Alarmed and distressed by the swelling population growth and its politicking in the North, in the face of serious unemployment, colossal insecurity, uncertain dice of displacement, macroeconomic instability, burgeoning debt profile, high inflation, unstable exchange rate figures, and blurred political future among other fuelling uncertainties, Nigeria has been listed among twenty “Hunger Hotspots,” by the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP), in a report released on 28th January, 2022.
Of the twenty countries identified as ‘Hunger Hotspots,’ Ethiopia, Nigeria, South Sudan and Yemen are on the watch list. In these countries, the report projected that part of their population would experience starvation and death, due to factors like conflict that promote acute food insecurity, placing people lives and livelihoods at the edge. This report therefore make more pronounced the inextricable link between hunger and conflict. Hence, FAO and WFP call for urgent humanitarian actions to forestall the looming dangers engendered by starvation and death in aforementioned countries.
In Nigeria, the occurrence of starvation and death are not new, they have been systemic problems precipitated by a barbaric, brutal and brutish government, which takes pride in showboating nepotism, tribalism, ethnicity, laxity, and puerile misplacement of priorities, junketing and a borrowing spree.
The terrible experiences of families residing in volatile communities forced to flee slaughter, abandoning their means of livelihood, homes, and villages to Internal Displaced Camps (IDPs); the unwarranted carnage and bloodbath in the North and other parts of the states; the scourge of ritual killings and kidnappings; the massacre at the Lekki toll gate; the perversion of the legal system; the incessant abuse and killings of children, and the skyrocketing of food prices, just to mention but a few all come in handy. Thus, tagging Nigeria a hunger hotspot is most appropriate, apt, relevant and suitable to describe the harsh and cruel conditions confronting our daily existence in Nigeria.
These grim realities and extremities meted out to the poor masses bespeaks the crass negligence of our supposed vindicator, President Muhammadu Buhari and his government, whose massive ineptitude has transformed Nigeria into a breeding ground for Yahoo boys and girls, criminality of all sorts, upsurge of quick money ventures, and today a hunger hotspot.
Buhari must understand that there is an unavoidable interconnectedness between sectors like education, politics, economy, security, agriculture, textile, et cetera. No sector should be ignored, they all are important, and they have their role to play in building a formidable economy that is buoyed with sustainable human development. Failure to do this necessarily implies a great negative impact on the Nigerian state as a whole.
Without mincing words, it is pertinent to note that Nigeria is grossly alienated from her greatness as a result of an intellectual and professional emasculation. People who govern the affairs of Nigeria should have the necessary qualifications that make them fit to rule. What we have has been a situation of the uneducated ruling the educated. The ancient Greek philosopher Plato asserts that “there will be no end to the troubles of states, or of humanity itself, till philosophers become kings in this world, or till those we now call kings and rulers really and truly become philosophers.” We therefore need sound and qualified people in government whose characters have not become sullied by the Nigerian game of politics. But, will they be given the opportunity to rule?
Tobechukwu Johnpaul Nwabuisi, email@example.com