4TH OF JULY 2017: MY THOUGHTS ON NIGERIA ON THIS AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE DAY! –Solomon Ben Olonade-Lawyer & Development Strategist
For once, let’s leave out our Colonial Lords! Let’s consciously leave out the British and all the awfully reprehensible contradictions they planted into the foundation of our nationhood. Let’s face ourselves for once. Also, we won’t crucify or re-incriminate our Founding Fathers and Their Supporting Mothers either. For sure, pre-/post-October 1, 1960, our Founding Fathers made their various mistakes in their attempts to midwife the birthing of the Nigeria of their respective dreams! Yes, Albert Einstein warned humanity when he opined that we cannot solve a problem with the same level of intelligence we possessed when we initially created that same problem. Evidently but arguably, our Founding Father seem to grow wiser than their initial failures and the problems that those initial failures hugely created. As we know, some of them departed early and untimely. Howbeit, they aimed, struggled and laboured to hand-down to the succeeding generations something better, though far from being perfect but meant to be perfected over the years. Quite frankly, that legacy of imperfections meant to be progressively perfected is neither strange nor incurable in the birthing and building of great nations. This is where the GREAT EXPERIMENT called the United States of America readily comes to focus on a day like this, both as a POWERFUL ILLUMINATION and a BIG CHALLENGE to Nigeria and Nigerians as we currently strive and corporately struggle EITHER to celebrate the UTTER DEMISE of whatever remains of our ‘One Nigeria’ OR to genuinely and collectively orchestrate the RE-BIRTH of a New Nigeria that will stand tall in the comity of nations and bless the world with its own innovations and productivity. How do you mean, Solomon Ben?
Alright. The Constitution of the United States opens up with the original intention of the American Founding Fathers who laboured most brilliantly and enacted that powerful Masterpiece. It says – “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union…” And that is the key issue here and now. The American Founding Fathers were not pretentious or presumptuous to claim that they had already formed ‘a perfect Union.’ But they apparently and hopefully look-up to the ingenuity, dedication and diligence of the future generations of their children to continue to strive, via the God-given invincibility of human spirit coupled with the creativity of the mind and the skillfulness of their hands, toward the continuous improvement and progressive formation, progressive building and progressive development of ‘a more perfect Union’. And, true to the profile of their courage and the audacity of their hope, some of the giant evils and the deeply-rooted woes, such as Slavery, which their Founding Fathers seemed to be too incompetent or too afraid to handle and thereby left untouched in the days of Pa George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson et el, had to be eventually slain in the days of their son by the name of Abraham Lincoln almost a 100 years after the era when the Founding Fathers failed to cure such imperfection before they went the way of all the earth.
The Way Forward:
Thus, American case keenly inspires and readily instructs the current breed of Nigerian Child at home and in the Diaspora. Yet, it is important to urgently note, that it is a different world that we now live, a supersonic, super-speedy and ultra-modern globalised world, one massive socioeconomic jungle called the ‘Flat World’, which terribly abhors mediocrity and wantonly preys upon real or perceived weaknesses. As such, we certainly do not have any extravagant luxury of some ‘eternal’ 100 years to slain our own giants, kill our monsters and vanquish our national demons which have hitherto wounded our potentially superpower but actually devastated nation, Nigeria. Meanwhile, in this crucial time of our national existence, this we dare speak to the government and the people of Nigeria, in world wherein America, having progressively formed a more perfect Union, now towers high as the present commanding height of the global political economy: how about the current generation of Nigerians stepping beyond the contradictions sown into our foundation by the Colonial Masters, how about rising above the various mistakes, the known errors and the onerous consequences of the failures of our Founding Fathers so that “We the people,” indeed, “We their children” may corporately and deliberately forge ‘a more perfect Federal Republic of Nigeria’? Hence, where is the generation of monster-slayers that Nigeria so seriously and urgently need, to slay this myriad of monsters which are currently raring their ugly heads across this Land of Hope, threatening to slay a nation which the world once watched with admiration and expectation of emergence as a world power, nay, world superpower? It’s time to slay our monsters: the monster of ethno-religious chauvinism; the monster of scary corruption perpetrated with Spartan impunity; the monster of pseudo-Federal Republic which is actuary a militarized Unitary System masquerading in the garment of true federalism; and perhaps, worst of all, the monster of educational ineptitude giving birth to newer monsters of fraud-ridden educational evaluations and massive educational pilgrimage of Nigerian Child to the West and the East! Who are the new breed of the monster-slayers? It MAY be Buhari-Osinbajo! They MAY arise from the fold of APC, PDP or whatever ‘P’! They MAY wake-up in the portrait of State Governors, Captains of Industry, Professionals or Academia! They MAY even rise-up among the masses of market-women and artisans! BUT, online and offline, they MUST certainly and largely be the young Nigerians at home and in the Diaspora, who are The True Custodians of Nigeria’s Future. This is the Spirit of New Nigeria! This is the Core Mission of NNC PROJECT! This is the Way Forward! WATCH OUT, JOIN THIS CHARIOT AND LET’S MOVE!