Sunday Trust online

The worst place to be born

There is no denying the facts that the PDP has transformed our society more than we care to admit. Thanks to the militicians (apology to Pius Adesanmi), who recycled the most scurrilous of their ilk and propped them up like zombies for backward integration. Where else are soldiers recycled from prison to lead a party and head a government they did not form? You would think that 30 years after leaving office, the returnee would at least take us back to where he left us. It was not to be.

For Obj, he learnt nothing, improved on nothing, and left us in a mess, retaining his nuisance value as the Baba Egbe of the ruining party. In office, Obj did not find younger Audu Ogbeh, (then 54) worthy of his trust; some swear he chased him off at gunpoint and anointed 69-year-old Ahmadu Ali as his right hand man. Ali’s claim to fame, as education minister was the number of protesting students killed over the introduction of school fees under his watch. How can such a man not be filled with transformation agenda for the progress of Africa’s largest party?

Thirty-three years ago, Bamanga Tukur, was elected governor of the defunct Gongola State reports Babatunde Benjamin. Bamanga became minister of industries under Abacha, and today he is chairman of the ruining party. He has no higher education but was famed to have made it in business doing what no one remembers; a great qualification for party chairmanship.

Anthony Akhakon Anenih, aka Mr. Fix It, was born in 1933. After secondary school, he joined the police farce, arguably the best leadership training institution in the country if you still travel by road. He was made works minister in 1999 aged 66. His tenure witnessed unparalleled transformation that left not just potholes on the roads he met, but on the national psyche and federal budget.  For all that transformation, he has been rewarded with the chairmanship of Naija’s Ports Authority. The last known occupier of that seat, Bode George (ex-solider governor) was so shoddy managing corruption he was sent on a two-year jail course at Kirikiri. We expect the presidential pardon that would help him formally re-integrate into the pantheon.

There are more. Murtala Nyako was 34 years old when the army made him governor of Niger State; 36 years later, he is governor of Adamawa - one of the most transformed states in Naija. Nyako has one of the best farms on the Mambilla and his state has adopted Operation Feed the Nation. He shares the podium with David Alechennu Bonaventure (translated good luck literally) Mark who was also governor of Niger state.

In 1978, Mark as communications minister was famed for saying that telephone is not for the poor. Today as the president of the sinate, he is campaigning for the regulation of social media. If he does not get Apa state as governor, he may become the sinnate’s first life president.

David Jonah Jang is a recycled militician. He was military governor of Benue State 27 years ago and, some argue with proof that he has transformed the Plateau as selected governor presiding over the disintegration of the state of peace and tourism into the state of chaos and anarchy. It was under him that Naija formally adapted the doctrine of indigene and settlers.  That doctrine helped Theordore Orji kick out 2,604 non-Abians still waiting for their entitlements. He punctures a deep hole in the quest for the actualization of a sovereign state called Biafra.

The regressive scheme that President Jones inherited is dubbed Transformation Agenda. In Otuoke speak, transformation is when electricity moves from the national grid into generating sets; when hospitals die to pave way for medical tourism and local universities die for the rich to send their children to foreign schools. It is when security paves way for brigandage and when corruption takes on a new term – attitude adjustment. If these are not transformative, tell me what is?

These transformations explain the renewed interest of dubious foreign polling agencies in our welfare. The Big Bad Company, BBC declared Naija as the happiest place on planet earth. Subsequently Naija is the worst place to be born in 2013. We should reject this imperial attempt to discourage us from exhibiting our penchant for genital recklessness or favour the needed atmosphere for extra funding for the Planned Parenthood Federation. Any which way, it would take ten to 15 years to feel the effects of this spin. When we start adopting motherless babies from Maradi and Bakassi, then we will agree that children have ganged up against Naija wombs. Then, we will understand that is why the protesting generation accounts for the long queues as prospective émigrés at foreign embassies.

But wait, isn’t there not a new one calling us the saddest people on earth? Bunkum! These lazy pollsters might have been tracking the ethno-religious salvos hauled on social media. The anger of Naija people against their recycled ruiners is never translated into ballot missiles to bomb out the spoilers of the nation. No. They are transformed into bricks for extending the walls of ethno-religious hatred that perpetuates their ruiners in office and keep them in perpetual grumbling state.  Good for the government, bad for the people.

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