With incomes stagnant and poverty, especially in the rural north, at shockingly high levels. Sadly, our beloved country Nigeria risks sliding into ungovernability. Like all nation-states before it, Nigeria is now confronted with stark existential choices — stay the current course of self-delusion or boldly grapple with deep-seated unresolved issues that threaten to disintegrate it.
The politics of men is rife in really fatal stakes.
Edited By 9NewsNigeria Assistant To The Editor/iReporter: @emeriewilliam
As expected, a leader would do so much to insulate himself from the dangers of undue exposure; it could be the lifeline to staying alive. He would need to sit easy, too, in full sovereignty not impelled to —always —look over his shoulder in mortal fear of latent attacks. Uneasy, they say, lies the head that wears the crown.
Unarguably, Africa’s biggest economy—and home to roughly one in six Africans—is in a deep malaise, with incomes stagnant and poverty, especially in the rural north, at shockingly high levels. Sadly, our beloved country Nigeria risks sliding into ungovernability.
Like all nation-states before it, Nigeria is now confronted with stark existential choices — stay the current course of self-delusion or boldly grapple with deep-seated unresolved issues that threaten to disintegrate it.
The country of over 200m people has had mountains of problems, from corruption and ethnic strife to a string of military dictators. But it has been democratic since 1999. And parts of it are thriving, especially in the south-west. Lagos, the commercial capital, is home to vigorous banks, a hip technology scene, and a flourishing film industry, Nollywood. One of the problems with us is that Nigerians have very short memories.
Interestingly, of all the cards that I carry around with me, none is a political party membership card. I have never and do not belong to any political party in Nigeria. Nor have I ever belonged to one or aspired to belong to any. My attitude to political party membership is pretty much the same as that towards organized religion. For the avoidance of doubt and by reason of providence, I am a Christian of the Baptist background and at some point, I experienced the modern-era church that is the ‘Pentecostal’, I’d like to remain reasonably close to my creator without the kind of display of hypocrisy and extremism that I witnessed.
I however respect and admire those who go to either mosque or church every week. My liberal attitude to organized everything has little or nothing to do with either my estimation of those who join and lead political parties or subscribe to organized religion.
Tragically, the twin evils of religion and ethnicity that are supposed to be more of a blessing to human-beings, have become a very dangerous weapon in the hands of manipulators. Hidden behind the misadventures of the recent past few months are the combinations of religious bigotry, hypocrisy, extremism, exuberance without corresponding wisdom, and political intolerance.
It is against this backdrop that I will like to place on record, my reservation about the inconsistencies and hostilities from both the failed politicians hiding behind religion and our respected faith-based leaders.
In particular, the statement concerning the desirability of the inauguration on May 29, credited to our revered Arch Bishop Emeritus John Olorunfemi Onaiyekan.His Eminence John Cardinal Olorunfemi Onaiyekan, Archbishop Emeritus of the Abuja Catholic Archdiocese, had said that it “makes no sense”, to swear in President-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu before the hearing of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal is concluded.
With profound respect to His Eminence, I beg to disagree with the unrealistic provocative expectations because nature abhors a vacuum. What exactly are the options available to us as a nation?
Or is it a case of revisiting the issues of Interim government as championed by the likes of Olusegun Obasanjo, Afe Babalola, and some others hobnobbing with strange elements? Your Eminence,
Sir! Find below some of the questions agitating the minds of some of us:
1. Does it make sense for the privileged few hiding behind religion to be collecting tithes and offerings from the poor in a very poor country like Nigeria with more than one hundred million people in multidimensional poverty and the collectors always showcasing their opulence?
2. What is more, is it not unreasonable for the same set of people who lost their voice in 2007, shenanigans called elections, when the foundation where we are today was laid by former President Olusegun Obasanjo who brazenly rigged election for his handpicked candidates both Umaru Musa Yar’Adua and Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan. The swearing-in took place as scheduled even though Atiku Abubakar and the current President Muhammadu Buhari, were both in court. Interestingly, Yours truly was physically present in all the courts’ sessions from the Court of Appeals headed by Justice James Ogebe to the Supreme Court.
3. Does it make sense for the pulpits to be converted into a political podium and the supposedly/respectable religious leaders to openly identify with a particular candidate promoting divisiveness encouraging disobedience, spreading falsehood and deceitfulness leading to ungovernability?
4. Does it make sense for pastors misrepresenting God to continue weaponizing ethnicity and religion because their preferred candidate Peter Obi lost the election?
5. Does it make sense to make reckless, inflammatory and unreasonable statements capable of increasing our fault lines? 6. Does it make sense to see those who were jubilating when the current president C-in-C of the federal republic of Nigeria Muhammadu Buhari signed the Electoral Bill into law, suddenly realized that there is a need for review retroactively when their favored bigoted candidate from Agulu ‘Yes Daddy’ crooner failed woefully?
Finally, does it make sense that those who once insisted it is wrong to make Laws that will take effect over matters which predated them are now insisting the Electoral Laws should be amended now to ensure that Nigeria’s President-elect Asíwájú Bola Ahmed Bola Tinubu is not sworn in before the Election Tribunal’s verdict?
Did it ever cross our minds to imagine the consequences of setting the nation ablaze? These and more are the questions agitating the minds of some of us. Ironically, the same people we looked up to for the teachings of the Lord have become buccaneer priests and have balkanized the church hiding their preferences in religious opinions. The road to Sudan must be avoided at cost.