AMBODE AND THE MOURNING AFTER THE LAGOS APC PRIMARIES

By: Andy Akporugo Jr


AMBODE AND THE MOURNING AFTER THE LAGOS APC PRIMARIES

Because democracy is a corporeal sport, we do not expect a miracle at the day’s retirement when the results of the Lagos APC gubernatorial primaries would be announced. It will be the kind of result that makes non-participation a more honourable activity; but it wouldn’t rob Mr. Akinwumi Ambode of the self-respect of deciding, in the mute company of his own shadow, how his story will end.

Surely the size of his defeat, loudly planted on his disownment by those to whom he continually ascribes his paternity, would hurt him deeply and he would want to proceed from the lost battle into an outright war, where he would fancy that he would have the last laugh, trophy in hand and cloaked in an apparel made from patchments of the shredded egos of his godfathers and their accomplices. Trust me, he would find noisy endorsements were he to so choose. But I hope he would fall, by the inducement of an overfill of his favorite brew of which I am not now at liberty to mention, into a deep, long sleep on the matter and return fully convinced of the consequences of his own decisions.

And if he chooses a war, let it be a war based on ideas that further our fair humanity, about which he must not be deterred by the possibility of another rout. For although some wars are suicidal, it remains true yet, that in the battle of ideas, suicide may be the only glory that its honour demands!

AMBODE AND THE MOURNING AFTER THE LAGOS APC PRIMARIES

Question would be, what ideas will Ambode be fighting for? If we are to be recruited into his war, we must understand what they are. It will certainly not be against the evils of Godfatherism without him first offering some atonement for his luxurious benefit all this while, since the only reason he ranks above the rest of us in the first place is his anointment by the Godfather.

We watch and wait then, for that time tomorrow when he wakes up from his defeat and hopefully speaks from the assurance that at least until May 29, 2019 he yet has the ascribed love of us all, something the rest of us are not blessed with!

‘‘Warri no dey carry last’’, they say. And Ambode is a Warri boy!

SUSTAINING DEMOCRACY BY ITS MASQUERADES [1]

No girl, no women, no life

 

TIME TO STOP BLAMING LUGARD!


By; Andy Akporugo Jr & Paul C Nwabuikwu

I’m tired of hearing what Frederick Lugard said or thought or did. The man and his girlfriend/wife, Flora Shaw died a long time ago. If Nigeria breaks up, it would be mainly our fault, not theirs.

So what if we started out wrong? Australia began life as a British colony of prisoners and prostitutes. Not every country enjoyed the privilege of being midwived by revolutionary-philosophers like the US.

But as with individuals, the beginning doesn’t have to dictate the trajectory of life or the timing or the end. So it’s time to stop blaming Lugard. The man was a patriotic trader who did the best he could for his empire and his firm, the Royal Niger Company.

And out of the process, Nigeria emerged – clumsily, messily but surely. Here we are, for good or ill, a country.

If we are going to fail, let’s at least have the dignity of failing honestly. It’s time to stop blaming Fred and Flora. They did their manipulative, imperial best for their fatherland. What are we doing for Nigeria?

 

Buhari Protest: THINK!!! PICK YOUR BATTLES; Let Yorubas Handle This.

By Ena Ofugara

Can we be smart about this for once? Can we use our heads East and South of the River Niger? Can we just play the fool for once and end up
as actually smart?

Buhari is a product of Northern grievance. I have written endlessly on this. The North feels cheated out of power which has led to Boko haram etc. They also believe their backwardness and destruction of their lands and death of their people is the fault of the south. Their warped thinking blames us. The great PDP was sacrificed on the altar of the Northern angst. Muazu that would have inherited the presidency from GEJ sacrificed his “heritage” just to placate his people. GEJ and Abdulsalam and and the the nation’s
power brokers all sat in Aso Rock and made the sacrifice. It is not that they like Buhari or hate GEJ. You saw the welcome of GEJ in Kano.

Today, with all the tension in the land, Yorubas have kept quiet. Now again Igbos are the ones going “live” and rioting to remove Buhari. They are the ones leading “resume or resign”. The Northern clerics and their almajiris are seeing this. They have been listening to Radio Biafra, watching Nnamdi Kanu and now Igbos are BEING USED to fight Buhari… fight the North as they see it. Why cannot some people sit and think???.

Is Falana dead? Has Tunde Bakare become cripple? Has Wole Soyinka returned his Nobel Laureate award? Is Punch and Tribune and all Yoruba papers out of ink? All the Yoruba voices are silent out of tact and brilliance and intellect. But some people think it is their head that should be used to break coconut for Tinubu and Osinbajo to make coconut “candle” and coconut rice.

If this goes awry and the Northern clerics begin their preaching, like 1966, guess who they will blame for trying to take power from them? The Yorubas that will directly benefit are “kprorring” and folding their hands across their chest and hands gripping their lips together in silence. Other “constitutional voltrons” are risking the safety of our people up North perhaps for peanuts paid surreptitiously to a PROFESSIONAL DEMONSTRATOR from Kogi and or an ambitious Igbo man whose activities will be interpreted as the actions of all Igbos. (I have no problem with ambition. I actually like this chap. But some people aren’t thinking)

My point? We have NOTHING TO GAIN from a Buhari return. We have NOTHING TO GAIN FROM A BUHARI RESIGNATION. El Rufai and Tinubu will be the beneficiaries. Everything will remain the same. However, it will be on record that Igbos (interpreted as all of the south not Yoruba) will have inherited hate and anger for taking power from the North and CHEATING THEM OF THEIR TENURE.

It is time for Ohaneze and Igbo senior voices to tell some people to stop risking lives.

LET YORUBAS AND HAUSA-HAUSA FULANI face their Aso Rock “Game of Thrones”. For the rest of us, Let us wait for 2019 and see what we can do. Fighting over Buhari resuming or resigning simply shows people have no idea how to PICK THEIR BATTLES.

CAPITALISM AND THE CHURCH…THE WAY FORWARD

By: Enenche Comedian

There is a work side to prosperity. It is the works of your hand God blesses.

People are in farms planting yams and you are busy sitting in church, when it is harvesting time; don’t expect yams to fall from heaven. When it is eating time; people are eating and you are “believing” God for yams.

Faith without work is dead. There should be a corresponding action in line of faith.

When the gospel came to Africa, the missionaries saw two vital areas of deficiencies; hospital and school. They filled these gaps. Today, directly or indirectly, we have all benefited from it.

Today, we have a major problem; unemployment. Instead of filling this gap we are taking advantage of it.

We gather the unemployed and “prophesy” jobs to them. We give them stickers, sell “holy water”, tell them to sow and expect harvest, convincing them to “work” for the Lord, that breakthrough is coming… All these we do to exploit and explore the vulnerable.

We travel abroad. We have gone to Isreal and see the agricultural exploits there. But we are not willing to bring them home.

When we sow, instead of our money to be invested into ventures like agriculture that would alleviate the sufferings of the weak ones among us, we channel the money to an atheist in Germany who designed MOG’s customised car.

We channel the money to Buddhists in China where we bought our building materials. We channel the money to a gay in America who produced the sound system and lighting system.

We channel the money to a Muslim in Dubai who did the interior decoration of our ” magnificent ” building…what a Capital Flight!

Why are we crying of poverty and for breakthrough? The God that I know respond to work wherever he sees man doing something to advance humanity, be it a Hindu, Gay, Buddhist, atheist etc.

I don’t want to start mentioning names, neither do I want to indict any person. But just imagine Living Faith going to rice production, RCCG going into Cassava production, Christ Embassy into Maize, God’s Choosen into Yams, Catholics into millets etc.

The land is there, the man power is there, the money is there, like the missionaries, who saw a problem and filled it, we can also fill this problem of unemployment and food security.

Just imagine a church sending hundreds of trailer load of food to evangelise the north. No man can resist love. Feed them in love and watch how their hearts change. That was how the missionaries changed the hearts of our forebears.

The missionaries have tried for us, and instead of us to keep pressing northwards, we have resulted in building empires. We have commercialized the gospel. It is all about breakthrough, money and less Jesus, His Person, His Sacrifice and Finished works.

We have the manpowers to feed Nigeria and Africa, generate employment by adding values to farm produce and exporting them.

We have traveled abroad and have seen great agricultural exploits, it is time to bring these inventions home.

It is time we convert our exotic cars in our garages to tractors and other mechanised and modern agricultural tools. Doing what government cannot do, by do doing this; “THE GOVERNMENT SHALL BE UPON HIS SHOULDER “.

When we roar, the government is supposed to quiver, not because of our large bank accounts, but because of our intimidating exploits.

It is time to wake-up… I see a day when we shall be holding our numerous church services in farms and factories. It is time to take the government upon His shoulder. It is action time!

A mere comedian has spoken!

IMPERATIVES OF A CAMPAIGN FOR RESTRUCTURING (PART 2)

         By: Andy Akporugo Jr.

In the first part of this intercourse, I had stated in generous words that the current agitation for restructuring especially in the Niger Delta, suffers internally from a moral deficit and poverty of rhetoric.

By some inverted morality, we are, at the risk of being labelled retroactive for daring to decline, expected to jump on the bus to Abuja to demand further restructure even when we know that the yield of our previous restructure efforts, has not been accounted for by our trustee Governors through any improvement on our lives, even in the most minute of ways. The expression ‘‘once bitten twice shy’’ is a universal prescription for caution, but this time they would have us sin against our senses. They want us to once again, go and fight for money before we come back much later to discuss how we will share it. They want two agitations, one before the other, with that of vesting more political and economic power on the states governments taking priority over the matter of the well-being of the citizen who by their estimation is supposed to be the ultimate beneficiary of the power!

To my mind, this is where they get the concept of governance wrong. The truth is that the individual ought to be the first line beneficiary of governance. Nothing subordinates him to the structure of governance. The structures are only good or bad because of his preferences and the reality of his needs. Certainly, 21st century theories of governance have no room for messiahs. The only job available to be taken by any structure of governance is one of agency and so however we may romanticize with concepts [inclusive of those of ‘‘refederation’’ or ‘‘fiscal federalism’’ or ‘‘resource control’’ and many such high-sounding but low-punching Nigerian efforts at words manufacture] their whole purpose must be to arrive at the people’s preferences, at delivering good governance to them. The people are the principal. At no time thus, not even for a split second, should they be taken out of the conversation.

But for a moment, let’s consider by its fabric, the logic of their argument, even if their agitators, many of them, are those who sat at the dinner table when the previous and current 13% derivation were being shared, to the deprivation of the people on whose account they were received. Their position, if it needs repeating, is that although bad governance by the State governments chokes us by the throat currently, we must yet find air somehow to deal with it later, after we have wrestled more powers for the states. One argument is that we will be more effective in insisting on good ethics or governance against a local tyrant, [by which I refer to most of our state governors] even if he had more powers, than we would against Abuja.

This position would have been plausible, except that it starkly denies our daily experience as a people. It denies the helpless vulnerability that poverty and illiteracy have consigned the people to, especially when set against more economic and political power of self-serving state governments. It denies the proven wickedness of state governments which have ensured that the wealth they have accessed on behalf of the state has been applied to keep their states so undeveloped as to cause the migration of the critical mass of the people whose education would ensure that they are not able to survive in them, and whose departure reduces the possibility of informed opposition against government. It denies the capacity of the State to intimidate the people off their will by sheer use of brute force, in a way that makes it all constitutionally, an internal affair of the state.

My insistence, although I confess my inability to match the size and timbre of the ‘‘people-later’’ restructure advocates, is that we do not need to have the conversation by instalments. We require a ‘people-now’ restructure – the type that deals with the factual concerns over the total absence of good governance, along with whatever prescriptions for ‘‘restructure’’, ‘‘resource control’’ or ‘‘refederation’’.

If this is to be considered, then we must immediately deal with a few small questions, amongst others:

i. What structure may be crafted that truly puts governance as much as possible within the control of the federating ‘‘peoples’’ themselves?

ii. Who are the people, by the way?

iii. What is the fair basis any way for determining ownership of resources? Does Nigeria have any direct claims to ownership of the oil in my community for example? How is the concept of State ownership of resources within its territorial jurisdiction a more valid preposition than that of federal ownership of resource within the territorial space of Nigeria?

iv. Would those who insist on ‘refederating’ along the lines of the 1960 or 1963 Nigerian Constitutions still be keen on their arguments if we insisted that the regional delineations of the time should also be used as basis for resource control? Or are they going to cherry pick because for the instant it seems to favour their pockets?

v. Shall we base the claims for restructure on state formations no less false in their creation than we accuse the 1914 amalgamation of the Northern and Southern protectorates?

vi. Shall we continue to federate under claims of tribal or cultural homogeneity that accentuate our divides and mutual suspicions? Why does the Delta man feel cheated out of his resources by the North or elsewhere for example, even when those areas are living theatres of lack, suffering and wicked deprivation as well?

vii. Shall we use ‘‘natural’’ private or family or communal ownership of property [which are truly the only legitimate forms of ownership of resource which are not an arbitrary sequestration of ownership by government, whether state or federal] as basis for ownership of resources?

In the third and hopefully, final part of this conversation, I shall consider a few of the above questions and more, and propose what I believe should be a more enduring manner of restructuring, that puts the Nigerian wherever he sprouts from, first, and commences a federation developed far away from mutual spite and the short-sidedness of our stomachs!