Nigeria @ 52: Hope against Hope
Beyound sufficient chronicles already exist of the doom’s den that Nigeria seems to have become. Not only is the nation in eclipse, it is on a tenterhook, a certain uncertainty that grows with the passage of every new day. A rehash of the myriad of the problems currently besetting us is not needed here. We have already seen and heard so much of them, and asking for more here will only put a damper upon many hearts. It goes without saying that at 52, the true gains of democracy remains elusive in our land. Constant power supply remains a pipe dream, unemployment continues to skyrocket, our roads are still death traps, the aviation industry is in a state of debacle, corruption is at its crescendo, educational standard is still on a down slide, poverty is written on the faces of many, and then, the peak of the penuries, Boko Haram. But, despite all these plethora of problems, the message for this anniversary is hope. This hope is not just one we should bestow on our leaders. Rather, it is one we should have because of the great Nigerian spirit that we possess. Bad as it seems, we can surely turn this around and usher in a wheel of fortune. Our nation is and has never been in need of efficient human resources. All we need is the true will to demand a change. Without fear of sounding ludicrous, we are a nation for all seasons. At 52, we should come to a round table. The sins of our past have been our burden today, but we can reverse the fate of tomorrow by getting it right today. A more effective and pragmatic way of doling out a fatal blow to the scourge that is Boko Haram must be concocted. The electoral process must be strengthened, and political offices should be made less attractive. Development should be holistic, and only square pegs in square holes should be tolerated. At 52, the blame game of who crashed the Nigerian project should be buried. We are all in the logjam together. We all live with the mess, though in varying degrees. It is far from uhuru in Nigeria, but better days are surely in the offing. It is apt to drop the ink by saying that the leaders must muster the will to take the genuine initiative and the followers must show enough believe and sincerity to steer the Nigerian ship together.