There are so many issues begging for attention in Nigeria on a daily basis as a result of our peculiar configuration. In the fullness of all the issues that have occupied public space in recent times, we do not seem to be paying attention to details. The Bayelsa politics of old has been one characterized by fraud and corruption since 1999 till date.
For obvious reasons, Muhammad Babangida, the first son of the most talked about Nigerian in the history of Nigeria, the indomitable General IBB marked his glorious forty years on earth on Thursday, 2nd February, 2012 in what typifies the humility of a family that has since become role model to many.
The appointment of the new Inspector General of Police did not come as a surprise after all, following public outcry that the immediate past IGP had reached his professional nadir and cannot offer anything new or creative to checkmate the menacing force of unreason of members of Boko Haram.
I am still in the realm of the metaphysical, trying hard to rationalize a number of things that took place in the country in the last two weeks. I have seen strikes before in this country but not one that was peacefully conducted. I think the Arab Spring mentality has come home to us and gladly too because it will help mitigate the unmitigated powers of our leaders who feel they can sit in their cocoon to dish out choking air for us to swallow.
The so-called complete deregulation of the downstream sector and the removal of subsidy may seem like a purely economic policy decision, but it is so tied to larger Nigerian questions that it ought to be more rigorously debated, and government should make haste slowly. As at this moment, Nigeria operates a partial deregulation regime in the downstream sector.
I watched the punctured imageries of the so-called government induced debate at the Muson Centre in Lagos penultimate week, and I could see how difficult it was for the protagonists of subsidy removal to sell their unpopular motive.
Truly, we are in difficult times in Nigeria. Anywhere you turn, the responses one gets as a direct output of interaction, are hisses and sighs. Such dismissive conclusion isn’t the best way to show satisfaction.
The remains of Prince Bello Afegbua, a retired Assistant Commissioner of Police, will be interred today at Okpella, a border village between Kogi and Edo States of Nigeria. He had died penultimate week at Irrua Specialist Hospital in Edo State after a brief illness, marking the end of an era and a journey that saw him dominate his environment for 80 years on this putrid plane.
Why does the country appear insecure and spineless in the last one year or so? Each time one expresses an opinion, no matter how logical and objective, what you get are phone calls from anonymous callers threatening hails and brimstones. When has it become a crime to express an opinion?
President Goodluck Jonathan bared his fangs two days ago by announcing the unceremonious removal of the EFCC chairperson, Mrs. Farida Waziri in a manner that defeats the anti-corruption crusade. Under the universal rules governing anti-corruption, you cannot hire and fire anybody just like that; trying to use corruption to fight corruption, without stating the reason for the removal.
The Senate on Tuesday gave an inkling of why Professor Chinua Achebe turned down his National Honours Award the second time when the Upper House raised queries about President Jonathan’s inability to confront the security challenges in the country.
One is getting unusually stressed up these days as a result of the very unsavoury news we get about our economy, politics and the future of Nigeria. Everything we do in Nigeria has a corruptive undertone; appointments, fiscal responsibility, allocation of resources, distribution of wealth, and appropriation of responsibilities, patronage, and general lifestyles.
There has been a systemic underestimation of the achievements of Comrade Adams Oshiomhole in Edo State to the extent that newspaper advertorials are easily published to rubbish whatever he claims to his credit. Amongst the several presentations by these respective “visioners”, who in their moralizing tedium claim to be representing the aggregate views of Edolites, the position of Edo Collectives on Oshiomhole’s NUT award is at best indubitably misleading.
I have watched with very keen interest the anti-corruption fight as shouldered by the relevant agencies namely the ICPC, EFCC and NDLEA amongst others. I have seen through my binoculars several contradictions and inadequacies in the whole fight to address the prevalence of corruption in our Nigerian society.
As much as one tries to find succour in the fullness of the socio-political maladies in the country, one gets trapped in the vainglory thoughts of non-performance in all sectors of our economy.
Just as I was about putting pen on paper to put down my thoughts for this weekend, I saw screaming headlines about the plan by Federal Government to remove the much-talked about fuel subsidy which has dragged on for so long. Reactions to the subsidy removal proposal have been expectedly interesting; each one threatening hails and brim tones, the usual Nigerian way.
In the midst of a plethora of happenings around the country, one is often at sea as to what should occupy one’s attention. Nigeria is a country that is usually entrenched in fluctuating moments, with palpable fear walking on the streets. Everywhere you turn, the fear of fear grips you with uncultured fervor. Yesterday, it was bomb scare, today it is bomb blast. Only God knows what tomorrow holds for us.
This week and weeks to come,altercations and counter-altercations would form the theme of the political discourse in Jos, the Plateau State Capital over the directive of Mr. President that there should be an occupation of soldiers in that troubled but once serene and peaceful conclave in the middle-belt part of the country.
I had a rare opportunity to interview the highly celebrated political scientist and author, the Chicago-born Professor Francis Fukuyama on Tuesday, September 27, 2011 during his visit to Nigeria as a guest lecturer at a conference organized by Muregi Associates.