‘Igbos enjoyed brief sunshine in Nigeria after independence’ – Orji Uzor Kalu

Former Abia State governor, Orji Uzor Kalu, has revealed that Igbos in Nigeria only enjoyed little sunshine after Nigeria’s amalgamation and independence.

In excerpts from his newly released autobiography ‘My Life, traced the “plight of the Igbos” to the early 19th century when the British first explored the Lower Niger, Kalu added that Igbos did not have a say in the 1914 amalgamation.

Orji Uzor who stated that the Igbos did not have a say as to whether they desired to be a part of such contraption or not, affirmed that they enjoyed brief sunshine in Nigeria in the decade before and a few years after independence.

He said in the book;

“In January 1914, Lord Fredrick Lugard completed the amalgamation of the northern and southern protectorates into Colonial Nigeria and became its first Governor-General.

“The Igbos did not have a say as to whether they desired to be a part of such a contraption or not. However, the clouds lifted so briefly and the Igbo enjoyed brief sunshine in Nigeria in the decade before and a few years after independence.

“Having embraced Christianity and western education with enthusiasm, they quickly rose to hold sway in the federal civil service, military, academia, commerce and industry.

“The ‘Jews’ of West Africa were on the march, toiling, sweating and swinging upwards, to the envy and hatred of their compatriots.”

The Senate Chief Whip also alleged that he chose to honor the Igbos over money during the administration of Olusegun Obasanjo, who according to him placed “a great strain” on the country’s unity with an alleged lack of democratic character.

Orji Uzor added;

“I am not in politics because I want to make money from it. If that was the case, I would have remained with President (Olusegun) Obasanjo throughout our time in office because he controlled all the money.

“But I needed honour for my people. He refused to honour and respect my people; he failed to give them a sense of belonging. He carried on as if he was still at war with the Igbo nation, hence we disagreed.”

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