Chika Onyeani responds to Rev. Agbali in a war of words which this moderator has no power to censor. As I have said before, I do not have the power to stop the circulation of of this type of exchange even if I do not agree with it. Having said this, I can only plead that Dr. Onyeani and Rev. Agbali move us in some other directions.
In Igbo, we have a saying that it is somebody who doesn't know another person
who calls him my friend. Obviously, I am dealing with an infantile, which is
a mistake on my part. I concede Rev. Agbali's point that I should have done
my duty before engaging him on a serious discussion. Some of us are open like
a book through our writings and the issues we have been involved, giving the
individual with whom you are engaged the advantage. Without USA/Africa
Dialogue, I doubt I would have come across a Rev. Agbali.
There is a recurring theme in Agbali's posture, that's defending Africans who
were sold into slavery (African-Americans), and alluding to the Arochukwu
people (Aros), of which I am not one and who I have severely criticized as
parasitic on the backs of Ohafia mighty warriors. Some times, an individual's
ignorance is exceeded only by their stupidity. I have been married for 35 years to
the same pedigreed African-American woman, with ancestry not only from the
Indians and the Caribbeans, but as well as African-Americans from Georgia.
Ignorance is a disease.
May 30, 1967, was the greatest day in my life, when I took the Declaration of
Biafra from Dr. Pius Okigbo's office to the State House in Enugu, before
driving back home to hear Gen. Ojukwu (then colonel) read it on the radio. When
Enugu fell to the Nigerian forces, I was in my village in Ohafia when the new
Republic of Biafra selected me as one two individuals posted to the Biafra
office in New York - 342 Madison Avenue, New York. When Gen. Ojukwu published his
book, Biafra, in 1969, I was the one Ojukwu requested to bring the books into
Biafra. When Ojukwu left Biafra in January, 1970, I was the only officer in
the Biafra office who received a telegram, telexes of which I still have, to
join the supposed-to-be government in exile. When Ojukwu visited the U.S. the
first time, it was in my house he was initially received, having brought him
from where he was staying in Long Island, because the majority of the Igbo were
afraid of what would happen to their families back home. Ignorance is an
The manifestation of envy is palpable in terms of people whose "Arrogant
projection of subjective interest and glamorous painting in the media - that is a
passionate hobby of yours it seems," of individuals strutting in the corridors
of power or the parliaments, of those of who purchased their Ph.Ds in Ariaria
market. In my earlier submission, I had addressed the issue of Africans
with p.h.ds (permanent heads damage) because of their nauseating odor of crab
mentality, which continues to be evident in all of these. This year, New York
Times selected me as a "Fellow of the New York Times Institute for Journalists,"
the only African so honored, and from an newspaper which has been very
critical of events in Nigeria. In both 1997 and 1998, the State of Tennessee
appointed me Ambassador of Goodwill for the State of Tennessee. Unfortunately,
because of my mistake, I thought I was issuing an challenge of "bloodbath blood
letting war of words," to an adult, not realizing that I was dealing with an
child. At least, I don't make pretences of being an Christian, and neither do I
envy whatever position Rev. Agbali might currently occupied. It is due to his
hard work, and he deserves it. If he is invited by the Pope or the
Archibishop of Canterbury, I will applaud him. There is nothing in it for me to be
envious of him. It was Dr. Seuss who said, "Be who you are and say what you
feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind."
Yes, in spite of hate mongers who wish to bring you down, some of us are immune
to such childishness. Hence, I refer you to browse through
www.africanevents.com, a website not owned by Chika Onyeani.
Rev. Agbali knows fully that the digression of physical harm to him is an
subterfuge. His allusion to physical threats or being harmed doesn't merit any
comment. I don't care to know where he comes from, it doesn't interest me.
But apparently, the Igbo must have caused some traumatic experience in him to be
so pre-occupied with what that Igbo did or what another Igbo didn't do. And
I don't see how what a South African said to an Igbo has any relevance to me
as a person. As I recall, the said statement was made to a delegation of
Nigerians, and later even Obasanjo's son was told that he shouldn't behave as if he
were in Nigeria. To my knowledge, Obasanjo's son is not a Igbo. Really,
really I am amazed at the pettiness of an individual who claims to be an
christian, no matter how young that individual. The vitriolic hatred of the Igbo
group by an individual who appellates himself with "rev." is beyond comprehension.
If we are to talk about what a South African said to an Igbo, then I am
entitled to include here what a South African recently said to me, knowing my
antecedent, which I had sent to this forum but which was not published:
June 17, 2005
Time: 04:44 AM
Dear Capitalist Nigger
This is not a concern but commentary and appreciation.
It is with great pleasure that I was first introduced to this book and having
opportunity to write a commentary on it. I must say subsequent to reading the
book I have recommended it to two other people and encourage them to buy a
and they have.
I found the book ironically eye opening. I say ironically because the things
speak about are known to me. Its stuff I have observed, continue to observe,
but just that, observe. The conditioning of our minds has created an
acceptance of the behaviour synonymous with stupidity among our people. It is
disheartening that the levels of our stupidity have become a world phenomenon. I for a
long time thought the issues you raised are only prevalent in my country
Azania (South Africa), but have realised that these are happening the world over.
You might have read about the recent decision taken by our President to
excuse his Deputy of his cabinet position given the association he had with
business people, which the court explained as being generally corrupt. The dismissed
comrade is a stalwart, revered by many including myself, but the decision is a
decision that will set the tone for the future of Africa. My point is, we
need to take difficult decisions as black people in general in order to effect
change in our lives and our future. I was in the beginning disgusted by a number
of statement you make in the book, but had to quickly mature and realize that
he is a man who mirrors the truth and rather than being critical of how
people exploit me, asks of me to look at how I have perpetually accepted the
As a people we have developed an appreciation for second-class citizenship.
We have appreciated that we have minds that think slower than other races of
the world. We have appreciated being street beggars of the world. The example
you make of Nigeria's, where they had to contract someone from abroad to fix a
broken machine was a low point. This just vividly showed a lack of forethought.
Today in Azania we have a policy of black empowerment through which we have
asked Caucasian led businesses to incorporate previously disadvantage people as
partners. The challenge is that the deals are still funded by the very
Caucasians through share allocation or loans from banks they own. This was an
opportunity for us to look to our black brother from the developed world for finance
(Spider Web Doctrine). As a result of the finance structure our new black
moguls have limited say in the executive management of the organisation. This
goes to show that as long as we still rely on other races for survival we can
never be able to tell them what our view is.
Yesterday was a public holiday. I went to a shopping centre to buy some take
away. I was confronted by a Chinese restaurant. This immediately challenged my
decision making process as I turned to find a shop that at least employed
people. I had to eat something I never craved for, but it was a better
Recently I received promotional increase in my pay. The first thing I wanted
to do was to buy a better car. I already drive an Asian model, which is pretty
good, but wanted to get a German machine. I am now battling with my emotions
to remain content with my current car and use my new money to clear my debt so
that I can save more.
This is a small way in which you have sensitised me and I hope one day you
come to Azania to give a lecture at a Steve Biko annual commemoration.
Sfiso Memela, (Azania Capitalist Kaffir)."
Discussing Rev. Agbali as a person doesn't interest me. Whether I know where
he comes from or what he does, doesn't interest either. I am only interested
in his envious attempt in trying to bring down some Africans who are trying
to make an difference. I am Igbo and an African, very very proud at that. I
make no apologies of my Igboness. Each of us must bear one's burden of hate.
Those of us who are sincerely involved in articulating the direction of the
black race, albeit African or African-American, have no alternative but to
maintain the debate, coupled with productive action. I will applaud any individual
who tries, like the person who brought us this forum, without whom I would
never have come into contact with a Rev. Agbali.