July 5, 2022 8:49 pm

Understanding A Dot In A Circle

By Nnaji Isaiah

The Special Adviser to Lagos State Governor on Drainage and Water Resources, Joe Igbokwe, was reportedly criticised Senate Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe for wearing a customised T shirt bearing the inscription “The Dot Nation”.

Igbokwe, in a post on his Facebook page as reported in some of the national dailies, described Abaribe as “an elder for nothing and an ethnic bigot”

What brought about the customized “A dot in a circle T. Shirt”, one might ask, although President Muhammadu Buhari used that expression on the IPOB.

The President, Muhammadu Buhari had recently during an interview with Arise TV broadcast, described the Indigenous People of Biafra clamouring for secession as a dot in a circle that has nowhere to go.

According to the President, ” IPOB is just like a dot in a circle. Even if they want to exit, they will have no access to anywhere”.

Where does the confusion emanates from, which made the entire Southeast region believed that Mr. President was referring to them?

Majority of the South-easterners believed that these words credited to Mr. President, “And the way they are spread all over the country, having businesses and properties, I don’t think IPOB knows what they are talking about”, was not only meant for the IPOB but the entire Igbo nation and they viewed it as very unfortunate that it came from our respected number one citizen of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

We feel worried that such a thing would come from the mouth of our beloved President, who we believed has seen it all, both as Military head of State and civilian President. It is not the best in the circumstance we found ourselves at present. It is somehow demoralizing and to a large extent capable of fueling the crisis depending on the perspective one appreciates it.

If you situate that dot within the context of the Nigeria sociopolitical configuration, it might appear insulting to the Southeast as a critical Bloc that has been playing a major role in sustaining the unity, peace and stability of Nigeria. Over the years the Southeast has been playing a stabilizing role. If you talk about the Southeast being a dot in a circle, it then means that you have not come to reckon the contributions of the southeast as a major Bloc like other critical Blocs.

Frankly speaking, the Southeast should be commended for sense of civility and sense of maturity in somehow overlooking the obvious negative implication of that description – a dot in a circle. Although Mr. President referred to the IPOB and not the Southeast. Though, it is not the best.

That somebody is putting on the cloth embroidered with a dot, for me, the psychological implication is that, this person is somehow, instantly or prima facie, reminds the people referred to, the need to be conscious including some or many of the group in that dot, who are in support or who are yet to see or appreciate the meaning of that dot in a circle.

So, I want to believe that we should be able to understand ourselves and help ourselves in the circumstances we found ourselves. It is not encouraging and may God help us so that we don’t perhaps inadvertently fuel crisis we are expected to abate.

‘Ndi Igbo si ebe a na agwo oria anya, anaghi etinye ya ose’. So, I commend the Southeast for tolerating that or perhaps overlooking or playing down the obvious meaning of that description – dot in a circle in the sociopolitical context we found ourselves. That means that the Southeast still believe in the unity, indivisibility and stability of Nigeria but that should not be to their detriment; ‘Emenyere Nwaogwugwu, emenyere Nwanosike’.

It is rather unfortunate that where the mother and the son are feeding from the same pot, at a point you start demanding light to see the depth of the soup pot, whom are you suspecting?

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