The upcoming general elections in Nigeria deserve our participation—all of us. I know we must be tired of the present leadership through wish many calamities were (and are being) let loose on us. There is leadership failure across all levels of government in Nigeria. The national leadership is on the lead of this failure. Deep inside us, I don’t think anyone would dispute this fact. I am aware that some people still think the best thing that has ever happened to Nigeria is the present leadership. This is what they say openly but deep inside them too, I have no scintilla of doubt that they are convinced that Nigeria has never witnessed a colossal failure like now.
Possibly, one can struggle to mention one thing that is fairly right in the midst of one thousand and one other things that are abysmally wrong. That is Nigeria for you. But shall we continue to fall victims of these leaders who care not? The forthcoming election is supposed to be a defining moment. I hope we get it right. And we can get it right if we jettison ethnicity and other primordial considerations in making our choice at the poll.
I know this is a bitter pill to swallow. I know we will definitely find jettisoning these sentiments that are about to throw us into the dustbin of history very difficult. But we just have to. Haven’t we observed that nothing works in Nigeria? Haven’t we observed that Nigeria is always leading from the behind in every index of development? We ought to have also observed that we are always leading from the extreme top when it comes to poverty, corruption, insecurity, and joblessness. If there is any global survey on countries with wasted talents and certificates, it will be shocking if Nigeria does not come first. Courtesy of joblessness.
Our kids and teens are also making serious ‘headway’ in their ‘discoveries’ of different horrible formulas or recipes for making ritual money. I will not be shocked if we were told that the currencies in circulation and the moneys in our pockets are ritual currencies and, thus, need to be withdrawn from circulation. After all, similar treatment is ongoing in our filling stations across the federation. Yet, the present leadership is the best thing that has ever happened to us as a nation. There is God.
It requires abnormal optimism to think that things will get better before 2023 or even after it in Nigeria. The mess is just inestimable and all-pervading. Tell me any sector that is healthy—including the health sector—I will tell you “you are drunk”. It is just awful. However, I have a strong conviction that Nigeria can bounce back. It can find its lost glory. It can surmount its challenges. Yes, I am not kidding. I mean it. But with the condition that we make this man our next president. Which man? Who is he? Where is he from? And how can we know him?
I initially thought it is wise to mention his name; but I refrained when I realised he is found in every state, in every tribe, and in every religion practised in Nigeria. He has many characteristics of which four are major—very essential. He must be very strong and firm. That is one. He should not be sick. There shouldn’t be debate about his incontinence—involuntary urination. He shouldn’t be terminally ill such that Aso Rock becomes his hospice.
He should be trustworthy. That is two. We should trust him that he is a human with human and humane blood flowing inside him. He should not be nepotistic or religious bigot. He should be able to see every Nigeria, first as human then as Nigerian. He should be less concerned about the language a Nigerian speaks or the religion they profess. He should be able to frontally address bribery and corruption without asking which technology was used to detect bribery because the beneficiary comes from his primordial constituency (tribe, region or religion).
He should be knowledgeable. That is three. His mental alertness should not be a topic of debate. He should not be senile. He should be an adept who will be able to answer tough questions on insecurity and the economy and the polity. Not only that, he should be able to proffer workable solutions to myriads of challenges which make living in Nigeria a living death for Nigerians. He should be an avid reader who regularly updates his knowledge on current happenings. He should be able to read newspapers by himself; not relying on what personal assistants, who are often bootlickers, tell him or read to him. He should know that the current PVC means Permanent Voters Card and that it does not expire (as it is now). Such leader should not be the only living Nigerian that is shocked or surprised that ASUU declared a long overdue strike. I just hope our leaders are not sleeping 24/7. Their utterances at times make one conclude that they are hardly awake.
He should be a good guard. That is four. A guard who will keep eyes on our resources to make sure they are used judiciously. He should not be extravagant. He should be a guard against corruption; he himself should be incorruptible and transparent to a fault. He should be feared as an uncompromising guard who does not wink at criminal acts. He should be a guard who will not allow such terrible fuel find way into our dear country. The fuel in circulation is not only cringe inducing to human sight but also to our car engines. Anyway, it is good for our mechanics who will end up working on our car engines when they knock—courtesy of bad governance.
In conclusion, our awaiting president, governor, or any leader come 2023, should be strong (healthy), trustworthy, knowledgeable, and watchful (not sleeping). We pray for a better Nigeria.
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