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Biafra: Aba, A Wasting Gold Mine

 Biafra: Aba, A Wasting Gold Mine My visit to Ariaria, Aba in Abia State reminded me of the story we were told by one of our lecturers durin...

 Biafra: Aba, A Wasting Gold Mine

My visit to Ariaria, Aba in Abia State reminded me of the story we were told by one of our lecturers during my year two in the university. The course he was lecturing us on is "Citizenship in Education". The man told us why and how Nigeria government stopped the teaching of Chemical engineering at University of Nigeria Nsukka after the Biafran civil war, just because of what Biafran engineers produced during the bloody war of 1967 to 1970. In the same vein, Production Development Institute (PRODA), Enugu was closed down. Precious golds are laid to waste in the Southeast, precisely in Aba just because of hatred and the fear of what Igbo man will become, and as a result of neglect and lack of technical know-how from the sides of those we call leaders. 

Hatred for the Igbo man has bewitched Nigeria government into not developing Ariara market in Aba, Abia State because it will develop the whole of Southeast and give more employment to all Biafran youths, than all the States in the Northern region. The Nigeria government prefers importing those goods that could be indigenously produced in very large quantities , wasting a whole lot of money on importing them, than seeing Biafrans produce the same goods.

The derogatory name for fake products in Nigeria is “Igbo Made”, even when those products are of the same quality, if not of more quality than the ones they import from overseas. Is it not hatred that made the government close the whole sea ports in the  southeast and open a dry port in Kaduna?

How do one explain that in a country where leaders preach oneness(One Nigeria), complains of bad economy and goes borrowing in faraway China as a result, the human resources of places like Aba of Ebonyi State and Aba of Abia State is being allowed to waste? How do you also explain that the government of this same country allow her youths go hungry everyday because of unemployment, but go importing the commonest things as tooth picks and pencils, even when theye are supposed to be exporting same to other countries of the world? Hatred of the Igbos is the answer.  

Negligence is also another big issue that made the so called leaders watch gold mines lay waste in the old eastern region(Biafra). They underrate what the Biafran youths can do. What has prevented the Igbo leaders from developing the eastern region into what it was before the war or even better, especially when we have all it takes to do that? Negligence is the answer. 

When I talk about lack of technical know-how from our leaders, I mostly mean the Igbo leaders who would prefer investing overseas, at Lagos, Abuja  etcetera to investing in the Southeast.

For instance, the Igbo leaders would prefer to patronize Toyota or Mecerdes, instead of Innoson who is their own brother. They would prefer to eat plastic in the name of foreign rice imported from China than to eat Abakaliki rice. They would prefer being seen wearing shirts or shoes written made in US or China to wearing Aba made. This has made led to the greatly talented Aba youths producing their goods and labelling it "made in Finland or made in Canada", so as not to be derogatorily called “Igbo Made”.

Just a little investment from the government and Southeast politicians in Aba will change the whole of West Africa, if not the whole of Africa. To compare Alaba International in Lagos to Ariara in Abia is a great insult to Biafran youths. The two markets are different in every dimension. Alaba International is a marketof "after finished products" with little production, but Aba is into full blown production of goods from scratch. But Igbo leaders would rather prefer investing in a militia like Ebubeagu that will kill fellow citizens, than investing in production goods in Aba.

The inverter connected to the solar panels that I am using today in my office is a pure product of Aba, and it is more powerful than the ones made in China. It is powering more than 100 computers and two Air Conditioners (AC), what the same capacity of the so called "made in China inverter" is unable to do.

The two Abas in the South East can sustain the whole of Africa if the government should invest in them. The Aba in Abia State is the hub for production of shoes, clothes and other goods The Aba in Ebonyi State is the hub for production of rice, cassava, yam and other crops. But the wicked leaders and government we have will not invest in them because of hatred and negligence of the Igbos. But one thing the haters of Igbos failed to know is that even in Egypt, Joseph the dreamer later became a governor. Therefore, though the gold may appear rottened, it will really never rust nor decay.

Written by Chidiebere Obulose.

Edited by Okechukwu Chuks

For Family Writers Press International

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