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How Nigeria will bounce back

Fola Ojo

He was named Sam. His parents had waited for many years after their marriage before mummy’s womb popped open. Prior to his birth, some divine instructions had been given about the don’ts and dos around Sam.

One of them was that the lad must never be taken to a barber shop for a haircut. Why? The source of his physical strength which made him a mighty man in life was in his hair. As Sam grew up to be a young man, he also grew up philandering and lusting after women to a patheticapotheosis. One of his many women became a mole planted in his life by an enemy nation.

The secret agent eventually got to know where Sam’s power domiciled. The cruel cocotte revealed the secret to the enemy who brought in a barber. Sam’s hair was cut. His strength was thus cut down. What made him stand out among nations vamoosed before his gouged eyes.

Afterward, enemies held Sam down, tied him up, and prepped up the mighty man for a premature death. But before they could finally snuff life out of him, his hair grew back. And the strength that made Sam stand out among men and nations came right back and in full force. Nigeria’s economy is in rubbles today. Everything seems to be at a standstill.

The angst and anxiety are rife and awash. Yes; Nigeria has lost much strength. She has lost much money and resources to profligacy and corruption perpetrated by mean men. She has lost respect in the eyes of many nations in the world. Thieves have robbed and pillaged her. Many of the thieves are like the woman Sam fell in love with in the above story. They colluded with enemies and caused Nigeria to bleed. Some Nigerians have lost hope because every aspect of the economy is in a coma. But Nigeria is like SAM. Nigeria will bounce back.

 I believe the philosophical submission that a global human society, characterised by islands of wealth, surrounded by a sea of poverty, is unsustainable. In my own words, I say that a protracted condition in a nation beefed and buoyed up by natural wealth, but encompassed by a spread of hunger and poverty, is unacceptable. If a country’s annual income runs into trillions of naira and most of the citizens feel it not on the dinner table, it is unacceptable. Historically, in Nigeria, ordinary citizens die 10,000 times daily under harsh conditions brought about by decades of misrule. In a land flowing with milk and honey; in a territory where sweet water is plenteous, there is thirst and hunger.

Young men with potential and abilities are kept in servitude of unemployment while some men with means are granted the liberty to haul the nation’s patrimonies abroad for “safekeeping”. Millionaires and billionaires are sneaking their subjects out of the country for subterfuge to enjoy their illegal cash-in. Greedy and gluttonous goons and geeks who care nothing about the common man just don’t get it. Yes, they shamelessly hide in the comfort of their homes in Chicago, New York, Texas and Tennessee -with their children, and their first, second, third wives enjoying the loot from Nigeria. To their shame, Nigeria will bounce back!

 The loud rants of threat of belligerence and deafening noise from the tom-tom of battles that some vow to wage are all reactions to prevalent tough times. Looming feud between the haves and have-nots has become a screaming signage. But we must not let Nigeria slide down the precipitous escarpment.

We must not let her go on a free-fall into the abyss of unquenchable self-set inferno. What nation in the world over will help Nigeria when she is in dire need? When Ghanaians got in economic troubles in the 70s, it was Nigeria that welcomed them. When Liberians got in rattling belligerence, it was Nigeria that stretched her welcoming hands.

I have had the privilege and God’s grace to travel to places all around the world and I can attest that Nigerians’ cerebral acuities are esteemed all over the world. But friends, Nigerians are loved by only a few and loathed by many.There is no longer much of a safe haven for the cruel and callous Nigerian purloiners. All eyes are on Nigerians everywhere now. If trouble sparks, God forbid, what nation of the world will welcome Nigerians? Nigeria is all that Nigerians have; my friends.

Together, we all must make her bounce back from backwardness and retrogression. Leva in circuitu oculos tuos et vide. Look around you and see; that’s what I mean. Ordinary Nigerians must begin to look around them and see the power within. Anywhere around the world, true change does not come from politicians and men who seasonally campaign, plead and ask for votes. True change comes from ordinary men and women who truly thirst and hunger for CHANGE.

If ordinary Nigerians are waiting for politicians to bring about any kind of change, they will wait forever. Although you may not be occupying a political position of leadership, you are a Nigerian leader. You must sit up, stand strong, and demand the kind of change you want. When a people are docile, their destinies will remain in exile.

Why am I so confident of a definite bounce back of Nigeria? There are many who stand with Nigeria than pit against her. There are more who yearn for her survival than those who campaign for her destruction. There are more who are interested in enriching and building her up than those stealing from her.I am confident that if the present purification and sanitisation trend is sustained for another 10 years, one day, garroting corruption will become an abnormality in Nigeria.

And then, civility will reign. From the Presidential Palace to the Governors’ Quarters; from the Legislative Mansion to the Ministers’ Drive, civility will reign. From the church to the mosque, from my town to your city, and then in all of our hearts, civility will reign. Nigeria is all that Nigerians have! Nigeria is the only inheritance Nigerians can boast of. Whatever it will take to get her to bounce back with peace and brotherly understanding as evidences must be pursued.

A group of successful men got together in Chicago some time ago to talk about their experiences. They were all millionaires and multimillionaires. They were all humble and thankful for what life has bestowed on them. As they discussed reasons why they had managed to achieve so much in life, the wisest among them said: “Success is goals, and all else is commentary”.

Every human move towards a bounce back from a dismal situation is tough. Bounce back is hard work not a high wish. Life itself is like a football match. You don’t score goals until you set goals. Nigerian leaders must begin to set smart, realistic goals for a bounce back from backwardness. Rhetoric is nothing but buccal retch of rubbish. Serious leaders with their heads on their shoulders set goals and pursue them to fruition.


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