Archive for December, 2014

By Prince Charles Dickson

In the Nigerian political space, nothing dominates more than the run up to the 2015 General Elections–With much hatred and hate speech across divides, very little in substance, and the reason is not far fetched, as citizens are absent minded and simply tagging along.

The year ends and a colossal 22 states of the 36 have not met at least 50% of their financial obligation, not because of Jonathan or because PDP governed state chiefs chose to gather over a billion for Mr. President’s campaign fund, but increasingly even with the writing on the wall, we continue to practice our feeding bottle federalism.

crossroadd

So today, my take is on the Nigerian…you and me.

The millions of us that can no longer recite the nation’s National Anthem with the pledge inclusive, a supposedly patriotic musical composition, a national song, a sacred awakening, a well above average poetic piece and an everyday wake up call second only to the Christian morning devotion or the five times daily prayer of the Muslims.

I recall it was the Obasanjo’s government, that a number of ambassadorial nominees could not recite the national anthem of Nigeria and they were going to represent Nigerians and Nigeria… Some tried and did it in style, they skipped several lines and recomposed their versions and in turn they all were asked to take the ceremonial ‘senatorial bow’. The bitter truth is that the national anthem with the accompanying pledges, one of the remaining instruments of patriotism is going extinct. I dare say with a measure of certainty not even half the nation’s legislators can recite it without mumbling and soon maybe our kids would tell us that the national flag is red, green, blue or something like that.

When we were young, I still get high from the kicks one felt at having to stop whatever one was doing just to pay allegiance to the national anthem and standstill while the pledge was being said. Among our rural and urban kids the same anthem has become a caricature with versions were certain phrases tell the story of Nigeria. An example…”to serve our fatherland with love, strength, and faith” has become ‘to serve Nigeria is not by force’, ‘to thief Nigerian money is by politics’ and more such ridiculous jokes. Before I started this piece I had to recite the anthem and pledge and it was a mean feat.

These days unlike yesteryears radio and television stations do not even bother to sign in with the national anthem or sign off with it. Even the state owned and taxpayer funded National Television is a culprit.

“Arise O Compatriots, Nigeria’s call obey”. We no longer have patriots…our compatriots are political jobbers and looters of the national treasury that milk the nation’s resource without recourse to their tribal marks. The real patriots that exist are the commoners be them Hausa, Ibo or Yoruba, that sit together and watch Nigeria unable to qualify for the African Nations Cup.

The real patriots mourn when we loose to the Sudan, they are taxi drivers, from Zaira to Abeokuta, Motorcyclists from Onitsha to Kafanchan, housewives, peasant farmers that in most cases only heard commentaries on the radio as they could not afford a television, those of them that could, had no electricity. These set of Nigerians have continued to heed the call to obedience but our leaders have on the contrary abused that call to service as a call to enrichment, and a call to dehumanize the ordinary Nigeria.

“To serve our fatherland, with love, strength and faith”. What beautiful line of poetry, but sadly that is all there is to it, for most Nigerians…a line of poetry because every Nigeria whether in leadership or not has learnt it pays better to serve ones pocket with passionate greed, and strength.

Talking of fatherland, we have none; we simply have Ijawland, Arewaland, Biafraland, Odualand…APCland, PDPland, Asorockland, INECland, corruptland etc. Certainly there is no land.

There is tension everywhere; the government is heating up the polity through its actions and inaction. The opposition is also following suit. For the populace love has become strange in their vocabulary, step on a person’s foot in the bus, you will be left with the impression that you just had an encounter with Shekau. Where is the strength when all the government does is to talk and talk…Several months of unpaid salaries and many more earning survival wages, we talk of strength.

A nation that has been continually raped economically by her leaders will loose faith and have only fate to look forward to. Service to humanity, to fatherland, with love, strength and faith has become ‘mouthology’ (rhetoric) because…

The labour of our heroes past is now in vain, this is not the Nigeria that they or any of us envisaged but indeed it is the Nigeria we deserve. Because we all got here somehow, it was not the job of spirits, we got to this point of decay where the National anthem is no longer sang in schools instead like slaves that our kids have become in the assembly grounds the sing the hymn “we shall overcome someday”.

The dreams of our heroes past are nightmares now…

Let me end by the last stanza of the national anthem “one nation bound in freedom, peace and unity”. The type of peace in the Northeast? What manner of freedom, that of association, speech…when journalists have become government lackeys and security personnel prowl the streets looking for treasonable ‘felonists’ like me when robbers and assassins operate in freedom, and peace from security operatives and unity from a fearful populace.

Is Nigeria really united…? When virtually the un-dividable the North is in bits and pieces, the South confused, Southwest kinsmen fighting each other, the Southsouth suffering an optical illusion, the Southeast with more River Niger bridges on paper than in reality, and less I forget gullible the Middle has been kept belted.

It is a sad day ahead for this nation, whether a buharist or Jonathanian, if we fail to wake when our mates are waking; else we may wake up to discover yesterday we were Nigerians, and tomorrow…what we will be–Only time will tell

Advertisements

By Prince Charles Dickson

The Almighty God will give us the best
He will give us what we deserve
If GEJ wins hurray but if he looses God has been very kind to him
Awolowo died without being president for one day, or hour that he so craved and begged for.
MKO died fighting to be President.
How many persons becomes President in a nation of 170 Million in every four years?

Precisely nine years ago I was guest to the Daura born General Buhari, at his home in Kaduna. The man who by his nature has divided Nigeria, across shades and opinion, ask Soyinka, ask Obasanjo, whether Christians are talking or Southerners are– or the Northern establishment is talking, you feel the ting,…ask me and I will tell you everyone is right and equally wrong in same measure.

The essence of this admonition is not to support, defend or malign the General, but simply an admonition.

On that day nine years ago, I interviewed in his capacity as then presidential candidate of the now defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party ANPP, and was ‘just’ 63 years, even at that point his age was still a matter of concern of debate. Ask Mallam Nasir El-Rufai.

Buhari11

Speaking with the General was rather a pathetic journey into why Nigeria cannot seem to move forward, while I talked to a couple of his lieutenants it was obvious from their personal opinion that the General will not be the President except a miracle happens…. A lot has changed today and he is coming under the slogan ‘change’, he maintains old associates, but it looks a different ball and there seems to be optimism around his current party.

In that encounter the retired but not tired General lamented the situation of the country, he told me that by simply logic and everyday living he could not understand why a nation that has earned more in the last seven years than it did in its whole existence is poorer for it. He blasted an energy reform that cannot provide a steady electricity supply for 12 hours and when it tried to give 3, 4 hours of such it was punctuated by 12-15 minutes intervals of darkness. Today the situation remained largely the same.

He spoke with passion, he spoke like the elder statesman he is, on Northern agitation for power then, the General’s view was that the ordinary Nigerian wanted food, clothing, shelter, security of his life, and property if he had any. Not the nonsense of North/South-South or East agitation.

I asked Mr. Buhari if he was going to probe “Big Brother Nigeria aka Obj. He stated that he was not obsessed with a probe of this and that, but as a pious Muslim he then swore to me that he would not turn a blind eye to any official complaint against Obasanjo backed by documentary evidence.

On IBB, he would not say much but then he smiles, “as colleagues at the Council of Former Heads of States, we are friends no wahala.” You could but notice that never will a marriage between Buhari and IBB occur, they are birds of distinctly different plumages.

On being a power broker, he said “Oh no, I am not that kind of person”.

I tried to decipher the man behind the mask. Inside his eyes I saw a man that could instill a form of discipline into the system, I saw a man that could provide a leadership that would make sure that one does not urinate by the roadside, that the Police does not collect money to buy pen from complainants before they can write their statements. But this was 2006, and even now its 2014!

We could not have finished our 30 minutes conversation without discussing accountability and then it was same sad Nigeria as Mr. Buhari lamented on how his own local Government spent N40m in welcoming the State Governor and of that sum N1m was spent purchasing packaged Nylon water.

The man I spoke with sure believes in something, and that’s where Nigeria needs to get it, we need to believe in something, though in the years after that encounter I was part of his team attacked in Zaria, and people have continued to remain divisive over his comments, be it on sharia, corruption or not running again for president. He believed in his pursuit, which has taken him to CPC, and now APC.

And incidentally this is one of many reasons I felt that would deny Mr. Buhari that coveted sofa in Aso Rock, Nigeria is always producing accidental public servants El-Rufai said so, and could not be wrong. Sadly, those seeking the office as a result of conviction, to try and leave a mark, never get it.

It’s 2014, Mr. Buhari is 72, a lot has changed, this is his fourth attempt at the coveted office, like probing Obasanjo, will he look up Jonathan if we have evidence that the otuekean stained his hand with chocolate from our cookie jar.

How is it now that the man that will not condone corruption be in the same kernel with questionable characters?

Maybe we stick with the new learning that his association with the ‘goons’ in today’s All Peoples Congress, APC, which is the same difference with the Peoples Democratic Party PDP is out of necessity, applying the political rules of using what is available. Anyway a political party is a conglomeration of all sorts, so it is not Mr. Buhari’s fault.

Much debate centers that just like Obasanjo is writing his memoirs; Mr. Buhari should be doing that too…Nigerians gravitate on religion, Muslim|Muslim ticket, North|South dichotomy, others wonder, why not a Fashola|Kwankwanso, Tambuwal|Fashola, Kwankwanso|Amaechi, or something even better…

But with some 55 days away, I can stand on my foot and say, none of both men have a grasp on the Nigerian malice, none is an Obama, neither are they any messiah, the problems are beyond these gentlemen whom many love to hate.

However, in local parlance we say, “na wetin bird chop e go take fly”, I cannot sit on the fence, its either Buhari or Jonathan, are we anywhere near change—Only time will tell.

December 16th, 2015.

Dr. Goodluck Jonathan,
THE PRESIDENT,
Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria

Your Excellency Sir,
Please do permit us to wish you a very blissful and Merry Christmas. With utmost respect to your person, and the office you occupy as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, we will like to simply introduce ourselves as citizens of Nigeria, variously domiciled in many parts of the world, but with a single conscientious desire to see that our nation come out stronger than it has ever been in years to come. We are simply CONCERNED CITIZENS who takes the privilege of our patriotism to avail your office of our concerns.

Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan

Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan

Mr President sir, you are well aware of the enormous security challenges in different parts of Nigeria, especially the Northeastern region, where Boko Haram has become a ‘Terror Nation’ unleashing untold horror on the population. Boko Haram, we know, is a socio-cultural, econo-political and tribal-induced religious conundrum, that has defied every sense of justification or understanding. Be that as it may, we are also aware that the insurgency have been fought without the courage, zeal, zest and fortitude required to dislodge such ragtag militancy. Our military often give reasons why they have failed severally to end the crisis. We are of the strong opinion that the sponsors are politicians within the rank and file of your government with external support, exactly what you have publicly adduced to at different times.

There are enough evidence to show from reportage of the Boko Haram insurgency that our military hardwares and weaponry always get into the hands of the ragtag army of insurgency, and no one has been brought to book on this. It is perceptible, and very apparent that Nigeria is NOT ready to engage Boko Haram. No nation is worth its existence if it cannot fight internal aggression within. How could such a nation subdue external incursion?

Our problems are much more than the aforementioned sir. Corruption has become socially endemic and systemic in our nation that prides itself as the fulcrum of African greatness. The myriads of our problems, however frightening they may be, can be surmounted if the WILL and COURAGE is there to engage them head-on. All our problems are self inflicted. They are MAN-MADE! If they are self-afflicted, it then means we have enough capacity within ourselves to address and subdue it. If we fail, which is palpably manifest presently, then we have morally failed.

In the light of this, we the citizens of Nigeria, have found the need to rally round ourselves as NIGERIA COALITION FOR FREE AND FAIR ELECTIONS (NICOFFE) to demand that you use your good office as the President of Nigeria to ensure we hold the General Elections billed for February, 2015, and make it FREE and FAIR. We believe that holding that elections will give faith to the constitution and integrity to your government. We have heard about the proposition demanding extension of your term under Emergency Rule to allow you put some policies in play. However, a strong argument should ridicule that since GOVERNMENT IS A CONTINUUM.

As it is today, we have the presidential candidates and their Vice for the two (2) major political parties in Nigeria declared to us. It should now be left to Nigerians to listen to where the contestants for the highest office in the land are planning to lead us for the next four (4) years. Our ears and eyes are on the ground to read between the lines of their manifestos to decide who to vote for in 2015.

You have done your best in the last four (4) years, and posterity is there to judge you on that. If we hold free and fair elections in February, 2015, and you win again, it then means the people have invoke another four (4) years confidence in you. And we wish you all the best on that. As it is now, the only legitimate thing to do is to give us Nigerians the opportunity to hold a General Elections in 2015, and allow simple wisdom to prevail.

Please do know sir, we hold your office in high esteem.

May the good Lord bless Nigeria and Nigerians everywhere. Amen

Signed NIGERIA COALITION FOR FREE AND FAIR ELECTIONS (NICOFREE)
Olu G. Adeyinka (Administrator)
Arodudu Oludunsin Tunrayo (Secretary)
Aliyu O. Musa (Exco)
Adekunle Al Miftau Adeite (Exco)
Iyabo Ughojor (Exco)
Alao I. Zangalo (Exco)
Bissy Koya (Exco)
Akin Ajayi-Obe (Exco)
Hajara A Bello (Exco)
Busuyi Oloye (Exco)
Ayodeji Atiroko (Exco)
Gbenga Adalumo (Exco)

By Prince Charles Dickson

Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Her name, simply Mama Ebuke, an Ebonyi woman, she has known nothing but suffering carrying wares from one street to the other, if she’s not on Tafawa Balewa street, she’s on Ahmadu Bello way, and on that fateful day, she was on the meat sellers’ axis of the now Old Terminus market…That was the last…She is dead!

Mama Fidelis, she is Miango, of the seven tubers of yam she regularly carried on her head, rain, sun, and shine…only one was hers as a profit, so even if she sold four, she still had three more to go if she was to make a profit, on a good day, she would do three or four runs, and that would be an approximate of three hundred naira to the purse, with five kids, that was her routine. She died as a result of the blast…whether it was a bomb blast, suicide or homicide bomber, a parked car of female in hijab is inconsequential.

You could blame the society, lazy husbands, and failed institutions…Both woman died less than three minutes walk from the spot where a bomb blast occurred in the same city of Jos, Plateau state, North Central Nigeria in May, killing several hundreds.

Barely weeks earlier, it was Umar who died, he had gone to make the obligatory Friday prayer, after bidding his wife goodbye. His wife and daughter had come to his small shop near the Emir’s palace to greet him. He grumbled and grumbled that it was time for prayers. They left and at least they would see at home…Umar had just married Aisha last year and had Fatimah, the first child of the marriage. That was the last both wife and daughter saw of the man of the house.

Umar was victim of the Kano Mosque bombing…same city where many have died…many ordinary Nigerians, all but not one politician or leader.

Several thousands of Nigerians would spend Christmas as Internally Displaced Persons, no hope, no hopeless, and far from their usual little comforts of life as peasant farmers, traders, and guess what life goes on…

So really what kind of life goes on–That is the subject of my admonition. In the last two weeks, it has been one political party primary after the other, majorly the Peoples Democratic Party PDP and the All Peoples Congress APC, with the presidential exercise ending the trail.

While political parties did their thing, in all but approximately 140 different locations across the 36 states, it included two very special primaries held at the ASO ROCK Villa, two other major gatherings of who is who in the Eagle Square, and the Teslim Balogun Stadium.

There were several scores of governorship contests that held in several stadia and hotels, add that to the State Houses of Assembly primaries by selections and delegates elections–the Senate, Representatives and you can add the numbers.

The fallout were that in the lower chambers of the National Assembly for example almost 15 legislators are not coming back…like Abike Dabiri or that Ndoma, the Senate don is gone–Maybe interesting is the fact that in Plateau, the Berom dynasty is about to begin or continue, and in Sokoto state, in-laws will slug it out via Father and son-law.

And in Lagos, it will be “shun” of the soil versus “settler” in Ambode versus Agbaje. Or that in Rivers state it will be Dame Patience’s adopted son Wike vs Amaechi’s anointed.

While all these are the highlights, Nigerians continued to be decimated by numbers through avoidable deaths.

Those of us still alive took to social media, remained in public parliaments and humor zones with palmwine, peppersoup and enough hatred and ignorance accompanying the opera to marshal out our arguments along divided lines of ethno-jingoist paraposim. The lines very clear, “you don’t like Buhari, you will never like him, and if you hate Jonathan it is as simple as that, you can’t love him”.

Our Otuekan son Jonathan and our beloved Northern son Buhari, and we continued the debate, defining and redesigning good governance–While the truth remains that all these are products of a nearby general elections, and the political airspace naturally is on heat; We simply forgot that no politician has been blown up by bombs or are really bothered about you.

No politician has been attacked in a Church, Mosque or by male or female suicide bomber, on the contrary the venues of the bazar has been protected to the teeth by those meant to protect us…

In the last one year, several Mama Ebukes, Mama Fidelis, Umars, Shehus, Bankoles and more have been killed and no one cared, the Chibok girls will spend this Christmas and barring any miracle, life would simply go on—Let me end with the following lines by a girl who lost the mother to a blast in Nyanyan, near the Nigerian capital of Abuja early this year.

I hate you truly. Truly I do.
Everything about me hates everything about you.
The flick of my wrist hates you.
The way I hold my pencil hates you.
The sound made by my tiniest bones hates you.
Each corpuscle singing in its capillary hates you.
Look out! For! I hate you.

If this is who you really are, than I want you far…
If this is what a nation is, than I never want one…
You abandon me in my time of need,
Left me with nothing…

What comes around goes right around…
I looked for you and hell is what I found!
I should have been your princess with a crown instead; you treated me like I was your clown…

Betrayed me and left me with a frown!!
Look at my tears, and all the fears?

Till we get a pin on our buttocks, we continually act out our ignorance, consoling ourselves, that its not as bad as it is, do our leaders really care, is there hope or we are just conscientiously stupid–Only time will tell.

By Prince Charles Dickson

A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots. –Marcus Garvey

A Tiv adage, says, a lizard that views a python with disregard will find itself in the belly of the snake. (Whoever disdains obvious danger will suffer dire consequences)

Last week was significant in the run up to the 2015 General Elections as most political parties sought to prepare the road by picking their candidates via various primaries. Well, I am not writing about political parties and their primaries or internal democracy or their candidates, no, not at all.

However my admonition for this week stems from an encounter with one of the candidates for the Federal House of Representative, in the course of discussing what he had to offer if he gets to the lower chamber, we veered into Nigeria’s history, so I asked the man, his thoughts on Nigerian leadership of the past, starting from the likes of Herbert Macaulay, Ernest Okoli, all the way down to Zik, Awo, and Sarduna, and I was shocked at his naivety about his own country.

It was so sad, as I had just despite an excruciating week, gone through Zik’s book for the umpteenth time–My Odyssey (1971) by Nnamdi Azikwe.

My take from ‘My Odyssey’ is where Zik says, “There is plenty of room at the top because very few people care to travel beyond the average route. And so most of us seem satisfied to remain within the confines of mediocrity.”

It occurred to me, not necessarily as a revelation but reinforced learning that we are still gravitating along the peripherals of mediocrity. A people, like Napoleon Bonaparte puts it, that has refused or not agreed on any version of past events, so we have no history.

Today’s Nigeria is a result of lies, half-truths, propaganda, misinformation, disinformation, revelation, grapevines, orange vines, and all sorts of vines, gist, rumours, gossips and whether you like it or not truth.

We are a nation with too many stories of the ‘gods’, too many secrets of nationhood.

Stories of the ‘god’, Abiola died, how and why, remain part of serial unknowns in Nigeria. Despite all the revelations, breaking news and new- breaking, we never will know the real truth. Rumours aplenty about the man Abiola, himself, his past and his rise and even in death will continue to mean different things to different people.

Like did Abiola pay to have a truckload of Bibles sunk in the high or is it low sea…Did Abacha pay him off, was he poisoned?

IBB killed Dele Giwa, my error, ‘allegedly’ killed. However, until the man IBB dies we will never know what really transpired, who really ‘wacked’ the gulf billions, does the man have properties in Israel, Rome, Paris and even in hell. What exactly is the truth is, we never may know.

Did he kill the junior officers in Ejigbo crash, how about Vatsa…?

On several occasions, we have been treated to the gist that Obasanjo is originally Igbo, with so much debate, who really cares about who he slept with and who he did not, story of the ‘gods’.

In our country, we hear, we gather; according to both informed and reliable sources, yet chances are that it may just be one big beer parlor induced contraption.

For all the efforts, years after we are still treated to several versions of the gospels of Bola Ige, Harry Marshal, Dikibo, Funsho Williams, the list is endless, add that to the Rewanes, Kudirats, you just wonder what a people.

Do you recall the hot story of how the late Abacha killed his first son in a plane crash because X did not follow Y but choose C, or how those Indians gave him apples?

How did Yar’adua die, who spoke to BBC, all those Jeddah information and signatures, how did they come about, is it true that his elder brother was injected, by whom, for what purposes?

Talking toady of Mr. President, the amiable man without shoes, so many gists about him, for example, that those kids in the family portrait belong to some other woman, or that he is being controlled by ‘you all know’ or the President drank ogogoro with alomobitters?

I do not know if it is true that there is an agenda to Islamize Nigeria, and funds are coming from A, B and F…same time Jonathan is Christianizing the power bloc and poverty is on the rampage dealing with Muslims, Christians and pagans alike.

In Nigeria, we elevate gossip to national discuss, fight ethnic wars based on unverifiable facts. In our national life, there are very thin lines between the fact and the truth. It may 6pm, but not 6th of August, and it may 6billion naira but not 6 persons. It’s often all muddled up.

Can anyone confirm that Tinubu smokes weed, I hear that Fashola also takes small too, and after all our generals and top shots also take Benelyn with codeine cough syrup to stay ‘high’ to the whims and caprice of an impoverished populace.

Death threats and brown envelopes won’t allow journalists get the job done, and then ethnic agenda and bias keep others mute, while others are stifled because the thief is practicing their religion.

Security operatives can’t do much because of officialdom. They beat cats until the cats accept to be leopards.

We are just doing the familiar dance. Nothing really is new, only more questions even when the old ones are still begging for answers. We are a nation with no history, very little pride.

Nigeria as is the case with the stories of the ‘gods’ remains a tale, every circumstance is situated to benefit a group of persons, and a section, a faith and we keep living on falsehoods.

Fact is that behind every rumour there is an element of truth, our case as Nigerians defies this statement, because for us, for every truth there is an element of lies.

For issues that are true, we have refuse to tackle them, we are threatened by the phenomena called Boko Haram, we are harassed by the conglomeration of politicians across party lines. “Nick Joaquín, in Culture and History says, “The identity of the Filipino today is of a person asking what is his identity.”

We have a generation that know nothing of their nation, either in the past or are showing signs that they possess a strong Nigerian identity, naivety is everywhere you go, for how long—Only time will tell

By Prince Charles Dickson

The owner of the body does not say that he is in no pain, while we insist on commiserating with him for his sleeplessness and his restlessness. (One does not commiserate with a person who does not admit his/her misfortune).

In Nigeria, it is not just about the more you look the less you see, the fact is that you rarely see much or see nothing. The system, if indeed we have any seems to defy all odds and logical reasoning. When you expect it to falter, fall and fail, it takes a curve and strangely comes on strong on the rebound. The only question is for how long do we have to rely on auto-piloting the ship of governance.

oil and gas

In the last three months, I have followed the Finance Minister Okonjo Iweala, who also doubles as Coordinating Minister of the economy, whatever that really means, say first we are not broke, and afterwards, announce austere measures and only last week blame governors for a depleted reserve.

I have also like most Nigerians witnessed yet another devaluation of the Nigerian naira, not that it had so much value in recent times, while the effect is yet to hit home and the austere measure take its toll, I have watched quite a few Nigerian debate over some Jewish looking symbol and the removal of Aramaic from the Naira notes–Follies of the heart, nay tell me that whether a Jewish mark or Arabic would increase the value of a naira note.

I have also seen and watched as the United States have drastically through a well planned and thought out system, dumped us with our oyel (crude oil), while they executed their plans, we stood still and watched, only mouthing diversification.

Now we are talking of luxury tax, increased custom duties, the Federal Inland Revenue Service is on the overkill in states, locking up businesses, left, right, ontop, center and below in the typical Nigerian fire brigade approach.

We are taught in primary school math that one plus one would equal two, however in these climes it could equal three, four, seven, and ten or even be zero. Every concerted effort at getting it right meets with unexplainable capitulation

In a strange twist typical of Nigeria, while poverty ravishes the land, it does not add up, millionaires are created everyday out of the system, few by dint of hard work, others by sheer Nigerian mathematics, it just happens for them it never adds up, they are poor in the morning and for doing next to nothing are rich in the evening.

Just be at the right place at the right time, know the right person and he better be ready to act right there for you and you are made–Just a supply of PDP wrapper or the supply of brooms for the APC, you may even get a contract for borehole in a community that already has four non-functional boreholes.

A local axiom says a cripple does not block the road with his legs, literally meaning that a person with a handicap should not challenge those who are not handicapped, but in Nigeria, a few thousands challenge plenty millions, because it never adds up, the maladministration, unfocused governance, fraud and waste continues, for example as symbolized by the cooking stove for rural women fraud.

One treats a disease; one does not treat death, my admonition every week dwells on the importance on us having to attend to problems before they become unmanageable. It gets worse by the day, the crude oil prices are falling, can’t we have more petroleum products refined at home, thus allowing for a drop in pump price which in turn would set about lower transport costs, lower food prices…and in that order.

Sadly we will not do that, we will keep on the hazardous walk of one step forward, two backwards, and endless motion without movement. I know it is a trap that the giant rat disdains that wrenches its testicles backwards. Dangers that one belittles are liable to cause great havoc.

Nigeria, be it himself, herself or itself, is a nation that thrives on breaking the rules, one of the major reasons for why we are at this point. We refuse to follow the set rules, the signs were there but we refuse to see it.

From a history of when the Naira outweighed the Dollar, the Naira donated to the Rand, and the Brazilian cruzero then was a debt currency, everything Chinese was inferior and India was known for its many gods, and cricket. Now we are miles apart, being deported and left to rot in jails in these places. From the point where just a Naira gave you plenty dollars to now a hundred dollar gives you plenty thousands, infact almost twenty thousand Naira.

From a history when most nations where VISA free, to a gradual decline where we beg, pray, fast and then if successful we add a thanksgiving for a VISA to Botswana.

The once upon a giant of Africa and big brother now begging to partner everyone for any project, electricity from Ghana to fuel from Niger, or Beans from Burkina Faso or what is it we wanted from Rwanda. Really our testicles have been wrenched backwards.

We killed everything that had an N–Nigerian Airways, Nigerian Railway, NITEL, Niger Dock, Nigerian Hospitals, Schools, Nigerian Police, a step at a time we sowed hate, theft, political violence and corruption, watered it and we are acting amused like we never saw it coming.

So mobile telephone is South African, the best hospitals are Indian, Egyptian, or German but not Nigerian.

Sadly now the dollar talks, Naira shivers, public officials loot in the dollar, and we citizenry spend Naira to cowardly defend them because of faith, creed, religion and ethnic cleavages. He/she is not a thief, if he/she comes from my own side of the wood or prays to my own ‘god’.

Fact is that we are where we owe the dollar because intemperate dandyism lands a youth in a creditor’s farm as a pawn. The oyel money go finish, and squandered resources will bring about destitution, except there is change, believing that by miracle of some sort there will be a turnaround is only a day dream, and for how long—only time will tell.