Happy new, welcome to 2007. This is the year we have been waiting for, my prayer is that all our prayers will be answered and all our expectations met In Jesus name. But personally I really thank God for what he did for me as individual in 2006 it was one long year, a year that many people want to forget for so many reasons and others would not forget for obvious reasons. But either way what more can we do than be happy that we were finally able to sail through.
There are lots of reasons to be optimistic, this year as well as a lot to be pessimistic about as a nation, a lot of us would be watching with an eagle eye as events unfold towards the General Elections, on the international scene the drama would certainly continue from where it stopped last year.
This post would be a thrust of all I expect would be confronting us this year as a nation and as a people, it would be a confabulation of issues that if tackled can take us closer to the promised land and if neglected will only be ingredients for disintegration and a continue slide downwards.
We again from the beginning of this year will be battling poverty; of the mind, of pocket and of sensibilities, despite seven years of reforms we still remain one of the poorest in the globe, despite our natural and human resources, due to human mismanagement we are battling to sustain meaningful development, and growth that is equal to the expectations of our people not even the international standard.
With the emergence of the Buharis, Yaraduas and co., again though subtly we will still be concerned about tribal sentiments, ethnicity, religion and thus to a large extent none of us or few of us are thinking nor discussing meritocracy. Around these three evils and many more we are likely to be subjected to more of political irresponsibility, rascality and political arithmetic that widen the gulf between the rulers and the ruled.
We shall again be fighting against negative statistics of reality, we are still somewhere around the fifth largest HIV/AIDS infected nation, although from 2nd we have moved down to 18th in the corruption index, we still remain and have continued to feature amongst nations with the worst badly run economies.
We are insecure as a people, we are once more going to be constantly dependent on others after 46 years of paper independence, our Rice would still come from Thailand, any land but not our land, our drugs both fake and original, and we have India, Germany and co. to thank for them.
This year, will we be able to make sense of our economic macro-policies, with cars, computers, clothing, and ball point pens all from Jand or Yankee. Will we shed off the skin of a nation that is full of contradictions, a nation of millions of school leavers without jobs, a nation of millions sick with curable diseases and ailment, a nation yet blessed with fertile land, with intelligent men and women in abundance. But being punished by a handful of crooks called leaders, being ruled by a collection of mediocre. A nation where amidst these poverty a man would steal in billions.
The issues that stop us from attaining nationhood again may include, the fact that we are all hypocrites, constantly waiting for any opportunity to better Judas Iscariot in the act of betrayal, go ask Atiku and Obj. Topmost is, we shall again see leaders who grew up in Oshodi, schooled in Oshodi, lived there all their lives and get elected to serve Oshodi, and first thing on their card would be a familiarization tour of Oshodi. Our Leaders would still be exploring all means and any means necessary to steal from us.
With looting, corruption and insincerity, the ball again would be played on the pitch of underdevelopment and to think otherwise would be deceitful. Our cry would still be trying to catch the Asian Tiger; even some West African puppies have gone too far for comfort. We may suffer the rule of idiots again, because sages are kept in dust bin or how will you explain the dropping of Donald duke for the lucky one time deputy Governor Of bayelsa state (Jonathan Goodluck) who we are yet to see his performance at the state level, it is going to be like it was, while Tafawa Balewa wanted to be a broadcaster, the powers that be thought otherwise, Yakubu Gowon was not intellectually, psychologically, temperamentally, ready but the Oligarchy said it must be him. Then we had all-knowing Obj in his first coming that was forced on us by Danjuma, Shehu Yaradua and co.
In Shagari it was no different, as the man that wanted to just be a Senator, a man that was not even at the Row Park venue of the NPN primaries emerged as winner without his consent, he was not even aware that his name was on the ballot. In 1998 fresh from prison, the Baba of Aso Rock had asked "how many Presidents did Nigeria want to make of him" but we did not listen. So again we may end up with a reluctant President in Yaradua except otherwise when qualified men like Professor Pat Utomi and many more are being brushed aside. These we have to contend with this New Year. INEC would be in the eye of the storm so also the Police, the ruling PDP, EFCC, the likes of Uba, Adedibu and many ruffians that the government has created.
Things will be better, Nigeria can be great if only we can prove these men wrong, if only you and I can make a concerted effort at being right in our own little way and fight in our own small corner. The nation will fight for liberation from tribal loyalties, ethnic jingoism, religious segregation, monetary godafatherism and many more. We will have to move a ladder up from hope and expectation to reality.
In this New Year, we have to move towards a Nigeria of the people for the people and by the people I mean a Nigeria that will be committed to the vision of the founding fathers, or we continue the self deceit and watch the nation crumble like cookies. As I welcome us into this new year let me say that this is our nation, only us can stop the drift, people that claim to love us are few, many a nation are watching and waiting. Let us remember that we cannot continue to massage the ringworm and leave the sore. Almighty God we as a people thank you for a New Year and ask for the best. Have a blessed, exciting and memorable year ahead.