#Nigeria At 54: Its All Tears, Pains And Hopelessness By Abdullahi Yunusa



How come all our glorious and historic moments are in the past? It is very common to hear Nigerians repeatedly refer to the groundnut pyramid in the North, cocoa in the West, rubber in the South and palm oil in the East era. While it is cool for us to talk about our past in superlative terms, hardly we say anything good about the present and future. We are not even sure of what the future holds for us as a nation.

The general feeling across the length and breadth of Nigeria as it clocks 54 years is that of fear, uncertainty, frustration, misery and confusion. We cannot roll out drums, organize street parties or carnivals to commemorate our 54 years of nationhood because all isn't well with us and our dear nation, Nigeria.

Nigeria and Nigerians are unfortunately trapped in a complexly dicey and depressingly intractable situation caused largely by years of misrule and poor governance.

Ideally, in the spirit of this momentous occasion, we should all be celebrating and popping champagne, but we cannot attempt that costly adventure at the moment for very obvious reasons. Top on the list of reasons we cannot celebrate in grand style is the security conundrum. Our security men cannot guarantee the safety of anyone, not even their own personal safety.

So, attempting to invite Nigerians to the Eagle Square in Abuja to dance to Davido's 'Skelewu' or Nyaya's 'Your Waist' is like walking straight into the lion's den.

We should discard this yearly ritual of wanting to sound or appear the most patriotic by openly admitting that all is well with our dear nation, when all we see and experience speaks of a country struggling to catch up with her peers in terms of meaningful development.

Nothing can be more suicidal than for a mass of people to keep living in crass denial, pretending that Nigeria has no problem. This is really sad and depressing. For how long shall we continue to grope in the dark? Isn't it laughable and annoying that Nigeria, a country blessed with abundant human and natural resources still struts and crawls behind less endowed and blessed nations on the African continent?

How come all our glorious and historic moments are in the past? It is very common to hear Nigerians repeatedly refer to the groundnut pyramid in the North, cocoa in the West, rubber in the South and palm oil in the East era. While it is cool for us to talk about our past in superlative terms, hardly we say anything good about the present and future. We are not even sure of what the future holds for us as a nation.

All that matters to us, especially our leaders, is simply how to stock up their homes with food, save well enough for their respective families, steal in advance and even in arrears and erect gigantic architectural masterpieces in choice locations across famous cities in world capitals.

I think this pathetic state of affairs in our dear country today should provide us a unique opportunity to reflect deeply on how best to address the mess that Nigeria has been plunged into. This should be moment for sober reflection and not time for partying or jamboree.

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