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OPINION: Struggling to Understand Democracy

By Akintokunbo A Adejumo (akinadejumo@aol.com)

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Our leadership are still struggling to understand democracy as a collective approach in meeting collective needs, such as quality education, jobs, housing, mass transportation system, quality health care services, pensions, etc.

You know our country is lawless; and the most lawless are our leaders and those in charge of our resources and infrastructures, etc. Those in charge of everything that should make life better for us are the most lawless, irresponsible, insensitive, conscienceless and unscrupulous. We may never know the answer; they hide their crimes very well; we and our Press and Media don’t dig deep enough, are compromised or afraid to; and so, life, as we know it, goes on.

The masses are happy with their poverty and oppression and think only by praying to God to come down and deal with their oppressors is the answer.

As Black people (remember Nigeria is the most populous black nation in the world) we are looked at as different and inferior. We truly appear feeble and inferior both in thinking and in managing our affairs.

We elect known thieves to run our affairs and even kind enough to sympathise with them when they are punished. Former Governor of Plateau State, Senator Joshua Dariye took tax payers money to London, it was Ecological Fund for his State. In his luxury hotel suite, he was doling out 50-pound notes to anyone who came. The poor people of Plateau were dying in agony of diseases and poor infrastructure. He was promptly arrested by the British Police and huge sums of foreign currencies seized from him. The smart guy managed to escape back home! Home sweet home, the land of the foolish! Dariye was later rewarded by his people by voting him as a Senator. 

When some of them are apprehended overseas and chastised, we welcome them with fanfare. After all it is our money they stole, not theirs. Ibori was celebrated on his return from British jail. He was met by the first citizen of Delta State and others. Our heads of states stash monies in foreign countries and we have to beg for the return when they die.

We knowingly elect leaders that are derelict in character and we go to church and mosques to pray for miracles or even hate our friends or relatives who have made it but can’t help us. We seem to be different.

There is something genuinely wrong with our race. Our mindset is warped. In 2014, our former Finance Minister was begging us to save in case oil prices crash but we quickly rushed to the courts to save us from a woman who didn’t want us to ‘chop’ the future of our children! Aren’t we the cursed race? Our values are warped.

Last time I was discussing with a close friend, he plainly told me that the system God designed for us in Nigeria is corruption, he said we were better off during the corrupt years and he wanted corruption brought back. The crook who can buy votes wins; we prefer to vote for thieves so long he can pay his way through. Decent hardworking people have no intrinsic worth in our society. Everything is upside down.

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