By Ajakaiye Olanrewaju
There have been calls from different quarters on the need for “Restructuring to be or not to be”, different divides representing known and unknown interest have continuously clamour for parting from the connecting links that binds a fragile entity called Nigeria. Both valiant, conqueror, beginners, experienced, in-experience, educated and the unlearned have joined the call to let the red tape go down by all means, all waiting for the victor that would dip in his/her scissors to cut the tape.
Pondering on this issue, I came to realize that in this game, it is just a battle of the fierce not the fittest. As the saying goes “in politics, there is no permanent friend or enemy, the only thing permanent is MR INTEREST”. To disabuse the sentiments that has polluted the solitude of refreshing peace the nation managed to cat away in the 2015 general elections, I want to bring some salient issues to bear, remember “the pen is mightier than the sword”.
The ringing tune from the eastern part of the nation called “Biafra” with neglect to the root and remote cause of the civil war that encapsulated the nation between 1967 and 1970 is just another “Awilo Logomba” rhythmic composition that we once danced to in our growing up days. I have asked my many Igbo brothers close to me on why Biafra should be or not to be, the best response I get each time is “this Nigeria na fuck up, I beg we won dey on our own” (this Nigeria is messed up, we just want to be on our own) #Biaframustbeattained. The second question I also do ask is that, who becomes the President? In the Federal Resource-filled Republic of BIAFRA? The response I often get is, who cares? We just want Biafra.
Creating a nation without an articulated agenda to harness the resources and potentials of her people for desired national growth and development is another holiday in an unknown paradise.
We usually say in this part of the world that “the DEVIL we know is better than the ANGEL we don’t know”, I very much agree with this because the dissipated Nigeria full of corrupt, bad leaders without clear-cut agenda to lead the nation out of her current economic and social challenges is better than a BIAFRA Republic promising HEAVEN ON EARTH! (Strange works and Strange turnaround overnight), without patent to what it takes to build a meaningful nationhood.
In my growing up days I used to pray for self-reliance without interference from my parent and siblings, but little did I know that freedom is huge task that calls for the totality of both responsibility and sacrifice. The peak of any man’s independence is when he is married and he becomes the ‘Lord’ of his home but that alone do not pay the bills, he must work to give it the maximum input this requires. Apart from paying the bills, you must provide serious emotional and spiritual support for not just your wife but the entire family, these were the things my parents and siblings provided for free and I still wanted to break away from. When faced with challenges in a relationship, breaking away is not the solution but rethinking and renegotiation.
The above analogy represents all the clamour for secession from different quarters, these are positive directions in a democratic engagement, it shows the nation is alive and kicking, but what becomes of us all when we break into fragments with every region flaunting her self-reliance?
Do I agree to the fact Nigerian needs restructuring? Absolutely! But before restructuring comes ‘rethinking and rebuilding’, that my house is defaced does not bring to light the need for me to divide the kitchen, sitting room from the bedrooms. The best solution is just for me to amend the cracked wall instead of bringing the whole structure down, most especially when there is limited or little resources to pull down the house and erect another.
In 1960, we got our independence from the British through a fierce struggle led by our Nationalists. They were like the DEVILS and we felt being led by our leaders was the HEAVEN we dreamt of then, please make the comparison now, how have we fared?
All these political brouhaha if not well planned and placed within the purview of the people for them to make informed decision through a referendum, would look like embarking on a journey with a Bicycle to Europe from Nigeria through the desert. The great people of Nigeria need to come together through a referendum to decide their destiny. Leaving all these political juggernauts who have impoverished the people of this great nation, Nigeria to take decisions for us would do us no good at all.
In politics, power is the central focus because with power one automatically possess the key to a world of unlimited resource control. This power in the final analysis under normal circumstance resides with the people but even our people are so deceived that they do not know this, what a shame! Until we come together as a people, the political elites would continue in their unending rape and onslaught on the very essence of our existence as a nation.
Restructuring to be or not to be? In my opinion should be left for the people, I mean the people and not politicians to decide what the future holds for us as an entity, as no one have the power to take decision for another. God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Ajakaiye Olanrewaju, a Media Practitioner Lives in Omu-Aran, Kwara State, Nigeria.