STRIVING FOR A HIGHER LEVEL OF CIVILIZATION
Our paramount ambition is to see Nigeria develop a surging free society where all men and women realize their dreams, irrespective of their ethnicity, race, gender or religion. Nigeria, multi-cultural and multi-religious, is by tradition, by geography, and by material interest, a great nation in the African continent. We need a country of free worship, free speech, free enterprise, free ballot, free trial to the benefit of all men and women and all nationalities visiting, living and doing business in Nigeria.
The first factor that every state keeps in mind while formulating local and or foreign policy is the safeguarding of its sovereignty and territorial integrity. It is the main responsibility of a state to safeguard the lives and properties of citizens and to protect their interests whatsoever and wherever they are. This responsibility also involves the concept of security of national territorial boundaries. There is a level of interdependence in the world as no nation is an island, however, it is advisable not to mix political interdependence with commercial and economic interdependence. While no nation wants to be politically interdependent, our wrong actions and bad governance may lead us to mortgage our political independence if we are not careful. Nations which have lost their independence have all experienced catastrophic collapse.
The determining factor of a country’s local and or foreign policy is dependent on the freedom enjoyed by it’s citizens which creates harmonious atmosphere for political , economic and security stability of the country. Countries are respected based on their development in science and technology, wealth, natural resources, military strength etc; these areas of interest also defines the country’s foreign policy. In the case of Nigeria, the misapplication and missappropriation of resources by the leadership over time has robbed us the opportunity of building a strong economic foundation as a back-up to the dwindling oil economy. Sadly, crude oil market is approaching an unsustainable economic level, so the need for an alternative economic fall back is more than necessary.
Food and shelter which are the basic necessities of mankind are still a strong concern for majority of our people. The average Nigerian family spends about 50% of their income on food, which is quite high, unlike most countries that food cost is not more than 20%, legislation or government orders cannot reduce food costs except massive food production is encouraged and supported. The factors of demand and supply must drive the process for Nigerians to have adequate food production, and food sufficiency to the level that all Nigerians will be able to buy food below 20% of their income. Considering, that Nigerian farmers are still largely on a subsistence level, and are still unable to preserve harvested produce to boost food supply for the nation, requires technology, machinery, fossil fuels, fertilizers, pesticides, and nutritional feed additives for dairy and meat production, only then we can produce cheaper food to match the income of majority of families.
The same situation affects the country in the provision of basic housing for all, the oil boom era has come and gone without basic infrastructural development provided for the people, and the frustrations and tensions are rising with the effect of people living with a mindset of an unpredictable future, especially, the youths who feel deeply frightened of their tomorrow, some of the misguided ones have resorted to kidnapping , rape, murder, robbery, and other heinous-crimes against their own people causing fear and panic across the country.
The situation has worsened the insecurity of the country and in effect scared investors. It’s consequences crumbling the economy and increasing the unemployment population, compounding an already bad situation.
The technological advancement of renewable energy and electric cars development, overwhelmed the oil industry and ignited the fall in the demand for crude oil and the continuous free fall of crude oil prices in the world market. Where and how will the resources come from to address the multiple problems of the country? This is the reality that requires answers and actions now, before we slip into the final status of a failed state. However, it is doubtful if there is an immediate solution to correct our educational system and seriously invest in science and technology. Take for example, Japan, after the world war without any natural resources invested in academic , science and technology and became one of the largest exporters of electronics and automobiles in the world. In-fact, the Japanese cars and electronics account for more than 50% of the entire world inventory.
The local stabilizing factors determine the influence and policy line of any country in international politics. Nations work toward safeguarding their economic, political and security interests which define their relationship with other countries as it affects them in protecting their interests in trade, commerce, security and international politics.
The need for a miracle to solve Nigeria’s problems does not need a pope’s prophecy. The solution to Nigeria’s political and economic growth and stability is frightening and complex. The recent categorization of Cameroun and Ghana as visa-free countries by the United-States exposes the imbecility of our government and reduces our Ambassadors as mere pageants of mimic sovereignty.
The insensitiveness, greed and ineptitude of our leadership has reduced our general population to indigents in consequence to our political and socio-economic delinquency; there are several other instances of imbecility in our government system that cannot secure to us the enjoyment of our own territories or internal tranquility.
The fundamental objects of the constitution are:
To protect us against foreign invasion.
To defend us against internal commotions and insurrections.
To promote trade and commerce and ensure the economic well- being of citizens .
To promote and maintain law and order.
As to the first, our Boko Haram experience has revealed that we cannot obtain any effective protection from our government. It is universally acknowledged that we have not being able to completely defeat Boko haram. Our inability to repel the invasion has reduced our country and military to a laughing stock among the comity of nations.
The internal invasion by herdsmen, leaving scores of death daily in some parts of the country have been a cause for concern; It is quite humiliating that we cannot repel external terrorist aggressions, neither could we contain the internal insurrections affecting different parts of Nigeria ( North to the South). In almost the entire 36 states of the country, these crises has created widows, the fatherless, widowers and the motherless, who have been oppressively wronged, and beggared. The grey hairs of the aged and innocent had gone down with sorrow to their shallow or mass graves in consequence of our disgraceful governmental system.
The economy has no direction. What government officials claim to have achieved in their economic jargons is at variance and contrast with prevailing realities on ground. Nigerians have no electricity, being the foundation for any meaningful impact in any industrialization process.
Nearly everything has collapsed. Greater percentage of the people are living below poverty level and are in excruciating financial pains. A general decay of trade, the uncontrollable rise of imported merchandise, the death of produce, the fall of the crude oil demand and low oil prices, and the uncommon high foreign exchange rate, these are all economic disorders, which have arisen in Nigeria . Good GOD! Who could have foreseen or predicted this great economic damage? Generally, “one would ask, what again are the indicators of a national disorder, poverty, and insignificance than what has befallen a country so peculiarly blessed with natural advantages as we have?”
The greatest challenge to the Nigerian government system are in two-folds from our perspective:
First, is the current electoral law. The electoral law is so porous that it makes the transfer of power from one government to another very often by violence-the dagger, the poison cup, or fratricidal civil war of sort. Wining elections is by might, and not by the free will of the people based on their conviction of a candidate’s electability.
Secondly, is the immunity clause in the constitution. This is supposed to be a protective clause to protect governance from trivial distractions, regrettably, it has been the protective shield used by government operatives to plunder the people’s resources into private pockets and use its proceeds to perpetuate themselves in power. It is now universally accepted that the immunity clause has done the greatest damage to governance in Nigeria, and it is the tool that has transformed supposed democratic governments into empires ruled by monarchs! ” emperors” from the federal to the states. A departure from the democratic values as intended by the constitution.
Historically, in a republican system of government, it is a fundamental principle that the majority govern by their immortal voting powers and the minority comply with the general voice. How contrary, then, to the republican system in Nigeria; how humiliating it is to our present situation; The “Coup d’etat” electoral laws constructively disenfranchised the people and forcefully installing rulers on the people, thereby silence the voice of the majority. This failed electoral law has altered the republican principle of majority rules to a crooked minority ruling, very small minority ruling the helpless majority. So far, this is being inconsistent with the republican principle, that in effect, makes the government in Nigeria a monarchy/ dictatorship of sort. Therefore, we must as a compelling duty first of all mobilize the country to amend the electoral act, from Manual electoral system to a full blown biometric electronic electoral system: from accreditation to voting in the next general elections. That will be the key to the future of our democracy.
The success of the change of the electoral law will instill confidence and attract good patriotic men and women to participate in the electoral process. Honestly, the flaws of the last elections was so terrible that it retrogressed the country 100 years back. Untill the electoral act is amended, no proper election can be be said to have been held in Nigeria. Only when the electoral act has been amended to a world class acceptable level, that Nigerians, and indeed the entire world, will have the confidence that we can midwife a new Nigeria.
The moral of the people has been depraved, being unable to have an efficient government, which will guarantee all mankind, justice and righteousness. Despotism is looming. Danger signals not too far. We very much stand in need of a reformed structure of government to the benefit of all Nigerians.
Fellow Nigerians, we must accept that our state vessel has sprung a leak; we must embark in a new bottom, or sink into perdition,”