Air Peace, Isi Agu Clothing And Social Media Rottweilers

Air Peace, Isi Agu Clothing And Social Media Rottweilers

… Of Paradoxes, Contradictions & Hypocrisies!

By Nnedinso Ogaziechi

(Caveat: For only those with clear thought process that read beyond headlines).

One of my most enjoyable and truly fun international flights was one with Medview Airline a few years ago. I was with my daughter on their Lagos-Gatwick flight (continue to wonder why Nigerian airlines are restricted to just Gatwick airport in the most lucrative aviation route in the world). The excitement started during the light refreshment when we were served plantain chips and some other local snacks that were proudly made in Nigeria.  Then the main meal time came with a variety of Nigerian dishes including ‘swallow’ and different soups, jollof, fried and white rice.🤪

I was however skeptical about the soups given that our local seasoning can have some very strong aroma and given the compact enclosure of an aircraft, that can be uncomfortable even for fellow Nigerians. Trust our people, those who loved the menu enjoyed themselves. It was a truly Nigerian airline. My daughter forgot the main dishes and continued with her request for plantain chips. Till date she misses that delicacy on other flights.

British Airways and other foreign airlines that have mainly Nigerian passengers are not known to serve full Nigerian delicacies even if we can excuse the fact that they can claim to be mindful of the different nationalities of passengers…🤔

Fast-forward years later and Air Peace, Nigeria’s flag career makes its inaugural flight on the same, Lagos-Gatwick route and some ‘never-do-wells bare their fangs criticizing the fact that the crew were dressed in the metaphoric Igbo Isi Agu clothing. For the avoidance of doubt, I can claim to know the reason the designers of the clothing used the totemic head of a lion.

In Igbo mythology, power was often assessed by the achievements and valour of a man. So, you have those who as hunters had conquered the king of the forest – lion by slaying them and bringing back their very valuable skin (often turned into royal clothing) and meat (there were no animal rights activists at the time) to the community as source of protein.

They were proudly crowned ‘OGBU AGU’ literally translated to ‘the slayer of lions. That was how powerful such achievements were rated. And they were quite very few men who achieved such feats. It was the apogee of valour and diligence.

And so, the Igbos today, given their history as a people and regional, national and global achievements can collectively own that title of ‘Ogbu agu’ now being expressed through different designs and colours of the isi agu clothing. You dress as you wish to be addressed, they say!

Allen Onyema, Air Peace Chairman/CEO can own that title of Ogbu Agu in the aviation industry! So, his choice of clothing for his crew given his aviation Odyssey is very apt. He deserves his flowers. 🌺

But wait a minute, the Isi agu clothing has even become a metaphor in the Nigerian political space even when those who adorn the clothing do not and have not proved any valour or achievements in any fields. I had Witten several times about the weaponization of the isi agu clothing by most if not all politicians in Nigeria. During elections, the politicians often wear the Isi agu clothing to campaign in the South East or other parts of the country given that in most states, the Igbos are often the second largest voting demographic after the natives. 🙄

However, it is often done in a funny way that seems to say that the hood makes the monk. A former President Buhari wore the clothes with matching caps, was even given chieftaincy titles in some states in the South East but when he won and started some seeming nepotistic appointments, he was asked and he proudly said he would first reward the 97% that voted for him before the 7% that didn’t vote for him. The warped statistics remains for history to keep.🤦‍♀️

In Lagos state where the Igbos and those accused of looking like Igbos were harassed, tortured, maimed, kil.le.d or prevented from voting during the 2023 elections, the politicians had won Isi agu to go campaign in the predominantly Igbo residential areas. After the elections, most of those areas are remembered only for taxes, infrastructure are dilapidated but hey, they have to wait till next election. Even a governorship candidate was said to be ineligible to lead Lagos because his mother and wife are Igbos. 😌

Nigeria is an indescribable contradiction. 😌

And so, given the authentic BEAUTY AND SYMBOLISM of the Isi agu clothe, the Airpeace management chose to showcase that piece of ART to the world through their crew on their Lagos – London inaugural flight, and the social media Rottweilers bared their fangs. They alleged that Air Peace was being regional by choosing the Isi agu clothing but they forget that in Igbo land we say, “ana esi na uno ama mma puo nezi” (Charity starts at home). The Chairman is an Igbo man through and through, the airline is not a rebirth of Nigerian Airways that was run aground with federal mismanagement.

In the various crises times that an Airpeace went in to airlift Nigerians from across the world with no federal subvention, if they had won Isi agu, would that have been an issue? He did those acts of charity without asking for a dime. His ancestry didn’t matter then! Today it does!

Now that he has reluctantly taken the offer of the Gatwick destination when airports like Heathrow 2, 3,4 and 5 seemed politically withheld, the Social media rats are not putting pressure on the government to force British Airways to be landing in Akure or Enugu airports instead of at our premium airports in Abuja and Lagos on maximum frequencies.

They are not barking over the fact that airlines that charged 15m and 5m naira respectively for Business and economy class tickets to London needed the entrance of Air Peace to slash prices within hours? They are not talking about the the student rebate for diaspora students that was last enjoyed in Nigeria before a Buhari coup in 1983!

They are not holding governors and their legislators accountable for the poverty and insecurity in the land but the clothings of Airpeace Crew is their problem?🤦‍♀️

Truly, Nigeria is a riddle and the level of crass bi.g.o.try and religiosity without piety are the roots of the underdevelopment and the pathetic 137million plus people living in multi-dimensional poverty! 😌

By the way, I am proudly Igbo and endorse the Isi agu clothing for the crew of Air Peace. All the retards making an issue of it should try owning their own airline and clothing their crew with the national flag as their proof of pseudo patriotism. Ndi uchu! Ndi obi ojoor!🙄

Congratulations to Air Peace!🎉🍷🎈

Bring on the debate… Igbos are ever ready!


April 2, 2024.

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