By Jaye Gaskia
Nigeria’s First Lady, Patience Jonathan
A few days ago, at the peak of the abduction saga of nearly 300 adolescent girls, after the escape on their own of more than 50 of the girls, and after several a series of denials and attempted denials on the part of highly placed persons, the First Lady finally weighed in on the matter and intervened in her own very dramatic personal style.
After a failed first stakeholders’ meeting, and in the course of a second stakeholders’ meeting, the First lady uttered the now famous phrases, the video of which has since gone viral, with numerous versions and creative adaptations of the original also following suit. The rest as they say is now history.
Well, we have all had our bellyful laughs, and we have all been entertained, nevertheless, however dramatic the first lady was in her elements, what she said has been the characteristic fallback line of this regime in particular, and the ruling class in general, whenever we as a people have been collectively confronted with existential challenges.
Not too long ago, the President after the bombing of the UN building in Abuja, the President, the first lady’s spouse, and our commander in chief also said it was our turn to be attacked by terrorists. Let us go down the memory lane a bit. After the Dana Air mishap, officials in public statements attributed the crash to an Act of God. After the 2012 devastating floods, again the calamity was attributed to an act of God.
The point being made is that our ruling class never ceases to seize the slightest opportunity to attribute the results of their maladministration, and the repercussions of their treasury looting spree at the feet of God.
So a ruling class whose failure to plan, and whose greed and adeptness at pillage, results in grinding poverty, the alienation of energetic population of dispossessed youths, and the violent crime and insecurity that often arises from these, always manages to pin the fault on someone else other than itself.
So, yes indeed there may be God ooh, nevertheless, he is certainly not responsible for the 112 million Nigerians living in poverty, in a country with the largest GDP in Africa, and the 26th largest GDP globally. Nor is he responsible for their country being host to the third largest concentration of poor people globally in a country whose citizens are the world’s richest Africa Man and Woman.
Since the advent of the Boko Haram menace, cumulatively more than 5 trillion Naira – the size of one annual budget – has been budgeted as the security vote, yet five or so years on, soldiers still have to mutiny in order to make the clear statement to the world that they are poorly equipped, ill armed, and lack the motivation to engage with the enemy.
Or take another instance of the bungling carelessness of this light fingered, treasury looting ruling class. To address the discontent in the Niger Delta, engendered by collective dispossession, the rapacious exploitation of a peoples’ resources, its attendant environmental devastation, and consequent loss of livelihoods, what does the ruling class do?
It establishes a permanent amnesty program, and proceeds to bribe 33,000 youths with monthly stipends and vocational trainings, while also feathering the nest of the erstwhile militant generals with mouthwatering juicy multi billion naira contracts. This incompetent ruling class then proceeds to replace investment in the development of the Niger Delta with this amnesty intervention program and assumes that it has solved the problem.
Five to ten years from, when the amnesty program terminates, and a new president who is not of Niger Delta origin takes over, and the violence re-emerges, some members of this inept ruling class will at some point also throw their hands in the air, and first lady like invoke God and attribute the problem to him.
This ruling class has run out of ideas, it is now dependent on miracles, even though as a class it has so sinned that it is no longer worthy of redemption!
This ruling class is incapable of tackling the existential crisis facing us, it is time for us to sack this ruling class. It is time for us to take our destiny into our own hands and Take Back Nigeria.
Follow me on Twitter: @jayegaskia & @[DPSR]protesttopower; Interact with me on FaceBook: Jaye Gaskia @ Take Back Nigeria
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