The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) has expressed displeasure at Nigeria’s “tale of conundrum” coupled with various crisis since her independence 57 years ago.
TUC in its independence message on Saturday, said Nigeria at this stage still “dances naked to the full glare of the whole world while its roof is on fire”.
It said though remaining as one country after 57 years was something to cheer about, “our staying together has been at the cost of innocent blood and outright violation of the fundamental rights of Nigerians”.
“Ordinarily it should not be out of place if we roll out our drums today to celebrate this feat, but we cannot, because like they say ‘you don’t participate in a dance competition when your house is on fire.’
“Nigeria is dancing at the market square naked to the full glare of the whole world when our roof is on fire,” TUC said in a message signed by Bobboi Kaigama, its president.
“This day should remind us of our heritage, the vision and struggles of the founding fathers, unfortunately, some have had cause to question the rationale behind the quest for independence in the first place.
“Our tale is that of a conundrum with insurgencies, collapsed educational system, gross unemployment, ritual killing, cultism, prostitution/rape, mass emigration, de-industrialisation, tribalism and nepotism, inept leadership, environmental challenge, infrastructural decay, gender issues, Badoo, kidnapping, YahooPlus, corruption and anti-graft, and a host of others,” it said.
Kaigama added that the pain Nigeria bears is a needless one “given the enormous wealth of human and natural resources God has bestowed to this country”.
He said Nigeria is not at par with many of the countries that attained their independence in 1960 “even when they do not have one-tenth of what we have in terms of human and natural resources”.
It said: “Our key functionaries and institutions must be made to work respectively and religiously like it is done elsewhere. Insecticides and deodorants have their roles. You cannot achieve result when you misapply the two liquids.
“We wish to appeal to the federal government to remember its ‘change mantra’.
“It makes no sense accusing and condemning the previous administrations for corruption only for the recovered money to be re-looted. Mere leaving a political party for the ruling party must not make anybody a saint.
“The world is watching and waiting for the pride of Africa and most populated black nation to blossom. The federal government’s economic recovery plan must not fail. No more excuses.”