Dede Chinweizu: Between Caliphate Colonialism and Guerrilla Liberation Of Nigeria
By Taju Tijani
Chinweizu’s flawless polemicisation of the caliphate internal colonisation and total subjugation of Nigeria is bound to trigger stirring intellectual debate among old and new light in the struggle to deconstruct the destiny of a tottering Nigeria from the abhorrent hands of arrogant Hausa/Fulani entrenched cabal. Each magisterial rendering of the serialised “Caliphate Colonialism – The taproot of the trouble with Nigeria” is like the work of a social thinking philosopher carefully deploying hounding history, research and the fierce urgency of now to demand collective action that would lead to liberation from the yoke of caliphate slavery as permanently decreed by Northern slave masters.
Chinweizu sounds like a literary fusilier at war with our preponderance imbalance of power that had favoured the north since the birth of this nation. The stridency of Chinweizu’s prognosis is a wakeup call to all Southern mugus still blinded by fatal blinkers of unity in a nation of extreme political injustice and bitter, feudal-driven federal partisanship. His exhaustive collage of Southern political subjection by Northerners and the eternal Dan Fodio-driven agenda of born-to-rule are enough fodder to magnify a collective sense of immediate outrage, anger, indignation and the need for an urgent structural retooling of a lopsided federal Nigeria. His fixated, unrelenting, charging subtext is starkly this: Yoruba, Ibo and the minorities are the ordained subordinate partners to a dominant, pompous, contemptuous Hausa/Fulani cabal bent on perpetuating Dan-Fodio’s megalomaniac doctrine of Hausa/Fulani master race.
His plain speaking advocacy with its furious cadence has become the only momentary truth allowed to stand in the Nigerian’s space of political flattery, lies, sycophancy and chicanery. His irreverent political views are timely, urgent, earnest, fervent and prophetic. His unbounded literary credentials allow him to judge critically the political soul, social anomie, economic genocide, tribal betrayal, theocratic fundamentalism and cultural myopia of the Nigerian condition. Chinweizu has not betrayed the root of his antecedent as an adversarial intellectual from the dawn of his famous literary fireworks with Wole Soyinka to today’s expose of the Nigerian state. His thorough grasp of our political deceit and descent allows him to offer fresh warning to Northern bravados together with their Boko Haram foot soldiers that we are now ready more than ever before to assert sectional autonomy from the unending internal colonialism of Shariyalanders.
Chinweizu’s argument, in summary, seems to recast the popular thinking that our society is seething with revolutionary discontent, resentment and possible implosion at the callous and rapacious seizure of southern oil wells by cruel, cabalistic and imperial northern hegemony. Further, there is a charge that Southerners themselves are somnambulists because of our current level of political stupor which is encouraging a re-northernisation of our polity as we are seeing in the thunderous pronouncements of Abubakar Atiku, Mohammadu Buhari, Lawal Kaita, Bala N’Allah, Junaid Mohammed and other caliphate die hards scattered across the Dan Fodio desert landscape.
The proof of Chinweizu’s genius is better tested than idealised. Speak to any Nigeria about our leadership problem, corruption and the burden of Hausa/Fulani parasitic lordship of this nation; you will be amazed how quickly his punch lines are breathlessly true. There is something cutting edge in Chinweizu’s forensic examination of the Nigerian narrative that makes his “Caliphate Colonialism – The taproot of the trouble with Nigeria” a document of travail, tribulation and tragedy. Chinweizu’s opening of the roof of our deformed political arrangement contains so much hits of oxygenated political bombasts, threats and arrogance from the narrow minds of Hausa/Fulani people. Sample this ancient arrogance of Sir Ahmadu Bello: “The new nation called Nigeria should be an estate of our great grandfather Othman Dan Fodio. We must ruthlessly prevent a change of power. We use the minorities in the north as willing tools and the south as a conquered territory and never allow them to rule over us and never allow them to have control over their future.” – Parrot Newspaper October 12, 1960.
Now, let us hear Lawal Kaita: “We hear rumours all over that Jonathan is planning to contest in 2015. Well, the north is going to be prepared if the country remains one. That is, if the country remains one, we are going to fight for it. If not, everybody can go his way.” The North is determined, if that happens, to make the country ungovernable for President Jonathan or any other Southerner who finds his way to the seat of power on the platform of the PDP against the principle of the party’s zoning policy”. That aside, more worrisome is the genocide-driven tendency of caliphate politicians as publicly calibrated by Bala N’Allah, “We can do away with 20 million militants for the rest 120 million Nigerians to live” (see The Guardian, Thursday, May 28, 2009).
Most of the quoted lionised Caliphate statements are relics of the colonialist triumphalism orthodoxy of myths, lies and sophistries which adjudged the Hausa/Fulani as Nigeria’s Aryan race divinely endowed for leadership compared to the southerners who were perceived as burden bearers and servants of Dan Fodio’s scion. We have to thank the British imperialists who sowed the seed of our future dismemberment.
However, in any struggle, there is a defining moment. In any sudden assault for radical redirection, something big must snap inside the rank of the followership brigade. In any tectonic political shift that may lead to national renewal or resurrection, there is always an intellectual intervention to galvanise and act as the catalysing agency to accelerate a new order. We are at the staging post of a Machiavellian moment – a moment when public necessity demands actions that run apposite private ethics, social norms, culture and even religious values. It was Niccolo Machiavelli’s “The Prince” that laid the principle of the moral world of politics and the difference between private conscience and the demands of public action. It was Machiavelli who said that evil deeds cease to be evil if urgent public interest makes them necessary.
The interplay of our monetised politics, the corruption that sustains it, southern marginalisation, tribal hierarchy and religious intolerance of the Hausa/ Fulani sharia overlords have all combined to make our democracy a shame both within and to the outside world. Yes, Dede Chinweizu may place the taproot of the trouble with Nigeria squarely on the historical deformity of our national structure and the excessive allowance the North had enjoyed since our independence, we should however not ignore other contested variables like Southern collaboration, our disunity, greed, cowardice, sycophancy and our predilection to trust Hausa/Fulani more than we trust our own.
An example is the Bola Tinubu (Yoruba) recent gospel journey of political atonement to the North. Chinweizu answers this absurdity eloquently. “Bola Tinubu and the ACN should not make the mistake of assisting Buhari and his CPC to come to power . However well any nationality thinks it has done under Caliphate colonialism, it stands to do much better after we jointly free ourselves from these arrogant caliphate parasites, that is to say, after the Caliphate’s lion’s share of the national cake is taken from them and redistributed.” On this very sentiment, I stand. And to lace icing on Tinubu’s cake, Chinweizu offers Yoruba a path of honour. “They should (the Yoruba) revive Awo’s self-determination option by convening the SNC-EN to formally dissolve this disastrous Nigerian union. In my estimation, Oodualand is today the best-organized and most advanced of the three emerging federations of the MNN. Hence they should naturally take the lead if President Jonathan does not. They deserve the honour of leading the others.” Mum is the word here. As said elsewhere, this ongoing national conference is the last ritual for a wobbled federal structure before its burial. The predictable outcome of the exercise – celebration of separateness – would either make Dede Chinweizu a fearless prophet or a twisted intellectual nihilist if Nigeria still stands as one indivisible nation by December 31, 2014.