A new change of government has come, and it will be time to get a redirection for us to do better than we have done in government and nation-building over the past years. I am writing to create aspirations for young Nigerians. I am also writing for us to take conscious steps to preserve our future and Nigeria. For this message to be thoroughly captured it will be written in two parts.
The average Nigerian today has to buy our own currency while images of Nigerian currencies being shredded and left at dump sites flood the internet. Millions returned to the bank with no source of income to back up the amounts they tendered and requested in new notes. They are money mules that have not been used to apprehend the other culprits in the game.
Is a belly full of delicacies and food a legacy? Is it worthy of note that a man has lived his life well? The situation of the country has become like one of those folk tales told to children and they are simple enough for children to learn from it but hard to be understood by the forces that are in this country. The situation seems just like the story of the tortoise who always seems to escape consequences but hurts the animal kingdom. The story of the tortoise eating the fish and the eggs without the tortoise getting punished but rather simply having a feast on the fish. It is a story where the tortoise deceives all the fish into thinking they are going to grow big by jumping into the hot oil. Our economy is being plunged into hot oil, and we are eating the fish with its eggs, so there are questions that leaders have to answer.
From the regime in 1985 to 2022, there have been various attempts for governments to take control of the economy, but the opposite has been achieved, with most of the mismanagement beginning in 1985.This started with the initiation of SAP. The next government we witnessed in the Interim government tried to cut the negative use of money in the electoral process and drove peace and stability with no manifesto. It fought for a democracy that it did not symbolize and equality that it could not propagate because of the respect itcould never earn. The military then took power. Here the looting and the decadence of our economy began in full swing. Misappropriation of funds at the highest level was the talk of the day, and violence was the talk of the day. Could you guess the goal of this regime? It was to bring order to Nigeria.
In 1999 an attempt to fight a lack of structure without a timetable to stop inflation came. The leadership will try its best to do so. It created civic service rules and finished the assignments of its predecessors, but none of the predecessors was called to account for funds that were misappropriated, even after the findings were declared. What happened to all those resources? Were they shared in space?
The governance of 2007 came with a seven-point agenda for:
ii. Power and energy
iii. Food security
vi. Educational and human capital
vii. Wealth creation
In a short time with this very large plan, the government was able to achieve a level of national security in the shutting down of the militants in the south, but could not tackle, put into action, or create a follow-through to end the dissatisfaction and corruption in the country nation-wide. Many of the infrastructures built were not maintained after the Vice President left office.
What I am trying to say is that for each and every development that has come, a lot of our economy has been lost to the different optimizations of the military and the political bodies and persons, or political contractors, as I wish to call them, that never handled any of the development rights and whose motive was only for their own benefits. All these things happened without any reasonable explanation being given to us. There is a need for caution to be called because when you continue in such a manner with no one to hold you responsible for these deeds, you should also know that one day the cake you are eating will be consumed. You should also remember that the image and the statue before us are diminishing.
The transformation agenda regime faced various attacks as well, also had similar plans to bring job creation,economic growth, an attitudinal change in governance and parastatals, policies for governance, infrastructure, industry etc.
These actions could not be carried out because there was no adherence to the very important keynotes of previous governments.There was a necessity for them to pay attention to the needs of the masses in the south and in the north. Our leaders have failed to address the key components of power. I see how at any given time everyone enters the office with a “it’s my turn” mentality, “my turn to make a legacy,” “my turn to be enriched by all the benefits that come with being a leader in one of the most resourceful nations,” without even a follow-through on what was left behind and presently promised. The government has no clear agenda to fulfil its promises.
Let’s speak of the resources, all our cash resources thatwere thrown into the various development plans that they come up with. In the industrial sector, they hoped to build, every school that they started but did not finish. What happened to all the funding that was attached to such programs?
Attention, please: every government in the world also has a sustainable plan that outlasts that regime.
Taking the example of Ghana, which was able to get 24 hours of electricity, our power system has been continuously funded, and many political parties and entities have benefited heftily from these projects with the rise of these governments without anything to show for it. Ministers and commissioners that merged were moved into the bunker room facilities and the La crème Society without anything to show for their offices
I see we are eating up our economy because even the money that has been returned to Nigeria from various ends is not being used. One of those ends was Abacha’s loot. Abacha’s loot is estimated to have returned over 3 billion dollars to Nigeria in the past few years, which has not been accounted for. What has that money gone into?
The basic dependency on the oil and gas of Nigeria and the neglect of other sectors is also eating into the future, as we have neglected every other resource. The agricultural resource has become an exclamation point with little hope, with the rampant food scarcity and high cost of agricultural aid, which are caused by the next point.
There has been a refusal by agencies to complete the refineries as a result of the opium of the oil, which is the benefits and royalties the oil companies give. These royalties that come to these bodies and persons have made them forget that we have a need for a refinery. A refinery is so necessary. We need the by-products that are lost because we have refused to make the right choices. We buy our own by-products from our own crude oil. These fragments from crude distillation are very necessary for industrialization and other sectors, such as agriculture.We have also underutilized our human resources in no small way.
We have also refused to develop sustainable goals from the legacy of our predecessors, failing to see them as the sustainable goals of Nigeria. We are constantly starting from scratch, and progress is lost with every regime. Nigeria is not 63 years old; it is simply the age of every tenure before it or 8 years.
We are just like a zygote, a foetus stuck in the womb of conception, not attending to term or miscarrying.
In a country that is full of debt, why are the leader’s entourage and allowances running into hundreds of millions, for insecurity? The same you ought to eradicate? Why are our senators’ assets that are meant to be sourced from a salary of just N700,000 running into millions? An average senator has assets worth over 100 million naira. As we multiply that number by 109 senators, that will give us 1 billion. This amount is needed to start projects in the country. What are we doing?
My last evidence that we are eating the fish and the eggsare a seemingly big desire for our country to feed these politicians more than there is to make infrastructural development and decisions that will turn the country around. We are constantly borrowing,even though we have a solid GDP.The lack of foresight is laughable. Would it have been wrong if Nigerians had been informed four years prior of sustainable goals and found them truly fulfilled? I do not mock my country. I call for the powers that be to take precautions.