Thursday, December 13, 2012

OF MISSING ITEMS AND THINGS ARISING



I lose things easily.  Little things especially- pens, keys, socks, cigarette lighters. I used to get exasperated and go into horribly depressive moods until I thought of a way to deal with it: keep everything in plain view. No hiding, no double layers in drawers- no concealment. Everything on my reading table- except my socks of course. 

I used to be like Nigeria. But Nigeria loses big things. We lose huge ships- it goes ‘missing’ like a button in a large bedroom. We lose 2.1 billion in 1,000naira bills- it goes missing like a check carelessly placed in a book amidst a large library of books. We lose pension funds- 195 billion naira goes missing. We lose 12 billion dollars of oil windfall. We lose high profile criminal suspects- a suspected terrorist walks quietly out of custody. No jail break or massive earthquake that breaks the jail bars. The guy just goes missing.

That anyone can boldly announce that 195 billion went missing, with a straight face and not fear the wrath of a nation shows something else that we have lost. We have lost the ability to say no, to ask why, to demand change. So a government official can announce, in a country that is barely able to pay a minimum wage of 18,000 naira (117 dollars a month or less than 4 dollars a day) that he intends to build a new mansion worth 16 billion naira. And maybe he deserves it, having worked so hard and selflessly for the country, but the fact that he can propose it means we have lost all sense of propriety or decency. 

Only recently a government ministry announced the real problem of our power sector.  Evil spirits, they said. And you know, I agree with them. Look at it this way. A spirit is something you cannot see right? So someone or something usually sabotages power projects. Someone we can’t see converts the money for the power sector to personal use. Someone we can’t see refuses to let Nigerians have uninterrupted power supply. And that someone or something is evil. Is the ministry not correct then to blame our problems on evil spirits? Or maybe I am missing something. 

 One of our most influential Ministers just lost her mother. Not to the cold hands of death. But to the hands of abductors (the temperature of whose hands I am unsure of). The 82 year old went missing from her Ogwuashi-Uku palace. This is not the first time the relative of a Minister will go missing. It is becoming increasingly common in many parts of the country to go missing, reappearing only after a ransom has been paid. 

Since the disappearance of the Minister’s mother I have read many reactions ranging from indifference to outright jubilation. I read one comment that said: “So what if the Okonjo-Iweala’s mother got missing”. I realized that something else was missing. Empathy.

Nigeria, (or more particularly, its leaders) has beaten and raped us so much that we have, probably purely as a self-preservation strategy, gone numb. We are numb to the suffering, to the pain, to the theft, to the violence, to the corruption, to the darkness. We have become numb so that we can survive. So that when the next many billons go missing we do not go crazy. So that when salaries delay, we keep going to work and find other sources of income, or just go hungry. So that when we have no electricity for weeks on end we do not run naked into the streets pulling our hair out. So that when the next bombing happens we sigh and worry only when someone we know died in the blast. So that when our President tells us he will need a billion a year to feed him and his guests we will not lose sleep. So that when he tells us he needs a new multi-billion naira banquet hall to dine in while the rest of the country goes hungry we will just sigh and keep boiling our stones. 

But we need empathy. We cannot afford to lose that which makes us human. If we lose empathy, and probably, someday get rid of this bad government, we will only replace their cold, unfeeling disregard for citizens with something similarly lacking in empathy. We cannot become like those that oppress us. We must not lose all feeling. We must not stay in the dark depth that allows us to lynch people in the streets for stealing wallets; that makes us do things like bludgeon and set ablaze young men upon an unsubstantiated accusation; that makes us kill our neighbors because they are of a different tribe or religion.

One thing that will help Nigeria is what helped me keep track of the things I lose easily: keeping everything open, everything in plain view. We must open national debate. Talk about the big elephant(s) in the room. Talk about the things that threaten to tear us apart. Open up government processes. The more open government processes are, the harder it is to perpetrate the kind of monumental fraud that we find today. And we do have the Freedom of Information Act, which gives citizens the right to demand access to information from public institutions. The Act allows anyone to demand information without a need to show reason for such demand. 

The laws exist. The resources exist. We have the manpower. What we need is the will. The will to move from sighing and complaining to demanding and acting. We have a choice. Act. Or lose. 

I do not have as much resilience as Nigeria. So I am working on a plan to stop losing big things. Like cars. Like jobs. Like love.

20 comments:

  1. I literally had tears rolling down my cheeks...we have gone numb, we have become an angry set of people. I would have said the youngsters would change things but they already have their minds set, they do not want to be the Jesus that saves Nigeria.

    ReplyDelete
  2. My feelings exactly. that we have the mind to lynch someone who steals N100 but praise and hail those who steal N1b is very telling of our present mindset. I have stopped complaining daily about our nations and its "rulers" but decided instead to do something about it. "God de" is the most lackadaisical attitude we have as a people. May we have the strength to help ourselves

    ReplyDelete
  3. I enjoyed reading your post. I agree with you that we have become numb; accepted things, in a twisted logic, as some form of self preservation . Where does one get the will now to do as you propose? A seed has to be sown ; there should be a shift in the mind set. It may have to start from one person, but at least it will be a start. It may not even occur in your life time, or mine, but as long as a few individuals are striving and believing in that change, maybe, just maybe, it may catch on and others will follow suit.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Revolution might be the answer to our problem. Look at Ghana today are they not better for it. China for one executes anyone found to be corrupt whether big or small. Its really pathetic we are literally selling off our farm land where will our children farm?

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hello every one this is Mr Benald Udo an agent in regards of getting any sugar mummy of your choice,so if you are interested in getting one all you need to do is to give me a call on (08076265935) for more information on how to get one thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  6. As we can clearly see, our leaders have pushed our youth into agents for sugar mummies.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Elnathan John....I miss you so much (blame it on finals). You have made me smile...again!! I wanted to hear something good today and I decided to come around and laugh! You've made me think.. not just think but think about what I can DO to be a better Nigerian instead of drowning in tears every time I'm overwhelmed with the pathetic situation back home. I love Nigeria..and I will do my best to replace some of her broken pieces. Maybe I can love more, forgive more, share with others more, hug more, ACT more...

    ReplyDelete
  8. is our hope to provide each veteran with no less than two gifts each. [url=http://officialcanadagoosesoutlet.ca]canada goose outlet[/url] As is known today, Nike has emerged highly successful in golf because since the company signed with Tiger Woods in 1996, have seen a $50 million revenue growth. Montague was, in part, responsible for the promotion and development of Labrador's mineral resources. These sold in packs of 20 for five shillings4 and had titles like 'Once a little vagrant, now a little workman.' These not only raised money, but also helped publicise the work.
    Most pieces were cheaply made and did not have manufacturers' marks on them. [url=http://www.icanadagooseca.com]canada goose[/url] I am a relatively young guy and I personally like the old style women and they way they would dress. [url=http://officialcanadagoosesoutlet.ca]canada goose parka sale[/url]
    http://flyballbags.com The mission of the Adult Christian Education Program is the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness Christ. [url=http://www.onlinebeatsbydreoutlet.com]beats by dr dre cheap solo[/url]

    ReplyDelete
  9. What a brilliantly written and heart wrenching post. In the U.S. we don't hear about these sorts of problems, but I'm thankful to have social media which reaches beyond borders.

    Every post, every discussion, every single word helps, because as long as there isn't absolute silence, there is hope. At least, that is how I feel.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Bottes G Star Pour Femme Bottes G Star Pour Femme , oG2grXcMOo
    Bottes A Lacets Femme Bottes A Lacets Femme , LuOB6bDk3uY
    Bottes Femme 5 Cm Bottes Femme 5 Cm , cRxsF6eVZk
    Bottes Cuir Femme 3 Suisses Bottes Cuir Femme 3 Suisses , DlC0PaKqcW
    Botte Femme Tour Mollet 45 Cm Botte Femme Tour Mollet 45 Cm , tJrdZwOLt
    Botte Femme Pointure 34 Botte Femme Pointure 34 , AmMDfYtlB
    Botte Femme 2011 Botte Femme 2011 , jGyj5FtUNl
    Botte Femme 10 Euro Botte Femme 10 Euro , VlJMqKvgD.
    Femme Bottes Caoutchouc Femme Bottes Caoutchouc , PcUZyWtaT
    Botte D'hiver Femme Yellow Botte D'hiver Femme Yellow , aRth9WsRLi
    Bronx Botte Cerex Webby Femme Bronx Botte Cerex Webby Femme , SaMGoImmD.

    ReplyDelete
  11. this is powerful. so good to read from you, i do miss your words. hope all is well. ;;;)

    ReplyDelete
  12. The act of missing is the order of the day. And nobody ask why...nobody ask in a democrazy system you don't ask why

    ReplyDelete
  13. top [url=http://www.001casino.com/]casino online[/url] check the latest [url=http://www.casinolasvegass.com/]las vegas casino[/url] unshackled no consign hand-out at the chief [url=http://www.baywatchcasino.com/]online casinos
    [/url].

    ReplyDelete
  14. Have you seen how they get fur from most animals? They rip their skin off when they are still alive since doing it after they have died affects the quality of fur. [url=http://www.ukdresshop.co.uk]prom Dresses uk[/url]
    [url=http://www.canadagoosehommes.com]canada goose toronto[/url] christian louboutin shoes release keep low-priced shoes this, you will use a best vendor plus world wide no cost.
    Of decorations, garlands and, this stories stuff halloween, halloween movie picture decorations, life all minorities when ideas. [url=http://www.salemulberryshop.co.uk]Mulberry Bags[/url] He wrote many articles for the Dial, the transcendentalist periodical of the time. This is the examine a lot of the huge beats by dr dre sounds words plus course of action connected with to become a finely registered bit of new music. Later on the in the fourth season the team works on an old case of Hotch's in which they identify George Foyet as a serial killer known as the Boston Reaper.
    When you go shopping, you will be put under the scrutiny of leaving your dog behind. [url=http://www.soldesgoosefr.com]Canada Goose Chilliwack Bomber[/url] Kedarnath is dedicated to Lord Shiva while Badrinath is dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
    This is a great option for all those people who do not wish to compromise on their style and passion for brands while still being able to save some money from their purchases. Colors also matters much if thinking to enhance you with a flare dress. Dubai rentals also offer long term stay, but it can only be availed by visa holders of Dubai residence. [url=http://www.promkleidde.com/]http://www.promkleidde.com/[/url]

    ReplyDelete
  15. The F4F Corsair, for example. [url=http://www.ukdresshop.co.uk]Mother of the Bride Dresses[/url]
    [url=http://www.canadagoosehommes.com]canada goose parka[/url] It is advisable to put on smaller but genuine jewelry, rather than larger costume ones.
    A $50 order is required and a deposit for that order is expected on the day of the session. [url=http://www.salemulberryshop.co.uk]Mulberry ooutlet sale[/url] Make it big bangles, big handbags, big earrings. Before a session begins, let the instructor know you're new, and they'll get you acclimated. They used it as an outtake in the joke reel at the wrap party.
    They could also be designed for different playing field surfaces. [url=http://www.soldesgoosefr.com]Canada Goose Trillium Parka[/url] You can pay through credit or debit cards that stand for a safe and secure payment for buying wholesale candles..
    Both before and after you hire a photographer, it's important that you discuss with them in detail what exactly you're going to be wanting from them. Smart casual (no jeans but somewhat stylish) is common at most trendy locations. Going on twenty five years old, Poison wows the wearer with jasmine, grape crush, and cinnamon. [url=http://www.promkleidde.com/]prom ball kleider[/url]

    ReplyDelete
  16. Of missing items and things arising...I don't think anyone could have written it as perfectly as you have. I guess it's is true what they say about the written word; "when words of truth are to be written they find the writer and then they ring true and real.
    I agree we have been numbed by the constant bombardment of all these evils and I also believe that the "divide and conquer while you rule" strategy has been employed by those in power over the years to separate us by religion and ethnicity. I was born and bred in the city of Kaduna; the proud son of a honorable father from Kogi state. I speak Hausa and a little English. But I can not claim the city I had come to love and as a child had bragged to everyone who would listen that it was the greatest place on earth. If I spill my blood for that city to defend it's people against a ruler who plunders it's wealth and potential it would go unnoticed. And of course my Kogi background regards me an outcast because my father married outside and raised us all to become "omo gambari' Hausa speaking children. So I have come to hate my first love, Kaduna state and demand that my siblings sell every single brick my father has left standing in that city and get out while they can since we are no longer welcome where my father and his generation spent their sweat, blood and tears toiling till they built the greatness now known as the City of Kaduna, now decaying into a community of hate, violence and discrimination.
    Until we become as awakened as societies such the United States where birth or years or significant contribution earn you the right to become indigenous to a community, we shall continue to hate each other, and that son of the soil you just voted for will surely plunder your wealth and leave your descendants with a debt that their grandchildren can never pay (Kaduna State, world bank loans).

    ReplyDelete
  17. The event started at 6pm and upon arrival while walking to get my goodie bag I noticed that there were 3 rooms there were tables with everything from jewelry, fashion, makeup, candles, and etc. [url=http://www.ukdresshop.co.uk]prom Dresses uk[/url]
    [url=http://www.canadagoosehommes.com]canada goose jacket[/url] Wayne was at the NBA All Star game sitting with another over the top Glammer Nicki Minaj.
    No man is above you or below you, and no god is above you or below you. http://www.salemulberryshop.co.uk Leftovers from the wedding feast are served, along with fresh soup - which is traditionally made from a cockerel that's been made drunk, then taken on a walk through the village with the newlyweds before it is slaughtered. Cost for a tour lasting about two hours can be around $100. Our relationship has moved quickly, sure .
    Collecting fashion accessories to enhance their self beauty is their biggest hobby on which they can spend several hours. [url=http://www.soldesgoosefr.com]Canada Goose Chateau Parka[/url] Ed Hardy sunglasses are also extremely popular.
    Emilio Pucci clothes and accessories are sold through Emilio Pucci and Rossignol boutiques worldwide and in high-end department stores designed by Lena Pessoa[11], mostly feature the designer's original brightly coloured, often swirly, prints or new designs in his original distinct style. If you take proper care of them they will last many years.. Gliding for 25 laps over 14 minutes and 12 seconds, Heiden beat the previous world record by six seconds and claimed his fifth gold medal. [url=http://www.promkleidde.com/]Chiffon Prom Kleid[/url]

    ReplyDelete
  18. The diease in our midst has eaten us so deeply,
    We just live to die in age of time. Sigh away our own pace and destinies.
    With one great rhythm of hunger and numb-skullness.
    If then, why do we exist..?
    Why do we chant ourselves Gaint of Africa..?
    And why are we Nigerians.?
    For at-most we're numb- skull humans of thoughtless might.
    Cause we perish and bleed in Hunger of Joyous Pains and Disgrace.

    ReplyDelete
  19. The diease in our midst has eaten us so deeply,
    We just live to die in age of time. Sigh away our own pace and destinies.
    With one great rhythm of hunger and numb-skullness.
    If then, why do we exist..?
    Why do we chant ourselves Gaint of Africa..?
    And why are we Nigerians.?
    For at-most we're numb- skull humans of thoughtless might.
    Cause we perish and bleed in Hunger of Joyous Pains and Disgrace.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Thank You for above Information and Nice Blog. I have Some information to share about Canada Spouse Visa. Global Migrate is the lading Visa Consultant Company. For More information

    http://global-migrate.com/

    ReplyDelete

You fit vex, bet abeg no curse me. You hear?