Biafran-children-starving-1967-1970-file-pix
My dear friend,
 
You may not believe it but you remain my friend for life. So, I am writing this letter to you as a friend and brother who is following the same road-to-no-where our elders once trod. After forty six years and despite the no victor, no vanquished mantra of the era, the pain, the anguish and traces of socio-economic dislocation arising from that misadventure remain. I am referring to the avoidable civil war that eternally laid Biafra to rest in 1970 during which an estimated two million Nigerians died. Even as I write, some people are still suffering its consequences.
 

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I am sorry to put it so bluntly but the only way to put it is that Nigeria has to remain one, united country. Professor Chinua Achebe captured the essence when he reminded the world there was a country. Yes, Biafra came into existence in May 1967 and ceased to exist from January 1970! This is a fact we must accept to move on. And, to move on is to build a great, united Nigeria where no-one will feel marginalized. As it is, we all have grouses, valid or otherwise, against the fatherland. Even the lecherous Boko Haram bandits reel out grouses against the fatherland! Very few people anywhere advocate a break-up of their countries as the way forward. No sane man cuts off the head to treat a headache!
 
 So-called well-wishers might have succeeded in pitching you against me. Whatever the case, let your own vision guide you so-called well-wishers guide you to self-perfidy! Nigeria needs you; we, your friends in Nigeria, need you! Use your vision as your guide to help the people of Nigeria. I ask that you be a true guide to them, and not to isolate them. You were a highly motivated Nigerian patriot who cringed from violence. Now, so-called well-wishers have overwhelmed you and injected so much hate into you! Deep down, you know we are better off as Nigerians who reject violence and embrace peace.

If what I hear is true, there has never been a common understanding among the so-called well-wishers, at home and in the Diaspora, in finding real solutions to the problems of Nigeria. Is that right? You should know because you have attended several meetings with these so-called leaders and well-wishers where the true vision and feelings of Nigerians, especially those of the youth, were never given any consideration. With your education and exposure and, considering your kind-heartedness, you must have proffered reasonable solutions which were spurned by so-called well-wishers who want your blood. Yes, there must be few individuals like you, my dear friend, who must have been labeled traitors for preaching non-violent approach to the national question.
 
I feel your pain, my friend! I feel your anguish! Let the time be now for you to feel some remorse about some of those terrible things you must have done in the name of actualizing a dream! I hope you never had cause to attack anybody in the process of your campaigns! Or, get ‘charged up’ by indulging in substance abuse. Or, go to the extent of contemplating or actually participated in killing! I ask these questions knowing you are a God-fearing individual but who could have been forced to do ungodly things!
Isn’t it strange that you can now attend meetings and campaigns where hate is always injected into people? As you know too well, there is no group that is deliberately targeted for mistreatment in Nigeria! None! You know this beautiful country very well enough not to characterize her as a zoo! You have travelled its length and breadth! And, during those trips, you saw poverty walking the streets of the far north just as you saw it in the middle belt. You saw abject poverty in the west just as you saw it in the Niger Delta area. So, if you have not done so, challenge the well-wishers who preach hate to embark on fact-finding missions outside the east.
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You have to understand the antics of well-wishers in the Diaspora, dear friend! From their comfort zones, they call on young men (and women) to carry arms to resolve the national question. Now is time to preach that violence does not resolve disputes. Bullets do not discriminate in the choice of victims. Neither blood nor violence is the answer to anything. We must learn to use alternative methods to pursue any political agenda. For a fact, the so-called well-wishers in the Diaspora believe in violence option for reasons known to all!

The so-called well-wishers in the Diaspora live in affluence in Europe! Yes! There in Europe, their day-to-day striving is to live life of luxury. They strive for the best education, the best cars, the best houses and the best of everything. From their comfort zone, they occasionally sneak into Nigeria to pollute the mind of people through hate campaign such as: you are surrounded by enemies; the Hausa seek your extermination; the Yoruba are your mortal enemies; the Ijaw hate you; never trust the Tiv! It is time to refuse to let well-wishers pollute your mind!
 
Instead of seeking alternative paths to help families and friends to live better life back home, the so-called well-wishers in the Diaspora is inciting people to fight. When all people back home need are fishing rods, they are being taught to shoot and kill. All the well-wishers in the Diaspora need to do is to get people back on their feet and get them the basic needs. Not guns! Give them education. Not bullets. Let the people choose how they want to live without anybody forcing their views on them. This is very wrong!

Finally, my friend, never allow yourself to be a catalyst for some people to propagate hate crimes using names like IPOB, MASSOB and the like. It is time to think freely, respect the law and live freely and peacefully in Nigeria. That was the message of Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu. It was the message of Dr. Benjamin Nnamdi Azikiwe.
 
Have I spoken well?
 
 
Magaji <magaji777@yahoo.com> writes from Abuja; (+234-805-138-0793)