Just yesterday, I read about the Nigerian senator (Mustapha Sani Mohammed) Who made headlines for commissioning an electricity pole within his constituency. This wasn’t even surprising to me because, as a bloody Nigerian (without a national Identity card by the way; story for another day), I’ve come to the realisation that it makes for quite the celebration when our public office holders commission mediocre projects such public toilets and electricity poles! So yay! Senator Mustapha for second term!!
On a more serious note, this kind of development is all too depressing! Little wonder it got me thinking long and hard as to why we celebrate mediocrity in our country. Why should an entire constituency gather to celebrate a senator whose greatest achievement since being elected into office in 2015 is the erection of a single electricity pole? How ludicrous and utterly depressing can this be?
It is no longer news that these politicians have no regard for the ordinary Nigerians. It shows in their blatantly-patronising courtship of voters during election times when they give out cups of rice and a few naira notes in exchange for valuable votes. They make bogus campaign promises which they know they will never fulfil and of which nobody can hold them accountable. As a matter of fact, they can do anything just to win the elections, even to the extent of using thugs to wreck havoc and commit electoral malpractices of immense proportion. Their eyes are ever set on the target at all times, because they know that the moment they win the elections and have unfettered access to the national treasurry, they will loot it with reckless abandon. And then as though they could never humiliate the people enough, they build public toilets and commission electricity poles that may never conduct electricity anyway. Talk about the encouragement of poverty for the people!
Why do we worship and celebrate the very politicians who enslave us? This is the one million question that had me perplexed throughout much of yesterday. Why would a well meaning Nigerian come out to celebrate the erection of an electricity pole by a man who receives millions of naira in monthly salary and allowances to represent them and push through policies that should bring about development to them? Why are most Nigerians willing to do anything to defend most of these devilish, altruism-lacking, so called representative who obviously do not have their best interest at heart? Why do my fellow Nigerians readily fight over themselves to defend these evil ones on social media? I was applied when last year during our Senate President’s daughter’s marriage in Kwara State I saw hundreds of Kwara unsigned dressed in their regalias and out to celebrate with the same man who governed Kwara for eight years and could not eradicate extreme poverty to a reasonable extent even though he ensured to make himself richer; a man who is currently being investigated for corruption. Why do we celebrate people like him? Why is this our story?
But then Nigerians have a way with mediocrity. We cherish it, celebrate it, and parade it as a national treasure. In this same vein, we celebrate corruption, making it seem right while encouraging others to embrace it. If this is not the case, there is no how Senator Mustapha would have thought it wise/right to commission an electricity pole for his constituents. As Nigerians, we are the true reflection of the kind of leaders we get. Little wonder public office holders such as Senator Mustapha will build luxury mansions for himself while commissioning useless projects for his people. He knows that they would eagerly accept his “dividend of democracy” and praise him very much for it.
Of a truth, the Nigerian political situation is in shambles. And it is destined to remain so unless we the people put our feet down and resist the political class. They have taken us for granted for far too long. And the truth I learnt long ago is that no oppressor will over readily give you freedom unless you either protest or demand for it. And so now is the right time for us to seek change, sweeping that will impact us positively, protect the future of our children yet born, while also securing the future of our Nigeria. Let’s think change.
2019 General Elections…