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2023 Presidential Election: A Nail In Search Of A Hammer By Bayo Oluwasanmi

February 1, 2023

The title of the article should be A Hammer In Search Of A Nail. But everything about Nigeria is abnormal, strange, scary, and upside down, so I flip the title the other way around. Nigeria is where people drive the car forward by looking at the rear view mirror, where shoes are used as hammers, newspapers for umbrellas, and a fingernail to tighten screws.

In Nigeria, snakes and other reptiles eat millions of Naira. Two bullion vans were escorted to Alhaji Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s house to deliver millions of Naira to him. Tinubu admitted the money belonged to him. Recently, an inebriate clown and die-hard supporter of Tinubu came on National TV to defend Tinubu. He said Tinubu was not the owner of the money, rather the drivers of the bullion vans missed their way and went to the wrong address. 

In the same Nigeria, Governor Ganduje before the cameras stuffed bribed money into his Babariga without any fear of being caught or arrested. It is also in Nigeria that donated foods and other essentials by foreign governments meant for Nigerians to lessen the impact of COVID-19 were locked up in warehouses by governors instead of distributing the materials to their hungry and sick citizens. In a county where killings, kidnapping, terrorism, and violence are in full rage, the president went to another country to mediate a peace talk. You can’t argue with the facts. I can go on, and on, and on. But I will spare you the agony of brain torture.

Nigerian electorates have a history of electing a nail as presidents instead of hammers. No wonder they are so wicked, brutal, blood thirsty, and despotic. As the countdown begins for the 2023 presidential election, Nigeria is in search of a hammer. A hammer who will hammer out the nails of ancient evils that have bedeviled the country. A hammer that will restore civilization and rule of law. A hammer that will treat citizens as human beings. A hammer that will be a leader and not an oppressor. A hammer that will serve as a servant. A hammer that will be a giver and not a taker. Nigerians walk on nail, sleep on nail, and live on nail, hence the multitude of sufferings. We need a new hammer that will deal ruthlessly with our recurring problems. For 62 years, we had relied on the same old set of hammers. This had inhibited and made difficult the processes of change. 

A girl born in Finland is sure to live to old age. If she’s born in Nigeria, her chances of dying before her 5th birthday is nine out of ten. Nigerians are three times likely to die a violent death, four times likely to be kidnapped, and five times likely to die from hunger and from both preventable and treatable diseases. Life expectancy in Nigeria is between 35 and 45. Majority live on one dollar a day, 133 million Nigerians are drowning in abject poverty, and 33 million children are out of school. In the last eight years, the tragic consequences of poverty is better imagined than described. Nigerian lives are battered, happiness stifled, creativity destroyed, freedoms uprooted. We are faced with lack of good schools, absence of health facilities, unavailability of medicines, ethnic cleansing, tyranny of the majority. 

Why are we ruled by these fools for so long? In our 62 years of democratic experiment and experience, our rulers truly behaved as older versions of high school dropouts. They are painfully weak in substance, deficient in intellect, and morally deformed. Again, why are we ruled by these fools? We're ruled by fools election after election because the majority of Nigerians habitually prefer affable fools to disagreeable pedants. The advantage democracy has over any other political system is that we can get rid of the fools. Are we ready to throw out the bums on February 25? I doubt it… The nail is still searching for a hammer!

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