New Societies: Oodua And Biafra Republics

by Ola Olurin

I must have been living under a rock because it wasn’t until last week that I stumbled upon the Oodua Republic concept. In the past months, I’ve spent a lot of time researching black history and more importantly Yoruba history, culture and mythology.

It seems more important now than ever that an Oodua society come to fruition. Along the way, we’ll meet a lot of Nigerians who are sentimental about Nigeria, however when you think about it you’ll realize Nigeria was a concept of the British. It wasn’t our idea, it doesn’t conform to our norms and it’s definitely not working for us. Being Nigerian means very little to most of us. We think of ourselves as Igbo, Hausa or Efik, until we leave Nigeria, then we become Nigerian because it’s just easier. I also came across the Biafra movement. I’ve always wished that the Igbos had been able to secede completely. I guess the only good that comes out of that is that maybe now they can try again with the Yorubas and this time, with a little planning and a little luck actually succeed.

My desire for an Oodua republic isn’t for a homogenic society; I believe our future depends on it. In February 2003, Osama bin Laden called for uprising of Muslims in Nigeria. I have no idea what the status of the so called “jihad university” is. It was a joint venture by Osama and Moammar al-Ghadafi.” He, Gaddafi, has also declared a jihad against Christianity in Africa, calling it a “false, infidel and irreligious faith.” This Moslem despot, who is building a $330 million “Jihad University” in Kano, Nigeria, has vowed to Islamize and Arabize the countries of Black Africa.”

It seems to me that over the past few centuries other peoples of different races have had plans for our destiny. We let it happen once and we shouldn’t allow it again. Leaving behind the Muslim North and creating new societies, isn’t about “tribal warfare” or ethnic cleansing, as the Western media is wont to name it, it’s about fighting for our survival and our freedom.

The Oodua republic sprang about after June 12 however, it seems to be dying down. Yorubas, Edos, Igbos and other Nigerians who wish to live in a secular society, free from religious intolerance, forced servitude should band together and fight for their own rights. There you’ll have the right to practice any religion of your choice, without government intervention. No Sharia here. This isn’t about a distaste for Islam, there are lots of Yoruba and Edo Muslims who will do not want sharia law and who will be able to practice Islam as they see fit. There have been reports of Taliban presence in Nigeria. That is not a Nigeria I want to live or raise my children in.

I found some Oodua republic material online. The idea was to lay claim to eight southwest states, Kogi, Kwara, Ogun, Ondo, Oyo, Osun, Delta, Edo and Lagos state. The problem lies in the fact that Edos do not consider themselves to be Yoruba, which is why a common ancestor was chosen. There’s been strife as to if the Yorubas borrowed language and culture from the Edo or if it is vice versa. To me, it’s a moot point. If the Yoruba borrowed from the Edo, I am happy with that. Better to borrow from Edo than English. There’s nothing more annoying than watching a Yoruba movie with English words peppered through out. So the Edo, I say we may not be brothers, but we are cousins.

Edos would probably not desire to be part of a Yoruba society for fear of being absorbed into the larger group. In order for this to work, Edo has to be set up as an autonomous commune within the bounds of the Oodua Empire. It’ll have its own leaders and is not subject to influence from the empire. The same has to be offered to the other smaller groups. They have a right and will want to preserve of their language, culture and general way of life.

People wonder how the new society will support itself without oil and oil money. Many countries exist without oil. We have to stop using oil has a crutch against progress. We currently do not reap the benefits of the oil money. It is horded by the uneducated elite north. Yet they have failed to build infrastructure or invest heavily in society. Despite having stolen an estimated $300 billion since the sixties. Some of the money is lost to the Western world banks when the account holder dies. What do we do when the oil runs out? It has been estimated that the literacy rate for the new society will be as high as 70% percent. We have a lot more human resource than a lot of European nations. We have to start harvesting that. We can build new networks and trade agreements with the new Biafra. We have the port. We are not cut of from the rest of the world. Lagos has always been an international hub. We have lots of potential. I don’t suppose we could be worse off now than we already are. We, Nigerians in general, Yorubas in particular have become overly complacent. Not willing to stand up for miscarriage of justice. Even though there’s a very high possibility of something happening, we think, it hasn’t happened yet so I won’t worry. We have to change our mind set to fit our surroundings. The “holocaust” could happen again. This time to us- because we don’t want Islam forced down our throats.

Is there going to be bloodshed to achieve our goal? Well that depends- on the North. Are they going to allow a peaceful secession? Maybe, but most likely no. If the Yorubas secede and Igbos secede. What happens? First, they’ll want to set an example, to keep others from attempting the same. However more, importantly, is what will they have left? Where are the oil reserves located? The reserves are mostly in the delta region. If that is gone, what do they have left? Not much. So we can expect them to be ready to fight to the end. In the end, we have to prevail. We don’t have much hopes of getting support from the west. While, we may get some support from Christian and humanitarian groups, we can expect a blitz of propaganda from most western governments. This new society will not be in their best interest. No more cheap oil. No more under-developing and polluting the land they drill from. No more badly constructed pipelines.

The OPC (Oodua people’s congress) has already been labeled an “ethnic militia”.
It’ll be called ethnic cleansing and genocide, but we’ll know the truth and we can’t let that stop us. We have to get the truth out there. We have to rally together, Igbo, Yoruba, Edo, and Efik. All of us. We have to band together, put our differences aside and fight for our lives.

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edoboi June 1, 2010 - 6:30 pm

thanks..for..this.. omo..yoruba… true..federalism….is…what..we…want… and…not…secession.

Reply April 12, 2008 - 6:24 am

Good piece. You called a spade a spade. Nigeria is not working. It is lord lugard’s creation for British economic interest. Awolowo said it clearly that “Nigeria is a mere geographical expression”. Gowon confirmed it when during the turmoil of 1966 he had said “there was no basis for Nigeria’s unity.” Nigeria can still stay together based on the true practice of genuine federalism or we go back to our former regional formation or we our outrightly break away,like you suggested, into separate independent states. Afterall, the former Soviet union has divided without bullets flying left, right and centre. Thanks for the right up.

Steve April 8, 2008 - 10:25 pm

Ola, you and your group, the yorubas are jonny come lately. Now that you chicken has come home to be fried, you are looking for the Ibos to help you secede. Tufiakwa!! You’re on your own. But your request won’t be long, because 2011 or 2015 is closer than we all think. So start preparing for your Oodua Republic or whatever you call it


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