May 24, 2018

The pilgrimage to London – Niran Adedokun

The pilgrimage to London – Niran Adedokun

You dear reader, must by now have read somewhere or the other that members of the Nigerian Governors Forum(NGF) may be planning to send a delegation to visit President Muhammadu Buhari in London.

I cannot say this development is surprising. It does not only accentuate the already known fact that sycophancy is the bane of progress in Nigeria, it also corroborates the point that those who govern us have very little or nothing to do with their time.

Because of the enormous powers that the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria wields, no one wants to be caught on the wrong side of his emotions, this is why a lot of governors spend more time in Abuja than they spend with the people who voted them into power.  And now that many of them have not had access to the President for weeks, they must send a delegation to show their solidarity.

Now, that by itself may not be a bad idea, if this was love founded on altruism and collective growth. But there is a more nauseating motive behind this planned trip, which is that since interest groups and politicians have made capital of a visit to President Buhari, governors of the 36 states do not want to be left out.

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This does not mean that they love Buhari but in obeisance to the spirit of eye service that reigns over public office in Nigeria, governors would rather not be left behind what has become a weekly venture by categories of politicians.

This is also why members of the opposition PDP caucus in the national assembly are said to be upset with their leadership which visited Buhari in London last week.  How could the leaders who are members of the APC, have gone to see Buhari without a single PDP member in tow. Doesn’t the leadership see that they have denied them the opportunity to worship the god of eye service like their counterparts?

You now even want to ask yourself, why we have all the exodus when those close to the President insist that he is in good health.

The only rational explanation is that these men have missed Buhari so much that they can’t wait for him to come home, especially as some others have gone to see him. And even if the President is himself too prudent to take notice of those who haven’t come to see him and hold same against them, those people, alleged to be the government-within-his-government may one day visit the sins of the defaulters upon them or their states or even their children.

All of these tell of why Nigeria is where it is today. To start with, no matter how high the office is, a lot of our leaders have no confidence in themselves and will always follow the bandwagon. Now, in following the bandwagon, they lose sight of the costs.

Many of these governors who may be going to London if Buhari does not return soon are owing salary arrears to workers and pensioners, many of them cannot fund education or health or anything in their states but they will find money to go and catch sight of the President and  be sure that all is well with him.

What about the time that we invest on these trips?  The time that could be spent on finding solutions to the hunger, unemployment and insecurity that ravage the country is spent on trips that would do nothing to the health of the supposedly ailing president!

Nigeria is groaning under what could pass as its worst economic experience in years, yet we move in groups to spend the foreign exchange that we don’t have on trips to a country where our leader should neither be holidaying nor receiving medical attention on, in the first place.

But how else would a people who are totally lost on the demands of modern governance show themselves? How do we justify our backwardness and the part that visionless governance plays in it if we do not engage in these frivolities?

So we may soon see a number of governors representing their brothers on a trip to London in a few days and then local government chairmen (where they have not been muzzled by governors) will follow suit and then traditional rulers and who knows who’s next.

This is just how we are!

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Read more from Niran

The rantings of a frustrated Nigerian – Niran Adedokun

Our president has flown abroad, again – Niràn Adedokun


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