As Nigerians decry ethnic violence, it has not seemed to ebb. What started like a spat has degenerated into a Twitter fist fight as various ethnic groups recount dreadful stories of violence against their people.
A twitter user who claims to be Nupe tells the story of the beheading of his grandmother who was Igbo.
“I’m Nupe. My paternal Grandmother was Igbo. So is my mum…but this story is not about her. My paternal grandmother’s name was Uzonitsha. Uzo-onitsha was industrious and wealthy.”
“Uzo- onitsha married my Nupe granddad and had 6 kids with him. Lived with him in his hometown – assimilated and beloved by neighbors and family. Refused to go to the Biafran side when the civil war started bcos her husband’s people were her people and his town, her town…”
“Until the fateful day when neighbors pointed her out to Nigerian soldiers. Uzo-onitsha was beheaded in the presence of her husband and children. Her body was taken away. They were not allowed to even bury her properly. It broke them. And it took decades for the trauma to recede.”
“My Dad (as Northern as anyone could be) never healed. Until his dying day, he mourned not knowing where her body was. He never forgot. Neither can I. I have zero tolerance for Northern bigotry.”
“So here’s the thing. Igbo people are incredibly resilient. My Grandmum’s relatives who lived in the same town did not leave. They stayed. Some are still alive. They stayed, some still married indigenous. And each time things flare up still have to prove their right to be there.”
“Igbos all over Nigeria still face the same dilemma. They stay. Work hard. Do their best to be good neighbors. Respect other cultures. Try to assimilate & still, every day have to prove you are Nigerian & have a right to be here. Otherwise, they get slaughtered, property burnt.”
“Something just has to give. This bigotry is an open running sore that has cost millions of lives and untold economic loss. We can not treat bigotry casually. We can not tolerate it or be silenced when we speak up against flagrant injustice.”