My thought about peace in Nigeria

by Odimegwu Onwumere

History teaches us that unity is strength, and cautions us to submerge and
overcome our differences in the quest for common goals; to strive with all
our combined strength, for the path to true African brotherhood and unity,
said Haile Selassie.

A peaceful society would do everything within its coffers to keep and
maintain peace. This is not new to Nigerians. We have always been a
peaceful people and can still maintain peace no matter the contrary.

We cannot hijack peace and replace it with wars and chaos where none should
exist. We have known that war and chaos are not part of human beings but
are created by greed and shortsightedness, hence combativeness and
belligerent attributes which will not better our lots or lift us to the 21st
century humanity.

Political turbulence will never have pay-offs except regret and sorrows. If
our pasts were turbulently violent, our future should be better than our
past, if we can make our today a good place for us all.

We are not beasts that we will be hatching Chimpanzee aggression that do
not support our neighbours, but attack our collective responsibilities. All
over the world, people are yearning for peace and we would not be a better
people if combatant schools are erected in the nooks and crannies of our
environment because of politics.

It should not be commonplace if we sack our tomorrow and call such ruinous
habit politics. We are one no matter our different political interests. We
should see ourselves as neighbouring communities that do not make wars with
each other.

Our country was not founded out of the dust of wars, so it behooves on us
to make it a peaceful system. Much as we knew, even an organization like
the European Union which was founded after the Second World War, has been
able to avert chaos on its continent, we can.

We will pay the price if we refuse to make peace today. We cannot continue
with the sharp increase in political casualties following one interest or
the other, which we invariably know that we will pay the negative price if
we do not take a decision and fan the embers of peace initiatives, instead
of fanning the embers of war initiatives, which the end product will be
sorrows and totters.

If we notice, our political fights are taking place in our villages, towns
and cities, public places and market places with upward disturbing
escalating traits. We cannot afford to have political Taliban, when we know
that in a place like Afghanistan were exists the gruesome Taliban; life has
not been easy for the citizens of that country. Taliban anywhere causes
injuries and deaths of about 80% of a country, state, council they are.

In 1988–1989 reportedly, there was the withdrawal of Soviet troops from
Afghanistan without a reached agreement between pro and anti-government
forces inside the country. The aftermath was the terrible (un)civil war
that ensued.

Today, some of us in Nigeria are doing everything within our reach to make
our country a place that we can call our own, but just like the Soviet
Union reportedly did everything to bring peace in Afghanistan, but the West
mounted the contrary, so also some persons are thwarting the peace moves in
our country for their self-centered interests.

For how long shall we continue to live like two warring brothers? All of us
should not continue in turmoil. The perceived divisions in our country can
only grind the efforts we are making for a better Nigeria if the divisions
continue to stay funded. We should learn lessons from the comment by
one Gabriel Carlyle in “Afghans pay price for US refusal to make peace” on the happenings in Afghanistan.

Carlyle said: With the US set to keep 9,800 troops in Afghanistan in 2015,
following the ‘end of combat operations’ at the end of this year, and both
Afghan presidential hopefuls committed to signing a long-term ‘security’
arrangement with the US within a month of taking office – ensuring the
continued flow of US funds, without which the Afghan army and police would
collapse – the war looks set to grind on for a good deal longer yet.

We must make Nigeria a peaceful place, unlike in “War is not part and
parcel of human nature”, where Douglas P Fry inter alia writes as if
speaking in idiom about our country thus: Over recent centuries,
non-Western peoples have been portrayed as ‘primitive’ and ‘savage’ and
such views have facilitated the atrocities of enslavement, displacement and
annihilation directed against indigenous peoples during colonialism and
subsequently. The existence of peaceful peoples and peace systems might not
be anticipated as they contradict the familiar stereotypes of uncivilised
and warlike savages.

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