The Reformed Ogboni Fraternity And The Reformation Of Nigeria

The Reformed Ogboni Fraternity And The Reformation Of Nigeria

Tuesday, December 16, 2014 5:01 pm

By Osuolale Alalade

Dear Olori (Supreme Leader)Otunba Francis Meshioye

On the occasion of the centenary of the founding of the Reformed Ogboni Fraternity, please allow me to heartily congratulate you and the entire membership of your fraternity. May you continue to grow stronger, but, more importantly, to soar higher in wisdom. This wisdom would guide your required courage to take over the mantel of leadership that your fraternity is destined to provide, not just in Nigeria, but in whole of black Africa. In many respects, you are the last bastion of hope for the true emancipation of black humanity. The near hopelessness of the current bleak situation in the world of black humanity is directly traceable to the supplanting of such indigenous institutions as yours. It is heartening to know that despite all the attempts at denigrating and demonizing you in order de-validate what we, as a race, represent, you are not just surviving, but indeed thriving.Your experience is consistent with the fate of all indigenous institutions that define who we are as a people or even as a race.

Your last interview was particularly heart-warming for its candor and courage. For many, among whom I count my humble self, the survival of The Reformed Ogboni Fraternity and the fact of its continuing vitality is the single strongest evidence of the resilience of black humanity in the face of the historic blistering assault on the integrity of our institutions as a people or indeed as a race. It is also gratifying to note that your pronouncements have only confirmed what has become obvious to non-initiates. This is that nothing indigenous was sacrosanct from the unending attack of hegemonic forces seeking to delegitimize and undermine the integrity of our institutions. These attacks were integral to the project of those who challenge our rights to exist to instigate wholesale self-alienation of black humanity from itself. Unfortunately, it is the massive success of this externally contrived conspiracy against a whole race that must explain the deleterious “mental stereotypes creating the image of what they expected should be” leading to both reasonable and unreasonable attitudes” to the Reformed Ogboni Fraternity.

Part of the legacy of this mental brainwash has been the supplanting of our core values and the denigration of the essences of our collective Being as a people and as a racial constituent of the creation of Olodumare. The outcome of this project of spiritual annihilation or reconfiguration of black humanity is the sad existential conundrums that define the reality of contemporary black humanity. This is expressed in the rapidity of our conscious escape from our Being and the maddening energy that accompanies our own denunciations of our cultural legacies. We do this in the name of the hegemonic religions and cults that have literally inundated black societies all over the world.

I have not been bemused by the situation black humanity has found itself. The practical quotidian illustrations are found in eminently intelligent black folks who only come across as mere intellectual lap dogs regurgitating whatever they have been fed from centuries old deformation and defamatory infusions about the world of the black Being and his cosmology. These local blind vassals of western hegemony know nothing about the essences of black life and where we’ve come. This ignorance has become a dangerous reality in the whole of black humanity. Imagine that as much as 80 per cent of the conflicts that have devastated black communities, societies and state are related to the struggle for ascendance by these foreign religions, their false doctrines and the intolerant attitudes that they cultivate. As we have witnessed in contemporary Nigeria, religious intolerance is not just the forte of the illiterate, even so called professors are in the forefront of this pervasive manifestation of our mass gullibility. Yet, for all their cacophonic enterprises, what they have offered us as a people include undermining the integrity of our culture, instituting corruption as a way of life , spiritual denigration, disoriented communities, political servitude, instability and associated underdevelopment.

These are all linked. The leadership of most of Africa must flaunt their Christian or Islamic credentials to the public as a badge of integrity or to demonstrate their acquiescence with the patently false and hollow externally inspired spiritual fads on the continent. These political leaders are the first to denounce anything that suggests that they are in any way associated with a traditional institution such as yours. They often claim to be born again which, given the crisis of the hegemonic faiths (read all the scandals the Catholic Church and the protestant fold are drowned in) implies no more than being a certified spiritual renegade. But beyond crisis of their institutions, it is also common knowledge that these leaders are not fazed by any revelation that they belong to other bodies similar to the Reformed Ogboni Fraternity. The only difference is that the fraternities that they belong to are European. So it is the extra-African origins that validate these bodies-not the functions that they perform in society.

In fact, in Francophone Africa, membership of National Grand Lodge of France is required for any meaningful social and career advancement by individuals in state and society. Let me illustrate this with the case of President Ali Bongo of Gabon, son of late Omar Bongo, who was installed as the head of Gabonese Freemasonry in September 2009 by grand master of the National Grand Lodge of France (GLNF). At age 53, Ali Bongo became the grand master of the Grand Lodge of Gabon (GLB) and the Grand Equatorial Rite, the two predominant Freemason orders in Gabon. Consequently, on Wednesday, November 4, 2009 Ali Bongo launched the World Conference of Regular Freemasonry in Libreville. This was to fulfill his father’s dream for the masonic forum to take place in the central African country to enable him to welcome his “brethren” from all over the world. Ali Bongo, his heir, not only inherited the opportunity to hold the conference but also mount the vacant Gabonese Freemason throne.

Just like in Gabon, Freemasonry is very present at the very top in many African states. Denis SassouNguesso, the Congolese president, Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Congo – Brazzaville is linked to the National Grand Lodge of France; President MamadouTanja of Niger; Chad’s Idriss Deby and former president François Bozizé of the Central African Republic are among at least twelve African presidents linked to the “trois points” (three points) brothers. The same partially applies in Angophone Africa, with Liberia as an exemplar.

The membership of African leaders in these European societies is more often than not the cause of misfortune for their various countries.They constitute the platforms to develop, advance and convey anti African policies. They are key vessels for disuniting Africans by separating Anglophoens from Lusophones from Francophones. They are instruments of control that all leaders are mentally conditioned to crave. They are punished if they do not belong. Importantly, they help to siphon critical resources from Africa to France. Paul Biya of Cameroon, for example, donated a large sum of money to l’OrdreSouverain du Temple Initiatique, a ridiculous thing to do against the backdrop of poverty in his own backyard. Mr. Biya is known for his expansive generosity towards gurus and esoteric groups. The largesse was made possible by Cameroonian taxpayers’ money. The summation is that these European bodies and their more open hegemonic faiths have nothing good to offer Africa. They have thrived openly because of the gullibility and timidity of black humanity. It is in the place of the Reformed Ogboni Fraternity to be a vanguard organization to begin the redemption of African spiritual spaces from these charlatan organizations that have percolated into the innermost recesses of black humanity.

As a vanguard organization to reclaim the African spiritual spaces and to authoritatively reassert the integrity of black spirituality, the Reformed Ogboni Fraternity must open its doors just a wee bit more and to begin an assertive propagation of its values. It must go an aggressive membership drive across the black world, identifying promising young minds across a wide spectrum of professions with a view to developing a new cadre of Afrocentric leaders to fill the African public realm. More importantly, it must reclaim its centrality as the anchor of a reaffirmation of traditional values and stamp itself as a validator of a new millennium of a renaissant Africa. The Reformed Ogboni Fraternity must inject itself more forcefully into national life and processes. In this second century of the Fraternity that roughly coincides with the beginnings of a new millennium, black humanity would be well served by a reinvigorated Reformed Ogboni Fraternity that is dedicated to the beginnings of a determined charge for holistic transformation of black humanity.

I wish you very happy celebrations.

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