Friday, May 27, 2005

Nigeria will not fail, if...

Our beloved and gravely ill Nigeria will not die. The country will not die if those at the helm of affairs stop their rhetorical dialogue and focus on addressing on getting us out of the woods. It is that simple. The report is not a prediction of doom as reported by many Nigerian new agencies and sensationalized by those bent on grandstanding on the mundane. The report is a projection, and there is always an error margin in any projection.

Aside from the Telecom sector, a new entrant in the Nigeria economy, I do not know of any other sector that is doing really well. The power house of the nation- the delta area- has been in a state of perpertual anarchy for quite sometime now; our infrastructure have failed; public health and healthcare is comatose, our leaders and their cohort are quick to travel overseas for medical checkup and treatment, yet millions die each day in Nigeria because of preventable conditions; cultism rule supreme in many of our institutions; we used to be a haven for drug couriers, now our international image has another round of battery , thanks to the relentless 419ners; a local and illiterate political kingpin with Aso Rock connection held a member state of the nation to ransom at will- yet he is still a free man and not a felon; our leaders, both elected and non-elected, lack ethics and decorum- they just want to line their pockets, many do not even have offices at their constituencies; we waste billions hosting the world over irrelevant events, yet we want debt relief. Aren't all these signs of national failure?

Some 30 years back, the standard of living and the general condition of the nation was way better than what we have now, at least the refineries were running and many could afford decent meals and education. What do we have today? Is there really any safety net for the average Nigerians. After many years of toil, many retirees now live in state of abject poverty. Yet many dubious political leaders have amassed huge wealth just within 365 days in office! You all know what the problem is, and if all these continue, then Nigeria will collapse and there will be anarchy, not pockets but general anarchy in the land. I pray that day will never come.

We have regressed enough as a nation, 2007 holds the key to our predicament. Events from now till then will determine if the trends we have witnessed as a nation within the last 2 decades will continue and usher in the final collapse of our nation, or we will be rescued from precipitating into oblivion. I hope for the latter, and that the error margin of the NIC report is a mile wide! Time will tell.