Wednesday, 22 May 2013
The Audacity Of Hopelessness And Jonathan's Posters By Prince Charles Dickson
Sà á bí olóògùn-ún ti wí. Meaning, 'invoke it exactly as the maker of the charm instructed'.
We ended the year 2012 with dead, hurting, missing and perhaps dying governors. In a global village outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was discharged from a New York hospital after treatment for a blood clot, we watched as Venezuelans have been up to date on the health of President Hugo Chavez. We in this clime simply did the opposite.
Also in the last month of 2012, we watch as several billions were released for fuel and we looked for the fuel to no avail. Over the week, we were greeted into the New year with posters of 2015 presidency of Mr. Goodluck Jonathan, the opposition quickly lashed out, alleging that it was a script on 'an already prepared election results for 2015'.
My quick take is, interestingly as far as I am concerned the president has the right to an early start, besides the likes of Atiku is already on their marks. The script is not an any different. You say you are consulting or your achievements will speak for you, you say something else, and you aides do otherwise.
I equally find interesting the poster slug: 'One Good Turn Deserves Another'. Indeed, its as sweet as 'I am Jonathan' and overshadows the cliche 'No Vacancy In Aso Rock'. And at least puts paid to the 'I did not have a shoe' era.
I find it also comically that posters appear overnight in the nation's capital with all the security just like magic courtesy late professor Peller of Ibadan fame. And we are told 'go to bed' no wahala, if posters appear overnight, it's easy to see why pension funds, contract monies etc equally disappear.
The ACN was also on the loose attacking the PDP, asking for proofs of the achievements reeled out by the ruling party for 2012. Truth be said, if scorecard of Fashola's 2nd coming, or Ajimobi and Mrs. Ajimobi London governance, CPC's Al-Makura's University for Blind and Deaf and airport governance is anything to go by, then it is all same one pence, head or tail.
While Namadi Sambo's daughters were dashed away, guests enjoyed the largese of Plasma TV sets and PCs. At least it was not refuted and who says it is a crime. Interestingly for most of the guests it was gifts not needed.
Gov. Babagida Aliyu the 'servantless leader' of Niger continued from his governance by billboards, to marriage by billboards as he gave out his daughters and Minna citizens enjoyed the rare privilege of near 24hrs electricity which expired after the fatiha was concluded.
Not to be outdone, APGA's Gov. Rochas of Imo continued his 'showmanship' leadership, first it was a two-week holiday and then a television wedding of his daughter with lasted over 10hrs including the traditional, church and reception ceremonies.
Then it was the turn of the agricultural ministry as it engaged itself in a game of wits, sixty billion Naira to purchase ten million phones for farmers. The minister fell short in his explanation and stated it wasn't N60b but won't say the exact figure. This writer raised this issue last year. Well whether Chinese noise, American iPhone, Finish Nokia, or Canadian Blackberries, fact is, while I personally support the explanations and concept behind it, 60billion by 10million and how we arrived at 10million farmers speaks volumes of our audacity of hopelessness and really this is my take for this admonishment to us.
Whether we go our separate ways, despite the religious/ethnic divide which to me supersedes our problem of corruption. Whether Boko Haram or pure criminality, the fact remains that we are in a situation worse than Jonathan, Chime, Babangida Aliyu, Suntai, Yuguda, Oshimohle et al. It is beyond Buhari, Ribadu or El-Rufai.
It is us, it is about you and I am guilty. One moment, we are followers, next we could be leaders. One moment Rochas was vying for President, (he still has that desire), next he was 'politricking', party to party and finally he is governor--Imagine as President he gives a two-week holiday. I am sure he would be praised by a holiday-loving populace, after all we don't earn per hour.
Our audacity of hopelessness, is why we are scared and making noise about posters. I end this admonition in a manner I should have started.
I conducted a random survey for reactions, the original concept was from my friend Ikenna, I just improvised and made additions. It was a futuristic news item, I asked how many believed it was possible.
1. Super Eagles May Win World Cup. First African Nation to Get to Final--Brasil 2014
2. Unemployment Rate Hits An All Time Low.
3. Top Politician Refuses N10billion Bribe, Says ''I'm Born Again.''
4. Electricity Generation Hits Record High of 17,000MW!
5. State Hospital Renovated to International Standards, Governor Boasts, "Expect
6. Pastor Sells Private Jet to Feed The Poor In His Church.
7. Nigerian Artiste Wins Grammy Awards.
8. Top Terrorist Group Surrenders, Leader Says "We Want Peace."
9. Petroleum Pump Price Stabilises at N50 P/ltre, Presidency Says No More
Increments Until 2040.
10. Nollywood Movie Wins First Ever Oscar Academy Awards...
11. Nigeria Tops List of Safest Countries to Do Business In - Transparency International.
12. Minister Steps Down Over Alleged Money Laundering Scandal...
13. Nigeria Makes 7bn Annually From Foreign Students In ABU, UI and Unijos.
14. Indian PM for koloficial surgery at Nigerian National Hospital Abuja.
300 respondents, variables were sex, faith and region. The response was one. It can't happen, when, in Nigeria, impossible, wake up, stop dreaming, not in our lifetime...and more such comments. Trust Nigerians, there were a few amens, but largely it was an expose on the audacity of hopelessness. It showed that though it was January, there was very little to look forward to on a national level.
Is our problem Jonathan's posters? A big no, endless hope is better than an hopeless end, though hope itself is an opium...our problem is a lack of belief even in the things we desire, the charm is Nigeria, we just don't have the recipe, we don't want to follow the instruction manual, we are polls apart from the maker...for how long, only time will tell.