Cultism is a big problem in Nigeria, especially among young students. It has caused the untimely deaths of many students and left others with lifelong emotional scars. This harmful practice is widespread in tertiary institutions throughout the country.
Interestingly, cultism initially began with good intentions, as history tells us. It started as a way for people to come together and fight against injustices.
However, as time passed, things took a negative turn. The original purpose got lost, and the actions of cult members became destructive and dangerous.
In today’s Nigerian society, cultism has become a major vice. It involves secret groups or cults that engage in violent and criminal activities.
These cults often have rivalries with each other and are willing to go to extreme lengths, including killing, to assert their dominance and protect their interests.
The consequences of cultism are devastating. Many young students have lost their lives as a result of these violent clashes between cult groups.
Families are left shattered, grieving the loss of their loved ones. The impact on the surviving students is also significant, as they live in constant fear and are often forced to join a cult for self-preservation or face severe consequences.
Cultism has far-reaching effects on the educational system as well. It disrupts the learning environment and hinders academic progress.
Lecturers and school staff members are sometimes targeted and threatened if they refuse to cooperate with cult activities. This creates an atmosphere of fear and undermines the purpose of education.
It is crucial for society, educational institutions, and law enforcement agencies to come together to address this issue effectively.
Efforts should focus on creating awareness about the dangers of cultism, providing support and counseling to students who have been affected by it, and implementing strict measures to discourage and prevent the formation and activities of cult groups.
By working together, we can strive to create a safer and more conducive learning environment for Nigerian students, free from the grip of cultism and its harmful consequences.
Let us look into the history of cultism in Nigeria and how it all began.
History of Cultism In Nigeria
Cultism is when a group of people do secret rituals together. It has become a big problem in Nigeria.
But do you know how cultism started in Nigeria? This article tells you the history of cultism in Nigeria.
Cultism in Nigeria started long ago, before the country was colonized. People formed groups to seek protection from their ancestors and did rituals together.
If you wanted to join the secret cult, you had to go through an initiation process. Once you were in the cult, you had to keep the group’s secrets very carefully.
Some of these groups were the Ogboni society, which was popular among the Yoruba people. The Ekpe secret cult existed among the Efiks and in some parts of the South East. The Ekine and Owegbe Cult were well-known in Delta and Edo State.
These cult groups helped their members with social, financial, economic, and political support.
Origin of Cultism In Nigeria
It’s important to know that modern-day cultism is different from the old ones like Ogboni, Ekine, and Owegbe.
Modern-day cultism in Nigeria was influenced by a group called the Ku Klux Klan (KKK). The KKK started as a secret cult in the United States in 1765. They targeted former slaves and people who supported them, using threats, violence, and even murder to promote white supremacy.
Their actions inspired Nigerian nationalists to fight harder against colonialism and seek independence.
As a result, the first recognized cult group in Nigeria was established. It was called the Sea Dog Confraternity, also known as the Pirates. It was formed in 1952 at the University of Ibadan by seven students: Wole Soyinka, Pius Olegbe, Olumuyiwa Awe, Aig-I’moukhuede, Ralph Opara, Olu Agunloye, and Tunji Tubi.
Their goal was to peacefully and intelligently oppose foreign influences, challenge outdated traditions, and find solutions to tribalism and elitism.
The Pirate Confraternity consisted of smart students who focused on their studies without violating the rights of others.
Cultism In Nigeria
Cultism is when a group of people believe in the same spiritual, religious, or philosophical ideas and do activities together.
These groups are called cults, but the word “cult” has different meanings and can be controversial.
Most cults are secret. They keep their activities and practices hidden from the public and people who are not members.
Members of secret cults make promises to each other and are willing to defend their beliefs and practices no matter what.
In the beginning, secret cults didn’t involve violence or bad behavior. Members socialized, helped others, gave gifts to orphanages, and fought for Nigeria’s freedom from colonialism.
Even after the founders of the Pirate Confraternity left the University of Ibadan, the cult continued to be strong for 20 years.
However, problems with leadership and changes in Nigeria’s society, politics, and education affected the cult’s operations, and members started leaving.
At first, these groups were limited to universities and focused on maintaining order on campuses. But in the 1990s, they started spreading to the streets.
The Pyrites Confraternity, also known as the Pirates, aimed to peacefully solve disputes and challenge the nonsense of the elites. Their motto was “Against all Conventions,” and their symbol was a skull and crossbones.
Sadly, cultism in modern-day Nigeria has become a big problem. It threatens the rights and lives of cult members, students, and society as a whole.