Thursday, 21 January 2010


"We have been recolonised by a single tribe, not Hausa, Yoruba, or Igbo, but a
tribe of thieves" Chuma Nwokolo at the Save Nigeria Protest in London.


by Kayode Ogundamisi

What a year this is! In fact the exigencies of 2009 never gave Nigerians the time to shut down on the old year and prepare for the new one. From the punch of the economic crunch to the breakdown in service delivery, no fuel, no light, no food and then the dirt being kicked into our eyes by those brewing one controversy after another in a bid to profit from the circumstances created by the health status of our ailing president there was no room for a breather! Don’t even think about enjoying the little time tucked into the Christmas and the New Year holidays.
Too much for a people to grapple with; too much for no good course. What impunity on the part of those who dare to visit such torture on our psyche. What cruelty on from those we gave the opportunity to serve us in very high places. Never mind the fact that most of these people were either rigged into such opportunities or were appointed by those who rigged their way to power, we gave them the opportunity because we failed to resist them when they began their evil manifestations from the word go.

Today Nigerians at home and abroad are trooping out to protest the political impasse created by the sick president, I wish we could turn back the hands of the clock to 1993 when the fairest elections we ever had were annulled. Of course there were protests that yielded some great results but how I wish we had the show of agree and solidarity from the larger public that we have today! I also wish I could turn back the hands of the clock to 2006/2007 when Gen Olusegun Obasanjo started scripting this Yar’adua drama that we all have become willy-nilly actors; actors in a tragedy that’s set in our own lives! How in the world has this come to be?
Drama everywhere! Innocent people on a Christmas day flight have a technical fault to thank for the air they still breathe. I’m trying not to get personal on that issue because at that point I begin to wonder who should take the blame for the making of a stray terrorist! I’ll allow discipline schedule that for another day. I will also try not to join deal with the controversial claims to the presence of terrorists in our country. Semantics and sentiments complicate issues and slur judgments.
The big deal in all this is that there is a growing necessary consciousness that will overwhelm the evil that has tormented Nigerians for decades. It is great to see that on the World Wide Web, in the nooks and crannies of Nigeria, in lonely habitations in the Diasporas and everywhere else Nigerians congregate, the issues that challenge us dominate discuss. The hunger for change is growing. The thirst for true freedom is becoming unbearable and the determination to do well is taking over the hearts and minds of Nigerians.

Thus if I could step into the fold of the prophet or the babalawo I’d say that this is indeed our year of struggle. The fact that our oppressors are determined to asphyxiate us by ensuring that there is little or no room to breathe is yielding great results. The need for air will propel us to fight our oppressors. We will fight until freedom walks proudly in our streets, leaning happily on the arms of justice and peace. But must we make the mistake of yesteryears? Must we keep agonising, marching and write epistles on opinion page of newspapers, blogs and list serves without the goal of capturing power? We have over the years left power on the streets only for charlatans to pick it up on a platter of gold and then use the same power to perpetuate evil on us and the generality of our people. The time is ripe for everyone to be involved in the politics of our country. Join a political movement including civil society movements; we can only deliver justice to the people with the instrument of authority. If good people leave the political landscape for evil people then we may have lost our right to complain when they bestow on us torrents of wickedness. As we march from Abuja to London, London to Lagos, New York, New York to Kiev and push for a return to sanity, all of us together as a people must rise and not only insist “Enough is Enough” but also take on the responsibility on either putting our name on the ballot box or encourage good people to take up the mantle of leadership. After all those monsters in power are not from the planet “Averter” they are our brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers and above all they are Nigerians holding Nigeria to ransom. We only have our bondage to lose if we fight them to a standstill. Nigeria deserve better than wailing and gnashing of teeth. We can resist evil.