#UnpopularOpinion: Black History Month And Why It Should Matter To Nigeria – Abigail Ocheibi


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#UnpopularOpinion: Black History Month And Why It Should Matter To Nigeria - Abigail Ocheibi

Every February is a #BlackHistory month in America. I have been hearing about it but never really paid attention as I should. But this year is different.

 

Nicki Minaj name dropped one of the late most respected female activists in the history of America, Rosa Parks in her latest single, #Yikes” and it raised a lot of controversies. (I have an opinion on that too but that’s for another day).

Now I decided to make some research about the popular Black History Month in the US and figured it’s so worth it!

I mean how would you keep “THEIR” LEGACIES , show them respect, tell many generations after you the TRUTH and PROTECT all they STOOD for aside constant celebration of the achievements of the African Americans (dead or alive) and their central role in U.S history, especially those who fought not just with their words and actions but their LIVES?

 

It might interest you to know that Black History month began in 1915, half a century after the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery in the United States.

 

Marking the 2020 event in US, Google aired an ad titled “The Most Searched “, you should watch it.
Celebrities and individuals alike talk and celebrate the likes of Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, Harriet Tubman, Roy Wilkins and Billie Holiday etc, for their roles and sacrifices in making sure that African Americans are treated fairly and equally in all matters of the land.

 

That’s it for that. Here’s why I’m writing this; In Nigeria aside June 12th now May 29th and October 1st, there’s rarely a time that Nigeria marks or celebrates its history or remarkable events/individuals in history. This is very dangerous to the younger generation on whose shoulders we crave a better Nigeria.

By narrowing how much we mark or celebrate in the light of our history, good or bad we stall so much from those behind us.

For instance, until my adult years where I was able to read handful materials and meet key personalities on the ongoing Biafran agitation, I grew up believing what I was told by my friends and the little I was taught in school about the situation.

Evident in the loads of misdeeds that go on today, our generation acts and feeds off wrong information and leadership. Again, it’s very dangerous to keep passing such habits and information to generations after us. Let’s have more moments to celebrate and tell our history, more to ourselves than to anyone.

We should set aside weeks or months for our history and use the opportunity to enlighten, celebrate our achievements, tell our truth and dismiss baseless stands.

How much for instance, do we know about ; Queen Amina of Zaria, Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti, Ayodele Awojobi’ Nnamdi Azikiwe, Obafemi Awolowo, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, Chinua Achebe, Dr. Nathaniel King or Dr. Ameyo Adadevoh etc? How much do we know about the ongoing Biafran agitation, civil war etc? How much do we know about slave trade in Nigeria, The Benin, Oyo, Hausa Kingdoms?

 

This will go a long way in creating unity in diversity and a better informed Nigeria.

 

Our struggles and achievements unite us at our core and knowledge is the first step towards further progress.

God bless Nigeria 🙏


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