By Emmanual Ugwu
When a group of Northern youths gathered in Arewa House, Kaduna and issued a ‘quit notice’ to all Igbos resident in the Northern Nigeria from that symbolic bastion of Arewaland, I hastened to clarify that “It’s A Genocide Notice, Not A Quit Notice.” My reading of that thinly veiled threat of pogrom has proved to be accurate. A hate song advocating for the urgent extermination of the Igbo race is currently a hit single in the North.
The genocidal anthem is a product of calculated penmanship. It’s an apologia for ethnic cleansing. An Igbophobic manifesto, complete with ‘reasons’ why the ‘Inyamirin’ should be wiped off the land.
The song, which was recorded by an unknown banshee, starts with an atrocious prayer to ‘Allah’ for message discipline: “First I want to appeal to Allah to help me in this song not to deviate…” The rest of the ‘song’ promoted the need for Igbo-bashing: it denied the humanity of the Igbo people, found them collectively guilty of fictional crimes and sentenced them to communal death.
The song declared all people of Igbo roots “ungrateful people and fools;” “a curse to Nigeria;” folks “whose existence and birth as a people in Nigeria is useless;” a tribe of “bastards” whose abortion would have blessed the earth more than their birth.
The song further indulges in fake history, lying that “in the beginning” Igbos had no name and identity and that “they have nothing since their origin.” It claims that “Igbos are the ones that ruined this country.” Igbos are the vampires masquerading as bloodthirsty Fulani herdsmen and Boko Haram terrorists, “killing people without shame.” Igbos are “the ones destroying our youths and children with drugs.”
From start to finish, the song scapegoats Igbo people. The theme is generalized demonization. All Igbos are inherently evil. No Igbo person is deserving of earthly existence or human tolerance.
The song is a sincere hate memo. It is tribal character assassination conceived as a preface to actual physical slaughter. The goal of the song is to stir the macabre dance of an Igbo massacre.
Those who scorned the “Kaduna Declaration” as the inconsequential bluster of some jobless attention seekers must now pause and recognize the Nazist tone of the musical spin-off from that “quit notice.”
The blanket inquisition of the Igbo people and their judgment were spelled out in black and white. The hate verse was vocalized in Hausa and performed in the song form. The adoption of the sound of music was meant to spread the contagion to ubiquity.
The song is a programming language. Its purpose is to condition the mind of the Hausas and ready them to a manifest a rabid Pavlovian response. The intent is to raise the level of appropriacy of Igbo killing in the North so that when the set time comes, the murder of the ‘Inyamirin’ will be instinctual and automatic.
The use of the song medium was to engender a climate conducive for the butchery of the Igbos. The function of the song is to popularize an Igbo version of antisemitism. To build a groundswell of race-specific rage that can only be satiated with copious blood from a Holocaust-grade purge.
This corruption of the song genre must worry all good men. Hate speech traveling on the wings of melody promises exponential bloodbath. Hate speech shaped as a song will fulfill violence on steroids.
A song is hypnotic in effect. It attaches itself to the heart and mind more easily than the spoken word. It is a more enduring state of propaganda.
The mind-bending anthem topping the chart in the North is not a fleeting fad: it will not fade into oblivion. It is a recipe for carnage: it will demagogue Northerners into a fetish of killing that is more frenzied than the anti-Igbo slaughters triggered by a cartoon and a column.
The North is the less literate half of Nigeria. It is home to a majority of Nigeria’s out of school children. The streets of the North teem with 9.5 million abandoned kids and teens. They are an impressionable and excitable legion, ready to generate hell on cue.
It’s only a matter of time before the unquestioning Almajiri army memorizes that song. At the right prompting, the maddening falsehood lodged in their heads will drive them to give full expression to the song. And the mass murder of the Igbo people will yield orgasmic entertainment for the hungry, disillusioned foot soldiers.
The unleashing of the song followed the reiteration of the “quit notice” by the leaders of Northern youths. This indicates that there is an orderly plot. There’s method in the madness.
Sadly, the Nigerian state is part of the bid to enact the sequel to 1966 anti-Igbo pogrom. The federal government and security agencies have declined to take proactive steps to avert the scheduled doom. The authorities and law enforcement have only helped to prepare the stage for the impending disaster.
The Nigeria Police announced the commencement of a manhunt for the publishers of the ‘”quit notice.” But it almost immediately begged off the search in the most shameful instance of cowardly surrender of power by a federal police. Even after the miscreants started a circus tour and dared the police to arrest them, the Nigerian Police did nothing.
Acting President Yemi Osinbajo chose to address the threat to commit crimes against humanity with parleys of appeasement. The pastor asked the threatening party to repent. And he begged the threatened not to take the genocidal vow seriously.
As the October 1 deadline approaches, the Igbos in the North must disregard any hollow guarantee of safety issued by the government. They must appreciate their vulnerability in a region that habitually sheds Igbo blood to no consequence. They must respect the meanness of the misanthropes who detest their existence.
Commonsense advises that Igbo settlers in the North should flee for the sake of their own lives. A foreordained war does not consume the lame. The ocean cannot drown a man who is far away from the waters.