When A Tribe makes A Nation

When A Tribe makes A Nation

What Nigeria is experiencing as a nation, especially on social media where it seems as if we have all gone bonkers with our divisive comments and attitudes is not unique and it is not going to change

Asisat Oshoala, The reigning female African footballer of the year, and the most decorated Nigerian female footballer in history, a Yoruba lady was leaving her football club, Barcelona Femini, in Spain for another one in the USA

Her club wrote a moving farewell tribute to her

They decided to add a bit of Nigerian touch to it by adding her local language

Unfortunately, they wrote their "Thank you very much in the Igbo language" rather than the Yoruba language of the tribe Asisat comes from

The Nigerian readers wouldn't take it

How dare they use the language of another tribe to speak to Asisat?

What sort of assumption was that?

White people don't bother doing their homework, after five years with them, they ought to have known she is Yoruba and not Igbo

Yes it mattered in the sense that things ought to be done right

No, it didn't matter in the sense of tribes being at each other's throat

The mistake was something to joke about, not fight about

It changes nothing in the long run

Asisat is Yoruba, everybody in Nigeria knows that!

Victor Osimhen, the famous Nigerian striker was born to Edo Parents but grew up in Lagos

When asked to greet his Nigerian fans in his local dialect, he said boldly that he does not know how to speak the Edo language

He went ahead and greeted the people in the Yoruba language

It was like setting the rain on fire

Edo people felt betrayed

How can their illustrious son, the most popular Nigerian footballer at the moment, the reigning African Best Footballer, a global icon not be able to speak the tongue of his town in Edo

Language has always been a stronger bond for a people than any other features

Those who speak the same language flock together, band together, think alike, and consider themselves united in a strange way

This is true even in the Bible

When the tribe of Judah found themselves denied the right to rule in the book of 1st Samuel

The Prophet Samuel gave the sceptre to a young man named Saul of the house of Kish and the tribe of Benjamin

The Capital of Israel was suddenly Gilboa

The people protested, they refused to accept Saul as King

Benjamin as a tribe was just coming out of a war and the number of men they had had been seriously depreciated

They were the least tribe and it felt unfair that they got the right to lead the other tribes who had more to offer

When the sceptre of leadership returned to David and the tribe of Judah, the people of Benjamin protested

Once they had tasted power, they wanted to retain it

They didn't care if God gave the throne to another tribe

They saw David as an usurper who abused the kind heart of Saul and took Saul's throne for himself by force

They were not there when David was anointed as King in secret in 1 Samuel 16

All they knew was what they saw in public and from their own point of view, David had no right to the throne

They made this known twice

Shimei said it out loud, even called David a dog when Absalom took David's throne and David and his men had to flee the palace

Sheba Son of Bicri did the same after Absalom was defeated

When you have many tribes in a nation, you will have accusations of tribalism, nepotism, bigotry, and so on

The current president will be hailed as a win by the tribe he represents and the one who lost out in the election will remain the darling of those who chose him as their president

It doesn't matter how unreasonable his claim was or how unreasonable their claim is

Members of Tribe A will be looking for the faults of Tribe B and vice versa so that they can accuse each other of all sorts

It is what it is!

Nigeria did quite well in the ongoing African Cup of Nations tournament

The National team is made up of Nigerians from across all the tribes in the country

There was a time when tribalism found its way into the Nigerian national team and a lot of talented Nigerians were denied the right to play because coaches wanted to balance the team with the use of the right representative from the tribes

This was why the use of a foreign coach has helped us tremendously

A foreign coach most likely wouldn't care which tribe a player is from

If the player is good, they will get to play

This is very good for the country

This is also a principle we must learn to adopt as a nation

Discarding tribal sentiments and embracing competence as a culture

Nigeria was in the Semi-final of the African Cup of Nations

The whole nation is agog with joy

The expectation was that the national team would win the trophy

The euphoria of the tournament has worn off but we must learn how to find joy in our diversity as a nation and embrace our differences.

This however is impossible in the flesh

The only way men and women from different tribes, languages, and people can truly unite is to embrace Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour and come into the commonwealth of Zion

I have been a member of the GSWMI fellowship for over five years and I can truly say that being born of God makes all the difference

Tribal talks and thinking have long been eradicated from our consciousness as individuals

I remember how most of us ignored the heavy political arguments leading to the current political dispensation in Nigeria

It is not as if we didn't talk about it at all but we didn't talk about it in a sentimental manner

The pros and cons were discussed and then the individual was left to make up his or her own mind when the election day arrived

It didn't matter who won

What matters is we know our source and we rule over times and seasons

For us the mandate of Revelations 5: 9 - 10 is alive and active

And they sang a new song, saying:

“You are worthy to take the scroll

and to open its seals,

because you were slain,

and with your blood, you purchased for God

persons from every tribe and language and people and nation.

10 You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God,

and they will reign on the earth.”

Not only has this new orientation in Christ removed all forms of bitterness and bigotry from our consciousness, but it has also helped us to see the inherent value Jesus has placed in all men and we have come to embrace the essence of Christ in every believer

Indeed he or she who is joined to the Lord is one spirit.


Blessed be God