By Abiola Olaifa
I love Nigeria. Nigeria is at the top of my heart; full of human and natural resources, with the best in educated and enlightened people. I have strong believe in the potentials and ability of the country as one of best in the world. However, Nigerians have continually betrayed my trust.
Nigerians are very selfish; they know the right things to do for the progress of all, but always choose not to. We always concentrate on self-progress and not collective-progress of all, no country works like that. A selected few swindle the wealth of the rest to themselves and this has continued over several decades, with no sign of abating. Those we trust with our affairs are the worst for it. Despite our level of education and international exposure, we have continued to be enmeshed in tribal and religious conflicts, killing ourselves for selfish reasons. They say that you do not live next to a river and bath with sand, that is not the case in Nigeria, not only do we bath with sand, we also sleep in it. Our years of education amounts to nothing more than ego-boosting chauvinism, it has been a game of everyone for himself alone and not the other way round.
The average Nigerian has been failed repeatedly, they have been left alone in the rain for so long, soaked with no shelter. They have not received any support from the government they so much believe in. Everyday of their lives is a struggle for survival, of what use is the government that cannot provide the basic things of life to its people. Nigerians have been made to suffer more than any of their contemporaries in other countries, they have been repeatedly denied their basic rights, they make and fix their own road themselves, provide their own security as the police cannot be trusted, they have to access and pump their own water, they have to source their own power supply and other basic amenities. Of what good is a country that cannot provide these amenities for its citizens?
The world can see the potentials in Nigeria, the prime minister of England was in Nigeria recently, and gave a very inspiring speech about the potentials in the country. He said the future is in Nigeria, but Nigerians have not seen the future yet, we are confused and do not know where to start from. Nothing so far is working in Nigeria. We are all glad that the world is praising the potentials, but our leaders are clueless. President Jonathan wants Nigeria to work going by his facebook wrangling, but he does not seem to have a clue of what to do to make Nigeria work. He has already spent 2 months in office with no visible evidence of what he stands to do to turn things around. His only noticeable project so far is trying to have his tenure increased to 6 years term, how absurd.
Corruption is still everywhere you go in the the country; every one wants to eat out of the national cake. Nigerians now see corrupt practises as a way of life, we all must cheat or be cheated. We take two steps forwards and four steps backward, all our efforts to turn things around have met rigid opposition from those benefiting from these joke. Innocent people are assassinated on a daily basis for no just reason and the country’s image is stained by the blood of these innocent people. I think it is getting late to turn things around in Nigeria, corrupt politicians easily slaughter anyone trying to stop their schemes. We are in a huge mess that many of us have underrated.
We are not investing in research to develop the country; we believe more in God to come and clear our mess, which He has not created in the first place. We continue to inflict unnecessary pain on ourselves, fighting and causing undue harm, killing our friends and neighbours because of tribal and religious differences, which should be what binds us together. There is division everywhere you go, the government is divided, the religious houses are divided; its blood for blood. The tribes are divided against themselves;the Ibos see the Hausa as the enemy and the Yorubas can’t stand the Ibo; but why can’t we all come together as one to develop our land? A Hausa president is seen as belonging to the Hausa and the Yoruba president belonging to the Yorubas. Let us not forget the aftermath of the last presidential election, with the northern youth slaughtering every one in sight because President Jonathan had been declared the winner. How much crazier can it get?
These abnormalities have continued over a long period, and there seems to be no solution at hand. We are all just existing and chugging along in this joke we call a nation. It is mind buggling to know that despite our wealth and potentials, average Nigerians have suffered this much over such a long period of time with no recourse in sight. I am bitter for Nigeria and I am angry at our leaders who have put us in this mess, I am bitter for my children whose future has not been protected, as a matter of fact…..I give up on Nigeria. To be continued.