By Chris Mustapha Nwaokobia
“No matter how long we choose to live in denial, the farthest road has an end, the worst disease has a lifespan, the greatest cheat and deceit will not forever blind, and the darkest night shall be swallowed by morning.” – CMN JNR.
In a few days this beleaguered estate shall be 59years old. In a few days the debate on why we should or shouldn’t celebrate 59years of independence shall be rife. In a few days politico-social cum economic analysts and critical social commentators shall inundate us with thoughts and opinion about the journey of the 59years old infant called Nigeria. And more than ever, the jigsaw as to WHY WE ARE WHERE WE ARE shall resonate.
In the first three parts of this series I laid bare the reason we are where we are. And repeatedly advocated we do the needful. Some operators of State have sought to know what the needful entails, and I hope they are sincere in their curiosity as we cannot continue to politic with the life of a nation so blessed (yet so poor), and we cannot continue to toil with the destinies of 200m people caught in the space called Nigeria.
To continue to live in denial and to undermine the huge foundational and structural challenge that confronts this Union is to deepen the low that places a massive price on our unity, and what lies beneath the jangling discord of a ‘forced and coerced togetherness’ rather than one that should be negotiated and agreed upon by the people, is too heavy to ignore, and we have continued to do so to our collective peril.
May I trouble your curiosity with seven incontrovertible puzzles that agitate sincere Patriots and Statesmen, if you consider yourself one, then let’s grapple with them..
- Why is Nigeria unable to resolve her political, social, ethnic, religious and structural contradictions even after 59years of ‘nationhood’?
- Why is corruption so endemic in Nigeria that every ‘Coupist’ latched on to it to sell their egocentric putsch to the people, and under civil rule (I deliberately opted for the phrase ‘civil rule’, rather than the word democracy, deal with it) every campaigner finds ‘we shall kill/fight corruption’ plausible. And why has corruption consistently defeated successive leadership in this clime?
- Why is Nigeria unable to forge a national ideology that must spur growth and progress? Why is our ‘nation state’ Topsy-Turvy, kamikaze and rudderless?
- Why is the most populous black nation in the world unable to challenge the black race and indeed our continent to great feats, whereas the individual ‘Nigerian’ citizen be they at home or in the diaspora are record breakers? Why is the Nigerian State unable to harness the exceptional Nigerian persona for greatness?
- Why does the Nigerian State nurse protocols and paradigms that engender mediocrity and lethargy? Why do we lower the bar with Quota system and the less than effective, efficient and effectual protocols we allow?
- Why is our infrastructural deficit benumbing, our healthcare system befuddling and shameful, our educational sector bewilderingly uneventful, rudderless and uncreative, our economic sector comatose, our politics banal and lacking in patriotism and ideology, our leaders egocentric and profligate, our space filled with hate and bitterness, and why is religion and ethnicity a curse rather than blessing?
- And why are human lives and property of little or no value to many including leadership? Why does the Nigerian State not place proper premium on human lives?
Grapple with the heptagonal challenge above, but please be patient with me, as l promise to prognosticate on the way forward in the concluding part of this series, let’s make the 1st of October, 2019 a date, haply we shall commemorate our 59th anniversary with a blueprint on the pathway to the Nigeria of our dreams, hoping that leadership shall do the needful. May God Bless Nigeria.
TO BE CONT’D.
Chris Mustapha Nwaokobia Jnr
Convener COUNTRYFIRST MOVT.