Nigeria’s Political Higi Haga And…

Posted: February 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

By Prince Charles Dickson

The smell of stockfish being cooked is one of the most powerful and recognizable aromas that mankind has ever encountered. Max Siollun

Last week I heard this dream of a great Nigeria, the dream that Nigeria could be great, but we needed to wake up, sadly as usual events have woken me to our reality as Nigerians

When I opened my mail, and it was the usual United States White House Weekly Brief (If only Nigeria had such, our own Aso Rock Weekly Brief).

Not to worry, there are at least two briefs, the Federal Executive Council Wednesday ‘Contract’ Brief and the conflict brief which could come from anywhere.

Back to the White House Brief, which read in part “When President Obama took the stage to deliver this year’s State of the Union, he told the American people that he intends for 2014 to be a year of action. He said:

“…What I offer tonight is a set of concrete, practical proposals to speed up growth, strengthen the middle class, and build new ladders of opportunity into the middle class. Some require Congressional action, and I’m eager to work with all of you.

But America does not stand still — and neither will I. So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do.”

Those weren’t just lines in a speech. It’s been just 11 days since the State of the Union.

In that time, the President has:
∙ Directed the Department of the Treasury to create starter “myRA” accounts that will make it easier for Americans to save for retirement.∙

∙ Ordered a government-wide review of federal training programs to make sure Americans get in-demand skills for good jobs.

∙Taken executive action to assist millions of long-term unemployed Americans — and more than 300 companies have already committed to the Administration’s best practices for hiring and recruiting the long-term unemployed.

∙Announced a major new commitment that will connect more than 20 million students to high-speed Internet — and the private sector stepped up to the plate with more than $750 million in commitments to help make it happen.

With the above let me treat this week’s admonition, I listened to Mr. Labaran Maku, Minister for Information, at the Wednesday weekly after FEC brief say “…Some Ministers who have elected to seek higher office or pursue their political ambition and be useful to the nation in other aspects of the economy have been relieved to do so. Council is grateful to them for their service to the nation and wishes them success.”

Half the polity  was agog with analysis, arguments, commentary and it ranged from the nimbly foolish to the usual suspects of hate speech.

In many locales away from the hustle and bustle of beer parlors and social media; the mai doya, the akara seller, and water hawker that only sees a plane as the big bird up in the sky was unaware of an aviation minister’s fall.

Citizen Idowu Awosika exclaimed “This is good news. Our president is gradually developing the ‘testicular’ fortitude to do away with the cantankerous, stubborn plant (Itakun), drawing him down. He should take a further look at other people around him with odious smell of corruption and get rid of them ASAP.”   ‪

And Citizen Danjuma Abdullahi gave it a better sum, “So, of what consequence is that to under-privileged Nigerians? There are many like her in the cabinet who have insulted our sensibilities as Nigerians. Change must be affected with genuine intention in a proactive manner no matter who is involved. Not selecting a few in order to pacify an outraged public near election. In all honesty, things have gone beyond Stella Oduah.”

But really when I look at our steps as a nation I conclude that we are a people stuck in our political higi haga, and indecisive crankum cranko in the lexicon of Hon. Patrick O.

I ask was Stella Oduah and others fired, relieved of their duties and office, or sacked, resigned?

If we follow public perception, both Stella and Orubebe were allegedly corrupt or abused their offices but as you read this, Orubebe has gone ahead to declare his intention to run for the No. 1 seat in Delta State.

How about the other two, we just never will know, read four newspapers and there will be four different versions. The APC side, or the PDP flick, the pro-Igbo defence for Stella, or Yoruba stand, even religion is not left out.

Citizen Kúnlé Adégboyè’s theory is better; “let us all go against corrupt public officials, no matter where they come from. If other ethnic groups seem to be targeting only the Igbo in government, what stops the Igbo from targeting corrupt officials from other ethnic groups? That’s the way it should be.”

Even the usually raucously but little purposed house found reason to love Jonathan ” *Oduah’s sack: Reps back Jonathan”

Dino Meleya the ‘ex-boxer’ of the last legislative era turned anti-corruption activist says he was vindicated and said his group of ‘anti’ corrupt gang were going to seek prosecution of Stella and Orubebe or something that sounded like that.

In far way Anambra, south east of the nation “*Oduah’s sack splits Assembly”.

On many occasion I am saddened by the quality of Nigeria’s intellectual reasoning, our interpretation of events and our self-serving purpose.

Do we really think Mr. President is in a battle for his political life and so he will get rid of those in the way.

So when wilI  Deziani go too, how about Ngozi. Better still Oduah is gone, there are no more worries, all that ails Nigeria has been solved.

As we journey towards 2015, the recipe for a better Nigeria is increasingly being muddled up. In the words of my young friend Dare, our problem is “If I expose the mis-management and corruption of PDP, then I am tagged as the APC agent but if I lampoon the foibles of APC, then PDP sponsored me?‪”

Some just hate Mr. President, and sure the man is not helping himself. While others think it is their right to rule, a few others don’t care. National conference/dialogue/confab/…from South to North issues aplenty, the smell of stockfish being cooked is everywhere: Is Nigeria ready to forge ahead as an entity or component states, with all these higi haga–only time will tell.


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