Monday 31 January 2011

Nigeria: The Revolution has already begun

The cry for revolution is shrill

I have suffered to my hurt and discomfort the many cries for revolution in Nigeria. Everyone seems to have an opinion about change for Nigeria; be it splitting up the country to sending the current crop of leaders to an early grave in order to clear the air for new growth.

Once again, it can be so easy to list all the problems with Nigeria, the great potential squandered by the selfish interests of those who on assumption of power are too intoxicated to walk straight, think right and act determined for the progress of the country.

The spirit of profligacy and kleptomania possesses the leaders to the point that rampant acquisition beyond needs leaves their bank accounts heavier than the treasury of the country – we have been sorely lead and badly served, indeed, something needs to give.

We are NOT like the others

There are some that wish for the clear-out that Jerry Rawlings offered Ghana with the execution of three of his predecessors, it did appear to purge Ghana of some of the poison and rottenness that was engulfing it, but Nigeria does not have a Jerry Rawlings.

The nearest example to that might have been Mohammadu Buhari in the early 80’s but in his zest to improve the country, it was slowly being turned into an Islamic police state, it prepared the way for even worse leadership that has held Nigeria hamstrung since.

One could say that the worst times in Nigeria were during the time of the military despot, Sani Abacha who by the grace of God expired in a sexual orgy which presaged the preparation of democratic rule just a year after in 1999.

Our ruler-ship is not homogenous

However, it is left for one to wonder about the ends of a revolution in Nigeria, we have not been under the cosh of or autocratic regimes like the Arabic states of North Africa where leaders have been in charge forever, chief amongst whom is Muammar al-Gadhafi of Libya. Nor have we suffered the false democracies of Uganda or Zimbabwe there has been a musical chairs of the ruling elite in Nigeria.

In some cases, they all seem to be of the same ilk, it is not like Nigeria has some popular leader of opposition in exile waiting to take the mantle of leadership when the revolution has toppled those in power.

The revolution talk is fraught with serious problems because the leadership clique is not homogenous, it is composed of competing interests regional, religious, political, economic and social.

None seem to have the wherewithal to coalesce for a common good because of egotistical megalomaniacs who only understand compromise and consensus in terms of the former being their lead and the latter being their view, none of which is negotiable.

After revolution comes anarchy

In other words, there might well be a revolution but no leader to reap the fruits of the revolution; we might well end up in anarchy with a rapidly deteriorating state of affairs as these competing interests jostle for position, opportunity, power and the do-or-die grab for the spoils.

We do need reform and change; we need a common goal for the good of Nigeria, preserving the entity and the identity that makes us proud Nigerians.

However, the good people have not stepped forward and for good reason many who might cannot bear the snake-pit of politics to sully their good intentions, plan and possibly progressive policies for Nigeria.

We are not suited for the usual revolutions

Nigeria is by no means ripe for a revolution, there are no components in place to make it the success we desire with blind optimism, we can do well to educate ourselves, participate fully in the democratic process we have, deign to hold the elected accountable and become better and coherent activists that demand positive action or expect the said leaders to resign in disgrace.

We are plagued with leaders of old who have refused to retire, whilst one cannot pray – death come swiftly and take them away, until we rise to assumed greater responsibility we would be belittled and patronised by those who through arrogance and hubris think they are the best gifts to Nigeria when they are in fact the worst things to be inflicted on our long-suffering people.

Your revolution is in RSVP

Pray, if you might, fast, if you will, but until we all take up the mantle of civic responsibility by registering to vote; selecting those we can trust and hold accountable; vote for those who have not tried to usurp the system, whose character is beyond reproach and competence is verifiably vouched for and stood to protect the voice of our collected efforts of choosing our leaders our revolution would be too far away in the future to grasp and too high an aspiration to attain.

Register | Select | Vote | Protect [1] without regrets your revolution by participating in democratic change for great change and accountability – the protection part does not end when the results are declared, it continues for the duration of the term of that elected representative and any other connected interest that should be working for the good and progress of the country.

Nigeria’s revolution is not in the template of marching the streets with civil disorder to upset the as it were status quo, our Green Revolution is in making the best of what we have now, take the democratic bull by the horns and not relenting until the will of the people is fully expressed and accepted in free, fair, credible and viable elections.

Our revolution has started already, are you in the move to change your country for the good?


[1] EiE NIGERIA: Register | Select | Vote | Protect


CodLiverOil said...

That was fantastic, really relevant, funny and above all else serious.

There is a very interesting post on the events in North Africa from a Nigerian perspective.
Click here

I have my reservations about these upcoming elections, hence my silence on the matter. We will see what happens this year...

I am more inclined towards Nigerian technocrats abroad (whose credentials are verifiable and who are less ethnically chauvinistic than home grown Nigerians), drawing up a blue print for national development, which governments will have to follow to achieve key milestones during their tenure. If the government is failing in it's task, they should dismissed from office and or new elections held so that those who are competent to govern are allowed to do so. That way something tangible can be achieved within the overall framework of something even more significant.

One of the major problems with these successive governments is that there is no consistency short term plans are drawn up with no overall guiding objective in mind. Which later governments shelve, or reverse, hence Nigeria is nowhere on the world scene, only engorging itself from the proceeds of hydrocarbon sales.

I agree Nigeria, can't follow the Jerry Rawlings solution, because there would be too many people slated to be gunned down. It would be better to bar them from political office and stop their meddling, more humane though more difficult to enforce.

Akin Akintayo said...

Hello CodLiverOil,

Thanks for the link.

Many have misgivings about the elections to be conducted this year but they are ahead of us not behind us.

Maybe it is blind optimism at work, we need to believe we can make something of what is ahead, rather than give up before it is done.

Again, it is not the customary revolution, but it is still has all the possibilities of being revolutionary through participation.


CodLiverOil said...

I stumbled upon this sophisticated skit on Nigerian Curiosity, and was impressed by the quality. I think you may enjoy it

Here is the link

Click here for a sophisticated promotion

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