The forced fusion and futile act of 1914 Amalgamation that produced what is known as Nigeria has torn the country into shreds. Doubts and questions whether Nigeria is really one country has become poisonously sickening.
Historical prejudices rooted in ethnic rivalry and acrimonious rancor strike at the heart of peaceful coexistence of various nationalities that make up Nigeria. Is Nigeria one country? Will Nigeria ever be one country? My answer is no. Here’s why:
Unity In Diversity: It’s an expression of harmony and unity between dissimilar ethnicities. It means “unity without uniformity and diversity without fragmentation.” It’s one of the hallmarks of federalism and multiculturalism. Nigeria lacks unity in diversity.
Religious Unity: To be one country, there must be unity among the various religious groups. This is conspicuously absent in Nigeria. Muslim north detests Christian south. Indeed, many southern Christians have been beheaded in the north. Common religion is always responsible for strong bonds of unity.
Cultural Unity: Nigerian culture does not possess a fundamental unity. The fundamental approach to literature, philosophy, tradition, and customs of Yorubas is different from the Fulanis, Hausas, and Igbos. Culture is a way of life. People having common customs and common way of life can easily develop into a single nation.
Linguistic Unity: With over 500 languages, Nigeria is perhaps the most linguistically diverse country in the world. People with common language can very easily develop into a single nation. Common language means common literature. It brings about like-mindedness. It leads to psychological unity among the people. Language is our major problem.
Political Unity: Politically, Nigeria is fragmented. Ethnic politics drives and destroys our democracy, hence there’s nothing like political unity in Nigeria.
Ethnic Unity: Each ethnic group in Nigeria has different local culture, civilization, beliefs, etc. There are tensions, suspicions, fears, hostilities, among the different ethnicities.
Emotional Unity: There’s no emotional bond in Nigeria that binds all the members of the country. We are far apart emotionally from one another. Fulanis have no emotional feelings for Yorubas. That’s why it is so easy for Fulanis to rape, kill, maim, Yorubas for no reason. That’s why they find it convenient to destroy our farms and other livelihoods of our people without any emotion, regret, or remorse.
There’s no one Nigeria and there will never be one Nigeria. Sixty-one years of one Nigeria has produced more sad stories than the Old Testament. Now is the best time for Yorubas to end the marriage of sadness!