The Catholic Bishop of Nsukka, Most Rev. Prof. Godfrey Igwebuike Onah, on Tuesday, criticised Igbo people for their hunger for money and the “only money counts” attitude they bring into all things.
Bishop Onah stated this when he delivered the 33rd Public Lecture of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, FUTO, titled “Intellectualism and the Development of a People”.
He further stated that money seemed to be all that matters to Igbos.
The Bishop said that ‘even our proverbial egalitarianism and republicanism seem to have disappeared as the super rich became the owners of the community and their praise singers remind those who were in doubt that the community or town, indeed belonged to some people.’
Stating that intellectualism was the pride of Igbo people before the Nigerian civil war, the Catholic Bishop of Nsukka and renowned academic also traced the history of Igbo people and how far the tribe had fallen.
“Then came the war, the blockade, the starvation, the surrender, the humiliation and the economic emasculation. Despite the beautiful slogan of no victor, no vanquished, there was and still is, a clear plan to crush the presumably rebellious Igbo spirit and, thus, shatter the myth of the resilient Igboman.”
He went on to said that at the end of the war, Ndigbo battled for survival in a country that had rejected them but still wont let them go.
“Having been stripped to the bare skin of all the material wealth they had acquired before the war by the post war Nigerian government.”
The academic said that a careful examination of how election of Igbo politicians into office were done, shows that the Igbo people have collectively sold their birthright to the highest bidder.
“Before long, the only money counts attitude found its way into the precincts of the churches and, through harvests, bazaars and the unending fund raising programmes for the innumerable church projects, it gradually moved into the sanctuary.”