OPINION: Nigerian Brand of Politics and Our Brokenness, By Philip Onoh
In today’s fast paced world, if you are not leading, you would be left behind, and if you fall behind, it is likely that someone less capable, less creative, with little or no resources, and less prepared than you would quickly take your place, and speedily have you relegated
There’s no super country anywhere in the world now that didn’t have their low times at a certain time in history, be it politically, economically, infrastructural wise among others. But the difference today cannot be far-fetched from the fact that these countries drew valuable lessons from failing occasionally and are most unlikely to repeat the same mistakes that saw them crumble as a nation.
It suffices to say that failure is not falling to the ground, but remaining there once you have fallen. And the greatest failure of all is when a nation deliberately decides not to stand up again.
There is no gainsaying the fact that Nigeria is crumbling down the ladder of national prosperity and development. She does fall every micro second with a frequency seemingly irreparable. She has not only fallen, but has sworn never to learn anything from her dungeon of ineptitude.
How on this earth did Nigeria become the giant of Africa in the first place?
The white man’s wisdom of amalgamation of southern and northern protectorate of 1914 was the threshold of our problems as a nation. But worse even was the idea of the white man under severe pressure to grant her subjects self-governance. By so doing, handed over a weighted rock to an ant to sojourn with. Nigeria at point of independence was handed over to a set of desperate power mongers and politically disoriented black elites who also used a certain political gerrymandering as a viable tool to further deepen their leadership naivety and orchestrate an unworkable nation.
Would we have wished the white man to continue with his quest for Colonialism, hell no!, Did they hand over a resourceful nation into the hands of wrong minds, pretty yes!
Since independence, have Nigeria ever had a clear shot at nationalism? well, the only regime according to history that championed such quest at ensuring one Nigeria and a workable nation was the six months old (17th January – 29th July,’ 66) military government of late major-general Johnson Aguiyi Ironsi.
But the 42-year old seemingly innocent and abiding vision for Nigeria was welcome and breathed out by a gruesomely repellent murder of a national hero, the murder of Aguyi Ironsi at Lalupon, Oyo State by certain desperately blinded northern political heavy weight was the last stroke that broke the reconciliation defence line of a battered marriage. Since then, Nigeria has been crumbling from grace to grass in all aspects of ethnoreligious and socio-political endeavours, the very key factors that catapults nations to enviable heights.
It is safe to say that the very last time Nigeria had and experienced true and an ideal sense of leadership was all through the Colonial era, shortly after the demise of the white man’s direct press and control button era.
Every elected or appointed regime/government were fully committed to the task of denigrating our collective national struggles, thereby compounding every single problem and challenge they were brought to power to salvage. At this very juncture, the crumbling of a purported giant of Africa started in earnest.
When a nation fails to adhere to the instincts of development, democracy and civilisations, they become very vulnerable to a collapse in national structure, security and stability. And often, they lose the very foundations on which their prosperity was built. They also risk being subjugated to tyranny and hardship, and after a few years of recession, lose most if not all the benefits, status, reverence and respect they had acquired over several decades of experiment on development.
Squarely speaking, the above is the raw and unadulterated truth about the present status of Nigeria and Africa, generally. It is sad to say that Nigeria may have lost it all, no than to her brand of politics.
The Nigeria of present has procured as her most lucrative adventure, the expansionism of tyranny, political polarisation, discrimination and disintegration, masses oppression and subjugation. There is broad way and broad day public fund looting, collapse in education sector, and victimisation of all sorts amongst so many evil. In summary, the above stated is a forehand truth of the evil that has refused to unregister Nigeria in the international roaster of abandonment.
Taking a stroll into dissecting our illustrious past reveals that Nigeria was not just a super and superior power in intelligentsia and politics, we were the economic and population hero of Africa which brought about the appellation (another Japan in Africa) by the government of Harold Wilson of great Britain in the late 60’s when a part of us took the world by surprise by innovating creatively and crudely the technology of such era.
Nigeria has failed and fallen to the mud, but most annoyingly is the fact that she’s deliberately refused to stand up again, one may aver that the reason is simply because most of our leaders have first class honours in global incompetence, mediocrity and ineptitude index.
In conclusion, the only viable, dependably tested and vetted antidote to the extinction of the name and nation Nigeria is having a leader with a clear vision to pioneer and inject the political will of resources appropriation and management and astute leadership into the arteries and veins of our national structure, since our problems are those of leadership and management, any panacea short of this, would spell more extinction factors to our global stance.
Hence, Nigerians must wake up and set in motions for actions, because the nakedness of our nation’s brokenness requires much more than we’ve given already, if we continue to remain on the path of failure without significant outputs to get working again, then we are currently enjoying our best days and Just about to be plunged into Hades.
There’s just one way to kick start the process of regaining our lost glory – since corruption is the enemy that has milked away our vast human and financial resources, government must tackle that first by implementing a law that spells death to corrupt officials if convicted.
Implemented projects must be strictly supervised to stipulated standards. Our education system must be given global standard curriculum and seriously overhauled to meet and address global challenges and the needs of globalisation.
Our overpopulated youths must be engaged resourcefully by the government through various social schemes of human capital development and management. This would be a way to tackling and fighting insecurity and unemployment to a standstill. Our dilapidated infrastructures much be awaken and resuscitated to pave ways for well to do investors. Most importantly, our over dependence on Niger-Delta soil must be curbed, hence our economy must be seriously diversified to welcome other means of revenue generation.
Finally, nobody claims any monopoly of political wisdom. This writer may not have offered the best panacea for our nation’s resuscitation. But the above stated suggestions are not bad ideas. It is simply a thesis upon which other patriotic citizens may offer better ideas on moving Nigeria forward.
Whatever thing anyone does, especially Nigerians, it should be aimed at remedying the disgraceful public image of Nigeria in the international waters of global politics.
Philip Onoh, a Nigerian sent this piece from Ebonyi State.