Date Published: 05/26/09
TRULY, NIGERIA CAN BE BETTER
BY OLUGBENGA FABILOLA
I could not agree less with my friend and colleague, Fola Arthur-Worrey in his contribution to Bisi’s Tolling Bells in the Thisday Newspaper of Tuesday 5 th May 2009. The other contribution by Adedapo Adebayo, a young man in his twenties equally gave me hope for a better Nigeria. I was thrilled by it.
For those who missed Fola’s contribution, let me reproduce what he said inter alia: “Obama is not a victory for the Blackman but rather a vindication and validation of America’s core ideals”. He continued “What is Nigeria’s defining ethos. I ask again. Until we are clear and succinct in this, we will continue to grope in the dark”. He ended thus “A nation needs a compelling narrative with which to define itself and shape its internal debate”. Vintage Fola.
At the risk of platitudes, I say again that the problem of Nigeria is a leadership problem – fair and square. Tell me that jurisdiction that is foremost today whose narrative has not been defined and shaped by its internal debate guided by a visionary leadership. Let us stop kidding, Nigeria will continue to grope in the dark until we have a visionary leader who is ready to make the difference even at the risk of his life.
Talking about risking lives, I have a list of Nigerians who if they are ready to sacrifice their lives for Nigeria, then the stage would have been set for a better Nigeria. They remain relevant, not because they are still in power, but because those in power use them as excuses, albeit silently, for misgovernance, greed, indiscipline, irresponsibility, ineptitude and all that corruption connotes. They and their relics should sacrifice themselves for the sake of a better Nigeria, so that they stop being a reference point for those in power. Something like, they got away with it, so why can’t I?
In order to demonstrate my seriousness, passion and altruism for this call, I am also ready to for this cause not because I am one of them but because I think we deserve a better Nigeria. Those who know me will agree that I am too inconsequential to be part of Nigeria’s problems. The question could be asked whether this extreme measure will transform the Nigerian State overnight. My response is a capital NO. However it will set the tone for a new Nigeria of our dream and it could be our children’s children who will be the beneficiaries. By this, we would have left an enviable legacy.
Though people may opine that this sacrificial death is too extreme, I believe it is a better option to any sudden revolution as the military has never been a solution to the Nigerian problems. Infact their interventions have caused most of the problems. This is why enlightened Nigerians will continue to say NEVER AGAIN.
In the interim, all the living past Head of States/Presidents from Gen. Gowon to President Obasanjo (Gen. Diya or Mrs. Abacha should represent Gen. Abacha) should be locked up in a house with a conference room without access to newspapers, television, telephone, etc., but lots of food, drinks, gym and sporting facilities for the purpose of discussing the Nigerian problems and their discussions which should be recorded unedited should be without resolutions but released to the Lagos Business School for purposes of analysis and probable recommendation therefrom. President Yar’Adua should be in attendance as an observer without making any contributions to the discussions but taking notes. We will certainly have a lot of revelations from this exercise. This exercise should last for 7 clear days.
Let us continue to pray for Nigeria.