Rt. Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe, GCFR,
PC, who lived between 1904 and 1996, was a titan of a man,
erudite, clear-headed, a political fighter, a boxer, an
orator, an accomplished leader and a gentleman.
the first President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and
along with his political associates, the co-founder of
very shameful that his remembrance was left to a one-page
advertorial by a growing branch of his family, ably
represented by his second wife, Professor (Dame) Uche
Azikiwe of the University of Nigeria.
recent article, I lamented that there is no befitting
Mausoleum in his honour like the one to Chairman Mao Zedong
at the Tiananmen Square in Beijing, the Lenin Mausoleum at
the Red Square in Moscow, the Dr. Sun Yat Sen. Memorial in
Nanjing, the Washington Memorial in Washington, USA.
visited these hallowed grounds and other cities around the
world as my professorial duties grant me the opportunities
to see beyond our nation, with its primitive political
Nigeria had developed a national consciousness of unity, we
do not need advisers to remind us that our heroes past
should be honoured with continuous zeal.
the welter of self-serving advertorials by political
neophytes and political light-weights, it is a shame that
founders of the Nigerian state are tangentially mentioned on
festive occasions by commissioned speech-writers.
time I visit the burial place of world leaders, I take away
the spirit of determination to add a foot-note to history.
the Great Zik in 1959, Chukwuma Azikiwe, his first son and I
were in the Premier Lodge in Enugu browsing through some
books in Zik’s Library. When Zik returned from the House of
Assembly, he greeted us, placed his large right hand on my
head as if he was administering a benediction.
told my father that I met the Great Zik, he challenged me to
be like him. I promised to go all the way and I have.
the late Dr. Chuba Okadigbo, irreverently addressed the Rt
Dr Honourable Zik, I replied with a poem in the Sunday Times
of Nigeria. When Zik died in 1996, I wrote a glowing
political speeches and his poems, especially in memory of
his late beautiful, Flora Azikiwe adorn my library.
happy to note that Zik’s family branches are elongating.
However, the first family should not be treated as if they
do not exist. They do.
is never forgotten, no matter how long the silence endures.
A tree’s branch will remain a branch.
main tree is made up of, the Owelle of Onitsha,
Chukwuma Bamidele Azikiwe, a Harvard business graduate,
Ngozi Azikiwe, a renowned, international editor, who was
shaken, when the father took a second wife, and Ambassador
Azikiwe, a polished diplomat.
second generation of the Zik family may celebrate a
cock-a-hoop victory about their relevance, but this cannot
be a stratagem to obliterate the existence of the Zik iroko
tree, we all know.
posturing that is gradually manifesting is like using
cochineal to give “ogbono soup” a red colouration, but which
does not improve the test.
months ago, one of Zink’s sons got married to the daughter
of an old colleague of mine, Professor Iloegbuna. I went to
the wedding because I wanted to honour the Iloegbuna family
and meet with the Owelle of Onitsha, Chukwuma Azikiwe
absence whispered to me that all was not well with the tree
and its branches. It reminded me of the musings in most
polygamous homes in Nigeria.
be impossible to reconcile the family because of the obvious
irreconcilable, historical differences that are now so stale
that they should be overlooked by both parties.
time someone publishes Zik’s Remembrance, a comprehensive
picture should be portrayed. Zik was very magnanimous in his
political debates and his attitude to life’s challenges.
friend of mine, who lives in Paris, France, wants to know
whether President Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan is from
the Zik tree or the extended branches.
promised to find out and keep him posted.
the April elections in top gear, there are impressionist
politicians, who will be cutting through the dense political
intelligence in the nation, blinking owlishly during
will use their oyez, just like town criers to catch the
voters attention producing the placebo effect
oratory was unmatched in the annals of Nigerian politics. We
are not hearing great speeches but commissioned speeches,
which are laboriously read. In this political dispensation,
knowledgeable politicians are few and far between.
many political light-weights and neophytes assault our
sensitivities by calling themselves Right Honourable, when
they belong to a Senate and House of Representatives that
dishonourably rob the State of colossal funds through
unconscionable salaries and allowances.
heartless group of people, with misplaced consciences cannot
be called “honourable and distinguished”.
the legislators will, in due course, be visited with
corrective,, commutative and distributive justice.
the First Republic, learnedness, honour, uprightness and
transparency adorned the faces of most of our leaders.
we are being punished by men, who are regularly induced by
improper consideration to violate their trust as well as
perform acts, which are destructive to our society.
have no right to wear their armorial bearings and National
early 1960s, there were gentlemen politicians, who were
above board until the spirit of booty and grabbing of
national resources became the guiding national ethos. The
gannet mentality has come to stay and the more the idea of
“so what” is not deterred by the leader, licentiousness
order to inaugurate decisive actions against those, who
benefit from unearned honours and coagulated fame, WE, the
PEOPLE of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, in exercise of
our inalienable political rights to choose those
compatriots, who will be our future Presidents, Governors,
Senators, and Members of the House of Representatives and
Houses of Assembly, resolve as following:
are going to vote for the most qualified, experienced,
honest, detribalized, deserving, flawless candidate,
irrespective of the Confederal entity, such a candidate
every candidate should deposit with INEC, his or her
Statement of Account indicating what he has done for a
living in the last ten years, a Declaration of his Assets
and liabilities and the person seeking elective office must
publish same in two national newspapers, with wide
circulation in Nigeria.
PEOPLE have resolved not to vote for politicians, who
profess to be patriots, which they are not. As Vidal Gore
said, “Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel”..
politicians have become endangered species as the attack on
Olusegun Obasanjo signifies. Plumes of discontent over the
jumbo salaries of legislators and the inability of
governments in the Confederal Republic to pay N18,ooo to
junior clerks, creates a volatile political anomaly in an
returns to dawn every day, I keep wondering, who is winning
and who is losing. I hope you are wondering too.
Northern zoning team dynamics has a limitation. If you have
successfully produced a consensus presidential candidate,
can you also produce a consensus Vice President or are you
going to use “settlement strategies” to conjure up one?
really serious about promoting the democratic process or are
we fixated with manipulative Machiavelli’s methods and
the next President is sworn-in, the turmoil and
imperfections in the Nigerian political order must be
eliminated by a close study of our Confederal state.
sophisticated and extraordinarily precise formulations on
statecraft and not sloganeering of the mundane genre.
Great Zik abhorred political pronouncements based on religio-ethic
set of teachings preserved by tribal jingoist and
their receding influence in Nigerian politics and the
collapse of the “Omphalos” of their ancient wisdom, the
minorities have been resorting to the use of force to
simulate a new political order.
Monarchs, who held the fate of minorities in the hollow of
their hands, are now getting aware that they will lose their
grip, if by their acts of omission and commission, a
confederal system is force into being.
Advertently or inadvertently zoning will be the critical
mass that will trigger the voting behaviour of Nigerian
voters. Zoning will engender a feeling of forceful
concession, which afflicts free choice.
consensus camouflage has its limitations. Its operational
strategy is motivated by cronyism, rabid compromise,
reverence, and expectant favour from the successful
who genuinely aspires to govern Nigeria, must sit down with
historians, political scientists, lawyers, economists and
other experts in order to draw up a societal blueprint on
how Nigeria should be govern through methodical, national
Advisers must be drawn from the School of Hellas and not the
“how for do” proselytes and political jobbers.
will cause the processes of government to be based on
debated concepts, axioms and treatises. The era of
guess-work, subjectivism and retraction of promises would
1980, 2000, 2005, 2010 promises of Nirvana, which never
materialized, should never be repeated.
great political wisdom and learning enabled him to sharply
see Pan Africanism as a political frame-work for Africa’s
H. Sabine postulates that ‘the end of political action, the
means of achieving them, upon the possibilities and
necessities of political situations and upon the obligations
that political purposes impose, is an intrinsic element of
the whole political process.”
family must unite, so that the name of Zik is not associated
with disunity, fractiousness and irreverence.
generously contribute to the erection of a befitting
Memorial to Zik of Africa.
was writing this essay, Anderson Cooper, the versatile CNN
journalist and organizer of the programme, CNN Heroes,
presented two heroes from Kenya,. One had built a bridge
to enable some village students cross a dangerous river to
school. The second one gave some citizens light.
reminded of the apostolic zeal with which Odinga pushed to
become Prime Minister of Kenya. He has since served as a
Mugabe critic, neglecting the dire political situation in
government that entertains directives, unsolicited advice
from foreign governments and individuals creates the
impression that it is weak and compromising. Nigerians do
not go out of their way to meddle in the internal political
affairs of other states.
Regular statements on Nigeria by international do -gooders
and itinerant visitors, who are not famous in their own
states, must stop.
Professor Dr. Emmanuel Omoh Esiemokhai, a Writer and
Academic, is the President of the proposed AFEMAI
University, Fugar, Edo State, Nigeria, email@example.com