Ekenem ndi igbo nile na-agu ihe a!
On behalf of well meaning, liberated, loving and reasonable Yorùbás, I say WE ARE SORRY!
We are sorry for the humiliation, the threats, the discriminations and the bad situation that our tribe has put you.
We are sorry for the pains, the traumas and the division we have caused the relationship that we share!
When you agitated for your own country, you did it without any tribal attack on the Yoruba tribe.
All you wanted was a libration from the servitude of the Nigerian system because she has been failing to include you in her plans despite the mineral and human resources she enjoys from you.
Your agitation was never against Yorùbás nor Hausas but for your own liberation.
You have always loved your Igbo brothers and support them, but you have never for one time rejected the Yorùbás.
We have seen how you moved from your states to seek greener pastures, open up desolate locations and turn them into a market place.
Your beliefs were that “a Prophet is not always respect in his own town”… Y’all left home to feed home.
You are the most industrious, resilient and hard-working group of people I have ever met in my parcours in life!
You never stop to learn, with or without education you never stop to grow.
You evolved from being scared of what the future will hold, to holding the bull by the horns and making a better life for yourselves.
Your forefathers foresaw that cultures are different; it may cause future marital issues for their children.
But your generation said “NO” – we are one Nigeria and there’s no need to discriminate, Àkandé the son of Olaosebikan can now marry Chidera the daughter of Asogwa without any préjudice.
We are sorry for the insults that our own son Gbadebo has brought on your tribe only because you decided to give your daughter’s hand in marriage to us.
I have been stranded outside Nigeria in the past, and I have seen a son of your soil, Collins Odinaka, came to my rescue, stood for me in a situation between life and death and said “this is my brother, I must have his back”. We were never related by blood but because we are related by Nigeria, according to him, I was his brother regardless!
Even when my own Yorùbás abandoned me!
Nothing, absolutely nothing have you done to deserve the humiliation, the disgrace and the pain our people have brought unto you.
We are sorry for the name callings, the subtle curses pronounced by our fellow tribe’s men and women.
We are sorry for the inferiority complex that some of our people suffer from, because they think you can do better than them.
I humbly urge you dear Igbos, all that you can, in your capacity – build yourselves, grow your lands, your city and your villages – turn your places into a mega hub that you have always dreamt of.
I am sure one day, Nigeria will come begging.
I am confident one day, Yorùbás will come back to their senses and they will want your inclusiveness in their affairs.
They will need engineers, traders, business men and women, special skills from your tribe but it may be too late.
They will, at a point, want collaborations with your government to grow their economy but you’d be too busy building yours that you may not have time to join hands with them.
But for now, I urge you be of good courage – know that we love you
Never allow the bitterness of others stop you from being who you really are
You are good people – loving people – let this be a lesson for you not to become just like those who oppressed you
Our love is endless for you
Omo Arèsà Àjèje
Omo won ní Òjé ñpetu nílè Ìbàdàn.,jéndu.u.e.u.u nílè Ìbàdàn.