When he arrives at home he sees that his mother is

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he must go home. When he arrives at home he sees that his mother is very ill. And, his parents tell him he must not marry Clara because she is an osu. In fact, Obi's dying mother gives him an ultimatum: she tells him that if he insists on marrying Clara, he must wait until she is dead because if he marries Clara while she is alive, she will kill herself. Obi, therefore returns back to Lagos and tells Clara all that has transpired. Clara becomes angry and breaks off the engagement, afterwards hinting at the fact that she is pregnant. It is at this point when Obi arranges an abortion. He does not have the money and needs to borrow it. Complications arise out of the operation, and Clara is hospitalized, after which she refuses to see Obi.
Obi then returns to work, only to be notified that his mother has died. He does not go home for the funeral, and the U.P.U. discusses this failure on Obi's behalf as a sign of his not having cared about his mother's death. The truth, however, is that he was terribly saddened by her death, feels terrible remorse and guilt, and has entered into a state of mental unrest. However, Obi awakes from this unrest with a new sense of calm. He feels like a new man, and it is at this point that he takes his first bribe, not without a certain degree of guilt. Obi allows this acceptance of bribes to become habitual. He continues to take bribes until the end of the novel, when Obi decides he cannot stand it anymore. He has paid off all of his debts and can no longer be a part of the corruption. It is at this moment, however, when he has taken his last bribe, that he is caught, which brings us back to the beginning of the novel. Achebe on Biafra In 1967 Chinua Achebe, one of Nigeria's most prominent writers, supported the secession of Biafra from the Nigerian nation. In this 1968 speech he describes why he supported the breakaway state in its attempt to achieve independence. It is clear to me that an African creative writer who tries to avoid the big social and political issues of contemporary Africa will end up being completely irrelevant—like that absurd man in the proverb who leaves his burning house to pursue a rat fleeing from the flames. And let no one tell me that if this was true for African writers, it must also be true for others. The fact is that some of the great issues of Africa have never been issues at all or else have ceased to be important for, say, Europeans. Take for instance the issue of racial inequality which—whether or not we realize it—is at the very root of Africa’s problems and has been for four hundred years. It has become fashionable to beguile ourselves into believing that all “reasonable” people accept the idea of human equality and that the minority who do not accept it are mentally sick, and will be cured in due course.

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