Buried heads

By Emma Maduabuchi on

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Buried heads     

Nigeria is currently at crossroads more than it had ever been since it was cobbled together in 1914 by a British soldier of fortune, Fredrick Lugard. In spite of this, it would seem that a great number of its politicians have not reckoned with the situation.

Since the start of the 2015 electioneering campaigns, the fixation of many politicians has been on how to win the election and mount the saddle of leadership. Many of them have threatened and warned that the elections, starting from March 28, must hold and the winner sworn in by May 29th.

Every other thing else has not merited their consideration. They have not cared to know what would be left of the country after the elections. They have not bothered to know whether there will still be people left for them to rule.

Meanwhile, careful analyses show that elections – whether Presidential election, National Assembly elections, Governorship elections, or even State Assemblies’ elections – are least of Nigeria’s problem at the moment. Many of the problems are multifarious and have remained unaddressed over the years, and the peoples have suffered under it, in an unworkable country that provides nothing tangible to a great majority of its citizens except for a tiny minority – the privileged few.

Instructively, the privileged few are those who hijacked power, fixed themselves up in strategic locations in the economy, and in the process have been stealing the country blind. For the generality of the people, they have seen the country diminish from a buoyant country that was sufficient in food production to an all-year-round importer of rice. They have equally seen a country diminished from an importer of brand new vehicles to one that now survives on used vehicles. Nigeria has gone down from a country in which its best soccer players played at home with foreign players coming to play in its League because of the strength of its economy, to one which its best talents now play abroad. Nigeria has become a country in which some individuals agreed among themselves that they must rule others by force and also force them to practice their own religion.

Worst of it all, Nigerians know that they have lived in a country where there is constant murder of people under every flimsy excuse, both by government and its agents and agencies, as well as by ordinary Nigerians such as represented by Boko Haram. Therefore, lots of innocent lives have been lost in the process, with many killed in cold blood.

Many Nigerians know that the country is confronted with plethora of foundational problems, especially its structure, and have commented about them. They know that the struggle for power at the centre has been a disuniting factor rather than a uniting factor as those in authority want them to believe. They had expected that the issue of the country’s structure would have been resolved before the elections were held.

Many of them, feeling threatened, have wanted the issues of relationships amongst the peoples, as well as the circularity of the country settled once and for all before the elections. But the politicians do not care; they did not want any of that. Elections and power is their main preoccupation.

Painfully, in spite of these problems, the power-mongering politicians have glossed over them. Instead, they, together with their hangers-on, have refused to treat the issues with the seriousness it deserves. And as has been the case over the years, they have buried their heads in the sand like the ostrich. They are expecting the people to also bury their own heads in shame.

Throughout Nigeria’s history, politician after politician; soldier after soldier have hoodwinked Nigerians this way – through propaganda and lies. They have made the people believe that solutions would be found immediately they ascended power. But that has always ended in an anti-climax for the people.

Again, the politicians are at their game; they are burying their heads in the sand, believing the people will not see through their pranks. But will the people also bury their heads believing the politicians will be different this time around?

One sad reality however is that by the way things are shaping up across the country, these politicians may wake up one day to discover that the country no longer exists for them to continue to exploit.


Posted on March, 11 2015

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