A CALL TO ACTION
Whenever I reflect on the injustices, the poverty in the midst of plenty, the wickedness, the heartlessness, lawlessness and greed that pervade my home country (Nigeria), I cannot but mourn and grieve. My heart bleeds and aches every day as I see the pain the leaders of my people inflict on the citizens . The older generation has refused to hear the groaning and cry of the younger( my generation). There is a palpable anger in the atmosphere. A great number of talented people of productive age have left the country in anger because there is no conducive atmosphere to express themselves.
I do not want to bore you with what is wrong with Nigeria because we are all aware of all these things. I am not as concerned about what the political class does to the people as much as I’m concerned about the reaction of the people to what their leaders do to them. While some are totally paralyzed, not knowing what to do with their lives ( they are in a state of perpetual helplessness); some responded by working hard to take care of only themselves and their immediate family members because the country offers them no hope; some have decided to go into economic exile by leaving the shores of the country to seek for greener pastures abroad (not trying to be derogatory); some decided to beg for crumbs falling from the tables of the politicians; others have decided to join the the wicked political class to loot the treasury of the nation.
My dear friends, a close look at the way we have all responded to the the perversion in our father land shows that majority of us responded cowardly. We have turned our eyes to the other side in pretense, as if nothing is happening, either for selfish reasons or because of a feeling of powerlessness. We have forgotten that he that fails to fight and runs away will come back on another day to fight.
I am aware that many of us in our closets have complained bitterly about the ugly state of things in our nation. The truth is- complaining and screaming in the closet will not solve the problem. Some have said we should pray; yes, prayer is good but praying without appropriate actions will not also solve the problem.
My appeal to all my friends is this: let us stop saying there is nothing we can do because there are a lot of things we can do to effect a positive change. Let this feeling of hopelessness and incapacitation stop, rather, let us rise up to the challenge of delivering our nation from the hands of a corrupt and wicked “gang” that has hijacked our commonwealth.
Where do we go from here? What should our response be? I believe it’s time for action. It’s time to wake up from our slumber. It’s time to face the challenge of nation building squarely like men. We will do well if we resolved to do the following going forward from 2011:
Start preparing for leadership: read books, attend seminars and conferences, take up challenges and be responsible.
Build character, develop an infectious integrity.
Speak out against oppression in whatever form it presents itself.
Be a good ambassador of your country wherever you are. Enough of 419, enough of fraudulent behaviors
Be bold, be courageous, don’t be afraid to challenge the status quo.
Let’s come out of ourselves, be interested in what is happening in Nigeria
Above all, let’s stop fighting solo battles, let’s collaborate, let’s join hands together to overthrow the current oppressive ruling class. This is the ultimate.
You can add to the list as you wish. The bottom line is- we all need to take appropriate actions that will effect the change we so much desire. Nothing comes from nothing. The definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing and expect another result. Let’s rise up, let’s take up the challenge life has thrust upon our generation. It will be totally unfair if we dodge and leave this problem unsolved for the generation coming after us.
I believe we need to collaborate. We need to put all our sentiments aside; be it religious, tribal, gender, social status or whatever. A close look at any country called “developed” today shows they’ve all at one point or the other gone through what Nigeria is going through today, namely, the oppressor- the oppressed dichotomy. Is it the US, Britain, France, Europe in general or even the emerging economies? The major difference between these nations and Nigeria is that the citizens had enough courage and collaborated to rise up against the oppressors to get their freedom.
I believe it is now time for a united effort to liberate Nigeria. Enough of this citizens’ apathy! Now is the time to break all the dividing walls asunder. Now is the time to build a nation we can all be proud of. Now is the time to build a nation where merit will count again. Now is the time to build a country we can call ours.
I will rest my case for now.
God save and bless Nigeria.
Dr. AC Jemilohun
F: Abiodun Jemilohun