Friday, April 25, 2014

OBI EGBUNA (1938 - 2014)

By Ishmael Mzwandile Soqaga

As a Pan-Africanist myself, I cannot but be enamoured with the life and times of the indomitable Obi B Egbuna.

For centuries, Europe dominated the African continent.  The white man arrogated to himself the right to rule and to be obeyed by the non-white; his mission, he claimed, was to “civilize” Africa.  Under this cloak, the Europeans robbed the continent of vast riches and inflicted unimaginable suffering on the African people. Kwame Nkrumah 1961:  I Speak of Freedom.

Dolefully, today is one of the most distressing times in many memories of the people who have an explicit understanding of the past racial oppression against black people by white people.  Apparently, this sombre feeling is obviously evoked by the sadden news of the demise of “Sir Egbuna”.  The sensational Egbuna was a sagacious, sophisticated black leader and enchanting black African writer. 

Fundamentally, he was deeply influenced by Marxist; he was very deft in interpreting Marxist in a unique black way.  While he was in Britain as the leader and the spokesperson for Universal Coloured People’s Association he used to argue:  “Nobody in his right mind disputes that the fact the white worker is a prey to capitalist exploitation, as well as the Black worker.  But equally indisputable is the fact that the white worker is exploited only because he is a worker, not because he is white, while in contrast, the Black Worker is oppressed, not only because he is a worker, but also because he is Black.” 

Although his anti-capitalist expostulation against white exploitation against black people was not rooted in African soil, however, he has significantly contributed in promoting black dignity and black recognition around the world.  “Sir Obi B Egbuna” will be remembered by his vigorous enthusiasm for the cause of social justice and political justice for black people worldwide. 

Courageously the black youth in the world must take into cognizance the immense selfless contribution that Egbuna has made for social justice and equality of black people in the world.  Both his political influence and literary greatness has added an enormous value for black race in the world today. 

As tears of mourning and sadness visited black people because of the death of Egbuna, black people must be proud to have a person of the stature and caliber of Egbuna.  His brilliant works need to be a guide for us and continue to inspire for future black generation.  At this moment of mourning it is vitally important for black people to relish the literary work of the son of Ozubulu, Anambra state (Nigeria).  Rest in peace Egbuna.


Wind vs Polygamy (Elina)
The Anthill (a play)

Daughters of the sun:
and other stories.

Emperor of the Sea.

Diary of a Homeless Prodigal

Destroy this temple.

The Madness of Didi
The Minister's Daughter.      

The Murder of Nigeria.
The ABC of Black Power Thought.

The rape of Lysistrata.

Divinity (a radio play)

* Mr Soqaga is a South African Pan-Africanist, essayist, and author

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