|Monday, June 17, 2019|
"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in a moment of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy" - Martin Luther King, Jr.
he real interpretation of these surreal words is that men with integrity and courage uphold certain values. In other words, these are men who could stand in the kitchen and not break a sweat because they will accept constructive criticism, dialogue, and do not subscribe to vindictiveness. The recent imbroglio between the Kano state governor, Alhaji Abdullahi Gaduje and the Emir Lamido Sanusi is somewhat very intriguing because of the power play. Nonetheless, the criticism that the Emir leveled against the governor is legitimate and valid. The reason being that the same thoughts was adduced over twenty-five years ago by Professor Afonja, of the Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering to his students at the time, which the writer happens to be one.
The professor was rightly troubled on how the Nigerian nation is not gaining anything from contracts issued to foreign nationals. Professor Afonja posited back then that when the Federal or State Government issued contracts to foreigners, they should demand the training of at least a 1000 Nigerians in return for the deal, thereby, making us rich in human capacity. The correlational analysis of his thought process is that by so doing our people will no longer be overly reliant on the foreigners whence such similar contracts are being issued in the nearest future.
The lack of benefit to the Nigeria nation for money spent on fathom projects has been the bane of the country for such a long time, and this trend has been prevalent until the Emir call the attention of his state Governor to it. The economic terrorism unleashed by some Nigerians and their foreign accomplices whom they work in tandem with to the detriment of Nigerians to subjugate the will of the people is mind-blowing. We have leaders in this great country that have no interest of the people at heart due to greed and perjured selfishness. These set of people are like the Pharisees and Sadducees who revel in praise of the people and very easily fall prey to "ranka dede" mentality and when their alter ego is brutalized, they seek revenge at all cost. Another category is those who wanted to do well by their people but will not invest the necessary time to give them the best but sub-standard products.
As an example, Nigeria is the only country that you have the dastardly "no network" syndromes which the people have grown accustomed to when making a telephone call from within and outside the country. The reason being that those who are entrusted to give us the best are busy lining their pockets with kickbacks and in the process do not care so much about quality of services provided by the service providers. Hence, we are all saddled with sub-standard service, which is not tenable in any other civilized countries of the world.
Corruption as it were, has been stifling the nation's economic growth, in the same way, the nauseating and diminutive 8000 MegaWatts of electricity has been stalling the advancement in a country of Nigeria's magnitude. This level of electricity generation is far below power generation of the State of California which in 2017, total system electric generation for California was 292,039 gigawatt-hours (GWh). Nigeria is the only country that spends approximately $16.2 billion on providing her people with power, and they got nothing out of it, and no one is asking questions. The national assembly is busy squabbling over inanities like double pension, wardrobe allowances and the like. Hence, it is incumbent on the people to be diligent in questioning members of the national assembly, state assemblies, governors, the federal government and its agencies. We need to be focused and relentless in our continued demand for accountability.
The Emir I know, not personally but through his speeches, writings in the public domain, I could to some extent draw an inference on his mindset, desire for his people and the like. In the same way, we only know God through His words. None of us has seen God at any time, but His words give us insight into who God is and His character. For instance, I applaud the Emir in his support for girl child education in the Northern part of Nigeria; even though it is not comfortable swimming against the tide( which he has been doing in recent times) thereby exposing himself to political enemies for speaking truth to power.
According to Vanguard of May 18, 2019, the alleged sin of the Emir is "Sanusi II challenged the Kano state governor, Dr Abdullahi Ganduje while delivering a keynote address at a function in Kaduna, on the governor's plan to secure a loan of $1.85b from a Chinese Development Bank that would fund 85% of a Light Rail project to be constructed by a Chinese company CR18G-CRECG. The project was for the construction of a 74 kilometer facility in the state with the intention of reducing traffic on the roads and to ease commercial activities".
"China will lend you $1.8b to build light rail. This light rail will be done by workers from China, the trains will come from China, the engines will come from China, the labor will come from China while the driver is Chinese.
"At the end of the day, what do you benefit from them? Your citizens will ride on a train and when you ride on a train in northern Nigeria, in a state like Kano or Katsina, where are you going to? You are not going to industrial estate to work. You are not going to school. You are not going to the farm. You borrow money from China to invest in trains so that your citizens can ride on them to go for weddings and naming ceremonies."
A man like Abdullahi Gaduje who is bereft of progressive ideas, could not see any good in what the Emir who is intellectually sound and with a better exposure is alluding to in his submission. All he could see is an affront to his authority that will lapse in the next four years. What he should have done instead of waging gorilla war on the Emir is that he should convene a round table of intellectuals to discuss the Emir's concerns for his people.
The governor acted in a manner akin to a child who could not get their way and throws a tantrum. He threatened the Emir with dethronement as if he were God. The governor attitude towards the Emir's alleged criticism graduate from the sublime to the ridiculous when he went ahead to break up the emirate into five and coerced the state assembly to pass a law to implement his childish antics hurriedly.
We have men without balls like Gaduje spread across the country parading themselves as governors but lack the requisite temperament and intellectual sagacity to confront real challenges without resulting in threats and capricious innuendo. This sort of people often refuses to stand up for the right things but serially take advantage of the office in which they serve. The blame for electing these clueless men lies squarely in the door of the so call godfathers who choose to perpetuate their illegality and desire to keep the ordinary man in chains such that they can control their minds and souls. To every road, there is an end. The end is fast approaching. We saw it in Kwara election with "O to ge" to elect a new set of people to man the affairs of the state.
If anyone is still trying to figure out the correlation between massive un-employment and men who cannot speak truth to power, you need not look further because, by their fruit, you shall know them.