Nigeria, the danger of tomorrow

Nigeria, the danger of tomorrow
March 30
08:13 2023


It is often said that if any country should have the taste of per-minute troubles like Nigeria, it will collapse with a speed of light. That being said, the future of Nigeria is dangling with the dangers of the uninformed lads across the length and breadth of the country.

Having access to information ought to be an added advantage to a number of people but unfortunately, that has caused seamless trouble for the people of this country. In 2020, when some citizens in the course of a protest demanded for the reformation of the Nigeria Police, the level of heat received by the Nigerian government was so enormous.

This ranged from rigorous physical protest to online campaigns in and outside the country. While those campaigns were ongoing, a frontline EndSARS influencer who is based in the UK wrote on his Twitter page: “I heard according to UN Constitution any protest that reaches 30 days will make UN intervene in that country” — and that tweet got nearly twenty thousand retweets, and contributed to the continuous and aggressive protest in Nigeria.


Surprisingly, none of the educated folks with access to the tweet could paste the message on Google to authenticate the veracity of the post. Although that wasn’t the first time misinformation and fake news would be spread in the country, the truth is that the magnitude of attacks the nation witnessed during the EndSARS protest, and yet survived, was huge. The question, therefore, is, “can the nation continue to survive the numerous attacks from its citizen who are hell-bent on enforcing their unfounded personal opinion on it?”

In 1932, Bonnie Elizabeth Parker and Clyde Chestnut Barrow, a well-known criminal couple, started terrorising towns in the United States of America by robbing, killing and maiming. They headed the popular gang robbery, stealing from banks, restaurants, gas stations, etc. They told the people a version of their story, and convinced them that they robbed only from the rich and not the poor.

Their activities and mayhem continued for two years and during that period, the people of America worshipped them, which made it more difficult for the government’s special task force to locate them. As a matter of fact, on a particular occasion when the couple went shopping in one of the cities, the whole town came out rejoicing and hailed them until they left the town. Eventually, when the law caught up with them and they were killed, over fifty thousand American citizens attended the burial ceremony of the couple.


Clearly, Bonnie and Clyde were able to garner pity and fame from the people by taking advantage of the fact that America was going through a depression in those years. This is similar to the situation in Nigeria which went through a series of economic crisis from 2019 till earlier this year. From a serious rise in inflation, and the Covid-19 pandemic to the EndSARS protest, the country had battled with a whole lot of issues which made certain persons come out like saviours as Bonnie and Clyde did in America.

One among many is the product marketing of the Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi, who was sold as a new kid in the block. No doubt, Obi is eligible to contest the last general election. However, if history is well-researched, some of the qualities ascribed to him should have been debated. We should not forget that he was a two-term governor of Anambra state under APGA before he cross-carpeted to the Peoples Democratic Party, where he was appointed as an economic adviser by the Goodluck Jonathan-led administration.

Also, at the time he indicated an interest in the race, his name had not been cleared from the Pandora Paper. More interesting, on the first anniversary of Charles Soludo, the executive governor of Anambra state, he mentioned that the same Anambra which Obi governed is the erosion capital of the world and the state is shrinking due to the previous governments’ inability to construct perfect roads with drainages.

In the build-up to the presidential election, some of the prominent religious leaders lent their voices to the campaign, for or against the current government. Pastor Poju Oyemade who happens to coordinate the yearly political discourse in the country via ‘The Platform’ had invited the candidate of the Labour Party on countless occasions which made him a bit popular as some of his usual magical solutions to Nigeria penetrated the heart of his audience.


In one of the events, Obi claimed that he wears only one wristwatch, which portrayed him as being economical and frugal. The Platform afforded him a great deal of image branding but unfortunately, this could not continue last year when the pastor made a personal observation on the political dynamics of Nigeria. Some of the pastor’s choice of words didn’t go down well with the uncontrolled mob garnered by the leading candidate. Pastor Poju was verbally attacked, threatened and eventually bullied to delete those statements from his official Twitter handle.

Questions started to well up in the hearts of people who could think for themselves and those who aren’t swayed by the online rhetorics and biases on why people should be bullied for having a diverse opinions on issues. Then, it went far more with various online attacks on the general overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor Adeboye, whom they insisted must make his political stance known otherwise he is automatically one of those responsible for the problems of the country. Notwithstanding that the general overseer ignored all the threats; the one on the 20th February 2023 by a Jnr. Lambo who demanded that if the church doesn’t make a bold statement, he would remove sound equipment and lighting he donated to the church caught the attention of many.

Oftentimes, you will wonder if truly the country is a religious nation as portrayed in the world. Research shows that the country has over 85 million Muslims and 80 million Christians, (that’s more than 82 percent of the country) worshipping God every weekend.

About a week before elections, many Nigerians abroad return to the country to exercise their civic responsibility to vote since the national assembly hasn’t passed the law to enable Nigerians in the diaspora to vote from their end. As Nigerians trooped into the country from different destinations to vote for their preferred candidates, many supporters of Obi went on to attack those who indicated on their page to vote for another candidate, wishing them bad luck on their journey, etc.


Celebrities like Olawale Brymo and Toyin Abraham were made to go through hell. Then, you start questioning if any of the holy books teach us to be that vile and wicked against one another. One can truly imagine if some citizens of this country aren’t anarchists, with the ways and manners they address issues. Amazingly, there is no law to the effect that one cannot choose or pick a side, be it at work, family or political gatherings, neither is this freedom of choice a crime.

As funny as it may sound, the overzealousness and flagitious actions of the young people can be excused but what could be said of elder statesmen? It was a bit shocking to everyone when Chief Ezeife Chuckwuemeka made a bold statement on Arise TV that the president-elect won’t be sworn in on May 29. In fact, it took the intervention of the TV host for him to retract his statement. We cannot continue to live in a country where everyone issues threats on issues they feel not satisfied with, when alternative methods are multitudinous.


Obviously, we can’t have a peaceful nation when the elders in our society who ought to direct the young ones on a better path are already entrenched in bigotry and hate. Now, the anger in the land has been systematically built over the years. The question then is, if our citizens ignore the message from the revered men of God and other sane elders but only listen to the hate poured out from some elders, where do we go from here?

The painful part is that the hate inside some Nigerians within and outside the country continues to fester because how do you explain the cases of citizens of this country who had relocated more than a decade and are happy funding insurrection in the country? Where do we go from there? What are the chances that Nigeria will continue to survive these internal attacks from its unpatriotic citizens who are hell-bent on seeing things only through their prism? How do we wake up the brilliance and curiosity of every Nigerian to verify fake news that they can smell on their own?


One would think that the ‘Change Begins with Me’ campaign introduced by the ministry of information in 2016 would go a long way in addressing this. However, the implementation was a bit shoddy. It, therefore, seems the government needs to get back to the drawing table to enlighten its citizens on crucial responsibilities for a greater Nigeria.

Opeyemi can be reached via Twitter: @equityoyo


Views expressed by contributors are strictly personal and not of TheCable.


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