The address of High Chief O.B Lulu-Briggs, the Iniikeiroari V of Kalabari. Although the content touches on issues of diverse interests but the underlining message is that of love and togetherness, which is gradually being eroded from not just Abonnema, but many other communities due to grandstanding based on personal interests and stiff necked views on mundane issues by few myopes in our various communities.
So the address is a clarion call to all, for a new awakening and refocusing on communal interests rather than personal gains to the detriment of the collective peace and progress of the community.
The high Chief aptly stated thus “knowing that Abonnema stands firmly for the concept of ‘Nyemoni’-loving and desiring one’s own, it was my belief that our brotherly love would overcome these nascent misunderstandings amongst us”. The address went further to state that “The time has now come for peace and reconciliation, for it is only when these abide in our community that old wounds can heal and that we can make meaningful and lasting progress that is beneficial to all”.
Progress can only be seen where peace has found a home. All that is needed now is communal progress built on the bedrock of lasting peace. Going through the address of the sage, one can only but wonder if the tiding of peace can be better said in any other way?
Individuals in our communities have pridal attachment to the narratives of their history, but for the civilized that value life, peace and unity should be the utmost desire, for a meaningful existence despite all that one’s ego and transient might will tend to foist in our heart.
The High Chief in his final submission in the address, admonished thus “we need to do this because the progress, welfare, safety and continuity of Abonnema is greater than all of us”.
Mahatma Gandhi once said “unity to be real must stand the severest strain without breaking”.
For those that know the value of life will strive not just for self but for the general good of the community.
The Bible was succinct, when it stated thus “For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow, but woe to him that is alone when he falleth, for he hath not another, to help him up” – Ecclesiastes 4:10.
From our recent past and present state, it is obvious that no one is greater than the community he is from and there is no price too high to pay or forego, for the continual existence of the community.
Although all that were conveyed by the Sage in his address will sit well with any reasonable, progressive, right thinking mind as to its actual intendment, but the closing instruction/command as to the staling of chieftaincy related issues in Abonnema may be construed to be threading on matters that is subjudice? Just my humble view.
Below is an attached copy of the address of the High Chief.
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