That Nigeria is still afloat is a “miracle pure and simple”.
This is against the back-drop of the prediction, challenges and bedevilment, as well as the financial rape of the country by her assaulting elites.
In addition, that Nigeria would be sixty years as an independent nation’s calls for jubilation and funfair, though we have been more or less expected to reflect on our co-existence that is unpleasant, as some have even referred to be worse than colonization by the British.
As our day to day activities pointing over the reality of our present predicament of sixty years of liberation. Truly, Nigerians have had to cope with the reality of life ups and down, hills and valley challenges, flips and flops of life disappointment, and many miseries, such as the insecurity, economics woes and general life difficulties face by millions of her populations.
In any scientific endeavour, we must acknowledge where we are coming from to appreciates where we are herding to, especially as the future plan success cannot be compromised no matter what .
Our founding fathers, the tripods of Dr Nnamdi Azikwe,Sir Ahmadu Bello and Chief Obafemi Awolowo received independent from the Britain on October 1st 1960.Other outstanding Nigerians also were not left out, the likes of Herbert Macaulay, Anthony Enahoro,Aminu Kano,Kingsley Mbadiwe, Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti, Margret Ekpo.While,it important to acknowledge labour leader such as Pa Michael Imodu and many of his comrades, even though many of our political and history books failed to acknowledge and recognized the role Nigerian labour movement and the radicals plays in the struggle for our independent.
Some of the above mentioned names are principal players of the post-independent ethnic politics that pervaded the first republic and the uncompromising attitudes of some of those political elites.
The first military coup and counter-coup of 1966 and followed by the civil war. Subsequent, military coups, second republic, aborted third republic and the current fourth republic since 1999.
The return to democratic governance in 1999 presents to Nigerians a ray of hope and succor. But what as turnout today is that the current political elites rather than effects development, what they have given to the people is abrasive corruption, monumental looting of the treasury at all levels and ego centric mindset with impunity.
Interestly, many believe so much in us as a nation and expect us to fulfill the promising of an African giant. However, has Nonso Obikili summarized it as “a set of political actors who position themselves via various institutions to extract as much value as possible from whatever political and economic activity going on in Nigeria.
This typically refers to grabbing their share of the proverbial national cake”. Thus, the true picture as in the moment of our frustration has an independent nation’s failure to get to the top among developed countries with the abundance of its human and natural resources.
Running deep is the littered dead abandoned or dilapidated project and infrastructure scattered all over our landscape.
From Ajaokuta Steel Mill, Paper Mills in Jebba, Rolling Mill in Jos and Delta and many other long forgotten industrial sites. This drizzling state failure was never envisage at the dawn of our independent on 1st October, 1960.
Therefore, there is an urgent need for a holistic, cognition and transformation of Nigeria, starting with the leadership recruitment system that gives birth to our leadership failure. Members of the Nigerian intelligential must salvage this nation, this is a sincere clarion call to them.
Secondly,we must tackle the profound dysfunctional, ineffectiveness, indolence, unproductive and corrupt elites they have decimated of our common wealth.
Thirdly, we must do away with the nation’s current signature of over reliance and import-mindedness for everything we use daily, and neglecting to develop and patronize our own.
Lastly, many have called for the re-restructure of the country, especially political arrangement. This has been greatly argue against and for as in the call for federalism or fiscal federalism by vested interest and there minions. Although there is nothing wrong with having Nigeria re-structure or true federalism, the obvious question is what is wrong with the present arrangement that would demand for a new arrangement?
To answer this question we need to understand the functioning of the Nigerian state, which this piece has address earlier, one wonder if the for and against restructuring actually understand that what has failed us is not the structure of Nigeria but the political and economic elites who have use the structure to enrich and enlarge their wealth.
What we need to restructure is the level of poverty, unemployment, inequality, educational system, de-industrialization, and injustice as well as women marginalization.
Inspite of all odds l wish all Nigerians young and old Happy Independent!
Adefolarin A. Olamilekan, a Political Economist and Development Researcher writes from Abuja. He can be reached on: Email:firstname.lastname@example.org; 08073814436