“The average Nigerian person has come to reconcile himself with the fact that his or her social progress remain essentially in his or her hands in collaboration with other fellow Nigerians and not merely relying on what government alone could provide for him or her. The days are gone for good, when men and women trooped to government establishments for employment and for benevolence.”
– Address By the President,
Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces
of Nigeria, General Ibrahim Badamosi
Babangida, CRF, FSS, MNI to the
Nation on Saturday, 26 June, 1993 titled
“Laying the Foundation of A Viable
Democracy and the Path of Honour”
This is June 1993 and the nation Nigeria is being viewed by the world as it witnesses one of many scintillating days in the exciting history of Nigeria; the focal news item: the annulment of the June 12 Presidential elections.
Fast forward to 2014 and welcome to Nigeria; it is two days after the New Year and I’m Peter, reporting in time-space; I’m at Ibadan. But the True question is; has the average Nigerian truly reconciled him/herself to such fact as IBB (Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida) says?
The truth of this matter, in my humble opinion, is that the crux of what IBB was saying, is the reason for the present stalemate in human talent/resource realization, as people the world over don’t seem to believe this statement; that their social progress pretty-much lies in their own doings alongside their fellows. Hence the overwhelming global economic woes and the horrendous number of youths without gainful work!
Topmost on the agenda of the then military rule of IBB, it seemed, was creating a fresh image of a Nigerian, free from colonial trappings of servitude; creating the new Nigerian; independent, self-confident and wealthy. This would be, of-course, largely contingent on a mentality in line with the above quote; belief in self and in the work of one’s own hands. A disattachment from total reliance on “Government employment and benevolence”.
I say, IBB is a visionary leader, seeing as the world is still facing a much similar problem in unemployment today. I give it to him; he had/has a clear understanding of the relative roles of government and the citizen towards and in relation to nation building. Today, I dare say, we have a paucity of such visionary stance in our leadership ranks around the globe, it need be said. But today is not a day for bashing; as its just two days into the new year; let’s celebrate. But just before that, my point need be completely made!
We are almost 7 billion people on this earth, male and female and the world is still suffering from poverty. Poverty of what? Is it a lack of people to bring positive ingenious ideas that will fuel the power turbines of world growth and intellectual/societal development? Afterall, like every fruit has seed, every human being has talent, and talent is the manure for growth in any developing society; which the earth of today is; we have 1st world/developed countries and 3rd world/underdeveloped countries on earth; and I say earth itself is a developing earth.
As earth is a developing world, we surely need to put more into the agriculture of talent development in our nations; seeing as God has given us talent free. Let us begin to solve our problems, starting with poverty, by human ingenuity. And this writing is just that; a piece of human ingenuity; but today is not a day to praise me, either. With the amount of talent already available as seed on earth and the benevolence of God; who is a provider of rain in its season; I see Nigeria and the world in its entirety blossoming quickly into a beauty and an awesome garden in time. But humans must know that their social growth lies in them bringing out the seeds deposited in them by God and not in relying on Government benevolence.
As a prominent american politician has said; “Ask not what your country will do for you…” And today, YOU must ask what you have to give back to mother Earth. Today!