Whither goes Nigeria?

Sir: Until recently, bandits turned vast areas of Zamfara into ungovernable places. They would kill people with reckless abandon. Thankfully, now, the government is reining in the activities of the bandits in the North West of Nigeria.

In addition to the afore-mentioned security challenges besetting Nigeria, the ubiquitous cattle herders, who have sanguinary proclivities, have embarked on a killing spree in many parts of Nigeria. They do kill members of their host communities, especially farmers. In addition to this, they desecrate the sanctity of womanhood by raping women, indiscriminately. Sadly, they’re seldom brought to justice.

To make matters worse, there are suspicions that members of security outfits in Nigeria are complicit in crimes, which are committed by armed robbers and kidnappers in the country. The Hamisu Wadume’s arrest and subsequent release by soldiers at a checkpoint has become an eye-opener for us. Our soldiers and policemen’s aiding and abetting of crimes in our country signposts the fact that Nigeria is fast turning to a fragile state.

It is this state of things that Omoyele Sowore planned to call attention to with his “Revolution Now” before he was arrested. Sowore has been clamped into detention and charged with a treasonous offence. Is it in our statute book or constitution that organizing protests is a treasonable offence? Muzzling opposition voices with high-handedness is an anti-democratic practice. It portrays Nigeria as a police state. It is an unconscionable act for the government to abridge the citizens’ right to freedom of expression and assembly.

We are not unaware that national underdevelopment is not unconnected with bad and profligate political leadership. No nation can rise above the visions and dreams of its leaders at various levels. Japan, Malaysia, and Singapore have achieved economic prosperity and technological advancement owing to good political leadership obtainable in those countries.

Here, although we’ve oil-wealth and humongous human resources, Nigeria is going to the dogs because we lack focused, patriotic, honest, astute, and visionary leaders, who can harness our natural and human resources to bring about our rapid economic and national development. However, we should remember that national development is a function of the existence of functional educational system in a country. Revamping our school system is key and critical to Nigeria’s achieving economic and technological greatness.Can President Buhari start to do the right things now?

  • Chiedu Uche Okoye,

Uruowulu-Obosi, Anambra State.

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