In my country we do not drive on the left side of the road; we now drive on what is left of the road!
This caption aptly captures the situation of roads and indeed living and amenities in Nigeria. Some may even argue we do not have anything left of our roads we just drive on what we assume to be roads. In every facet of our polity we are being served remnants or leftovers. There is nothing tangible to take home, hold or keep. Our leaders see us as only fit for economic or population statistics and therefore serve us rankings, ratings, mean values, averages, median and deviations. We are described as robust when our waistline has almost disappeared. When ten Nigerians can be squeezed in to a commercial vehicle meant for four passengers!
In Nigeria we are now left with what is left. Our students now learn on what is left of their academic sessions. Our sick are now treated with what drugs are left in the pharmacies and hospitals and patients are now attended by what is left of our doctors and nurses. Our pupils and students are now being taught by what is left of our teachers and lecturers including those who are obviously unqualified to teach or lecture. Our economy is managed on what is left of our monies after the politicians, the MDAs and leeches in government have finished having their daily sucks or routine meals. After the more qualified or better candidates are dismissed, discouraged or coerced out of elections, we are forced to vote for whoever is left to contest the elections. Our leaders do not address all Nigerians; they speak to those left listening or who care to make comments on their activities.
While many are celebrating the opportunity to have left the country for good, many others are celebrating what is left of the country. Speak to those who are in control of the economy or those doing business with them and you will be convinced that living and working or doing business in Nigeria is heaven. Speak to those whose brains have been drained to become economic migrants abroad and they will tell you Nigeria is hell. They will boldly tell you there is nothing left in Nigeria. On the other hand the government apologists will tell you there is nothing left about Nigeria. While Nigerians abroad will not return to Nigeria no matter how bad things get in their host countries, our leaders on the other hand will leave Nigeria immediately they are out of power.
Those praising the economy and polity to high heavens, leave Nigeria at the slightest excuse. They leave Nigeria for medical check-up, their children have since left Nigeria for their education abroad and their wives have left shopping in Nigeria for the poor. In fact you can count what is left of their families in Nigeria. Nigerians are now left to provide education for their children, health and electricity for themselves, water and food for their dependants and roads and security for their communities and homes. We are like abandoned babies left to cater and fend for ourselves. As soon as any one succeeds the government is very quick to claim the credit and we are left in bewilderment.
While there is so much left undone in Nigeria we are quick to say all have been done. No matter the sector or area you tackle a Nigerian leader he will assure you that all that is required have been done even though no one has seen it or benefitted from it. Each time government will say it has met all the requirements of ASUU yet the strikes are never called off. Government will say our airspace is the best in the world and yet Nigerians pray more in the sky than on ground. Roads have been tarred and bridges built, water projects commissioned and hospitals opened only to go there after a short time and there is nothing left of the project!
As things stand now, the only thing Nigerians need is to be left alone to enjoy our makeshift peace or what is left of it. Yet government agents and the media keep tormenting us and threatening us with developments and policy implementations. They paint a very loud vocal picture of Nigeria and the din emanating from all sectors has drowned our peace and driven sleep off our tired eyes looking for any evidence of development or change. All we can see is a difference of similarities. Permit us to ask; now that everything possible has been done, all plans are in the pipeline, all efforts have been expended and we now have a healthy and robust economy, ASUU’s demands have been met and our ministers have all bought bullet proof cars, what hope has the poor that his life and living will change and indeed what is left?