blacks. The white boys now pretend that the Ancient Egyptian civilization was created by white people and that it did not spawn Greek civilization. They are lying about all that and they have been doing so for the last three centuries. Their ancestors knew differently. The Greeks themselves said differently. So, even if you don’t believe what anybody else says, there are the ancient Greeks themselves who studied in or visited Egypt, and they said so.

Q: How come black people could not sustain this civilization after the Europeans invaded Egypt? Where was our proverbial knowledge?


A: You first have to understand that black civilization was destroyed. Chancellor Williams wrote a book, The Destruction of Black Civilization, where he describes that. The easiest way to understand what happened is to take what happened to your own country in the last century. Once you lose sovereignty, you are rubbished. Loss of sovereignty is the worst thing that can happen to a people. The Egyptians tried long and hard to maintain their sovereignty and power: it took the white people more than 1000 years of repeated attempts to finally overrun Egypt. But once they finally accomplished it, it was one white group after another. The Persians were the first whites to overrun Egypt. Before them, other groups had penetrated Egypt but were fought off by the Egyptians. The long and short of it is that 525 BC was the final defeat of Egypt, about 2,500 years ago. After the Persians, the Greeks defeated the Persians and took over Egypt. Then the Romans took over and occupied it till the Arabs invaded Egypt.

The Arab invasion was the turning point because all the previous conquerors just sent people to administer Egypt, but the Arabs came in large numbers to live. They were a settler multitude. They swamped and drove the real Egyptians away so that today, most Egyptians don’t look black. The only Egyptians who are still black are descended from remnants of the ancient Egyptians. People like Sadat, the former Egyptian president. Sadat didn’t look like the normal Arab; he was black, being of Nubian descent, from the Nubian remnants of the Ancient Egyptians. Boutrous Ghali, who was presented as an Egyptian, is a Copt and the Copts are descendants of Greek invaders. So, Boutrous Ghali is a white man. He descended from people like Cleopatra who were the Greek colonizers of Egypt. But, by the lying accounts of modern Europeans, the Copts are the real Ancient Egyptians! The long and short of it is that 525 BC marked the end of the sovereign ancient black Egypt. Everything since then has been the Egypt of white invaders. The invaders have long since taken over. That’s the way it is with conquest. If you allow yourself to be conquered, you are finished. Not many peoples survive conquest, especially by conquerors who are determined to eliminate you. Black Africa is struggling to shake off the effects of just one century of people who didn’t even come in droves to live here. It’s so hard. They scattered your civilization, scattered your culture, scattered your mind and scattered your mentality. And just getting yourselves out of that disaster is difficult enough, not to talk of when they come in large numbers to settle permanently and take over your land. So, you can begin to understand what happened in Egypt.

But the basic thing is that those illustrious Egyptians were black. The pyramids were built by black people. All of the glory of Ancient Egypt belongs to black people. But there are other questions, of course. Why is the influence of Ancient Egyptian civilization not so manifest in the rest of Africa? It’s necessary to ask such questions. Egypt happens to be one great achievement but where are the others? This is what makes it easier for the whites to claim Egypt. Maybe if pyramids like those of Ancient Egypt are found all over the continent and you lose Egypt to the whites, that’s not so bad. There would still be enough visible remains to save you from the imputation of having achieved nothing. There are all kinds of questions about African history that need to be investigated, but black people are yet to wake up from their slumber to investigate them. Cheikh Anta Diop once asked: “How can Africans love Africa when they don’t know Africa?” A century of European brainwashing through the education system has done its damage, and to get out of it is a long and difficult process. So, people should just read Cheikh Anta Diop’s works to get themselves started. These include The African Origin of Civilization: Myth or Reality, Pre-Colonial Black Africa, The Cultural Unity of Black Africa, and Civilization or Barbarism.


Q: It would seem that all these claims and counter claims have not been helped by the seeming lack of any enduring account of how black people evolved as a race. To the best of my knowledge, there doesn’t seem to be a historically black theory of creation outside of the big bang. You are knowledgeable in these things, do you know of any?

A: We have the Ancient Egyptian cosmogony: it is the original from which the Hebrew cosmogony in the Bible was derived. Dogon cosmogony was recorded in 1946 by some French anthropologists. I believe there were many others and that, wherever there appears to be none, it has been simply lost. The notion that some societies did not have their own world systems, including cosmogonies, is, I think, just a Eurochauvinist prejudice. The valid question, to my mind, is: would these cosmogonies still be remembered now, after what befell black people for all of the last century?

Q: These things are known to have a way of enduring through the generations. They may not be popular but you would still find people who know about these accounts if ever they existed.

A: Well, if there are such people who do remember, until you seek and find them, how would you know? Indians can remember theirs and their journey through time because they still have the institutions that have transmitted Hindu lore and knowledge for many thousands of years, from one generation to the next, orally, by their own methods, under their own authorities. So too the Dogon. The condition for finding ancestral bodies of knowledge, cosmogonies included, seems to be this: The society must have preserved its ancestral organization, especially the institutions of the initiates, those that conserved and transmitted ancestral knowledge of all sorts. In the 1940s and 1950s, there were still many such societies left in Africa, societies that had managed to preserve some cultural autonomy and had saved their ancestral institutions from total destruction by the intolerance and fanaticism that is standard with Christians, Moslems, colonial administrators, Europeanizers and Arabizers. That was why French anthropologists were able to document the world systems of the Dogon, Bambara, Bozo, Kouroumba and others. (See the book Conversations with Ogotemmeli, by Marcel Griaule). The point I am making is that many such accounts as we had would have been destroyed in the last century because part of the main work of the missionaries was to attack all our institutions, calling them works of the devil and so on. So, they interrupted the transmission of ancestral lore, and there are things that, if you interrupt transmission for two generations, they are gone! If father doesn’t teach son and son doesn’t teach grandson, the knowledge is lost. And too much of that has happened to us in the last 100 years. So, even if a cosmogony existed in a given society and we cannot find people who have received it from their parents, it’s lost. We Africans are like a people hit by a rampaging hurricane of barbarism from Europe, a hurricane which swept through our continent, disrupting and destroying so many things. If our people had woken up in the 1960s, it would have been easier to start reconstructing the transmission structures because, at that time, some of these things were still around. But now, after a full century of loss, it’s very difficult to find the bits and pieces, especially for people who had no strong institutions for preserving ancestral lore.

But even those who still have strong institutions may have found it hard to do so under the hostile and deforming conditions of colonialism. Look at Bini people for instance. Their monarchy is still intact. I, therefore, think that keepers of their ancestral world systems are still there. So they could begin to reconstruct, but any society that does not have strong institutions that can preserve those things is worse off. Ndi-Igbo are in this sad group. Even the remnants of those few institutions that Ndi-Igbo had have been destroyed. That’s what you destroy when you attack shrines and sacred groves. Missionaries destroyed most of them 100 years ago; now it’s our own people who are destroying the remainder. You recently demolished Okija shrine over some rubbish, some false and sensational allegations, whereas it’s such institutions and their priests that preserve knowledge of the kind you are asking about. The more you demonize them, the more you lose these precious things. Now, this has gone on for a century; so what are you going to pick up that will be intact, coherent and authentic? This is the reason why we don’t know as much as we should know.


Take, for instance, the institution of Eze Nri, whether in Oraeri or in Nri: Is it still being preserved? Are they still keeping the ancestral traditions intact? When the keepers of a tradition go Christian or Islamic, a lot of things get adulterated, abandoned or lost. So there are all kinds of difficulties in recovering the ancestral tradition after five generations of this type of damage. I am not saying that the full story, if we had collected it a century ago, would have answered all the questions you are raising. I am saying that we don’t even have that little to tell us how far we can recreate our history and the various myths of origin that we had. There are myths of origin all over the world but if we could find out our own, it would help to answer some of these questions.

Q: Now, how would you assess the present Nigerian society as it is. Are we showing any real signs of readiness to stand on our feet?


A: Nigeria? Stand on its feet? This Nigeria that cannot survive one month without imports? That must be the joke of the century! Can Nigeria defend herself? Can Nigeria defend her territory and population from any attack? If she can’t, what are you talking about? Where is Nigeria going? Nowhere but down the drain and into the sad condition of Haiti. The world is in crisis, you can’t defend yourself, you can’t even grow your own food? All it would take to scatter Nigeria is an embargo from wherever we import all these importables. If they embargo exports to Nigeria for one month will there be any Nigeria left? You are in a disaster if you can’t even survive for a month unless your enemies allow you to eat. The root of the disaster is that you don’t even understand that you are at war and that you have enemies; and you take your imperialist enemies as your best friends!

Q: Are we at war really?

A: You’ve been at war for six hundred years and you don’t even know it, and you’ve lost every battle in that war. When you don’t even know you are at war then you’re lost. Europe has been making war on the world since the time of Columbus. You complain about “slave trade”. Who were the slaves? Were they not prisoners of war? You talk of the scramble for Africa; was it just a scramble? It was the conquest of Africa, but you delude yourselves by calling it a scramble. Colonialism: you were slaves to colonial masters, doing forced labor for them; your foreign conquerors came and ruled you, that’s slavery and that’s war. When some armed fellow comes to your house and takes it over, comes into your bedroom and tells you what to do and not do, is he your friend or your enemy? We don’t understand that we are at war and that we have been at war for a long time. And that we have lost every major encounter. Even your so-called independence might have counted as a partial victory, but it isn’t, because you didn’t get independence. You didn’t. So, if a people are at war and have lost every battle for six centuries, are they not in disaster? It’s not that a disaster is coming, we are already in the final stages of it. The question now is: Will there be black people living here in the next century? Will the people of Nigeria survive till this time next century?

Q: What is the nature of this war? It’s not a shooting war evidently.


A: It’s long past the shooting stage. When Lugard and his troops were conquering different bits and pieces of Nigeria, when they attacked Sokoto, Lokoja and other places; when British troops attacked Arochukwu and crisscrossed all over Igboland shooting, burning and destroying, that was the shooting stage that led to what you now call colonialism. So, we lost the war before the shooting stage, lost it at the shooting stage, lost it at the fundamental cultural stages when they destroyed our ancestral education system and destroyed our religion. We lost all those stages of the war. It’s like what’s happening in Sudan now: the Arabs overrun a village, kill the men, rape the women and force them into slavery, capture the small children and raise them up as Arabs. That’s exactly what the British did to us. They defeated all your kingdoms and non-kingdoms, captured the small children and sent them to mission schools where they raised them as fake Europeans. That’s what we all are.

Q: That’s what we all are?

A: That’s what we all are; every one of us now in Nigeria. For five generations so far. You see people have a baby today, tomorrow they hand him over to the church and the school where children are brainwashed as imitation Europeans. It’s a cultural war, a military war. The military stage is over but it can come back again. We still have episodes of the shooting war erupting from time to time -- as in Bakalori, Odi, Zaki-Biam and in the case of the Apo Six -- when armed units of the Nigerian State massacre defenceless Nigerians, and do so with impunity. And there is the political side too: you guys claim you have democracy, you have the AU, you have NEPAD. You haven’t asked yourself what those organizations and programs actually are; what purpose were they instituted to serve and what will happen to you in another 50 years if they continue? You are at the tail end of a 600 year old disaster.

Q: What is the nature of this struggle?

A: It has been comprehensive all along. But at this terminal stage, it’s mostly a cultural war. But it’s also an economic war in the sense that when Obasanjo goes and throws away $12 billion of your money to the Paris Club, that’s the economic side of the war. When he jacks up your petrol prices, that’s the economic side of the war. Who are the beneficiaries of this jacking up and all that? Whose orders is he carrying out? Enemy orders. And how many thousands have starved, gone mad or even died from the effects of these enemy policies (foreignization, deregulation, etc) that OBJ has been implementing? They are the present day casualties of the economic side of this war. But, of course, you don’t understand that the IMF, the UN, the WHO, the World Bank and WTO are enemy institutions. So you are at war on every front and you don’t even know it. They use these agencies to dictate your government policies, down to the last detail. None of your budgets is devised without abiding by the framework that the World Bank and the IMF impose, before it is allowed to be written up and announced and you are allowed to implement it. Nyerere called it the International Ministry of Finance. I call it the Imperialist Ministry of Finance. That’s what the IMF actually is. And the imperialists use it to run Nigeria and the other provinces of their global G-8 empire. And they sent you their agent, Mrs. Okonjo-Iweala to be your Finance Minister and you accepted, and she is doing their job. She is on leave from the World Bank. That wasn’t quite clear until the other day when the MIT Alumni Magazine wrote that she is on leave from the World Bank. So, she’s still on their job. And she’s your Minister of Finance designing policies to impoverish you and enrich her imperialist masters. You say you are not at war? Well, it’s worse than a Trojan Horse because the enemy has taken control of your brain. In the old imperialism, they would send a white governor general to come and run your affairs. After a while they began sending their agents whom you appointed as consultants to your presidents and to your ministry of finance, to co-ordinate oversee things for the imperialists. Now they have locals whom they have trained and brought up and you just make them your Minister of Finance or Central Bank Manager or this or that. So, your own people are now running the provinces of their empire for them. That is the disaster in which you are. And the bottom line of all this is that when you project all the things that are happening now, you’ll see that your economic system is on its way to implode.A: The self-uprooting dynamic of this upside-down economy will cause it to implode. But even before you get to that point, there’s the matter of oil. Your oil is not going to last for ever, is it? In fact, it will soon finish. This Nigeria you talk about, what is it? It’s only a pool of oil under your ground. And who mines it? The foreigners mine it, they tell you how much they have taken and give you some money. And even before the oil finishes, if they refuse to pay you tomorrow, Nigeria will collapse in 6 weeks. This Nigerian state you are talking about with Obasanjo and all his gragra, all this foolishness about being the giant of Africa and about getting a permanent veto seat on the UN Security Council; if Obasanjo, or whoever takes over Aso Rock, doesn’t have the money to pay his security services, nobody will take orders from him; Nigeria will collapse in one week. So when the Americans were warning about your collapsing in 10 years, they were just being nice to you. All it takes for them to destroy Nigeria, whenever it is in their interest to do so, is to instruct the oil companies not to pay you a damn penny for six weeks, and Nigeria is finished. Nigeria is a failed state already, and if you don’t have oil revenue for six weeks all your governors, all the contracts they have been sharing will come to an end. And who will be loyal to the Nigerian state if money is not being dished out? You are living in a state that doesn’t really exist. It’s only a contraption that the foreigners built and are using for their own purposes. They can disappear it any day they like. All that your “on shore-off shore” debate. None of the oil is effectively yours. It’s like a child who is told that a goat is its own. The day it’s killed he will not know. If he is lucky, he will arrive to see “his” goat in the soup pot on the fire. The oil still left in Ijaw land in the Niger Delta, who mines it? If they refuse to mine it tomorrow, what will you do? If the oil companies say they are pulling out tomorrow, what will you do? They have their reasons for not doing so for now. You are a big power, right? Big enough for a Security Council veto seat, right? The easiest way for them to call your game, to dispel your delusions and cut you down to size, is to say: “sorry, we shall no longer mine oil in Nigeria” and your state will collapse. You don’t have the off shore oil under your control. The US Navy is in physical possession of all the oil fields in the Gulf of Guinea. You can’t dislodge them. What do you have to dislodge them with and say: “this place is mine, I want you out”? So, oil money is the only thing holding Nigeria together today and that oil is not in your control. So, your state is not only insecure, it’s rickety, it has no economic foundation. All it takes is for someone to stop paying money into its account and this conceited Lugardian state will disappear, poof! Your president cannot give an order to anyone and have it carried out if there is no money to share, whether legally or illegally. The caliphate thinks it is clever but it does not realize that the game it’s been playing is coming to an end.

Q: The caliphate itself?

A: The caliphate is dead. All you have been seeing for a hundred years is the artificially revived corpse of the caliphate. It was already dying when the British propped it up for their own purposes and later handed Nigeria over to it to run for them. The caliphate has foolishly run Nigeria into the ground and turned it into a cesspool, and neither Nigeria nor the Caliphate will survive without oil revenue. Nothing in Nigeria will survive without oil revenue and that revenue can be stopped any day by the G8 masters when it suits their interest. So, you are not in control of anything. You can’t even feed yourselves, you can’t produce food. To produce food, you now must depend on fertilizers, and fertilizers depend on oil. The Nigerian state has even sabotaged the refineries that would help produce fertilizers locally to lessen the impact of an enemy embargo. If your oil money is cut off, but you have working refineries, you can try to make your own fertilizers and carry on for a while. But now, with your refineries killed off, if there’s no imported fertilizer for one season, there’ll be no food! What I am pointing out is that you are living in a rickety structure that is already as good as dead. All that is waiting to happen is Nigeria’s official funeral. And you are shouting ‘keep Nigeria one, Nigeria will survive’. How can it? Why should it? Okay let’s watch and see.

Q: What must Nigeria do to counter these obvious inadequacies?
A: I am not an adviser to Nigeria. If I have any idea, why should I help to sustain this rickety structure by giving it to them? Nigeria to me is an enemy state. So, I don’t see why I should give out any idea on how to preserve Nigeria.

Q: Nigeria , an enemy state?

A: Yes, it was created by our enemies. Lugard was an enemy of the African peoples he conquered and foisted the Nigerian state on. And that state has not changed. It was programmed to be the enemy of the Nigerian peoples, and so it remains. Just think of Bakalori, Odi, Zaki-Biam, the Apo Six. Is that the behavior of a friend or enemy of the Nigerian people? So why should I be advising an enemy creation on how to preserve itself? It's none of my business.

Lagos,

Nov 2005

Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Callotti: 5:38am On Mar 29, 2012
Cool stuff!
Q: Now, how would you assess the present Nigerian society as it is. Are we showing any real signs of readiness to stand on our feet?


A: Nigeria? Stand on its feet? This Nigeria that cannot survive one month without imports? That must be the joke of the century! Can Nigeria defend herself? Can Nigeria defend her territory and population from any attack? If she can’t, what are you talking about? Where is Nigeria going? Nowhere but down the drain and into the sad condition of Haiti. The world is in crisis, you can’t defend yourself, you can’t even grow your own food? All it would take to scatter Nigeria is an embargo from wherever we import all these importables. If they embargo exports to Nigeria for one month will there be any Nigeria left? You are in a disaster if you can’t even survive for a month unless your enemies allow you to eat. The root of the disaster is that you don’t even understand that you are at war and that you have enemies; and you take your imperialist enemies as your best friends!

The imperialists have always been my best friends o!
Africans are their own worst enemies. . . TRIBALISM!
I can tolerate racism in any form. But tribalisim from YOUR OWN PEOPLE? Worse!
Oh boy, speak for yourself.
The devil you know is ALWAYS BETTER THAN THE CHRISTIAN SAINT!


Q: What must Nigeria do to counter these obvious inadequacies?
A: I am not an adviser to Nigeria. If I have any idea, why should I help to sustain this rickety structure by giving it to them? Nigeria to me is an enemy state. So, I don’t see why I should give out any idea on how to preserve Nigeria.

Hmmmmmmm. . .my sentiments exactly!
I did not help nigeria enjoy it's loot, so I can't be part of the nation-builders. Period!
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Callotti: 5:56am On Mar 29, 2012
Q: Nigeria , an enemy state?

A: Yes, it was created by our enemies. Lugard was an enemy of the African peoples he conquered and foisted the Nigerian state on. And that state has not changed. It was programmed to be the enemy of the Nigerian peoples, and so it remains. Just think of Bakalori, Odi, Zaki-Biam, the Apo Six. Is that the behavior of a friend or enemy of the Nigerian people? So why should I be advising an enemy creation on how to preserve itself? It's none of my business.

My sentiments exactly!
To whom it may concern please!
God bless America. . . my home sweeeeeeeeeeeeeet home!!!
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by OneNaira6: 5:57am On Mar 29, 2012
Nnenna1 I thank thee for introducing this man to me. What a brilliant fellow. grin grin grin grin

The mention of egyptains and greek section, I don't really care much about that.

Q: Are we at war really?

A: You’ve been at war for six hundred years and you don’t even know it, and you’ve lost every battle in that war. When you don’t even know you are at war then you’re lost. Europe has been making war on the world since the time of Columbus. You complain about “slave trade”. Who were the slaves? Were they not prisoners of war? You talk of the scramble for Africa; was it just a scramble? It was the conquest of Africa, but you delude yourselves by calling it a scramble. Colonialism: you were slaves to colonial masters, doing forced labor for them; your foreign conquerors came and ruled you, that’s slavery and that’s war. When some armed fellow comes to your house and takes it over, comes into your bedroom and tells you what to do and not do, is he your friend or your enemy? We don’t understand that we are at war and that we have been at war for a long time. And that we have lost every major encounter. Even your so-called independence might have counted as a partial victory, but it isn’t, because you didn’t get independence. You didn’t. So, if a people are at war and have lost every battle for six centuries, are they not in disaster? It’s not that a disaster is coming, we are already in the final stages of it. The question now is: Will there be black people living here in the next century? Will the people of Nigeria survive till this time next century?

Q: What must Nigeria do to counter these obvious inadequacies?
A: I am not an adviser to Nigeria. If I have any idea, why should I help to sustain this rickety structure by giving it to them? Nigeria to me is an enemy state. So, I don’t see why I should give out any idea on how to preserve Nigeria.

Q: Nigeria , an enemy state?

A: Yes, it was created by our enemies. Lugard was an enemy of the African peoples he conquered and foisted the Nigerian state on. And that state has not changed. It was programmed to be the enemy of the Nigerian peoples, and so it remains. Just think of Bakalori, Odi, Zaki-Biam, the Apo Six. Is that the behavior of a friend or enemy of the Nigerian people? So why should I be advising an enemy creation on how to preserve itself? It's none of my business.


These quotes and the amount of truth iT's oozing is shockingly unique.
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Callotti: 6:00am On Mar 29, 2012
Looks like the man only cares about Biafra.
Good for him. I only care about America.

Will the real Nigerians please fix this piece of shyte!
Shalom!!!

600 years later, this moo-moo still dey shout LUGARD! LUGARD!

Singing Sonny Okosun jare.

"We want to know who owns the land. . .WHO OWNS PAPA'S LAND'!!!!

Welcome to the new age Apatheid!!!! For Africans, by Africans!!!!

1 Like

Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by TonySpike: 9:00am On Mar 29, 2012
"So when the Americans were warning about your collapsing in 10 years, they were just being nice to you. All it takes for them to destroy Nigeria, whenever it is in their interest to do so, is to instruct the oil companies not to pay you a damn penny for six weeks, and Nigeria is finished. Nigeria is a failed state already, and if you don’t have oil revenue for six weeks all your governors, all the contracts they have been sharing will come to an end. And who will be loyal to the Nigerian state if money is not being dished out? You are living in a state that doesn’t really exist. It’s only a contraption that the foreigners built and are using for their own purposes."


I read this portion of this interview and it is so obvious that Nigeria is finished. It's a big shame....the more reason why we must revive regional autonomy NOW. The country must be restructured as soon as possible!!!

1 Like

Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Nnenna1(f): 1:29pm On Mar 29, 2012
^^^ that is actually the most frightening portion of the article for me.
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by cheikh: 8:50pm On Apr 29, 2012
Nnenna1
^^^ that is actually the most frightening portion of the article for me.


@^^Nnenna1 why would you be frightened? Does it mean that you have never really contemplated about our existence as a so called country even economically(singularly) let alone holistically.
Tribalism is a lazy man's excuse for our general ineptitude grin. I am very glad that you discovered an enlightened thinker like Chinweizu to help expand on some of my own line of thoughts about us as a people/country. Thank you so much for bringing forth this interview/topic. I agree with him 100% on everything he said especially about the state of our so called "Education"
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by naijaking1: 2:06am On Apr 30, 2012
Thanks for the post from Chinweizu. Does he have a last name?
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Kilode1: 5:06am On Apr 30, 2012
^
His name is Chinweizu Ibekwe. He prefers just Chinweizu I believe.

@ Cheikh, bro, I must confess that I'm kind of surprised that Chinweizu is not very well known in Nigeria though..he's a legend in the Pan African afrocentric movement. Maybe I should not be surprised.

Generally, nigerians are not too interested in big political or philosophical ideas, even pan african ideas. Big ideas like marxism, socialism and all did not grow beyond university classrooms in Nigeria. We are too preoccupied with daily survival and we've never had a political movement based on a specific ideology. Come to think of it, that is kinda amazing for a country this large.

BTW, Chinweizu's work/column was serialized in a Nigerian newspaper a few years ago, businessday or something iirc.
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by ektbear: 5:33am On Apr 30, 2012
Summary?
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by lagcity(m): 6:25am On Apr 30, 2012
Africans have lost their phocking minds, especially with those imported religious bu11sh1t.

1 Like

Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by ebere1712: 7:14am On Apr 30, 2012
He is so right on education. Education is best taught with your language. But the truth is that they have already started failing. Their last survival moves would be a total disaster. It is our responsibility to get our children cultured in their ecosystem and learn things that would help them solve their own problems. Any society that teaches its children with a foreign language has mental illness. communal poverty is a disease that we must acknowledge and fight to eradicate.
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by cheikh: 8:02pm On Apr 30, 2012
[b][/b]Kilode?!
@ Cheikh, bro, I must confess that I'm kind of surprised that Chinweizu is not very well known in Nigeria though..he's a legend in the Pan African afrocentric movement. Maybe I should not be surprised.
Generally, nigerians are not too interested in big political or philosophical ideas, even pan african ideas. Big ideas like marxism, socialism and all did not grow beyond university classrooms in Nigeria. We are too preoccupied with daily survival and we've never had a political movement based on a specific ideology. Come to think of it, that is kinda amazing for a country this large.


@^^ Bro Kilode?!, I guess he's not exactly a "showman". Nigerians are not noted for being "ntellectually"/positively predisposed towards writers let alone "challenging Ideas"(isms) Pan-African or not. We are inherently intellectually lazy. Only text books matter to our air head students interested only in money, BB, latest gear and silly cults. The so called opinion formers in Nigeria are not exactly known for any high minded political/philosophical thoughts nor inspiring oratory. Sincerely, none come to mind shocked. Chinweizu will be invisible in a place like Nigeria because of our general predisposition for everything foreign(ideas) hence very few Nigerians are exposed to him, thoughts/writings of Amilcar Cabral, Nyerere and Mondlane et al. How many have bothered to read the full text of the Biafran (Ahiara Declaration). How many so called "Awoists" have actually read/understand the Great man's book? The size of Nigeria is an embarrassment when talking of "Ideas" of such nature. I believe that there are some individuals around with great minds/thoughts but the nature of our environment is not conducive for intellectual pursuits. Yes material poverty may have something to do with it but I very much doubt it. We are so neck deep/absorbed in crass consumption/materialism that it has negatively impacted on our so called Educational system too. We are sick as a country and the so called"Leadership" Lucky Joe et al are equally lost and confused too. It's a mess and very sad indeed. I heard a man Mr. Biodun Aremu speak on a TV program(Agatha), he sounded very grounded and inspiring. Take care Bro and keep on putting out the correct ideas for our survival.

2 Likes

Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by ektbear: 9:15am On May 02, 2012
ekt_bear: Summary?


I know i'm being somewhat lazy, but..
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Ufeolorun(m): 10:16am On May 02, 2012
When you all stop tacitly blaming others for our problems maybe,you can quickly check China,India and Brazil. In fact China is enough-You only need to learn what makes your enemy better,copy it and he loses is edge then sink him further by adding your own local know-how to the way you fight back.
We have been saddled with shockingly hedonistic middle-aged men whose life revolves around instant gratification and we still think century old issues are still the cause of our problem please go back to your Lagos will die infatuation. smiley
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by cheikh: 2:29pm On May 02, 2012
Ufeolorun
When you all stop tacitly blaming others for our problems [/b]maybe,you can quickly check China,India and Brazil. In fact China is enough-You only need to learn what makes your enemy better,copy it and he loses is edge then sink him further by adding your own local know-how to the way you fight back.
We have been saddled with shockingly hedonistic middle-aged men whose life revolves around instant gratification and we still think century old issues are still the cause of our problem please go back to your Lagos will die infatuation.


@^^ You may be right that we should stop blaming others for our problems. I am a little puzzled about your suggestion that we should learn what makes the enemy [b]better
and copy it and perhaps with a little addition of our local know-how we may reach the proverbial promised land wink grin. Well, that's very doubtful because in my opinion the fundamentals are almost non existent such as "Discipline", Discipline, Discipline grin and some dose of positive self consciousness. You have correctly identified the "shockingly hedonistic" proclivity of our people not just the so called leadership or in your parlance- "middle-aged men whose life revolves around instant gratification". Bro, it's our "culture". We are inherently lazy! lacking in serious intellectual and physical rigour like the peoples of the countries you mentioned above. Please think about it. It is beyond simply copying/mimicry and grafting something we do not quite have as a "nation"/people presently. Our salvation is far off as we do not have a functioning viable Educational system like the countries you mentioned above especially China.
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by idelle: 2:48pm On May 02, 2012
You have correctly identified the "shockingly hedonistic" proclivity of our people not just the so called leadership or in your parlance- "middle-aged men whose life revolves around instant gratification".
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Ufeolorun(m): 4:47pm On May 02, 2012
cheikh: Ufeolorun


@^^ You may be right that we should stop blaming others for our problems. I am a little puzzled about your suggestion that we should learn what makes the enemy better and copy it and perhaps with a little addition of our local know-how we may reach the proverbial promised land wink grin. Well, that's very doubtful because in my opinion the fundamentals are almost non existent such as "Discipline", Discipline, Discipline grin and some dose of positive self consciousness. You have correctly identified the "shockingly hedonistic" proclivity of our people not just the so called leadership or in your parlance- "middle-aged men whose life revolves around instant gratification". Bro, it's our "culture". We are inherently lazy! lacking in serious intellectual and physical rigour like the peoples of the countries you mentioned above. Please think about it. It is beyond simply copying/mimicry and grafting something we do not quite have as a "nation"/people presently. Our salvation is far off as we do not have a functioning viable Educational system like the countries you mentioned above especially China.
I don't agree about our being generally lazy or it being cultural.Change all over the world has been championed not by the majority but few influential minority,we do have them but they are no where near the real influence they need or they are totally out of touch angry.
We all love pleasure,its human but the real worry is the shocking total embrace of it by those who should know better.
smiley
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by cheikh: 8:25pm On May 02, 2012
Ufeolorun
I don't agree about our being generally lazy or it being cultural.Change all over the world has been championed not by the majority but few influential minority,we do have them but they are no where near the real influence they need or they are totally out of touch .
We all love pleasure,its human but[b] the real worry is the shocking total embrace of it by those who should know better.[/b]


@^^ Bro, I know that my choice of word(lazy) might offend some folks but we can't run away from the fact that a cursory look around our general productivity and work ethics is radically different from our counterparts in/from other continents especially Asia(India, China, Malaysia, Vietnam and Indonesia)et al. We may try to emulate them but generally our spirit is weak grin or we don't have the natural resilience/discipline necessary for "industrialism". I am not saying that we cannot acquire such skills, techniques, and train ourselves to be disciplined like in those places including Euro-America. "Revolutions" or Champions of change are usually a minority everywhere but they don't just happen in an atmosphere of general/complete ignorance at times deliberate as it is in our society hence we always make bad choices at the ballot box.

^^ Well, as for pleasure being a human trait and desire, why then would the real worry be "the shocking total embrace of it by those who should know better" in our society?. They are products of the society and they have to live up to the "desired" expectations of the "people"/ society hence rarely do properties of corrupt politicians or looters ever confiscated by the authorities. It is like a gentleman's agreement that whatever happens properties or loots must be left untouched/never tampered with. Ibori will go back after his sojourn in England and still be "flexing" as if nothing ever happened or changed in his life. Bro, our problems are unique and quite different from those of other peoples of the world hence serious thought and radical action is required beyond mere hope that a small band of "enlightened" persons will lead/effect the change we desire. I am not exactly hopeful on the national(central)level but perhaps hopeful on the "micro"/state level if the people so desire to effect changes for the better. Somehow, that too is problematic because I sincerely believe that Nigerians are masochists who love pain, badness and ugliness around us. I wonder why?
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Nobody: 2:08am On May 03, 2012
hmmmm....i will read it all later o!!

Callotti: ...Africans are their own worst enemies. . . TRIBALISM!
I can tolerate racism in any form. But tribalisim from YOUR OWN PEOPLE? Worse!

....The devil you know is ALWAYS BETTER THAN THE CHRISTIAN SAINT!

OMYFRIKENGAWD!! YES BRO!!! A-MEN!! cool cool
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Kobojunkie: 2:19am On May 03, 2012
Hard truth ko . . .!
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by ektbear: 2:57pm On May 03, 2012
It appears that no summary is forthcoming for the lazy like myself sad
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by igbo2011(m): 2:52am On Aug 02, 2013
ekt_bear: It appears that no summary is forthcoming for the lazy like myself sad


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmu_F92nB4U
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by thoth: 4:56am On Aug 02, 2013
Man! i almost went Mad reading this... the man was so on point i felt i am levitating on my chair.

I have argued this over and over with many people on nairaland but what do i know...you will see them asking for summaries very soon.

They will tell this man is dumb but they whom has not done any research whatsoever on this issue, has not lost any sleep on it are right.
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by Demswear4u: 8:55am On Aug 02, 2013
Wow.
This interview sent electric bolts all over my body.
The damage of Africa and Nigeria is too deep.
All Nigeria and Africa has for citizens are fake Europeans,fake Arabs,and fake Americans.
There's no hope.
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by slap1(m): 9:14am On Aug 02, 2013
Chinweizu is a delight to read anyday. I love his poems, too!
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by asha80(m): 10:15am On Aug 02, 2013
has anybody wondered whether the education we are getting in nigeria is 'nigeriacentric'?
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by igbo2011(m): 11:46am On Aug 02, 2013
thoth: Man! i almost went Mad reading this... the man was so on point i felt i am levitating on my chair.

I have argued this over and over with many people on nairaland but what do i know...you will see them asking for summaries very soon.

They will tell this man is dumb but they whom has not done any research whatsoever on this issue, has not lost any sleep on it are right.

Slave mentality that we have. Only value what doesn't come from us. I had an intellectual organism reading this.
Re: Afrocentric Scholar Chinweizu Dishes Some Hard Truths About Nigeria And Africa by igbo2011(m): 11:47am On Aug 02, 2013
asha 80: has anybody wondered whether the education we are getting in nigeria is 'nigeriacentric'?

MBA no it doesn't teach you to be proud of nationalistic as Thoth said.. Ts Eurocentric from the British.

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