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Politics: The Okorocha's Elusive Depiction of A True Elder In Igbo Land

 Politics: The Okorocha's Elusive Depiction of A True Elder In Igbo Land Rochas Rochas Okorocha, former Governor of Imo State and a 2023...

 Politics: The Okorocha's Elusive Depiction of A True Elder In Igbo Land


Rochas Okorocha, former Governor of Imo State and a 2023 Presidential Aspirant made a deliberate error during an interview with BBC pidgin. Okorocha gave a very deceptive picture of who an elder in Igboland is, in contrast to the agitation for for Biafra freedom. He categorically stated in the interview that "if the Igbo extractions wants to leave this country and have another nation, it will be elders in Igboland that will bring such ideas/suggestions, not the Youths". The former Imo Governor further opined that "what an elder sees while sitting down, a child will not see it while climbed a tree.

Sequel to the above, it became necessary to give simple clarity to the misconception and illusions hovering around the true meaning/concept of “elder" in Igboland.

In Igboland, an elder is called Okenye or Ichie, meaning an older member in a family, village or community, as the case may be. There is a specifical recognition for this person because the Igbos believe in the insight from the wisdom of an elder.

An elder is supposed to be an embodiment of wealth of knowledge, wisdom and understanding borne out of years of experience. The people see an elder as a problem solver, a great manager of humanity, resources and good example to the Youths of the community, ethic or nation. An elder do not talk senselessly, or more than necessary on any topic, at any time. Advices from an elder are seen as top notch, and second to none. Elders in most cases, resides in the communities and seldomly visit town and other places. When they have to, they do so freely without guards, unlike the Rochas okorocha and his kinds.

In Igboland, an elder is a peace lover, a fearless person that says the truth as it is, not minding whatever might be the outcome.

Does politics give one the right to become or play the role of an elder in Igbo land?  The answer is no.

So, why would the former Governor think that the right to determine the future of Igbos is bestowed on the so called politicians that are not even playing the mandate for which they were voted, let alone attributing eldership of Igboland to themselves while granting an interview?

Politics do not make one an elder in Igboland. It surely draws one close to the elders, yes, especially if the politician is worthy, because the elders in Igboland does not celebrate criminality in any form. But the rate at which politicians keep referring to themselves as elders is very alarming and startling. Any active politician, residing outside Igboland and at the same time, claiming elder, is an impostor. 

Even if the politician is aged but naive, coward, sycophantic and afraid to speak the truth, the people do refer to the politician as elder but  "Okenye aruru ala" (abominable elder).

Rochas Okorocha claiming to be an elder is a clear act of an impostor, for so many reasons I cannot outline here. Okorocha by age in his community is not yet even close to becoming an elder, let alone speaking for the Igbos.

The foolishness must stop totally now, because it is conceived out of ignorance. Continuing to shamelessly claim an elder you are not, will never make you one. The people of Igbo land know their elders, and these true elders are in full support of the total freedom of old the eastern Nigeria(Biafra).

Written by Onyemachi Gabriel

Edited by Onyebuchi Eucharia O

For Family Writers Press International

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