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My #OgaAtTheTop: Exposing Mediocrity At The Helm of Affairs

March 15, 2013


(Somewhere in Lagos Nigeria, the following conversation ensued between the staff of Channels Television and the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps(NSCDC) Commandant of Lagos zone on a breakfast show, Sunrise Daily)


(Somewhere in Lagos Nigeria, the following conversation ensued between the staff of Channels Television and the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps(NSCDC) Commandant of Lagos zone on a breakfast show, Sunrise Daily)

Channels TV Staff 1:  What is the website of the NSCDC?

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NSCDC Commandant: The website of NS...NSCDC yes would be...You know…be…the... I cannot categorically tell you one now because the one that…


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Channels TV Staff 1:  (cuts in) you have multiple websites?


NSCDC Commandant: Wait, wait the one we are going to make use of am not the one that is going to create it.


Channels TV Staff 1: See the question is what is your website?


NSCDC Commandant: Wait! The one that we are going to make use of is…is going to be made known by…by my oga at the top yes, I can’t…I can’t announce one now and my oga says is another one


Channels TV Staff 2: (cuts in) Does NSCDC have multiple websites?


NSCDC Commandant: Listen we…we…we not have multiple websites but the one that will (cough)


Channels TV Staff 2: (cuts in) No no no not (both staff) not the one for employment


Channels TV Staff 1: What is your website now, the official one?


Channels Staff 2: If I want to know about NSCDC, what website do I go to?


NSCDC Commandant: ok if you want to know about the NSCDC


Channels TV Staff 2: Exactly


NSCDC Commandant:  Ok… ww.nscdc yes so (cough) hmmm… that’s all


Channels TV Staff 2: ww.nscdc?

Channels TV Staff 1: That’s it?



Born in Katsina State Nigeria, Mr Shem Obafaiye Sunday proceeded to the prestigious University of Lagos and graduated in 1984, he is also an alumnus of University of Ibadan and Lagos State University. Commander Shem was promoted three times between 2011 and 2012.  Currently he is a level 15 officer of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corp (NSCDC) second only to the Assistant Commandant General, Deputy Commandant General and Commandant General.


Every day we wonder why pipeline vandalisation is on the increase, why there is no end to bunkering, why militants and terrorists still continue to hold our dear nation to ransom. Need we ask more? When individuals like Commandant Shem sit at the helm of our nations security agencies. The NSCDC is one of the most important security agencies in Nigeria. Its statutory responsibilities among others are to safeguard helpless citizens, protect the oil pipelines against sabotage and of recent fight terrorism and militancy. The issue is not about not knowing the website address but rather the lies and deceitful tactics the commandant took to to cover up his mistakes. 


However, it is not surprising to most of us that Nigerian officials from the local council officers to the president do not take into cognizance the little but important things under their nose. I am very sure the president cannot recite the second stanza of the national anthem, the senate president does not know the official website of the national assembly and only about1% of Ministers, Honourables and Senators can boastfully  recite the National Pledge. 


It is not the level of education anymore or the dilapidated nature of our educational system. After all, Mr. Shem schooled at a time education in Nigeria is presumed to be great. It is the bred of people we give authorities to. There are brilliant but jobless Nigerians out there who continuously roam the street while some individuals are been given sensitive positions and appointments on a platter of gold, without any interview. I do not challenge the ability of Mr. Shem to comb crime but his leadership ability calls for questioning. What do we expect a man with such integrity to pass on to junior officers under him, what moral lessons would they learn from him on and off the field if his ego wouldn’t make him speak the truth? A single ‘I don’t know’ would have done the magic rather than the disgraceful charade he embarked on. 


Like Mr. Shem there are individuals in the public and private sectors who are being placed with leadership authorities which they do not merit. These sets of individuals are most times the bossy and unfriendly ones. They shout on staffs, ridicule employees and take people for granted. While most of them cannot even pass a teacher’s grade II exam, they set PhD aptitude test for job seekers and expect them to perform magic. It is time we start focusing on potentials rather than qualifications.


To my friends at Alaba and Aba market who have made millions from the misfortune of Mr. Shem - congratulations, to the family and relatives of the commandant accept my humble sympathy but above all to the ever gifted Nigerian youths whose creativity has created the most hilarious pictures, music and videos I doff my hat.


Adekoya Boladale can be reached via twitter @adekoyabe



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