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Why Are We So Blest?

August 10, 2010

Although I am a proud member of the literary fraternal community, I must say that this work has nothing to do with the creative output of the Ghanaian writer, Ayi Kwei Armah.

Although I am a proud member of the literary fraternal community, I must say that this work has nothing to do with the creative output of the Ghanaian writer, Ayi Kwei Armah.

I have only decided to borrow a title from the Gold Coast since the once Giant of Africa now look up to Ghana for inspiration and guidance on such matters as electoral reform, conducive business climate, and uninterrupted power supply. If my country can set the pace, why should I not sustain the tradition?

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Since my last essayistic attempt, I have kept myself busy by problematizing the issues with Nigeria. Unfortunately, more problems continue to surface especially in relation to the clowns that govern us. In literary studies which is my primary discipline, problematizing an issue brings me close to solving the problem. In fact, I only have to rely on certain critical frameworks for me to attain my epiphany. Unfortunately, my country in distress is an exception to this norm.

I was asleep last weekend when a text message woke me up. The message reads, “Idiot, a roforofo fight is going on in Ogun state and you had better wake up before it consumes your head.” Of course, the sms was from one of the few people that can call me an idiot: A very smart guy. I woke up, placed a call and it was then that I realized that Gbenga and Dimeji have taken their shame a step further over an overhead bridge. Pius Adesanmi laments my tragedy over this macabre dance when he decries how these shameless men wasted a day of work and our money by implication. 

Unfortunately, some commentators have proceeded to analyze the protocols and bureaucratic etiquettes involved in such ceremonies and how either party is to blame for the problem. Wake up guys, this is not about a bridge that is not even completed yet. It is about 2011 and who occupies what position. It is time we wake up and allow PDP to bury their dead. As for me, I rejoice whenever they end up annihilating themselves. It is only then that we know how they play golf with our national destiny. Or have we forgotten that it took the disagreement between Obasanjo and Atiku for us to realize that both of them are crooks and specialize in buying cars for their girlfriends and baby mamas with our commonwealth. And the same Atiku has the temerity to distract our national discourse again with his quest for the presidency in 2011. Never mind that he is begging to return to the PDP that he vowed never to return to. So, for Gbenga and Dimeji, you do not deserve my thought: May your wars never end and may both of you be the losers.

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However, PDP has succeeded in teaching some of the other parties and family businesses how to wash their linens in public. Recently, we were told that Governor Orji of Abia has left the PPA because of the overbearing influence of his godfather, Orji Uzor Kalu. My friend, Dike Kalu, can you help me ask your governor why he waited for 3 years to tell us that Orji Uzor Kalu has an overbearing tendency? It is annoying that these guys wait until things fall apart between them before disturbing our peace with their roforofo fight. And now, the principled Orji Uzor Kalu is begging to return to the PDP that he swore never to do anything with. 

The next question is: Where does this leave the ordinary Abians? Their state has been taken over by thieves and kidnappers who are exploiting the ineptitude of their moronic Governor. After losing their state resources to Orji Uzor Kalu and the cabal, their personal resources too are under siege from men and women of the criminal world. The situation is not practically different in other states in the South-East. As I write, members of ASUU in my alma mater and other state universities are on strike, and a state governor was reported to have asked the striking lecturers to close the university and bring the key to the Government House. That is the kind of leaders that we brandish in the 21st century.

And this is why I tell my fellow Igbos who care to listen that the solution to the Igbo problem is not secession from Nigeria. In fact, I continue to marvel at how some Igbo leaders have succeeded to sell the dummy that secession will end the problems in Igboland. At a recent Igbo youth convention in Chicago where I was privileged to address an enthusiastic audience, I listened as young Igbo minds catalogue the woes of Ndigbo and concluded that the solution to the problem can be found in secession. Of course, I reminded them that Igboland does not have Northerners as leaders and challenged them to show me what the governors have to show for their stewardship. They are yet to offer me one but I can suggest one quickly: endorsing Goodluck Jonathan for the 2011 elections and banning all Igbos from contesting the offices of president and vice-president! Who says my governors are not working?

In the North, zoning is the stock in trade and the Governors have abandoned the art and science of governance to ensure that the zoning debate favors them. Unfortunately, the average Northerner has swallowed the zoning bait and is insisting that the North must produce the next President. Dear Herdsman, you stand to gain nothing by who occupies the position. You will not be appointed Chief of Staff or awarded contracts. Your leaders are only using you to achieve their ends.

In all of these, what does the average Nigerian stand to gain? He/she continues to be the chess in the leaders’ game. We are manipulated to suit their tendencies and when they are done with us, they abandon us to suck at our loss. Isn’t it a shame that we still have leaders whose only achievement for the nation’s fifty years anniversary is the unveiling of the largest cake in history. My people, why are we so blest?


Afterword: A happy birthday to the charismatic Igbo leader, Dr. Kanayo Odeluga. I wish Igboland is blessed with leaders like you. Ya Gazie.


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