Stolen Magic...

I’m writing this one on stolen time so forgive me for any lack of depth or originality. It turns out that blogs can’t compete with actual real life work, and if your blog is in contention with your bread and butter then you need to restructure your priorities. If you’re too lazy to do this yourself then I can do it for you, at a small price (Marketing is essential). Yes, so as I was saying, forgive me for my lack of originality because none of the brilliant lyrical magic below is mine. This should be obvious to anyone with half an eye, as it lacks my rambunctious touch but it’s epic writing all the same. It was reblogged from the decor of my mind.

The Government We Deserve
When it comes to politics my favourite quote (because it pertains to Nigeria) is: “Every Nation has the government it deserves” Joseph Marie de Maistre. If you know me well enough, or have read my blogs long enough, no doubt I would’ve whipped this one out before. The truth is that for as long as we sat in our offices and homes providing our own electricity, healthcare, security, education for our children, and generally accepting the status quo. The government we had was exactly the government we deserved. Our sitting and accepting the nonsense they dealt us was license enough for them to continue dealing it. Not until the #OcuupyNigeira movement started, did I see a people that deserved a better government, all I saw were a group of sweet talkers that were not ready to put their money, their lives, or their time where their mouth was.
I tried very hard to stay away from blogging about the topic of oil subsidy removal, largely for ignorance of the real issues behind it, and my position has very much been one that most Nigerians will not appreciate. After much coaxing by an activist friend of mine I have somehow been moved.

I cannot claim to have the economic prowess of Dambisa Moyo, or the technical depth on all things oil and gas that perhaps a Mr. Sumonu of Shell does, but my opinion for a very long time was that maintaining the fuel subsidy was not sustainable, and furthermore in keeping it we were not under pressure to develop the infrastructure that we need as a country because we had no real need for it. But my opinions were largely ignorant of how subsidy removal will affect the average Nigerian. I cannot be sure how accurate the CIA world fact-book’s figures are but let us assume they are accurate (in actual fact they may be quite benevolent) 64% of Nigerians live below the international poverty line of $1.25 a day, so the average Nigerian is not very well off and a removal of subsidy is actually a case of some semblance of a life and a life lived in the shadows of death. I feel then, that it is in-fact my duty to in any way I can empathise with all those that are occupying Nigeria not just because they are looking for a bit of activity on a weekday or because it’ll just be nice to have that extra cash in their pocket, but because their very life depends on it.

In conversation with my activist friend on Monday I expressed my then nonchalance for the occupy Nigeria movement, I didn’t feel that people were protesting for any clearly defined outcome, but rather just making noise for what it was worth. Do they want the government to bring back fuel subsidy? Or do they want the government to build refineries. It wasn’t so clear to me, and I wasn’t going to stand in the sun on an empty stomach for the government to do something that even the protesters aren’t sure of. Truth is that people are protesting for different reasons, some people want the subsidy back, some people want the government to tackle the corruption that necessitated the removal of the subsidy, some people just like in the Arab spring have taken the final straw and the camel’s back has been broken. It is the standing up that is of essence in the movement, it is becoming a nation, a people that protest till they are worthy to have the government that they deserve.

This house has truly fallen. We are our own government: we provide our own electricity, we provide our own security, we provide our own healthcare, we provide our own education, we provide our own road networks, and now we are being asked to provide fully fund our own transportation. The fuel subsidy removal is merely just the straw that broke the camel’s back. As a nation we were already down, and people who are down cannot be afraid of a fall.

I do not call for a reversal of the subsidy removal, I think that is the last thing we need, a government that cannot stick to its seemingly informed decision. Instead I believe that we should ask the government to:
• Tighten their belts. We are happy to tighten ours if you tighten yours. And it is of no consequence to “in the year 2012 cut 25% of the salaries (not allowances) of executive government”
• Develop other industries. We have the best Iron Ore, Bitumen reserves in the world, Palm Oil, Cassava, Cashews, Gas, Quails Eggs, sooooo many things… I cannot think of another country that God has BLESSED with more resources than Nigeria. We allowed ourselves to be side railed by the discovery of oil, let us look back at the industries we ignored
• Improve Healthcare
• Improve the educational system, our minds are our best assets and we can achieve anything if we developed them, produce a better government. Because after all a good president doesn’t come from heaven, he comes from amongst us
• Improve security so we do not feel unsafe even in our own homes
• Provide alternative transportation (not those 1600 buses for the entire nation), I’m talking about railways, metros, water transport, bicycles for rural populations
• ELECTRICITY, If we can no longer power our homes with petrol generators do something about the state of national power generation
• Develop refineries, even if they cannot alleviate the costs of petrol immediately we will feel better to know that in some 26 months we can look forward to cheaper petrol through subsidised production not consumption
• And most importantly CREATE jobs.

Let us #OCCUPYNIGERIA till we have the government we deserve!!!!!!!!!!!! A government that can provide us with the basics!!!!

This blogpost was reblogged from The Decor of My Mind
The original post can be found here:

Happy Days,

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