Task Your Intellect; Develop the Society Tells the Youth – Elder Jerry Olaka
A human capacity developer and an elder statesman, Elder Jerry Dee Olaka has called on the youth to take up profitable ventures rather than squandering their time on debating the relationship between Eleme and Ogoni which is well established. This was a response to series of arguments trending on social media.
Elder Jerry said that the youth should task their intellect, develop the strength to excel in critical areas of science and technology.
“You need to understand that in the realm of the pursuit of knowledge and excellence, ethnicity and tribes do not exist. Even in the ancient world, Africa was able to excel in art, spirituality; even in the area of technical expertise as well as governance systems without regard to the walls of divisions that exist today.
For this reason, young people from both Eleme and Ogoni can choose to respect the fact of the documented evidence that both groups as the Ibibios and many other small ethnic groups across the Jos Plateau Basin down to the Naama tribe of Bornu belong to the Semi-Bantu race who migrated from the larger Congo Basin”
The renowned academic did not condemn the pursuit of the knowledge of history but called for an open mind as a path to meaningful gains and emphasized that unguarded comments could lead to hostilities between the two people.
“If you choose to explore an issue in history, clearly one that is hinged on and rooted in knowledge of facts, it is cardinal that you learn to understand that in the realm of knowledge; one must be willing to have an open mind and be willing to discard emotionalism.
In this back and forth discourse which you young ones have chosen to start on Facebook;
You must understand that inability to respect facts and demonstrate respect for the history and life of others, is what opens the door to friction, violence and even genocide against others.
Elder Jerry was shocked that in a technologically driven society, many have jettisoned well-articulated and documented facts on sociology/ cultural antecedents delving in what he described as shadowy back-alley of their ignorance, lust, and emotional hangover.
“The more painful aspect of all this hubris is the needless veneer of debate, a subtle but obvious back and forth wringing (almost to frostiness) of an age-long relationship built on mutual love and respect, that has always existed between Eleme and Ogoni.
If it is just for the fact of the sociological structures/symbols left in place by the forefathers, distinguishing and asserting their identity and way of life; such should be evident to anyone who is not twisted by intent; to accord or at least respect the people for who they are.”
As if he had a foreknowledge of the Book: The Ogoni of the Eastern Niger Delta written by clergy and renowned historian, Dr. Kpone-Tonwe published recently, Elder Jerry said, “After all, what is the elementary definition of a nation? It is a people who see themselves as a people of their own. The forefathers of Elemeland (for all its sociological implications) strictly did not use to marry from outside (what they referred to as strange lands), but today progress has come and more young people from Elemeland marry from outside than within.
The bottom line is that all the hubris is needless. History as well as the demands of modernity teaches us this. Young people must rather recognize that life is challenging them to focus on areas of exploits that will leverage growth and transform the land.”