100 Days of Jonathanistan . . .
Patriotic Musings ‘n’ Missives of an Inspirationally Dissatisfied Citizen
Today marks 100 days in office of the Jonathan Ebele Goodluck Azikwe led administration and Nigeria is not working! And the naked truth is that the nation is on a brink; a very edgy brink.
The sitting President has actually spent over 500 days in same office both as acting president during the dying days of Umaru Musa Yar’Adua and the incumbent after his demise on May 5, 2010. This gives no margin for any form of excuse of ‘settling down’ before the Nigerian populace starts reaping the dividends of this democratic process. Even if we give room for magnanimity (as no one expects quick solutions to these problems) and blab over old wife fables that the problems he inherited are humongous, the first few words, decisions and choices of a man shows you both what he is capable of becoming/doing and what he is sure not able to give/deliver. And for our Southerner President (as the divided map of the nation after the election is a national disintegrating slur and reality – we all will have to contend with that for some time now), his first few steps has definitely shown us what he is capable of doing and becoming and what he is sure not able to give to the Nigerian people and deliver for the great posterity of the nation. How a weekend will look like, we start reading the signs right from the Friday’s evening. This Yoruba adage simply defines this scenario: omo ti o ba ma je asamu ati kekere l’oti ma s’enu samu-samu. Meaning that a child that will become vibrant and vociferous, you start seeing the signs right from his tender age. This, we have definitely not seen in Goodluck’s 100 or over 500 days in office, as there is nothing to signal the direction of spot-on connective policies to salvage the bleeding soul of the nation.
In my irrational calculation, the foolishness of which we would permit in this mordant epistle (as we are all ‘happy, smiling, suffering n foolish’ recipient of the world infamous award), Uncle Joe will spend (unless by cunningly gushing down our throat of the sweetened coloured meaty elongated single term) one thousand four hundred and sixty (1,460) days during this promised one term stay in office. And if we decide to put that on the percentage scale we have spent around 7% of GEJ days in office and I don’t know if there is anything to show for the worth of those stretch that we have profligately expended in cooling off in Obudu; politicking of the post-election violence; running hundreds of millions worth of congratulatory ads for all portion of the mythical national cake duly shared in positions even to as low as special assistants/advisers; returning non-performing and appointing callow and gauche politicians as gate keepers of our national heritage; shouting and debating over the pre-election promised minimum wage; questioning and making barren noises over the religiosity of a system of banking; drain media warring of our Boko Haram pillory; politicisation and muddling of the nation’s judiciary system; the strategic incapacitation of EFCC; reducing to ruin the economy of the state through our debt rising profile and over bloated remunerations of the executive and legislature and so on and so on.
The truth is that the list is endless and the mere thought of the depth of the shattering impact of all of these on our national life and psyche, both now and in the days ahead is both demoralizing and hope butchery.
The ‘rented’ lyrics that sprouted the whole of our desecrated atmosphere some months back was that of ‘The breath of a fresh air’. And apart from the thick stench of ‘paraga’, ‘eja’ or ‘shepe’ of the evenly sprouting army of unemployed youths in our street corners and garages; the stinks of our petrifying roads; the scum of our epileptic power supply; the repels of life quality in our suburbs and slums; and the scum of our dilapidating social infrastructure, I doubt if there is anything fresh in this air. And amusingly we have just taken just one whiff of this cunningly concocted concoction and already we have started coughing sporadically with thick odious mucus and phlegm that we don’t hanker after, but will definitely have to swallow in bitter recriminations.
The muscle we have not built over time in the place of preparation we sure cannot deploy as a tool or resource in the days of battle. It is periphrastically hard to say for me and sure bitter to swallow for others that I have no faith in this administration. We sure have not seen the end of issues yet and at best we can just keep our fingers crossed, with hope in ‘time’ that the days ahead will speak. It was George Goethals (1858 – 1928) who said and I quote:
‘Faith in the ability of a leader is of slight service unless it be united
with faith in his integrity and justice.’
This ark of state of ours cannot be built from this scrap of an abandoned vehicle as this, nor on a faulty foundation of decrepit blocks of luck and maintaining the status quo.
On the morning (21 August, 2011) of the liberation of Libya from the stranglehold of Ghaddafi, it was reported in Eastern Tripoli that the entire neighbourhood were woken by the imam at the local mosque singing the national anthem of the pre-Gaddafi monarchy. That is not same with our Captains of the Temple here in Nigeria. From our ‘daddy’ that told us whom to vote for, to our ‘bishop’ flying presidential jets across the land and blowing the whistle of ‘his’ Niger Delta brother, it is a shame that the kingdom has been dragged along this path in our nation. And with an average of two (2) churches and one (1) mosque each on our streets and roads nationwide, I am waiting to see when our idiotic religiously shaped minds will deliver a disciplined and corrupt free nation. With the Arab Spring advancing across the Middle East and North Africa, our Muslim neighbours go to mosque to pray for the change they desire from God Almighty, when they are done they gather themselves to hit the streets to demand for the change they have besought God. But my people – laugh-out-loud! We go leave matter for God o! What a nation! Rich country, happy-foolish-poor people!
O foolish Nigerians! Who has bewitched us I pray to ask.
Obasanjo proposes third term agenda – let us pray to God to truncate it.
Massive rigging of 2007 elections in favour of PDP – God will frustrate the tokens of liars
Turai hijacked power when Yar’Adua was in Saudi – let us pray for God to heal him
Jonathan proposes single term of 7 years – It will not see the light of the day IJN
Salami suspended by NJC and retired by GEJ – God will scatter their counsel and justify him
Boko Haram bombs UN building and other places – God will render their camp desolate
Flood ravages our city – God will stay the hand of evil in our land
Nigerians are being killed in Libya – God will deliver them
Police are killing and collecting bribe – God will give them a new spirit
Killings and carnage going on in Jos – we restrain the force of evil in our land
What a people!
The bottom line is we have been conditioned over the years to be socially lazy, living absent minded and nonchalant in a nation where we jointly hold the commonwealth. We fear for our lives and would rather live with the fear, living servitude than die. And if anyone would ask for my number one opinion on what should be our prayer request in all the comatose religious houses in the nation; it would be for the power and courage to face and conquer the fear of death and truly live freely.
(And to all my people who insisted that it is a biblical injunction and commandment for us to pray for leaders in authority. No wahala. We would keep praying but with a promise that our eyes will not be closed, our mouths will not be shut, our legs will not be tied to chase those caught stealing and our hands will not be roped to stone same.)
No wonder when the people’s general cried on the eve of the election having sacrificed all, my generation said he was too old to cry; tagged him the weeping general, but I don’t know for how many of us now for whom it really hurts to laugh.
We dig our own borehole.
Generate our own power.
Fix the roads leading to our own houses and estates.
Have our own private family doctors.
Build our own schools or send our children to ‘private’
Buy our own jet.
It’s simply a case of God for us all; every man to himself, whosoever the devil catches is life’s culprit. What a life!
Igba o lo bi orere
– Time does not go like a vista says the Yoruba nation. Our lot is definitely not just in God’s hand, but ours for the demand. And for me, the time is up for Nigerians to hit the street; particularly the teeming over 75% youth population. This is the generation of those who were born into this mess has so much been conditioned by this bondage living in Egypt that we do not know what it is like to live free in Israel.
And our demands are simple:
1. The restoration of Justice Ayo Salami as the President of the Appeal Court and a public-open investigation into allegations made against the former Chief Justice Katsina Alu
2. The call for a Sovereign National Conference
3. Constituted by credible Nigerians who have not been soiled by the mess of the past and chosen through an open referendum from all parts of the nation
4. To write a New Constitution for the nation that we can truly call the People’s Constitution
5. Fixing of the key infrastructures and project affecting development in the nation
6. Arrest and immediate prosecution of all those that have been named in the different bribery, corruption and embezzlement charges of EFCC, ICPC and so on (Siemen, Haliburton, Power Projects, BPE, Railway Projects, Police Affairs and many others that has been swept under the carpet)
7. Finding and prosecuting all those behind the different murder cases, killings and carnages; and bringing them to justice
I have always said it that when you employ a drunkard as the gate keeper of a distillery, it should not amaze you to come back to meet the gate of the factory wide opened, with ‘your’ man dead asleep from the stupor of the ‘awoof’ under his supposed protection. This is where we have found ourselves; the worst of us (both in competence and integrity) are ruling over the best of us and they are the gatekeepers of our national heritage and patrimony.
Nevertheless we are not going to loose faith. The thought and hope of the future is certainly a huge consolation of expected changes in the days ahead. No doubt there are those who scoff at the thought of tomorrow and the changes that comes with it. They continue living as if the present would be the pattern for the future by carousing in the day time; carousing in their own deception. Hmm, it is good we boldly warn and declare to such inglorious elements that whether they like it or not, Nigeria will come to its own-It is only a question of time.
And for this generation, if there is anything we would have to linger and anchor on, it is time. Faith in time (not in our over bloated religiosity and crammed rhetoric) and being radically progressive in our action and alertness, hopeful that time would justify our faith. The answers to our problems don’t lie beyond our reach.
The time to change course is now!