MUTUK Mzough U Tiv United Kingdom

Tar Tiv Imagine

By Terna Kevin Korgba, MUTUK Assistant Secretary, September 17, 2019

It is indeed an honour and privilege for me to be able to contribute to this inaugural edition of the Mzough magazine both as a writer and a project team member. Along with the privilege of being the Editor-in-Chief, I also had the job of reading and editing all the articles before they were published and in so doing, I realised that most of what I wanted to say had been covered! Covered by the creativity of my friend and colleague on the Mzough Editorial Team, Melvin Ijih, by the strong, powerful writing of Dr Son Gyoh, by the real, on-the-ground pen(wo)manship of Dooshima Mavis Orjime, by the very intellectual position of Dr Stephen Akuma, by the humble but pinpoint style of our President, Dr Kohol Iornem – all covered. 

As a result of this, I decided to take us on a journey through a piece I originally wrote in 2017. Now I have written this in a very simplistic manner, but as we all know, these things were and still are deeper and more complicated. But the purpose is not to be prescriptive or give a history lesson, but to take us on a journey of self-reflection, thinking back to “the good old days”, pondering on where we went wrong and imagining what could be. 

So with that in mind, Angbianev av ken Tar Tiv, please come with me and let us remember, let us dream a little…let us imagine!

Imagine…

It has been 58 years since our founding fathers gained independence from the rule of the British. I was not born yet so I can only imagine what the mood was like across this vast amalgamated geographical expanse called NIGERIA! It must have been full of joy and hope – joy because we were finally ridding ourselves of the colonial shackles of ‘empire’ and becoming the masters of our own fate; hope because each one of the multitude of tribes making up the various regions of Nigeria – including us, the ALMIGHTY TIV NATION, had something to offer and contribute to this new world we had just achieved – imagine that!

Sadly, this joy and hope was short-lived when a group of military boys decided (in our collective name) that this ‘new Nigeria’ was not moving in the direction it was supposed to and chose violence over discourse and dialogue. And so began the killings and bloodshed, spilt along ethnic lines (at first) that would plague this new and supposedly ‘prosperous’ nation for years to come…killings, which the Tiv Nation has experienced and come to know only too well!

Can you imagine what a better 

Nigeria, indeed a stronger Tiv Nation would look like?

… Imagine a Tiv Nation where we had many more leaders who actually knew what true leadership meant, and followers who actually understood that they were actually the leaders…

… Imagine a Tiv Nation where we all realised that political affiliations, class divisions, and inter-tribal divisions (“yande ne man yande la”) are tools used effectively by unscrupulous groups and individuals to keep us divided and fighting because they know very well that a united Tiv Nation would be unstoppable…

… Imagine a Tiv Nation where, instead of spending our time and data trading insults on various fora – online and offline, we increased our knowledge and education, understanding full well that “knowledge is power”… 

 … Imagine a Tiv Nation where citizen participation became citizen leadership and everyone of us decided to be the change that we so desperately crave by going out of our way to pull each other up… 

… Imagine a Tiv Nation where ‘iwuhe’ was not the order of the day and we fought to lift each other up and genuinely celebrate each other’s successes thereby lifting the collective… a Tiv Nation where we once again realised that “ya na anmgbian” was not just a power-sharing formula but a “brother-raising formula”…

… Imagine a Tiv Nation where the thought of attacking our farms, villages and homesteads by ANY enemy was so terrifying…a Tiv Nation where, even if attacked, we were so UNITED that our defence would make our ancestors proud…a Tiv Nation where no decision in Nigeria could be made without consultation or input from TAR TIV!!!

If you can imagine any of this, then together we can achieve all of it and much more… but only if we UNITE! 

I will leave the “how” for another day but for now, for this day and time while you are reading this, just take some time and imagine the Tiv Nation of your dreams and then wake up tomorrow and let’s get to work!

AYATUTU KA UNO!!!

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