Once you can afford to carry the unnecessary and preventable economic-burden that the current administration is daily putting on you, there is no point agitating for those who cannot handle it, because if you do, and you end up being incarcerated for it, those you are agitating for will become dumb. The only time the poor and jobless citizens of Nigeria find their voice is when they want to watch and predict football matches, and when they want to vote for vanity and nudity—when some adults are yearly locked up in a house for three months.
I wonder why anyone will be talking about “revolution now” in a nation where her young folks are always expecting those in their 80s to speak and fight for them. And I marvel why anyone will be talking about “revolution now” in a nation where about 95% of her youths do not care a hoot about their own future, let alone the future of Nigeria. They daily fritter and splurge their time away in fantasy and they are quick to compare themselves with the generation of Matthew Mbu, who climbed to national leadership when he was very young—as if he was vision-less, distracted and lazy like them.
Also, I wonder why those who can meet the expense of to paying toll on our roads will be agitating against the second coming of toll-gates by the current administration—when the poor citizens (mainly youths) of Nigeria—who are supposed to take charge of our country have chosen to go hit the sack, snoring. Why will you want to go to prison for those who wake up almost every morning, drinking and smoking? Why will you want to go to prison for those who daily spend their money, betting? As an effect of what’s happening in our polity, if you are imprisoned today, a few hours after, you would be complete forgotten by those you are fighting for.
This is no time to fight for anyone in Nigeria. Nigerians are currently meaninglessly divided along ethnic, religious and political lines. And divided-people cannot take what belong to them. Divided-people will forever be conquered by those who hate them. Divided-people can never have a singular voice. Divided-people will helplessly and certainly continue to swim in the poor of poverty till the time itself gives up the ghost. Instead of wasting your time and life, agitating for those who love their chains and oppressors, find something meaningful to do with your life, so you are not wasted like late MKO Abiola. If MKO hadn’t gone to the prison then, he would have later easily become a C-in-C.
This is where I am coming: For the first time since Buhari got to power, I want to write on one thing I like about him. It is a little departure from the past. I want to ‘ignore’ some of our national challenges as Mr. Garba Shehu and Mr. Femi Adesina would do and commend Mr. President for not covering the back of some undeserved political leaders—with the robe of our high-valued National Honors. During the time of Dr. Matthew Olusegun Aremu Okikiolu Obasanjo, our National Honor awards were “three for one kobo.” As Nigeria was going down into the valley of insignificance, National Honors were being conferred on politicians and friends.
In the same vein, during the lackluster-time of Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, a woman was given a National Honor award—a year before—and a year after—she was given same thing! While people were being bombed almost every day, one the 1st of October of every year, undeserved friends and politicians were being honored in Abuja. It is only in Nigeria that ineptitude, ineffectiveness, blood of innocent citizens being shed and honor do flow together. It was a show of shame!
It was so sad in those days that twice late Chinua Achebe rejected our National Honors. He couldn’t wrap his head around it. Nigeria was moribund and people were being honored for making it so. In sane countries, people are only honored for heroism and bravery, but here, it is always a different ball game. We derive joy from honoring mediocrity!
Truth be told, since Buhari got to power about five years ago, he has stopped the travesty, charade and sham that all his predecessors were doing, watering down a noble idea called “Nigerian National Honors.” It was a dignified and splendid idea when it was instituted in 1964, but over the years, political leaders have hijacked it, using it to reward mediocrity, cronyism and selfish service being meted out to Nigeria and Nigerians.
The sole purpose of “Nigerian National Honors” is to reward Nigerians who truly distinguish themselves while rendering varied selfless services to our beloved country. Today, one shakes his head, seeing National Honors, being hawked all over the country by too far many undeserved people.
Lastly, for those who think criticizing a president objectively is equivalent to hating him, I think reading through this piece will help them to have a change of mind. Those who objectively criticize Mr. President do not hate him. Infact, if “baba” truly wants to leave a lasting legacy behind, he should listen to those who criticize him and keep far away from him bootlickers. Bootlickers are only looking for the crumbs that fall from his table. When Buhari leaves power, they would return to tear him into pieces.