Fr Angelo Chidi Unegbu (22/02/2022)
Do you know that in Igboland (and many other nations), the same reason that made people embrace education, is the same reason they embraced the “modern miracle” churches, and also the same reason they are into Oke-ite today? Ask me “how?”.
During the colonial times, Igbo people (just like some other nations) outrightly rejected Western education. When they did send anyone to school, it was their slave. However, in a short time the court messenger, court clerk, teacher, warder, police and secretary who graduated from the primary school became the modern rich people. The tide changed! They displaced the big farmers in terms of wealth, power and prestige.
Consequently, every Igbo person wanted his/her child to go to school. Every town wanted a school in their village. Education, whose main goal is to improve the quality of human life and the environment, was pursued for a completely different purpose, namely, as a source of wealth, power and prestige. This reason has not changed till date. That is the reason we have so many degree holders but little knowledge of how a society works.
At the wake of the modern miracle churches that promised adherents instant material prosperity, especially, when one pays his/her tithes, many in a bid not to be left behind in this prosperity march embraced the new trend of worshipping God the same way they embraced education. Just like education gave birth to certificates and degrees without knowledge so also did churches produce faith without morality. Today, it is oke-ite. Whether it is the school, church, politics or oke-ite, the drive is the same: wealth, power and prestige.
Unless there is total overhauling of our dysfunctional educational system and faulty religious indoctrinations that have given birth to oke-ite, our inordinate drive for wealth, power and prestige will continue to render us poor, powerless, irrational and a laughing stock before the world.