By Kate Henshaw
That is the first line in the chorus of a popular tune which says, “ One day, One day, One day e go better for me, I go get money, I go get pikin, I know one day, one day, one day e go better”. That is the constant and unshakeable prayer on the lips of most Nigerians these days. That is my fervent prayer; that one day, indeed, there will be a turn around.
Things are quite bleak in Nigeria and no, I am not politicizing the current security challenges we find ourselves in while we are comforted with words like “ security agents are on top of the situation”. Practically every Sunday is now referred to as a Black Sunday because of the scores of lives lost in places of worship and the next day referred to as a Mourn-day.
Something has got to give… . Things cannot go on this way. We are bursting at the seams and the repair has gone past managing it with a stitch or two. We need to retrace our steps,and search deep into our souls to find out where we took a wrong turn.
As if that is not enough, another scandal has surfaced which should be given an award as the best home video yet to be released into the market. A man seen as upright and taking a firm stand against corruption, a man whom many hailed and some protested against when he submitted the findings of his committee on the fuel subsidy probe, has turned out to be nothing more than a common thief and liar.
Lawmaker, Farouk Lawan has shown that money is indeed the root of all evil. His initial denial of the event soon changed to another version, that he was going to turn in the said sum of $620,000 as evidence and again changed to another version that he handed the money to Adams Jagaba, Chairman, Committee on Narcotics and Financial Crimes, who swiftly denied the money being in his possession.
The amount though seems too little for the permanent damage to his reputation but then again, maybe he knows that Nigerians have short lived and selective memories. He knows that it does not matter if you steal, kill or destroy, you can still move around freely in a few months or years time and go about your business as though nothing happened. You might even again be placed in a position of authority, given a national honour, hosted and feted across the country.
Is this the Nigeria we want to leave behind for our children? A Nigeria where the original purpose of the NYSC scheme has been defeated because we cannot secure the lives and property of our Corps Members? A Nigeria where we cannot move around freely to any part of the country without let or hindrance?
A Nigeria where we rape and beat up our women without any repercussion? A Nigeria where the House that is supposed to represent the people is the cancer that indeed eats them up slowly inside by carrying out it’s own selfish agenda? A Nigeria where I can wake up one day and my whole family has been wiped out in a plane crash because of greed and negligence?
How much can one person take? How can one person eat so much, steal so much, with little thought for the next man or tomorrow? Gluttony is a very deadly sin and it is not limited to food alone. We cannot keep projecting ourselves to foreigners as an investors’ paradise, inviting them to come pitch their tent with us when we kill our own so brazenly.
We delude ourselves continuously if we claim to be a great nation, for the wealth and health of a people are what make a nation great. It is one sad occurrence after another and until we put a stop to this wanton disregard for life, we can paint our green, white, green colors on the third mainland bridge till next year but the rot still remains. I guess it is when it hits closer home to the hearts of our leaders, when they too feel that their lives hang in the balance, will change come.
This is the prayer I received on my blackberry a few days ago “ Dear God, whoever is behind this madness, killing of innocent lives and wanton destruction of properties, no matter how high or low, how powerful or strong, Muslims, Christians or pagans, Northerners or Southerners, no matter their political allegiance or tribe, we ask in the mighty name of Jesus Christ that God Almighty will speedily expose them, humiliate them, render them impotent and put them to shame. Amen. I want this prayer to come to pass, one day.