Thursday Feb 02, 2023

How to reBuild a Nation (Part 2)


Defining a National Vision can be quite a feat, you know?

We all come from different places. While a man raised in Lagos may dream of having a country having facilities that rival and/or surpass Disneyland, the O2 Arena, Old Trafford, the Sydney Opera House and the Burj Al-Arab; the man from deep in Kwara or Benue may simply want a country that will be a viable market for his harvested crops; a country where his precious crops will not die of thirst or be washed away by preventable floods; a country where he will receive full payment for his months of hard work in the sweltering heat; Still again the man from the creeks may want to come home to the smell of fresh air, to fish from rivers unspoiled, to chat freely with his neighbours without tasting the pollution that hangs in the air like clouds bringing rain; The man from the woody east who wants his business to thrive, who want to see his ingenuity on the shelves of supermarkets rather than overpriced imports. The man from the Deserts of the North may simply want water to drink, houses with electricity to beat the heat and a steady supply of fresh fodder for his cattle.

All these are stereotypical dreams.

But what should be the basic goal of the Nigerian people? Past governments have tried to create roadmaps. Abacha came with Vision2010. Yar’Adua came with vision20:2020. That economic blueprint is perhaps one of the most intelligent piece of Nigerian origin. Full of lofty goals: to be the best in this or the best in that or to be among the best 20. But these “Visions” are just hanging in the air, inexplicable and at best mysterious to the casual man on the streets of Abuja, Conpuzzling to the Shepherds in the FCT “countryside”. What does it matter what position we are ranked on paper?

Should we be in competition with other countries where statistics actually reflect reality? That would be a mere playing to the gallery. Think about it- Our GDP grows every year, we’re rated as the biggest economy in Africa, but how does that translate to a better life? Inflation is allegedly at a single-digit rate, but how has that reduced the price of ordinary commodities like bread in the market? Instead we run an amazingly expensive legislature that hardly justifies the expense.

While we confer with our elected representatives to codify our dreams, while we wait for the visionaries among us to dream up a Nigerian dream; while our chiefs and traditional rulers discuss, while our youths generate trends on twitter with the latest campaign/protest; while we wait for the bureaucracy we have promoted to a National Treasure to take reactionary steps; We need to ensure that we have a (working) temprary BASIC national plan.

Our national vision must not be comparative or competitive with other economies. Our National Vision must seek to define what is the BASIC standard of Living. we need to decide what kind of life should be normal in terms of comfort. We should have a National Agreement saying that THIS is the threshold, THIS is what every adult is entitled to; THIS is what very student in school is entitled to; THIS is the lowest level our roads should degenerate to; THIS is the highest amount of aggression we can tolerate; THIS is the highest percentage by which a lawmaker’s salary should exceed a Civil Servant; THIS is the minimum level of implementation we can accept from contractors before sending them to jai; THIS is the minimum punishment for those who dare to dip their hands into the public coffers.


We need to DEFINE our minimum living standards.

Sculpture in Rumukwurusi, Port Harcourt


5 thoughts on “How to reBuild a Nation (Part 2)

  1. We need to leave the era of ‘the just and the unjust sat together under the sun and it baked them unrelentingly… But more on the just because the unjust had the just’s umbrella’… What I’m saying is that I’m tired of seeing skinny, impoverished scape goats. ..they can’t be the ones breaking fences and stealing food and pooping all over.

  2. Before we can think of trying to compete with the other world, we need to meet basic requirements (As you rightfully said). What is the use or point of being called the giant of Africa or the largest oil producer if there is no mere security, inaccessible health services and proper electricity, plus the implementation of nonsensical useless laws. This is a whole jumble of strings not knowing where to begin or end… when we stop trying to prove our worth to the world, but to the people(that it matters to), only then we can have some results, and the accolades automatically come in. I am a huge football fan so don’t chop me raw giving this example lol …Like with the world cup mania, why are the boys there when we have children that have been captured, no proper arrests of the Boko Haram have been made?, Have we forgotten that? Use that money to strategise and secure their safe return.. Will them winning the cup fill the victims’ parents with joy.. I mean cm on where are the priorities?! For Naija to have reached this stage of unconcerned, dirty, materialism politics, First is to solve the pressing problems at hand (Boko haram and the girls) and then total annihilation of ALL the present politicians. A very drastic move (Hasn’t Nigeria reached that?)but idealism IS the mother of realism (To me at least). Just wipe them out and start with a clean fresh slate with the real people of Naija, people that know the real struggle and have faith that they can help turn some if not all things around (that is the thing about politics, you take risks in the hope that something is down, we have had too much of disappointments), If we do want to copy, which is highly welcomed, maybe we look at the Nordic countries on how they have developed their sectors so well.

    I think i have not made sense and have maybe sounded ignorant but you did want an honest opinion from someone from who is less well versed with Naija’s political background. I’d like to learn or hear from people who think i said shoot 🙂

    • idealism IS the mother of realism (To me at least). Just wipe them out and start with a clean fresh slate with the real people of Naija,

      Very true words you’ve spoken…sadly in Nigeria Idealism is usually just a springboard for political achievement. Realism I believe should be the mother of Idealism!

  3. Kudos PAE! These are all what an average intellectual Nigerian will think of. But what baffles me much is the fact that the sailors of this cargo called Nigeria have an unGodly thought towards manning the goodness and betterment of this country. Everything is seems getting worst and out of hand, one common thing left to the masses is being healthy! Am with you MONICA F. Can you imagine that our super eagles did not even hold something to show the word about their predicament with regards to the missing girls, the additional abducted women and the number of lives lost daily without a proper and official moaning! We pray that one day our good dream will come true insha Allah!

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