DONALD TRUMP, SHITHOLE AND AFRICA (2)

Selected progressive and selected oppressive heds of government
Selected progressive and selected oppressive heds of government
Selected African Heads of Government

By
Babatunde Fagoyinbo

INTRODUCTION

Trump can be likened to a man who lives in a neighbourhood and observes the foundation of his neighbours’ building being eroded. He called them to attention and they accused him of poke-nosing into their affairs. Let’s look at the major points raised in the statement:

  1. “If after 50 years of independence you have not built the necessary infrastructure for your people, are you humans?
  2. “If you sit on gold, diamond, oil, manganese, uranium… and your people don’t have food, are you, humans?
  • “If to stay in power, you buy weapons from strangers to kill your own citizens, are you humans?
  1. “If your only social project is to stay in power for life, are you being human?
  2. “If you despise and shoot your own citizens like game, who will respect them?
  3. “If you take all resources meant for development of your country for personal property are you humans?
  • “If you leave your country healthcare unattended and treat yourself abroad are you humans?
  • “Until your leaders think less of themselves and more about your people. You are not human but animal.”

Infrastructures Emplacement

Economic Infrastructural Status of uncolonised Ethiopia and Liberia relative to other countries in Africa

Colonial Africadepicting the colonising countries and showing those that were not colonised
Colonial Africa

(Fagoyinbo, 2018) observed that Liberia’s growth rate stands at 2.50%, ranking it 42nd position out of 54 African countries.  Ethiopia ranks highest on literacy level at100% while Liberia ranks 40th with a mere 43%. On Human Development Index (HDI) Ethiopia ranks 41st at 0.406 while Liberia ranks 39th at 0.413 within the region; France, UK and USA respectively scored 0.952, 0.946 and 0.951. Liberia has a high rank, 6th among 50 countries ranked, in political stability at an index of 0.55 while Ethiopia falls to 44th with a score of -1.57.

Very important is infrastructure provisioning to assess a nation’s economic development programmes. Ethiopia ranks 34th among African countries by annual electricity production of 98 KWh while Liberia ranks at 38th at a production of 73KWh. In healthcare delivery, Ethiopia is ranked 44th position among African countries and 180h in world ranking while Liberia is rated 50th among African countries and 186th in world ranking. France and United Kingdom ranked 1st and 18th respectively in health and provide 8,336KWh and 12,866KWh of Electricity respectively per capital.

The State of Development Infrastructures

In this section, we’ll look at basic socio-economic development infrastructures like electricity supply, road network, Human Development Index, population below poverty level and health delivery.

Table 1 lists the performance of countries across the world in the provision of basic infrastructures. It is observed that African countries are in the lowest rung of the socio-economic development world’s ladder in infrastructures provision, not because of lack of resources but because of little, if any, value addition to export commodities, thus, lacking in employment opportunities to the citizenry.

Over the years, most African countries have made their citizen believe that the government provides every basic need of life like water, electricity, housing, employment, and even sponsoring the performance of religious obligations.

In Nigeria, rather than embark on the provision of development infrastructures to create enabling environment for socio-economic development, many state governments have been supplying free wives to the indigenes in the way of chaste living (Fagoyinbo, 2018). Cheap promises devoid of achievable manifestoes characterise political campaigns for political posts. One clear example is the circulation of such ridiculous rumour of the cloning of a Sudanese by the name Jibril to function as President Buhari after the failure of the allegation of lack of West African School Certificate which to my mind is baseless when we consider the many pieces of training and educational attainment of the incumbent along with the diverse responsibilities that had been held and discharge creditably.

Overall, South Africa may be classified as the best performing African country. It has a nominal GDP of 370.887 x 109 US$ ranking it 34th position in the world but its population lowers its rank to 91st in per capita GDP at US$6,459. This lowering might be due largely to a high percentage of unproductive population coupled with a low level of gainful engagements. South Africa ranks fairly, 19th, in electricity production at 4,858KWh/yr per capita as compared with Nigeria that brands itself the Giant of Africa, with a nominal GDP of US$408,612 x 109 yielding a low rank of 143 at a per capita nominal GDP of US$2,108. Electricity supply is dismally low at a per capita generation of 164KWh/yr. 70% of Nigeria’s population lives below the poverty line due to the lust for multiple wives and prolific production of uncared-for children (Fagoyinbo, 2018).

Table 2 compares Nigeria with countries in the same range of per capita GDP. Among the 17 countries in the range chosen, Nigeria has the highest percentage of population below poverty level, the least per capita generation of electricity, the worst health provision, the least human development index, beating only Côte d’Ivoire while in road network it surpasses only the Republic of Congo and Djibouti.

Table 1: Development Infrastructures, by Country

State of Development Infrastructure -1

State of Development Infrastructure -1

State of Development Infrastructure-2

State of Development Infrastructure-2

State of Development Infrastructure -3State of Development Infrastructure -3State of Development Infrastructure -4State of Development Infrastructure -4
State of Development Infrastructure -5
State of Development Infrastructure -5
State of Development Infrastructure -6
State of Development Infrastructure -6
State of Development Infrastructure -7
State of Development Infrastructure -7

Table 2: Comparing Nigeria with Countries in the same GDP Range

Comparing Ifrastuctural Proviion by Countries in the ame GDP range
Comparing Infrastructural Provision by Countries in the Same GDP range

HDI is used to indicate the level of human development in different countries, to rank whether a country is developed, developing or underdeveloped. HDI combines three dimensions: A long and healthy life (Life expectancy at birth), Education index (Mean years of schooling and Expected years of schooling) and A decent standard of living (GNI per capita {PPP US$}).

The prospects of application of resource funds to the provision of infrastructures in Nigeria can be more clearly understood in the British Prime Minister David Cameron’s frank remark on Goodluck Jonathan’s attempt to win his (Cameron) support in attempt to solicit loans in international multilateral institutions for unspecified infrastructural industrial restructuring in Nigeria was that “lack of accountability and transparency is a big problem in Nigerian oil and gas industry.” (Aribisala, 2013). Aribisala further stated that Nigeria comes first among the African countries that have suffered from massive outflows of illegal funds between 1970 and 2008 (Tran, 2012; Kazeem, 2015; Roberts, 2015); and it is still on to-date.

Utilising Natural Resources Proceeds 

Socio-Economic Development Infrastructures

Most of the problems in Africa result from non-availability of infrastructures. A young professional willing to be self-employed needs power supply, water supply and transportation. These basic needs require higher funding than the small enterprise being envisaged. In Nigeria, for example, cheap means of transportation is not available; the trains are not functioning and water transportation is limited to riverine areas and not coordinated.

It is true that corruption cuts across the world but what is looted in Nigeria is not invested but stacked in hidden places, spent building luxurious buildings that are not inhabited or purchasing exotic cars that are not used (PR, 2017; Yakubu, 2017; Adepegba, 2018). Nigeria is an important oil producer, but much of that income is siphoned off by a greedy elite instead of being invested in the country (Gelling, Undated).

Population Decimation

Boko Haram

It is claimed that “the failed Sharia project during Nigeria’s fourth republic (1999–2003) led to the emergence in the north of sundry Islamist sects (Animasawun, 2015). Made up of between four and six thousand hard-core militants (Felter, 2018) Boko Haram remains a top-tier threat to Nigeria and it is claimed to be supported by top government functionaries. It is believed that the onset of Boko Haram was pleasing to traditional rulers in the core north; believing it is genuinely Islamic jihad. Until they discovered that they were part of the assumed haram, burning of Churches and slaughtering of Christians and killing of law enforcement officials was nursery school play to them (vanguard.com, 2011). Attributing the rise of the Boko Haram as a direct link between the uneven nature of distribution of resources and the rising level of violence in the country (Oke, 2012; vanguard.com, 2012) is not an authentic issue. What needs to be looked at is economic greed of the power players (Gidda, 2017; Abdulah, 2018); wanting to destroy their opponents by any means so that they can have access to the huge emoluments being paid to the law-makers.

Maj-Gen Ahmed Mohammed was targeted for killing by his soldiers blaming him for the killing of their colleagues in an ambush by suspected Boko Haram militants (BBC, 2014. amnesty.org, 2016). His troop believed he was in complicity with the Boko Haram boys and thus ensured they were not adequately equipped. While deliberate decimation policy cannot be ascribed to any government in Nigeria, corrupt power brokers ensure that there is a hidden population decimation policy; scarce resources for dealing decisively with Boko Haram are not due to lack of military spending but corruption in high places (Gidda, 2017).

Unchecked Terrorist Fulani Herdsmen

Nigerians have been made aware that Boko Haram is not only the country’s internal security threat. States in Nigeria’s middle belt have been rocked by attacks from suspected Fulani herdsmen in a new wave of violence which primarily stems from disputes over grazing areas for cattle (Kazeem, 2018). Attacks in villages in Benue state have left hundreds of people dead, houses burnt, women and girls raped and barns pulled down for cattle to feed on. Thousands of people have been displaced from their homes. Government deafness to the cry of the middle belt states is a pointer to the fact that climate change is responsible for the attacks is unfounded (Lozano, 2016).

As a mark of the complicity of governance in the terrorist Fulani raid, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) claimed that some top commanders within the Division One of the Nigeria Army illegally deployed armed soldiers who invaded Awgu in Enugu State community whereby 76 indigenous Igbo farmland owners were arrested and hauled into the Umuahia prison for allegedly resisting the plots and activities of some armed Fulani herdsmen to annex some of their ancestral farmlands for the purposes of illegal grazing of cattle (Ugwuanyi, 2016). That the herdsmen carry arms with impunity in a country that has laws against illegal arms ownership and use is a pointer to the complicity of governance (Brisibe, 2018).

Rifle-carrying terrorist herdsmen are common features in Nigeria
Rifle-carrying terrorist herdsman

Though the focus has been on Nigeria, it is not the only country that has embarked on the decimation of its population. Mapfuna (Undated) listed:It is unfortunate that the southern belt that had been carrying the financial burden of the north and the middle belt region that had stood by the core north in the execution of the civil war are now the objects of attack. Fulani leaders should be ready for retaliatory attacks on their communities when the middle belt region gets tired of their antics. This is the time to save the Fulani race. A few reprisal attacks on communities in the northwest may completely eliminate the Fulani race. It should be noted that the age of horse-warfare is gone while wits and tactics belong to the middle belt. Even with the horses, none of the notable communities in the middle belt could be conquered.

  1. Mengistu Haile Mariam of Ethiopia (from 1974 to 1991) was responsible for between 400,000 and 1.5 million deaths
  2. Idi Amin oF Uganda (1972 – 1979) was responsible for between 25000 and 30000 deaths
  • Sani Abacha of Nigeria (1993 – 1998) was responsible for between 100 000-200 000 deaths
  1. Ahmed Sékou Touré of Guinea (1958 – 1984) was responsible for between 100 000 and-150 00 deaths
  2. Charles Taylor of Liberia (August 1997 – August Of 2003) was responsible for between 100 000 nd150 000 deaths
  3. Hissene Habre of Chad (1982 – 1990) WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR BETWEEN 80 000 AND -100 000 DEATHS
  • Macius Nguema of Equatorial Guinea (1968 – 1979) WAS Responsible for between 50 000 ND 7 000 DEATHS
  • Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo of Equatorial Guinea (1979 – date) Still counting. Abuses under Obiang have included “unlawful killings by security forces; government-sanctioned kidnappings; systematic torture of prisoners and detainees by security forces; life-threatening conditions in prisons and detention facilities; impunity; arbitrary arrest, detention, incommunicado detention and cannibalism (Daniels, 2004).
  1. Omar Al-Bhasir of Sudan (1989 -Date ) was responsible for between 30 000 and–  40 000 deaths. He has been charged with 7 crimes against humanity. He planned and committed genocide against several ethnic groups such as Masalit and Zaghwa killing tens of thousands of people. He is regarded by many as one of the most murderous dictators ever.
  2. Paul Biya of Cameroon (1982) IS RESPONSIBLE FOR BETWEEN 20 000 AN 30 000 Deaths

Constitution Manipulation for Prolonged Stay 

The common strategies used by African leaders to hold on to power has mainly been through imposing restrictions on political competition, the use of force and manipulating the constitution such as amending term limits. For the most part, these strategies have worked for the incumbents. Unfortunately, these constitutional amendments have not in any way been favourable to the overall economic development of the nations. In the wake of a slew of constitutional amendments granting Mugabe broad power, the country experienced drops in life expectancy and per capita income between 1990 and 2005, as well as a notable decline in its ranking on the UN Development Program’s HDI and resulting to underfunded or dysfunctional government departments and programmes (Felter, 2017). Felter also observed that the practice gained intensity after 2000 when many postcolonial leaders were nearing the ends of their constitutional term limits.

About seventeen heads of state have tried to remain in power by altering their countries’ constitutions. Sam Nujoma of Namibia did so in 1998, Eyadema Gnassingbe of Togo in 2002. Omar Bongo of Gabon got the parliament to modify the country’s constitution to allow him for a sixth term in 2003. Such countries as Angola, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Chad, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Senegal, and Uganda also made attempts.

However, 2017 was a tough year for Africa’s strongmen: Yahya Jammeh (Gambian, 1994 to 2017) was kicked out, José Eduardo dos Santos (Angola, 38 years in office) stepped down, and Robert Mugabe (Zimbabwe, 37 years in office) was pushed off (news24.com, 2018).

Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo is an Equatoguinean politician who has been President of Equatorial Guinea since 1979, continues news24.com (2018). Mbasogo’s eldest son Teodorin was given a three-year suspended jail term and a suspended fine of €30m.by a French court for embezzlement, money-laundering, corruption, abuse of trust and plundering public money from his oil-rich but impoverished west African state to fund a jet-set lifestyle in Paris. Cameroon’s President Paul Biya has won a seventh term in office in polls marred by low turnout and voter intimidation. Mr. Biya, at 85 and sub-Saharan Africa’s oldest leader, took 71.3% of the vote; making it the 7th term in office since 1982. Others include:

  1. Congo-Brazzaville President, Denis Sassou Nguesso, has spent 34 years in office; though with a break between 1992 and 1997;
  2. In Uganda, Yoweri Museveni has been in power for 33 years. He took office in January 1986 after winning the war that ousted brutal dictator Idi Amin Dada. He was elected to a fifth term in February 2016;
  • In Sudan, Omar al-Bashir has ruled for 29 years after staging a coup in June 1989.
  1. Chad’s Idriss Deby took over the northern nation in 1990, giving him nearly 28 years in power. He won a disputed fifth term in April 2016;
  2. The Eritrean leader, Isaias Afwerki, has been in charge since independence in April 1993, making 25 years;
  3. McVeigh (20175) added Rwanda’s Paul Kagame to the list. Rwandans have voted overwhelmingly to allow President Paul Kagame to extend his term in office with an official result of nearly 99% in an election criticised for numerous irregularities. He has been described as the “most impressive” and “among the most repressive” African leaders. It is, however, noteworthy that Kagame is credited with engineering Rwanda to a turnaround from a war-ravaged, ethnically divided country to a united and successful nation.

news 24.com also noted that two were killed in office:

  1. Ethiopian emperor Haile Selassie holds the record for the longest time in power on the African continent. After reigning for 44 years, he was ousted in 1974. His regime was also criticised by human rights groups, such as Human Rights Watch, as autocratic and illiberal. The 1973 famine in Ethiopia led to Haile Selassie’s eventual removal from the throne. He died on 27 August 1975 at the age of 83, following the coup d’état of 1974.
  2. Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi, who ruled with an iron fist for nearly 42 years. Gaddafi attended military college and almost immediately set about plotting to overthrow Libya’s ruler, King Idris I. He succeeded in 1969, taking power in a bloodless coup. Muammar Gaddafi was 27. Gaddafi remained firmly in power and built a reputation as a shrewd if eccentric, dictator. In 2011, he attacked protesters in his own country, leading to a full armed rebellion in Libya. The rebel forces overran Tripoli in August of 2011. Gaddafi escaped, but two months later he was wounded in battle after being cornered near his hometown of Sirte; he reportedly was captured and then died of his wounds shortly thereafter. He was famous for his all-female contingent of bodyguards, and for his habit of receiving visitors in a Bedouin-style tent.

Two presidents were relieved from power by death:

  1. Gabon’s Omar Bongo died in June 2009 after more than 41 years in power. Bongo was criticised for, in effect, having worked for himself, his family and local elites and not for Gabon and its people. For instance, French green politician Eva Joly claimed that during Bongo’s long reign, despite an oil-led GDP per capita growth to one of the highest levels in Africa, Gabon built only 5 km of freeway a year and still had one of the world’s highest infant mortality rates by the time of his death in 2009. It is believed that he died of advanced complications of cancer.
  2. Gnassingbe Eyadema also ruled the West African country of Togo for 38 years from 1967 to his death in 2005. He was succeeded by his son Faure Gnassingbe. He participated in two successful military coups, in January 1963 and January 1967, and became President on April 14, 1967. He was declared to have died of heart attack. Eyadéma’s son Faure Gnassingbé’ declaration as president was opposed widely byAlpha Oumar Konaré, president of the Commission of the African Union, the International Community and ECOWAS. The presidential elections of April 24, 2005, declared Faure president with 60% of the vote.

Will African Leaders Plan for Development?

Where is the hope for the emergence of Africa from squalor to eminence? From under-development to industrialisation? From poverty to wealth? The hope is bleak.

Let’s look at the Nigerian situation. An ex-Minister of Communication declared that the telephone is for the rich. A few decades later telephone became ubiquitous; even affordable to roadside hawkers. The same person rose to be Senate Preside with a two-time tenure. We voted him in. the same Senate with the lower House allotted huge allowances to themselves; as stated earlier.

In same Nigeria, ex-President Obasanjo declared the following concerning his Vice President, Mr. Abubakar Atiku, as:

  1. Possessing unsavoury corruption perception (Ogundipe, 2018)
  2. Anti-graft detectives allegedly came up with damning dossiers that linked his lieutenant (Mr. Abubakar) to a slew of financial misdeeds (Ogundipe, 2018).
  • $6m of the diverted funds allegedly went to iGate, a Kentucky-based communications firm that tried to do business in Nigeria in 2004 (theguardian.com, 2007)
  1. Atiku complained about taking on too many responsibilities as the nation’s Number 2 citizen. (Toromade, 2018)
  2. His judgment was not right and, on a number of occasions, I pointed this out to him (Toromade, 2018).
  3. a blatant and shameless liar (saharareporters.com, 2018)
  • a most disloyal human being (saharareporters.com, 2018)
  • If I support Atiku for anything, God will not forgive me (Ogundipe, 2018)

However, Obasanjo reneged on his “God will not forgive me” vows as he has pledged to support Atiku Abubakar’s presidential bid, as the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party. Obasanjo and Atiku have mended their broken fences or should we say that they have filled up the gulf existing between them?

Chief Olabode George was adjudged to be very corrupt, investigated and found to be involved in shady deals. Obasanjo instructed a review of EFCC findings and he got a clean slate (Obabueki, 2016), was later arraigned before a court that found him guilty and sentenced for 28 years on (vanguardngr.com, 2009) 35 of the 68-count charge (2 years each on 7 counts and 6 months each on another 28 counts of the charges- Abdulah and Adejuwon, 2009 ). Nigerians were not happy with the low penalty and PDP celebration after his release (Abati, 2011; Aziken et al, 2011). After serving out the jail term, the Supreme Court slammed the case, to the chagrin of legal luminaries (Falana, 2013; Obabueki, 2016) and accusing the Nigerian court of being penchant to dismissing corruption cases on the altar of technicalities, that it is on record that many corruption cases filed against members of the ruling class by the anti-graft agencies have been dismissed in the last few weeks on flimsy grounds (Falana, 2013) and that it is a significant setback to the fight against corruption in Nigeria (Muktar, 2014). When such highly placed individuals cry against corruption, it excludes themselves (premiumtimesng.com, 2014; Abdulah, 2018).

Ibori was jailed in Britain but conferred with chieftaincy title on completion of his jail term and return to Nigeria (Yusuf, 2017). The old adage which says “Remember to uphold the family’s good name” has changed to “Don’t forget to haul in the nation’s resources that you have access to”. This new title agrees with the chieftaincy title conferred on James; “Ezi-Oyi Anioma”, also known as “a good friend of Anioma nation”

Way Forward

I have no apology concerning my views on Ango’s declaration on handpicking Obasanjo for presidency (Fagoyinbo, 2016). Obasanjo noted that beyond other PDP presidential aspirants, Atiku possessed, for him, relatively and of all the aspirants the widest and greatest exposure, experience, outreach and possibly the best machinery and preparation for seeing the “tough and likely dirty campaign ahead” through (vanguardngr.com, 2018). Obasanjo has the right to air his opinion and has not forced it on the nation. It is also right for the populace to consider Obasanjo’s opinion based on their assessment of his ow performance and the credibility that is assigned to him.

He claimed Atiku has a better understanding of the economy than President Muhammad Buhari.  He advised Atiku at their reconciliation meeting “You surely understand the economy better and you have business experience, which can make your administration business-friendly and boost the economy and provide jobs. “You have better outreach nationally and internationally and that can translate to better management of foreign affairs. “You are more accessible and less inflexible and more open to all parts of the country in many ways,”. Obasanjo further advised him to run an inclusive government where merit and performance count more than blood relationship, friendship or kith and kin like they both did between 1999 and 2007 and emphasising “Please uphold truth, integrity, principles, morality and fight corruption, crimes and insurgency’ and stressing that “The fundamental law of the land, our constitution must be scrupulously defended.”

Obasanjo unequivocally committed Mr. Abubakar to uphold the country’s constitution ”I make one demand and one demand on you today, I need you to say before God and man that you will always remain irrevocably committed to upholding all the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the whole country will remain your single indivisible constituency. “Constitutionalism, popular participation and inclusiveness are pre-conditions for reversing the deficits of the past three and half years.” They will ensure abiding faith in our indivisibility, oneness and faith in the survival of all against none. “The fundamentals for our development, economic growth and progress are hard and soft infrastructure.”

On inclusive governance, he advised “Remember to always give adequate places in your administration to our youth and women. All the authorities involved with the preparation, all processes and conduct of the election must ensure that the election is free, fair and credible.”

Atiku reiterated that he could not have become relevant without the training and tutelage from Obasanjo’s leadership. Atiku who described the day as one of the happiest days in his life said it was time for well-meaning Nigerians to come together so that the country could be repositioned on the path of unity and prosperity. He pledged to dedicate and commit his tenure, if elected as president, to the continuation of the Olusegun Obasanjo- led administration (vanguardngr.com (2018).

Obasanjo is one ex-president that is accessible to any socio-economic development agency involved in active and participatory development programmes. He is involved in promotion f research and development, agriculture and governance. African leaders need to learn from his experience. He is not hunted by any international court or local judicial organisation.

Other ex-presidents to learn from are Arap Moi f Kenya

  1. General Yakubu “Jack” Dan-Yumma Gowon is a former Head of the Federal Military Government of Nigeria from 1966 to 1975. He took power after one military coup d’état and was overthrown in another. During his rule, the Nigerian government successfully prevented Biafran secession in the 1967–70 Civil War.

The postwar years saw Nigeria enjoying a meteoric, oil-fuelled, economic upturn in the course of which the scope of activity of the Nigerian federal government grew to an unprecedented degree, with increased earnings from oil revenues. Unfortunately, however, this period created the era of 10% gratification on contracts to federal government officials; and although the head of State himself, he was often accused of turning a blind eye to the activities of his staff and cronies.

General Gowon lives peacefully in Nigeria and is involved in Guinea Worm Eradication Programme as well as the HIV Programme with Global Fund of Geneva. Gowon founded his own organisation in 1992 called the Yakubu Gowon Centre. The organisation is said to work on issues in Nigeria such as good governance as well as infectious disease control including HIV/AIDS, guinea worm, and malaria. He is also the founder and Grand Patron of Nigeria Prays, an interdenominational praying group committed to praying for peace and development.

  1. Jerry John Rawlings was the former head of state and president of Ghana from 7 January 1993, to 7 January 2001. Rawlings initially came to power in Ghana as a flight lieutenant of the Ghana Air Force following a coup d’état in 1979 and, after initially handing power over to a civilian government, ousted the then government and took back control of the country on 31 December 1981 as the Chairman of the Provisional National Defence Council.

In 1992, Rawlings resigned from the military, founded the National Democratic Congress, and became the first President of the Fourth Republic. He was re-elected in 1996 for four more years. After two terms in office, the limit according to the Ghanaian Constitution, Rawlings endorsed his vice-president John Atta Mills as a  presidential candidate in 2000. He currently serves as the African Union envoy to Somalia.

  • Daniel Arap Moi was named vice president in 1967, Moi became president in 1978 following the death of Jomo Kenyatta. He quickly consolidated his power, banning opposition parties and promoting his Kalenjin countrymen to positions of authority at the expense of the Kikuyu. He also curried favour with the army, which proved loyal to him in suppressing a coup attempt in 1982. His continuation of Kenyatta’s pro-Western policies ensured significant sums of development aid during the Cold War (1947–91), and under Moi’s stewardship, Kenya emerged as one of the most prosperous African nations.

Following western countries’ demand for political and economic reforms Moi to legalised opposition parties in 1991. The following year he won the country’s first multiparty elections amid charges of electoral fraud. Riots and demonstrations marred the 1997 elections, and hundreds of Kenyans, mainly Kikuyu, were killed. Easily elected to his fifth term as president, Moi promised to end government corruption and implement democratic and economic reforms. In an effort to combat corruption, in 1999 he appointed Richard Leakey, the popular and respected anthropologist, the head of the civil service and permanent secretary to the cabinet, a position Leakey retired from in 2001.

On 25 July 2007, Kibaki appointed Moi as special peace envoy to Sudan based on Moi’s “vast experience and knowledge of African affairs” and “his stature as an elder statesman”. In his capacity as peace envoy, Moi was expected to help secure peace in southern Sudan.

  1. Nelson Mandela spent 28 years as a political prisoner in South Africa before becoming the country’s first black president.

He was a leading member of the African National Congress (ANC), which opposed South Africa’s white minority government and its apartheid policy. The government outlawed the ANC in 1960. Mandela was captured and jailed in 1962, and in 1964 he was convicted of treason and sentenced to life in prison. He served his prison tern on Robben Island, near Cape Town. He became a prison-bound martyr and worldwide symbol of resistance to racism.

South African President F.W. de Klerk finally lifted the ban on the ANC and released Mandela in 1990. Nelson Mandela used his stature to help dismantle apartheid and form a new multi-racial democracy, and he and de Klerk shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993.

Nelson Mandela was elected the country’s president in 1994. He served until 1999, when he was succeeded by his deputy Thabo Mbeki. Mandela remained a celebrated figure in South Africa and throughout the world until his death in 2013. Mandela is one good example to emulate by African rulers either in the Executive or legislative arms.

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Daniels, A (2004). DIf you think this one’s bad you should have seen his uncle. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/personal-view/3610187/If-you-think-this-ones-bad-you-should-have-seen-his-uncle.html

Fagoyinbo, B (2018). Colonisation and the Fate of African Countries: Nigeria as Case Study. http://motresource.com/2018/10/08/colonisation-and-the-fate-of-african-countries-nigeria-as-case-study/

Fagoyinbo, B (2018a)Donald Trump, Shithole and Africa (1). http://motresource.com/2018/11/17/donald-trump-shithole-and-africa-1/

Fagoyinbo, JB (2016). The Source of Nigeria’s Socio-Economic, Political and Security Dilemma Revealed. http://motresource.com/2016/11/02/the-source-of-nigerias-socio-economic-political-and-security-dilemma-revealed/

Falana, F (2013). How Supreme Court wrongly freed Bode George, others, By Femi Falana https://www.premiumtimesng.com/opinion/152325-supreme-court-wrongly-freed-bode-george-others-femi-falana.html

Felter, C (2018). Nigeria’s Battle With Boko Haram. Council on Foreign Relations. https://www.cfr.org/backgrounder/nigerias-battle-boko-haram

Gelling, P (Undated). Here is why Boko Haram exists. And the terrible repercussions. GlobalPost. https://www.pri.org/stories/here-why-boko-haram-exists-and-terrible-repercussions

Gidda, M (2017). Boko Haram Is Growing Stronger in Nigeria Thanks to Corruption in the Military. 5/19/17 AT 2:30 AM. https://www.newsweek.com/nigeria-defense-spending-corruption-boko-haram-611685

Herdsmen kill one, rape woman in Delta Published January 22, 2018 https://punchng.com/herdsmen-kill-one-rape-woman-in-delta/  Theophilus Onojeghen, Warri

Kazeem, Y (2015). Nigeria’s Ex-Petroleum Minister Has Been Arrested in London for Money Laundering. https://qz.com/africa/516617/nigerias-ex-petroleum-minister-has-been-arrested-in-london-for-money-laundering/

Kazeem, Y (2018). A new wave of brazen attacks by herdsmen in Nigeria is sparking fears of genocide. January 12, 2018. https://qz.com/africa/1178371/benue-killing-nigerias-fulani-herdsmen-attacks-have-over-surpassed-boko-haram/

Lozano, M (2016). In Nigeria, Fulani herdsmen are new Islamist terror threat to Christians. https://www.churchinneed.org/nigeria-fulani-herdsmen-new-islamist-terror-threat-christians/

Mapfumo, E (Undated). Top 10 Most Murderous African Presidents of All Times. In  Murderous Presidents. http://www.africacradle.com/top-10-murderous-african-presidents-of-all-times/

McVeigh, T (2017). Rwanda votes to give President Paul Kagame right to rule until 2034. Sun 20 Dec 2015. modified on Sat 2 Dec 2017  https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/dec/20/rwanda-vote-gives-president-paul-kagame-extended-powers

Muktar, A (2014). Editorial: Bode George And Our Supreme Court In Reverse Gear. https://www.premiumtimesng.com/opinion/153490-editorial-bode-george-and-our-supreme-court-in-reverse-gear.html

news24.com (2018). PICS: Africa’s longest-serving leaders. 2018-10-02. https://www.news24.com/Africa/News/pics-africas-longest-serving-leaders-20181002

news24.com (2018a). Nigerian soldiers lash out in video after bloody Boko Haram attack. 2018-11-25 . https://www.news24.com/Africa/News/nigerian-soldiers-lash-out-in-video-after-bloody-boko-haram-attack-20181125-2

Obabueki, DI (2016). A critical examination of Bode George’s trial: The view point of societal justice. https://www.newsexpressngr.com/news/28364-A-critical-examination-of-Bode-Georges-trial-The-view-point-of-societal-justice

Ogundipe, S (2018). Exclusive: God Will Never Forgive Me If I Support Atiku for President — Obasanjo. https://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/headlines/278869-exclusive-god-will-never-forgive-me-if-i-support-atiku-for-president-obasanjo.html

Oke, G (2012). Why Northern leaders are silent over Boko Haram. Politics on January 27, 2012. https://www.vanguardngr.com/2012/01/why-northern-leaders-are-silent-over-boko-haram/

PR (2017). How EFCC recovered $9.8 million from Yakubu, Ex-NNPC GMD . February 10, 2017 Press Release. https://www.premiumtimesng.com/news/headlines/223140-efcc-recovered-9-8million-yakubu-ex-nnpc-gmd-see-mountains-dollars.html

premiumtimesng.com (2014). Bode George calls for war on corruption in Nigeria. https://www.premiumtimesng.com/national-conference/bode-george-calls-war-corruption-nigeria/

punchng.com (2018). Hypocrisy in tackling Fulani herdsmen terrorism. Editorial Published January 10, 2018. https://punchng.com/hypocrisy-in-tackling-fulani-herdsmen-terrorism/

Roberts, S (2015). Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, Nigerian Notorious For Corruption, Dies At 62 https://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/15/world/diepreye-alamieyeseigha-nigerian-ex-governor-dies-at-62.html

saharareporters.com (2018). ‘A MOST DISLOYAL HUMAN BEING’ AND OTHER BAD THINGS OBASANJO PREVIOUSLY SAID ABOUT ATIKU. http://saharareporters.com/2018/10/13/most-disloyal-human-being-and-other-bad-things-obasanjo-previously-said-about-atiku

Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International

theguardian.com (2007). Nigerian Vice-President Faces Corruption Charges. Staff and agencies. Wed 2007 28 Feb. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2007/feb/28/1

Toromade, S (2018). Obasanjo says Atiku complained that his duties as Vice President were too much for him. https://www.pulse.ng/news/politics/obasanjo-says-atikus-duties-as-vice-president-were-too-much-id9002620.html

Tran, M (2012). Former Nigeria state governor James Ibori receives 13-year sentence. https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2012/apr/17/nigeria-governor-james-ibori-sentenced

Ugwuanyi, S (2016).  Menace of Fulani herdsmen may result in civil war if not checked – HURIWA warns. Published on April 5, 2016. http://dailypost.ng/2016/04/05/menace-of-fulani-herdsmen-may-result-in-civil-war-if-not-checked-huriwa-warns/

vanguard.com (2011). Boko Haram: Has Northern leaders found their voice? on December 10, 20111:04  in Politics. https://www.vanguardngr.com/2011/12/boko-haram-has-northen-leaders-found-their-voice/

vanguard.com (2012)The ‘real members’ of Boko Haram! Viewpoint on February 29, 201212:27 https://www.vanguardngr.com/2012/02/the-real-members-of-boko-haram/

vanguardngr.com (2009). Bode George, others jailed for 28 years.  Headline https://www.vanguardngr.com/2009/10/breaking-news-bode-george-others-convicted-judgement-still-on/

vanguardngr.com (2018). Obasanjo Recants, Backs Atiku’s Presidential Bid ON OCTOBER 11, 2018 https://www.vanguardngr.com/2018/10/obasanjo-recants-backs-atikus-presidential-bid/

Yakubu, D (2017). $25b NNPC scam: Nigerians can now see the hypocrisy in Buhari’s anti-corruption fight – PDP ON OCTOBER 5, 2017 11:05 PMIN NEWS296 COMMENTS
https://www.vanguardngr.com/2017/10/25b-nnpc-scam-nigerians-can-now-see-hypocrisy-called-anti-corruption-fight-pdp/

Yusuf, O (2017). James Ibori Gets Important Chieftaincy Title in Delta (Photos). https://www.legit.ng/1099559-james-ibori-important-chieftaincy-title-delta-photos.html

DONALD TRUMP, SHITHOLE AND AFRICA (1)

Political map of Africa showing respective countries

By
Babatunde Fagoyinbo

Introduction

Africa

When Trump’s remark “Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” in his reaction to the discussion on protections for immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador, and African countries in the Oval Office, Thursday, January 11, 2018 penultimate to January 28 annual summit of the African Union, with the official theme of combating corruption got into the open, African leaders feigned outrage! We’ll wait to see how African countries rate in the next Transparency International at the net assessment.

Is the outrage morally right? Did Animasaun not tell us in 2013 that we like to show our allegiances to religion yet we have lost our humanity? (Animasaun, 2013). What happens when we lose our humanity? We treat ourselves like shit. And because Trump reminded us in 2018 of Animasaun’s observation in 2013 so that we can brace up and restore the human aspects of ourselves but we draw daggers! Animasaun further stated that the elite use the ethnic divisions for their own benefit yet we are too blind to see it.

Which of African leader has left his country on a better socio-economic standing than he met it other than Obasanjo’s military regime and Rawlings’ military regime and civilian presidency? He was named African Union Envoy to Somalia. It is claimed that Rawlings’ success in governance results from freedom from family or tribal pressures. Obasanjo could have succeeded better than Rawlings in his civilian era. He had no inclinations to ethnic sentiments but he submitted himself to manipulations by the National Assembly because they refused to pass the budget due to his unwillingness to package Ghana-must-go bags; a resolve he initially made in order to rid the nation of the garments of irresponsibility, greed, avarice and lasciviousness.

It is the feigned outrage that amazes me. A look at Museveni’s track records shows that he came into power in January 1986, has remained for three decades and won the country’s very heated poll in 2016 to extend his 32 years for a further five years before the next elections in 2021 (Eweniyi, 2017) vis-á-vis his remarks that “It is the Africans’ fault that they are weak” (news24.com, 2018) shows that LeBas (2016) was right in his conclusion that “Executives are able to act with impunity because there is no strong, organised opposition to challenge entrenched incumbents and push them toward a genuine political opening,”

Corruption

Corruption exists in governance everywhere but not in Africa! What exists in Africa is made up of irresponsibility, indiscipline, moral decadence, lawlessness, greed all combined together.

Gratification

Sometime around 1980, I read either in Time or Newsweek Magazine of prosecution of the Mayor of Melbourne for taking kick-back. The students of the University of Melbourne stormed the court; demanding that the case should be dismissed.

It was. Why? The students claimed that the bridge on which contract the mayor received kick-back had resulted into the deaths of many, including students, prior to the mayor’s tenure without the previous ones doing anything about it but that after the bridge was rehabilitated there were no more accidents there. The case was not heard in the court but we should assume that there was kick-back, there was performance and the lives and well-being of the people were positively affected. It is unlike the cases in Africa where the contract will be awarded and the funds released but no work is done or, at best, shoddy performance observed.

To me, corruption is any form of gratification negotiated or promised prior to the execution of a project for the purpose of easy passage, approval or certification. In Nigeria, prior to military rule gratification might cause a contractor to lose favour with the awarding agency. Gratification should be seen as saying “Thank You” after a job has been successfully completed and certified. This was even rare in the pre-military era in Nigeria. Civil Servants viewed gratification as a scheme to get them out of service using contractors. However, when a contractor felt that he’d been blessed in the project, they usually gave appreciation to the spouses of the project supervisors.

I have supervised many projects where contractors came to negotiate kick-backs but I’d always advised them that they could offer whatever they were capable of after the projects had been accredited as properly done and had ensured that their projects yielded dividends. Only one of them took me to lunch after the conclusion of his project. In Nigeria, particularly, most contractors see contracts as portions of their own pieces of the national cake and thus want to share some portions with the project administrators.

Misappropriation

This has to do with diversion of project funds to other means, most especially to personal accounts (Isenyo, 2017). Dasukigate is also a clear case of misappropriation, carried out without consideration for the dire consequences of his actions; the lives of young men and women who had been trained at great expenses for national security assignments, the loss of their service to the nation, the dashed hopes of members of their families.

Irresponsibility

Rifle-carrying terrorist herdsman

A government becomes irresponsible when it leaves undone what it is supposed to do. Let’s look at the rifle carrying herdsmen’s situation in a country that prohibits firearms without licenses, yet keeps mute over these so-called illiterates brandishing firearms in the open and attacking farmers on their farms so that cattle can feed on the farmers’ sweat. Is it Trump that called African nations shit pits or we ourselves who value cows more than human lives? (BBC Pidgin, 2018; PE, 2018)

Extension of terms by governance

Felter (2017) opined that (i) leaders are increasingly securing longer terms through “constitutional coups,” proposing amendments for approval by the legislature or judiciary, or in national referenda, that allow for additional terms in office, (ii) at least seventeen heads of state have tried to remain in power by tweaking their countries’ constitutions, (iii) countries lacking effective political opposition are vulnerable to constitutional coups, (iv) kleptocratic incumbents could lose their wealth if they were to lose power and potentially face prosecution and (v) very few African countries have any kind of pension or security scheme for former presidents or heads of state. This is necessitated because of fraudulent practices that siphon most of the state’s resources into private accounts.

Dr Yakubu  Gowon was ousted from Office as Head of State in 1975. He had no pension neither had access to his military salaries. He enroled and did a degree course and progressively acquired a PhD in political science as a student at the University of Warwick. There is no record that he has ever used those certificates to apply for employment.

Gen. Gowon is also involved in the Guinea Worm Eradication Programme as well as the HIV Programme with Global Fund of Geneva. Gowon founded his own organisation in 1992 called the Yakubu Gowon Centre. The organisation is said to work on issues in Nigeria such as good governance as well as infectious disease control including HIV/AIDS, guinea worm, and malaria.

In November 2004, Gowon won World Peace Prize Top Honor (awarded by World Peace Prize Awarding Council) for maintaining national stability, promoting economic growth, and organising a symbolic peace conference in the African region.

To-date, there has been no allegation of corruption, mismanagement or misappropriation of funds or embezzlement levied against him. He leads a simple life and moves about unguarded safe for official benefits as Army General.

Pacific-Ocean-wide disparities in salaries and emoluments

In Nigeria, there has been more than a decade struggle to raise the minimum wage to N30,000 for workers but in the same country the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) alleged that 21 former governors collected N40 billion between 2015 and February 2018 as pensions despite the fact that many of them are rewarded by their parties as ministers or senators for jobs well done in election manipulations for their parties. Osuntokun cited the immoral case of Akwa Ibom State Governor’s retirement emoluments as the most extreme in generosity (fraudulent practice), a former governor is entitled to the following: N100 million for medical treatment annually; N1 million monthly medical allowance; Five bedroom bungalow each in Abuja and Uyo; 300% of the basic salary of the incumbent governor as pension; a new utility and three saloon cars every three years; foreign holidays for wife and children under 18 years; provision of personal aide, cook, security guards not exceeding N5 million per month (italics mine). This is a State that is oweing pensioners upwards of 10 years gratuity and pensions based on a monthly minimum wage of 17,500 (Anthony, 2018). At the national Assembly Shehu Sani a total package of 14.25 million naira per month per senator who is part of decision making on a minimum salary of N30,000.00 struggle over a period of over 10 years..

Stark Illiteracy Syndrome

In Europe and America literacy is the ability to read and write, Isn’t it? In Africa, many of us have university education with high grades but cannot apply the knowledge even within the discipline; not to mention its application in the broad spectrum of socio-economic development. The reason is that we are thought-warped.

Please tell me, how will our children be able to work together when parents are asking for class separation on the basis of religion in school? Muslim students, Christian students, the various traditional religions must have their seats separated because of religion! What type of population are we nurturing?

In 1981, I hired a bus to carry my luggage from Zaria to Akure. Between Abaji and Lokoja the bus had flat tyres. His spare was down so he had to carry the two tyres for repairs. I had nothing doing and I was alone but nearby was an anthill. I drew near it and broke a part of the mound. Almost immediately came a swarm of termites. There were two different two different shapes of them. They immediately set up a task force to rebuild the damaged part. There was no segregation. I know that after the repair each would go back to its assigned responsibilities.

I have also watched ants; the little black ants.  They don’t give up on any crumb of the a food item. If it’s too large they’ll set off cutting them into bits and pieces but if it can roll the piece, it will persist until others come to team up; and together, they always succeed. I know they have colonies but I’ve never seen small ants fighting. I don’t know what happens if one strays into a colony it doesn’t belong to.

I remember that in my university days one of my roommates was a Muslim and had a Christian friend squatting with him. The Muslim would carry his mat and rosary at prayer time while the Christian would read his Bible as appropriate and attend Church services. The irony is that these parents are going through hard times and struggling to pay school fees but are not bothered about good education for their children.

I believe Donald meant that leadership in Africa is the passage through which Europe and America (Asia has joined the league) dump all sorts of rubbish on us. The unfortunate thing is that we are not resisting. We cannot resist because our leaders know our weak points.

Royal Dutch Shell (Shell) has an internal policy requiring that an Integrated Assessment IA be conducted for all new major projects and for significant modifications to existing projects. The scope of individual IAs is meant to be ‘fit for purpose’ (Orenstein et al, 2010),

Within Shell, an IA is defined as an assessment that:

  1. Looks at environmental, social (including economic), and health impacts in an integrated manner;
  2. Integrates the impact assessment process with the business development and project development process;
  • Integrates the impact assessment as a cross-functional activity within several internal departments (e.g. health, safety and environment, reputation/issues management, social performance); and
  1. Looks at issues raised by projects that are also important beyond the project scope, with regard to both the host society and international interest.

But the government that was expected to ensure compliance is the same that encourages the violation of environmental protection by Shell (Ahmed, Undated). Cases of submission of loyal forces to Boko Haram insurgents also abound in the armed forces (bbc.com, 2014; Agbugah, 2015).

In agony, Prof Wole Soyinka bemoaned the governance of Nigeria “We haven’t had a situation where it is being alleged and proved that the money supposed to be spent on defending ourselves, nation and neighbours has been shared among individuals……..We have never had a case of critical emergency where children are being kidnapped under our noses, we are helpless and our soldiers have been sent to the front to defend our very existence and we are not backing them up. It has not happened before.” 

Why are Africans docile?

Africa can survive without shelter throughout the year

Africa is so blessed that if you eat pawpaw today, you will come to that spot a year later to harvest many without bothering yourself about caring for it. Notwithstanding that our soils are fragile; but, in most parts of Africa, you can survive without shelter throughout the year. This is evident in the lunatics that roam the streets daily. But the governments have tuned us to be dependent on governance including marriages in which government pays the bride price and provides furniture and household utensils for the newlyweds (bbc.com, 2012; Usman, 2012; AFP, 2016; Aminu, 2017), performance of religious obligations where government pays for the travel expenses and sustenance allowances and blatant denial of such infrastructures as electricity supply, water supply, transportation so that the entrepreneurial among our children will have no facilities to promote self-engagement and healthcare delivery while they use government funds to treat themselves in foreign hospitals only to come back home to die or are cloned (Opejobi, 2017).

Donald Trump- American President

Trump can be likened to a man who lives in a neighbourhood and observes the foundation of his neighbours’ building being eroded. He called them to attention and they accused him of poke-nosing into their affairs. Let’s look at the major points raised in the statement:

  1. “If after 50 years of independence you have not built the necessary infrastructure for your people, are you humans?
  2. “If you sit on gold, diamond, oil, manganese, uranium… and your people don’t have food, are you, humans?
  • “If to stay in power, you buy weapons from strangers to kill your own citizens, are you humans?
  1. “If your only social project is to stay in power for life, are you being human?
  2. “If you despise and shoot your own citizens like game, who will respect them?
  3. “If you take all resources meant for development of your country for personal property are you humans?
  • “If you leave your country healthcare unattended and treat yourself abroad are you humans?
  • “Until your leaders think less of themselves and more about your people. You are not human but animal.”

Next: DONALD TRUMP, SHITHOLE AND AFRICA (2)

REFERENCES

AFP (2016) Cash crunch hits mass weddings in northern Nigeria. Agence France-Presse July 20, 2016 · Accessed 15 Nov 2018. https://www.pri.org/stories/2016-07-20/cash-crunch-hits-mass-weddings-northern-nigeria

Agbugah, F (2015). DASUKIGATE: here is a breakdown of the alleged misappropriation of $2.1 bn by Dasuki and others. http://venturesafrica.com/dasukigate-here-is-a-breakdown-of-the-misappropriation-of-2-1-bn-meant-for-arms-deal-by-dasuki-and-others/

Ahmed, FH (Undated). Violation of Human Rights by Shell Oil Company: government failure. https://www.academia.edu/7327376/Violation_of_Human_Rights_by_Shell_Oil_Company_government_failure

Aluko, M (2015). Dasukigate’s Diagraph of Corruption. Monday, January 11, 2015 11.58PM  https://www.proshareng.com/news/Nigeria-Economy/Diagraph-of-Corruption-Diagraph-of-Corruption-/29763 

Aminu, M (2017). APC Chieftain to Sponsor Mass Wedding of 100 couples in Sokoto. THISDAYDecember 28, 2017. https://www.thisdaylive.com/index.php/2017/12/28/apc-chieftain-to-sponsor-mass-wedding-of-100-couples-in-sokoto/

Animasaun, D (2013). Nigerian lawmakers are the highest paid in the world  Vanguard August 25, 2013 In Outside Looking In. https://www.vanguardngr.com/2013/08/nigerian-lawmakers-are-the-highest-paid-in-the-world/

Anthony, E (2018). Akwa Ibom and Payment of 10 Years Pension Arrears, Gratuities. The Nation on: November 2, 2018 In: Niger Delta. http://thenationonlineng.net/akwa-ibom-and-payment-of-10-years-pension-arrears-gratuities/

BBC Pidgin (2018). Fulani herdsmen: Nigeria suppose declare dem terrorists? BBC Pidgin 13 January 2018. https://www.bbc.com/pidgin/tori-42650096

bbc.com (2012). Nigerian Kano divorcees marry in mass ceremony. BBC World News 15 May 2012. Accessed 15 Nov 2018 https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-18072118

bbc.com (2014). Nigeria soldiers ‘fire at army commander in Maiduguri’ BBC News 14 May 2014. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-27417778

Eweniyi, O (2017). Cameroon’s President Has Spent 42 Years In Power – And Here’s A List Of Africa’s Longest Serving Presidents. Accessed 15 Nov 2018. http://www.konbini.com/ng/lifestyle/cameroons-president-42-years-in-power-africas-longest-serving-presidents/

Felter, C (2017). Africa’s ‘Leaders for Life’ Syndrome. Accessed 15 Nov 2018.  https://www.cfr.org/backgrounder/africas-leaders-life-syndrome

Isenyo, G (2017). Inside poor community where former NNPC GMD, Yakubu, hid over N3bn. Punch February 19, 2017. https://punchng.com/inside-poor-community-former-nnpc-gmd-yakubu-hid-n3bn/

Lebbas, A (2016). Term Limits and Beyond: Africa’s Democratic Hurdles. Current History May 2016. pp169-174

news24.com (2018). Ugandan President Backs ‘Frank’ Trump after ‘Shithole’ Remark. 2018-01-23 https://www.news24.com/Africa/News/ugandan-president-backs-frank-trump-after-shithole-remark-20180123

Opejobi, S (2017). Buhari was cloned in London, current Nigerian president is fake – Asari Dokubo. Published on October 3, 2017 Accessed 15 Nov 2018. http://dailypost.ng/2017/10/03/buhari-cloned-london-current-nigerian-president-fake-asari-dokubo-video/

Orenstein, M; T Fossgard-Moser; T Hindmarch; S Dowse; J Kuschminder; P McCloskey & RK Mugo (2010). Case study of an integrated assessment: Shell’s North Field Test in Alberta, Canada, Impact Assessment and Project Appraisal,

Osuntokun, J (2018). Obscene Pensions for State Governors.  The Nation February 15, 2018  http://thenationonlineng.net/obscene-pensions-state-governors/

PE (2018). Hypocrisy in tackling Fulani herdsmen terrorism. Punch Editorial  January 10, 2018. https://punchng.com/hypocrisy-in-tackling-fulani-herdsmen-terrorism/

saharareporters.com (2018). AT A GLANCE: The DSS Breakdown Of How Politicians ‘Bribed’ Oshiomhole In Dollars. SaharaReporters, New York Nov 15, 2018 http://saharareporters.com/2018/11/15/glance-dss-breakdown-how-politicians-bribed-oshiomhole-dollars

Usman, Z (2012). Nigeria’s First Mass Wedding. NigeriansTalk May 20, 2012. Accessed 15 Nov 2018. https://nigerianstalk.org/2012/05/20/nigerias-first-mass-wedding/

INFRASTRUCTURAL PROVISION IN COLONIAL PERIOD

by
Babatunde Fagoyinbo

Colonial Era Infrastructures

INTRODUCTION

Birds Prepare Their Nests for Comfort

A newly resettled rodent through capture would search for a means of escape, if it fails, it would search out materials for building a nest and make itself comfortable. So also are birds. If it locates a new settlement by itself, it will prepare a comfortable nest and do everything possible to ensure its safety.

Man wants to maintain a certain standard of living below which he feels uncomfortable. Once he is in control, he carries out every activity that will ensure that the standard he is used to is either met or surpassed.

Towards the end of 1979, a group of students gathered themselves in a bid to denounce apartheid. It was a wonderful and welcome idea. They showed a film that presented a farmstead with the owner, his wife, a child and a dog occupying a two-bedroom duplex with two large sitting rooms, an expansive kitchen, two balconies and a terraced and floral-decorated surrounding. Each of the workers’ apartments contained a sitting room and a bedroom large enough to contain minimal sitting chairs and a bed respectively. The family of the worker that was shown comprised the man, his wife, five children and three family members, something similar to Figure 2)

That film was a wrong prelude to the message to be passed across.

As the lecture was about to begin, I asked for permission to raise an observation. The permission was granted and I observed as follows:

  1. The Boer built a house that was comfortable and adequate to the standard of life he’d been exposed to;
  2. He built a house that he believed was adequate for his workers and enough to accommodate all;
  • He chose to limit his family to three persons and a dog, it might be providence that chose the size for him;
  1. The worker decided to procreate five children and possibly expecting more;
  2. Some members of his family and/or his wife’s felt it was comfortable for them to squat with him and his family agreed to it;
  3. Can you please assess and compare these items I’ll mention as part of this lecture you want to present?
    1. The percentage of junior staff accommodated by this university and the percentage of professors accommodated; and
    2. The level of disparity between a professor’s lodge and a junior staff lodge with respect to that of the Boer and his workers’ lodges.

 

Farm Workers’ Housing. Insert 1 Boer’s House; Insert 2 Boer’s Family

The colonialists didn’t include these acts in their handover notesI thank God it was then; not now. I might have been lynched and killed. The seminar couldn’t hold; though I suggested that the seminar should be postponed until they got these facts. I hate apartheid. It is going on right now in Nigeria, as well as other countries in Africa. Certain ethnic group hiding under religion and right of grazing have taken it upon themselves to kill and slaughter human beings without the government doing anything about it. Human beings have been forced into Internally Displaced Persons’ (IDP) Camps for cattle to take over their homes and farms

Pre-Colonial Era Infrastructure

Basic framework of interdependent networks made up of facilities, services and personnel are needed for effective productive and efficient functioning of a community, organisation or society. For the well-being, economic growth and prosperity of any community, there must be integrated, purposeful, sustainably designed infrastructure for harnessing resources, carrying/transporting them to processing centres, processing to semi-finished or finished products, conveying to locations of needs and executing distribution capabilities that provide a reliable flow of products and services essential to the accomplishment of the objectives and aspirations of the community in relation to other communities.

Administration

In the North, the Hausa adopted a feudal system of government which was also inherited by the Fulani, their conquerors, with power centralised and later delegated to emirs who were vassals of the Sultan of Sokoto. However, Islamic laws did give specific powers to the emirs while traditions and conventions stated the limits of their power. The feudal system of government was found suitable to Britain that did not want to invest much on personnel.

Modernisation of the feudal form of government brought in a well-organised fiscal system and a trained judiciary. The Kanuri founded a dynasty in Bornu about a century before the modern states of the Hausa. Like the Hausa, the Kanuri had also established a relatively powerful type of government.

In the West, culturally the most homogeneous area, the Yoruba and the Edo operated a modern form of government as empires (Benin, Ife and Oyo) and Kingdoms. The paramount rulers operated their respective territories through their chiefs. The chiefs collected tribute from the people and divided it with the Oba of Benin, Ooni of lfe, the Alaafin of Oyo respectively. In Yorubaland, outside lfe and Oyo, Oba was the central chief. He was the priest as well as the protector of his subjects. He was the symbol of peace and honour but answerable to Ooni of lfe and Alaafin of Oyo depending on which empire he belonged to.

The most heterogeneous part of Nigeria is the East with the lgbos as the majority of the population. But for the riverine areas, the people were elaborately organised into small semi-autonomous communities as clan, village, or family. Kingship exists in Calabar, Opobo, Bonny, Ogoni and Onitsha with political powers comparable to that of Yoruba Obas.

Physical infrastructure provision

Pre-colonial physical infrastructures available in Africa are limited to bush paths, carved boats, hoes, cutlasses, baskets, calabash, clay pots, earth-mound stoves, mortar and pestle and in the Savannah belt we have in addition donkeys, bullocks and camels to assist in the transportation of goods. Water supply is limited to scooping of ponds and digging of wells while we still transport in the rainforest belt carrying loads on our heads. To date, our agriculture has not advanced beyond that level. Our healthcare delivery system has gone worse; having now more than 90% of our herbal healthcare centres as fake.

Economic infrastructure

Prior to the British effective occupation of present-day Nigeria, there were various empires and kingdoms with their respective modes of administration centred on joint ownership of land but trusted into the hands of family heads in the southern parts and community heads in the north. There were periodic markets that bound neighbouring communities together and interconnected by footpaths.

The transportation network was controlled by nature. In the southern parts, transportation was facilitated by waterways that had the capacity to take paddled boats. The sizes of the boats were dictated by the available depth of water and range of navigation limited by the reach of stable flows. the impressive network of Lower Niger, Benue, Donga, Katsina-Ala, Gongola, Cross, Ogun, Osun and Anambra Rivers and the numerous creeks along the coast provided routes of contact between the peoples cutting across the north and south axis, while the associated trading posts and fortes provided the points of exchange of goods and farm produce. Land route networks were dense in Benin, Igala, Igbo and Yoruba areas facilitated by established empires like Benin, Ife and Oyo, and various Igala and Yoruba kingdoms,

In the north, transportation was facilitated by the use of beasts of burden (oxen, camels and the donkey) as against the south where due to tsetse infestation human carriage was predominant. The Niger-Benue combination nurtured three major kingdoms: The Jukun Empire embraced most of the Benue valley and exercised influence over much of northern Nigeria as far as Kano, and as far as the estuary of the Cross River in the south; the Igala kingdom controlled areas around the confluence of the Niger and Benue, and traded below the confluence as far south as Aboh and Onya at the head of the Niger Delta. The big rivers Niger and Kaduna form the axes of the country of Nupe kingdom. These rivers also served as the kingdom’s effective and natural system of communication. The strategic location of these three kingdoms on the Niger-Benue meant that the history of traffic on these rivers would have a great deal to do with the history and relations of peoples comprising them (Agajelu, 2018).

Land routes made Awka to penetrate into many parts of the Igbo hinterland with their crafts and blacksmithing and carving, the Nok culture, the Ife and Benin bronze crafts, the Oyo aso oke and the Egba aso adire textiles all survived mainly on land routes. Kano, Maiduguri axis thrived on caravans to Timbuktu and the horn of Africa and the Arabs.

Agriculture was mainly hoe and cutlass technology and irrigation limited to shadoof system. Healthcare delivery was herbal and dosages were at the discretion of the herbalists; mystified in incantations. With respect to the pre-colonial use of currency, trade by barter was a medium of exchange. However, in an attempt to unify the mode of valuation and create a medium that would be acceptable, there were several creations across the ethnic groups and over time, multiple currencies emerged with some monies locally produced and acquired, and others imported through intercontinental trades, such as the Atlantic slave trade. Cowries were imported to West Africa via land from the Maldives Islands and later became one of the currencies of the slave trade, augmented by copper manilas (bracelets), iron bars, textiles, glass beads, liquors, and other imported objects (Guyer and Pallaver, 2018).

Infrastructures Provision in the Colonial Era

The first set of Europeans that visited Africa came for trade. Due to the problems of access, their operations were largely limited to the riverine areas but their impacts were felt in the hinterland through the activities of local traders who purchased goods from the hinterland to sell to the European traders. The riverine traders built warehouses and river ports as deemed necessary.

Others were Arabs who came by caravans through the desert. They left no infrastructures for history but brought Islam.

Next were the missionaries and the explorers who were respectively adapters to local conditions to be able to win the people for Christ and field men who moved from site to site in search of resources available and returned home for their reports. Infrastructures were not paramount to their missions.

With the advent of the slave trade, the operation remained the same. They had no need for infrastructures other than the “warehouses” used and which were unhealthy

Infrastructure is fundamental to success in businesses because businesses need roads to have production inputs delivered and hence to deliver finished products and services to their customers. The slave merchants contented themselves with delivery to them at the river and ocean ports in the coastal areas and trekking along the Sahara Desert.

Incursions into Africa

 

Pre-Colonial Africa

Germany’s fall in WW1 resulted in dividing its colonies between Britain and France to administer on behalf of the League of Nations (history.com, 2018). While France appointed ministers among the people to represent their people in France, Britain used indirect rule. Before 1880, Europeans had only made small incursions into Africa, with forts and trading posts mainly around the coast; the interior, until then, remained largely inaccessible to Europeans because of disease and difficulty of travel. In 1884-5, the Berlin Conference was called to carve up Africa between Britain, France, Belgium, Spain, Portugal and Germany. The Berlin Conference laid down ground rules for the partitioning of Africa. They drew lines on a map of places they had never been to, with no regards for existing kingdoms, geography or the people that lived there; believing that they were bringing civilisation to ‘savage peoples’ (Boddy-Evans, 2017). Navigation on the Niger and Congo rivers was to be free to all, and to declare a protectorate over a region the European coloniser must show effective occupancy and develop a ‘sphere of influence’. They introduced Christianity, trade, education, justice and a good deal of exploitation and forced labour. They also introduced cash crop agriculture to feed their home industries with raw materials.

India championed the quest for independence commencing with the idea of an Indian nationalist movement opposed to British rule dated from the 1850s. (EB, 2018) and actualising same in August 1947.

The actualisation of socio-economic is contingent on human capital made up of trained and motivated people of great ideas and abilities, capable of innovation, exploration, science and philosophy. The existence of a committed coordinating team, the government in the case of a country, to channel the aggregate action of these human resources acting in concert determines the status of the community.

Infrastructures Emplacement

Provision of Colonial Infrastructure

Administration

Upon amalgamation of the Southern and Northern Protectorates, indirect rule was practiced in the north using the existing traditional rulership system, while local authorities comprising District, Divisional and Provincial Councils were established in the south. Occupation was not without stiff resistance from the indigenous chiefdoms, kingdoms and empires. This made the British imperial government foist on the people coercive administrative instruments intended to extract their obedience and submission.

Under the Indirect Rule system, local authorities were conferred with legislative, judicial and executive control over their communities; empowering them to make laws, regulate the conduct of affairs in their areas of jurisdiction, adjudicated cases and carry out administrative functions with the sole objective of maintaining law and order and general development in their localities.

The colonial army, the police, the judiciary and prison services served as the main instruments of coercion. In the 1880s, the British government established the West African Frontier Force. The WAFF served to subjugate and “pacify” the people of the colony. With the enormous military might of the colonial power, the people were forced to submit to the colonial administration

Banking and Currency

Monetisation was a major aim of the colonial fiscal policy to enable the integration of the colonial economy into the imperial capitalist economy. A new and common currency was needed to replace the different currencies circulating in various parts of the country. A common currency would ensure portability, sustenance of export market economy and the establishment of a national market. The introduction of the British coins met a strong competition from the manila which was highly valued at the time. Acceptance of the British currency was made possible through the expansion of wage labour, taxation payable only with the metropolitan currency, penetration of the colonial economy by the British capitalism and integration of the local economy into the metropolitan system

The monetisation of the Nigerian economy necessitated the establishment of commercial banks. The first successful bank to operate in Nigeria was established in Lagos in 1892 by African Banking Corporation but it was sold to Elder Dempster who transformed it to Bank of British West Africa (BBWA) in 1893 BBWA changed its name to Bank of West Africa (BWA) in 1957 and was bought over in 1965 and renamed it Standard Bank of West Africa. In 1971, Standard Bank of Nigeria placed 13% of its share capital with Nigerian investors. It eventually changed its name to First Bank of Nigeria in 1979 (revolvy.com, 2018). It was the sole operating bank until Barclays Bank was established in 1917 (barclays.com, 2018). In 1948, the British and French Bank for commerce and industry, which later became the United Bank for Africa, was established (2018).

The banks favoured mainly the British business circle until 1959 when the Central Bank was established in Nigeria to regulate the activities of these banks. The excesses of these banks led to the emergence of some indigenous banks (Industrial and Commercial Bank, 1929 Mercantile Bank 1931; Nigerian Farmers and Commercial Bank, 1947) which, however, experienced early demise due to factors that ranged from mismanagement, accounting incompetence, embezzlement, the Great Depression and unhealthy competition from the metropolitan banks (Agajelu, 2018; Ajayi and Sosan, 2018).

Transportation.

Transport, the cornerstone of civilisation, is an essential part of human activity development and it is essential to economic growth. As society and economic organisations become more complex, the relevance of transport grows. The complexity of transportation in any community is a reflection of its economic status reason being that a large proportion of its economic activities are largely dependent on an efficient network of roads. Transportation projects are: capital intensive; require long gestation periods; traffic volume, flow and pattern dependent and connective in nature.

Transportation infrastructures are usually provided by the government as social services to the population because of their capital-intensive nature. This explains why governments all over the world take responsibility for the provision of transport infrastructures; irrespective of their viability. Undoubtedly, the growth, development and functioning of an economy requires the use of transport; principally connecting raw materials to processing centres and products to consumption centres

Water Transport

 

This Mode of Water Transport is Still Typical

In north-eastern Nigeria, Hadejia River and others flow into the Lake Chad. Other major coastal rivers in South-western Nigeria include River Ogun, River Osse and Oshun River, while the coastal rivers in South-eastern Nigeria include Cross River, Imo River,Aboine (Ebonyi) River and other tributaries of the River Niger such as Anambra and Mamu Rivers. The major inland waterways in Nigeria that span much of the country is the Rivers Niger and Benue together with their tributaries Donga, Katsina-Ala, Gongola on the Benue River and Sokoto and Kaduna on River Niger. The major rivers meet at Lokoja where they dissect the country into east, west and north sections and later enter the Gulf of Guinea through a large network of creeks and distributaries which form the Niger Delta. The two rivers offer links to countries bothering Nigeria in the North and East respectively.

The role of the inland waterways and the seaports in the economic development of Nigeria was such that the numerous ports along the coasts and rivers of the country expanded, declined or completely disappeared as the pattern of trade within the country and with the outside world changed. Initially, there were scattered small trade activities along the coastline such as Lagos, Gwato, Forcados, Koko, Burutu, Akasa, Brass and Calabar, among others, each with a very limited hinterland trading variously in slaves and oil palm produce. However, as the penetration and subsequent control of the interior continued new trade routes were established and consequently, some ports such as Gwato, Brass, Koko, Forcados and others declined in importance or became extinct while other ports such as Lagos, Warri and Port-Harcourt became dominant (Onokala, 2015).

The early European traders relied on water transport using the numerous creeks and rivers from where they communicated with specialist traders from the inland trading communities such as Arochukwu, Awka and Nkwere traders in the interior of south-eastern Nigeria until the latter half of the 19th Century. In addition, some coastal and riverine communities such as the Efik, Opobo, Bonny and Calabar people traded directly with the European ships (Onokala, 2015).

Main Water Routes along the Coast and Major Rivers

Develop, own and operate ports and harbours. The years (1914 to 1953) were periods in which ports administration in Nigeria was under the auspices of Marine Department and which did not witness any remarkable port extension. The ports were characterized by narrow passages leading to shallow rivers on which vessels had to sail, and lack of dredging facilities to keep them open as much as possible (Brown, 2013). Onokala (2002) noted that the period after World War I and II witnessed remarkable development in water transportation in Nigeria, mainly through such improvements as introducing powered motor boats, government launches, motorised ferries in addition to engine boats and canoes for carrying goods and passengers along the River Niger and other major rivers and for transportation from one side of the river bank to another; the Nigerian Ports Authority having been established as an autonomous public corporation to manage ports and inland waterways (Brown, 2013) in March 1954 by the Ports Act of 1954 under the name, Nigerian Ports Authority (Badejo and Solaja, 2017; NPA, 2017). The NPA’s mandate consists of:

  • Provide a safe and navigable channel
  • Offer cargo handling and storage services
  • Maintain Port facilities and equipment
  • Ensure safety and security
  • Develop and own property

It is pertinent here to reinstate that the transport system was financed to facilitate the improvement and expansion of British trade and the distributive system (Agajelu, 2018). This should not be considered as a minus to the colonists but rather to our inability to maintain and improve upon them.

Timeline on Water Transport

1906:   the Nigerian Marine was created (Badejo and Solaja, 2017).

1907:   Commencement of work on the moles project deepening of the approach channel and the harbour to admit ocean-going ships to berth. 2 Small wharves were first constructed at Iddo and at the east mole site. By August 1913, with the attainment of a sixteen-foot draught over the bar for seven consecutive months, the long-desired goal of port development at Lagos was achieved

1909:   The effort towards the provision of facilities for ocean-going vessels started with the          opening of Lagos Lagoon (NPA< 2018)

1913    The Apapa Port in the South West was earmarked for development (NP, 2018).

   The construction of PH Port began on Bonny River. Skeletal services for coal loading      commenced through small wharves NPA (2018)

1916:   a berth for colliers was dredged for PH Port and its construction was completed (Brown, 2013)

1921    Construction of the first four deepwater berths of 548.64m at the Apapa Port began (NPA, 2018)

1923:   the construction of the main general cargo wharf for PH Port began (Brown, 2013)

1956:   Inland waterways department under the Federal Ministry of Transport was established Badejo, 2010)

1957:   Extension of the PH wharf by 1,600 feet (Brown, 2013)

1958:   linking the existing PH wharf electrically with the new ring circuit and construction work on the ports’ railway track and a new locomotive shed and fuelling point were completed and brought into operation (Brown, 2013).

1960:   The PH wharf which began in 1957 was first opened in October 1960 by Princess Alexandra (Brown, 2013)

 The Railway

The decision to delve into the expensive investment in railways in the Nigerian colony was influenced by a number of reasons (Agajelu, 2018). They included:

  1. Colonial Train (Locomotive)

    The desire to expand British trade by the opening up of the Nigerian interior as a new market for British goods.Curiosity in Britain about Nigerian interior.

  • To reach the produce centres remote to the inland waterways (Figure), to help the colonial merchants in moving cash crops and extractive minerals from their respective sources to the harbours for export.
  1. To facilitate the transportation of the bulk import and export commodities in view of the absence of good roads and unavailability of heavy haulage road vehicles.
  2. To establish a more flexible movement of colonial administrative personnel in the vast colony especially after the amalgamation of 1914.
  3. To facilitate the exercise of military control of inland territories.

Conception began in 1877 and construction of the railway started in 1898 at Iddo.

Timeline on the Establishment of Nigerian Rail Transport

1877: Conception of the need for rail transport (Agajelu, 2018)

1898:   Commencement of construction of the first phase of Nigeria’s railway network (Ayoola, 2016).

1901:   The railway extended from Lagos (Iddo) on the south coast to Abeokuta and later Ibadan; a distance of about 120 miles (95 km) (Ayoola, 2016).

            The northern line started in1901 at Zungeru, onwards to Kaduna (Agajelu, 2018)

1911, The Baro-Kano line was completed (Ayoola, 2016)

1912:   The Baro-Kano line was joined with the Lagos Railway line at Minna (Ayoola, 2016). Trains had to be ferried across River Niger at Jebba

1915:   The construction of Jebba Bridge across River Niger was completed

            Extension of the southern railway to Kano in the north (Ayoola, 2016).

1916:   Construction of the Eastern line fromPort Harcourt line was constructed to Enugu (Ayoola, 2016).

1932:   Eastern Line finally reached Kaduna due to the completion of Markudi Bridge (Ayoola, 2016).

1945:   Rail network reached Kaura Namoda in northwest and Nguru in the northeast (Ayoola, 2016)

1955:   Transformation from Department of Railways to Nigerian Railway Corporation

Road network

Although the outboard engine boat (the Erico) was used on the River Niger between Onitsha and Asaba.  a two-section railway bridge (with a total span of 1,795 feet [547 m]) over the Niger River was commissioned in 1915.

In Nigeria, although existing bush paths were widened to form a skeletal grid of road network, roads were not widely developed until the advent of motor vehicles in the 1920’s and 1930’s and extensive road development took place only after World War II.

In 1926, the road system of Nigeria was classified into three major types:

  1. Federal Trunk A Roads;
  2. Regional/State Trunk B Roads; and
  • Provincial/Local Government Trunk C Roads.

In this way, the Federal, regional and provincial/local governments were given separate responsibilities for the planning, construction and maintenance of roads in the country.

Although roads were primarily built to feed the railways and be complementary to them, roads eventually took over from the railways as the country’s road network improved and captured more and more traffic from the railways, especially after independence in 1960. The new roads resulted in tremendous savings in travel time and thus:

  1. Encourage the migration of population from the hinterlands to the new transport routes thus giving rise to a ribbon-like concentration of towns and villages along both sides of the new roads; and
  2. Provide employment for drivers, mechanics, spare parts dealers, vulcanizers, petrol stations, car washers and other related activities and their numbers have increased in recent times. The employment generating and other multiplier effects resulting from these forms of linkages have gone a long way towards the modernisation and rapid development of the Nigerian economy. Roads are also very important for successful tourism activities in the country.

Air transport

In 1920, A Royal Air Force aircraft landed on a polo field in Maiduguri. This marked the beginning of aviation practice in Nigeria and thenceforth continued to operate in West Africa with a squadron stationed in Sudan by 1925. The British commander sought approval from the Colonial Office in England to operate frequent cross-country flights from Khartoum to Maiduguri. By 1930, civil and military aircraft were carrying passengers across boundaries and touching down in places like Kano, Sokoto, Bauchi, Minna, Oshogbo and Lagos while British Imperial Airways carried regular passenger and mail services. Subsequently, Lagos and Accra became hubs for flights en route to the Middle East and India.

West Africa Airways Corporation

The Royal Air Force subsequently extended its services to Takoradi, Fort Lamy and Cairo. Aerodromes, stores and quarters were built for staff and to serve as night stop accommodation for pilots.

The Dakota aircraft was used extensively; and air services were operated from Lagos to Port Harcourt, Enugu, Jos, Kaduna and Kano until May 1946. After the Second World War, the economic recession which occurred in Europe compelled a wide influx of Europeans to West Africa which was then the main source of obtaining raw materials for European industries. This resulted in the development of a wide market and the consequent economic boom in the area. By then, nationalist agitations for independence had intensified in the four British West African colonies—Nigeria, Gold Coast (Ghana), Gambia and Sierra Leone.

The West Africa Airways Corporation (WAAC) was formed by Nigeria, the Gold Coast Siera Leone and Gambia by an Order-in-Council of the Colonial Office in 1946 as a result of their meeting of May 15 1946, and also handle the recurrent problem of transport and communication between the British Isles and the colonies. BOAC provided the technical and commercial staff.

In effect, the WAAC became a public corporation set up by the colonies to develop efficient air transport services in West Africa. It started operation with an initial capital outlay of £465,000 provided by the colonies and a Wet Lease Dore aircraft. Its operation was supervised by the West Africa Air Transport Authority (WAATA), which had powers to legislate and execute policies. WAATA’s supreme body consisted of the Governors of the colonies with the Governor of Nigeria as the presiding officer. In addition to its powers, WAATA was charged with the responsibility to keep under review all air matters of importance likely to affect aviation in the territories of member states.

WAAC took over the major air routes that had been established by the Royal Air Force in West Africa up till 1956. On 31 March 1948 WAAC became responsible for the operation of the inter-Colonial West African coastal services and extended operation to Freetown, Bathurst and Dakar. The airline began a Lagos-Khartoum service with Bristol 170s in April 1950

As the member states gained Commonwealth status from the United Kingdom, they set up their own carriers, namely: Ghana Airways; Sierra Leone Airways; and Gambia Air Shuttle (Magoon, 2016; en.wikipedia.org, 2018; Tutu, 2018). In June 1958, Nigeria signed an agreement with the Fokker Aircraft Works in Holland, the company from which the new Nigeria Airways would be buying its middle range jets for Nigeria’s domestic and West African routes. On August 11, 1958, On October 1, 1958, the West African Airways Corporation was renamed WAAC (Nigeria) Limited with the Nigerian government jointly owning the shares with the British Overseas Airways Corporation and Elder Dempster. Nigeria owned a majority share of fifty-one per cent.

Power Supply

The history of electricity development in Nigeria can be traced back to the end of the 19th Century when the first generating power plant was installed in Marina, Lagos, in 1896 (nercng.org, 2018), thirteen years after its introduction in England. Its total capacity was 60kW. After the amalgamation of the Northern and Southern protectorates in 1914 to form modern Nigeria, other towns in the country started to develop an electric power supply system on the individual scale. The following major cities thus had a dose of electricity supply in the following order: Port Harcourt (1928); Kaduna (1929); Enugu (1933); Maiduguri (1934); Yola (1937); Zaria (1938); Warri (1939); and Calabar (1939).

1898:   Electric street lighting was introduced in Lagos (Echeruo, 1977).

1923:   Ijora Power Station, formally commissioned (Echeruo, 1977).

1929:   Nigerian Electricity Supply Company was established (nercng.org, 2018)

1946:   Nigerian Government Electricity Undertaking (NGEU) was established (Adesope, 2013).

1950:   Electricity Corporation of Nigeria (ECN) was established (Awosope, 2014).

            Nigeria Dam Authority NDA) was established (Awosope, 2014).

1951: April, ECN, officially took over all electricity supply activities in Nigeria (Awosope, 2014).

1956:   Commisioning of the Ijora power station February (Awosope, 2014). If Adesope’s report is correct, it is likely to be an expansion scheme in view of increased population.

Water Supply

The responsibility for water supply in Nigeria is shared among the three levels of governance: the federal; the state; and the local governments. The federal government is in charge of water resources management; state governments have the primary responsibility for urban water supply while the local governments together with communities are responsible for rural water supply.

1862: Sir John Glover, an early colonial governor of Lagos, introduced public wells to the city, but the quality of water from such wells was variable (Olukoju, Undated-a).

1864:   Deliberations on how to secure safe potable water began (Olukoju, Undated-a).

1910:   Completion of the Iju waterworks, located some 1,000 feet below the confluence of the Adiyan river and the Iju stream and conveyed to Lagos via a cast iron main trunk with a diameter of 28 inches(Olukoju, Undated-a).

1915:   Formal commissioning by 1915 by Nigeria’s Governor-General, Sir Frederick Lugard on 1 July. The scheme had an initial capacity of about two and a half million gallons per day, sufficient for 115,000 persons, more than half the population of Lagos. It consisted of three giant engines which pumped 5,000 gallons of water per minute. A total of 200 fountains were provided all over the city and 250 hydrants were installed to provide water in case of fire (Olukoju, Undated-a).

1933:   On 30 March water charges were introduced but resisted (Olukoju, Undated-a).

1940:   Lagos Township Ordinance (chapter 59) of 19 March 1940 fixed new water rates (Olukoju, Undated-a).

1943:   the capacity of Iju WW plant was increased to six million gallons per day and another cast iron trunk with a diameter of 26 inches was laid to facilitate supply to Lagos (Olukoju, Undated-a).

1944:   The first ten-year plan (1944 – 1956) included in its overall budget about 5.7% of the total expenditure for the water sector (Ajibade et al, 2015).

      Concrete open wells were constructed under the supervision of Public Works Department (PWD), of the Regional Governments who were responsible for providing safe water to the rural communities (Ajibade et al, 2015).

1954:   With the creation of regional governments, the financial and technical responsibilities for developing new water schemes were taken over by the regional governments who also assigned supervisory high-level manpower to oversee operations and maintenance (Ajibade et al, 2015).

in a few towns managed at the lowest administrative level. Amongst the early beneficiaries of public water supply in Nigeria in the early twentieth century were Lagos, Calabar, Kano, Ibadan, Abeokuta, Ijebu Ode (Ogun State) and Enugu.

Sanitation and Healthcare Delivery

 

Jericho Hospital Ibadan

As settlements grew there arose the need for concerted efforts at keeping the environment safe for human settlements. This led to the establishment of sanitary inspection with responsibilities of ensuring:Sanitation has to do with such public health conditions that incorporate clean drinking water and adequate treatment and disposal of human excreta and sewage. In agrarian communities sanitation may not pose very serious problems as there would be much space to keep human wastes far away from settlements; thus, reducing the possibility of transmission of contagious diseases.

  • Routine sanitary inspection of houses, markets, schools and
  • Waste disposal and environmental sanitation, pollution control and industrial sanitation.
  • Vector and pest control e.g. Malaria control
  • Prosecution of public health offenders in the court
  • Meat and food inspection
  • The disposal of the dead (corpses)
  • Occupational health and factory inspection
  • Vaccination/inoculation of both schoolchildren and adults.
  • Health education on personal and public hygiene.

In Nigeria, the development of environmental health has had a more challenging history. As far back as the 18th century, the Colonial government took the issue of preventive health services serious because of the need to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes, which was a major killer of the colonial settlers. They introduced the then Sanitary Inspectors to the Colony of Lagos h a position that earned him a seat in the Legislative Council in 1913 on the amalgamation of both the Southern and Northern Protectorates of Nigeria (ehorecon.gov.ng).

In 1920, the Nigerian School of Hygiene was established in Yaba, Lagos (Omipidan, 2018).

Healthcare delivery is summarized thus (Table 1).

Table 1: Timeline on Pre-Colonial Healthcare Delivery

Housing

Formal intervention into the housing sector in Nigeria dated back to the colonial administration, following the unfortunate outbreak of the bubonic plaque of 1928 in Lagos (Bigon, 2016; Faleye, 2017). This necessitated the establishment of the Lagos Executive Development Board LEDB in 1928 (articlesng.com, 2018) as the main organ for Town planning and housing development and subsequent ushering of Nigerian public housing programmes intervention like  the evacuation and drainage of entire swampy neighbourhoods (such as Oko Awo) and re-settling of the people on the mainland. This was the genesis of the establishment of the Yaba and Ebute Metta housing schemes (articlesng.com, 2018)

The policies are modest with the ultimate aim of addressing the housing problem at a National scale with a focus on the provision of expatriate quarters (Oni, 1989) and some selected indigenous staff in Railways, Marine, Police and Armed forces. Government residential areas (GRA) were established as well as some “African Quarters”. No effort was made by the government to build houses for sale or rent to the public and little effort was made to allow the growth of housing estates outside the GRAs (articlesng.com, 2018).

With the approval of the Lagos Central Planning Scheme in 1954, LEDB attempted to solve the problem of housing development in the metropolis. This led to the establishment of the following estates

  1. Workers’ Housing Estate and re-Housing Estate, Surulere;
  2. Akinsemonyi and Eric Moore Housing Estate, Surulere; and
  • Workers’ Housing Scheme and Sites and Services Estate in Surulere, Apapa, Ikoyi, Ilupeju and Isolo

In 1955, revived concern for slum clearance brought the central Lagos slum clearance scheme into effect. The scheme opened up Apapa and later Victoria Island as high and low-density areas of Lagos.

The Nigerian Building Society was established in 1956 to provide mortgage loans. Lean financial resources and poor response of the public to the scheme skewed the operation of the NBS to poor performance (articlesng.com, 2018).

 

Colonial House, Port Harcourt

In 1958, the Western Regional Government pioneered the establishment of housing corporations (Olukoju, Undated-b). Other regions soon followed suit. The main function of the housing corporations was the construction of housing units for sales to members of the public and the issuance of loans to whoever wished to build their own houses on their land.The construction of senior civil servant quarters in the capital city of Lagos and regional headquarters like Kaduna, Ibadan and Enugu are some of the practical efforts made at the same time with some form of rent subsidy and housing loans.

Note:

This article is presented with the view of raising concern for the development of the “developing countries”, not to condemn any government but to create awareness and fashion out concrete paths towards development. While African nations will be the focus, examples will be drawn from other regions. It is hoped that peoples from other nations will contribute positively to the programme of fashioning out the path of development.

There is a Yoruba adage that says “Eepa npa ara ę o ni oun npa’ja, t’aja ba ku n’ibo ni eepa yio wa?” meaning “The dog worm is carrying out its extermination; believing that it is killing the dog, where will be its habitation at the demise of the dog?”

This applies to African (and their likes) leaders who are busy carting away the resources of Africa into foreign lands to keep for their children. The Lord who created us said “So shall my word ‘If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep. (Ex 22:1,KJV)’ be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it” (Isa 55:11, KJV). To those who assume that the grace has covered their iniquities “And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold” (Luke 19:8, KJV) to which Jesus replied “This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:9-10, KJV).

Any comment that does not address the subject of discussion will be spammed

REFERENCES

Agajelu, AC (2018).     The Colonial Infrastructural Development in Nigeria with Particular Emphasis on the Railway. Accessed 15 Oct 2018. https://www.academia.edu/12413932/the_colonial_infrastructural_development_in_nigeria_with_particular_emphasis_on_the_railway

Ajayi, TA and  M Sosan (2018). The Evolution of Nigerian Banking System, Supervision and Current Challenges. Accessed 16 Oc 2018 https://www.academia.edu/3807072/the_evolution_of_nigerian_banking_system_supervision_and_current_challenges._by_toluwani_a._ajayi

Ajibade, FO; JR Adewumi; OM Ojo; JO Babatola; and AM Oguntuase (2015). 2015 Conference Proceedings: National Development Strategies toward Sustainable Civil Infrastructure.Nigerian Institution of Civil Engineers: Sustaining the World’s infrastructure (A Division of the Nigerian Society of Engineers)

articlesng.com (2018). Mortgage Banking in Nigeria Accessed 25 Oct 2018. http://articlesng.com/mortgage-banking-nigeria/

Awosope, CA (2014).  Nigeria Electricity Industry: Issues, Challenges and Solutions. Public Lecture Series. Vol. 3, No. 2, October, 2014

Ayoola, TA (2016). Establishment of the Nigerian Railway Corporation. Journal of Retracing Africa Volume 3 | Issue 1 Article 4 December 2016

Badejo, B (2010).  Developing Inland Waterways Transportation in Nigeria: What Role for the Private Sector

Badejo, BA and OM Solaja (2017). The Nigerian seaports and development (1900-2015): Historical perspectives and dynamics. International Journal of Development and Sustainability Vol 6 No 9 (2017): Pages 1007-1024

barclays.com (2018). Barclays Bank of Nigeria Limited/Union Bank Nigeria. Accessed 16 Oct 2018. https://www.archive.barclays.com/items/show/5344

Bigon, L (2016). Bubonic plague, colonial ideologies, and urban planning policies: Dakar, Lagos, and Kumasi. Planning Perspectives. Volume 31, 2016 – Issue 2. Pp  205-226

Boddy-Evans, A (2017). Events Leading to the Scramble for Africa: Accessed 15 Oct 2017. https://www.thoughtco.com/what-caused-the-scramble-for-africa-43730

Brown, GM (2013). Port Harcourt Port and Inland Waterways in Nigeria, 1913-2010: A Historical Perspective IOSR Journal Of Humanities And Social Science (IOSR-JHSS). Vol 11, Issue 5 (May. – Jun. 2013), PP 74-80

EB (2018). Indian National Congress. The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica. Accessed 15 Oct 2018.  https://www.britannica.com/topic/Indian-National-Congress

Echeruo, IM (1977). Electricity supply in Lagos, 1898-2000. Ch Two. Victorian Lagos: Aspects of Nineteenth Century Lagos Life, London: Macmillan, 1977, p. 21-45

ehorecon.gov.ng (2018). History of Environmental Health. Accessed 22 Oct 2019. http://www.ehorecon.gov.ng/welcome

en.wikipedia.org (2018). Sierra National Airlines.

Faleye, OA (2017). Environmental Change, Sanitation and Bubonic Plague in Lagos, 1924–31 International Review Of Environmental History: Volume 3, Issue 2, 2017

FGN (1986). Hydrological Year book Vol 1 (1914 – 1959). Inland waterways Department, Federal  Ministry of Transport and Aviation.

Guyer, JI and K Pallaver (2018). Money and Currency in African History. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of African History. Online Publication Date: May 2018

history.com (2018). Treaty of Versailles. Accessed 15 Oct 2018 https://www.history.com/topics/world-war-i/treaty-of-versailles-1

Magoon, A (2016). TBT (Throwback Thursday) in Aviation History: Ghana Airways. Accessed 21 Oct 2018. https://airlinegeeks.com/2016/09/22/tbt-throwback-thursday-in-aviation-history-ghana-airways/

nercng.org (2018). History. Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Cmmission. Accessed 21 Oct 2018. http://www.nercng.org/index.php/home/nesi/401-history

NIWA (2018). National Inland Waterways AuthorityWaterways. Accessed 20 Oct 2018. https://niwa.gov.ng/waterways/

nrc.gov.ng (2018). Nigerian Railways Corporation. Accessed 20 Oct 2018. http://nrc.gov.ng/about-us/

Olukoju, A (Undated). The Port of Lagos, 1850-1929: The Rise of West Africa’s Leading Seaport  Accessed 20 Oct 2018.  http://calebuniversity.edu.ng/ckfinder/userfiles/files/THE%20PORT%20OF%20LAGOS-CHAPTER.pdf

Olukoju, A (Undated-a). Water supply in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries: Developments Up To The Inauguration Of The Iju Waterworks. Ch 3 in INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENT AND URBAN FACILITIES IN LAGOS, 1861-2000

Olukoju, A (Undated-b). The spatial and demographic contexts of infrastructure development in colonial and postcolonial Lagos. Infrastructure and Development: An Overview. Ch 1 in INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENT AND URBAN FACILITIES IN LAGOS, 1861-2000 pp 1-19

Omipidan, TO (2018)> The Historical Background Of Sanitary Inspectors In Nigeria. Accessed 22 Oct 2018. https://oldnaija.com/2018/05/10/the-historical-background-of-sanitary-inspectors-in-nigeria/

Onokala, PC (2015). Transportation Development in Nigeria: The Journey so Far and the Way Forward. An Inaugural Lecture delivered at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

Oziogu, AI (2012). Nigeria’s Indigenous Currencies. Accessed 15 Oct 2018. https://www.vanguardngr.com/2012/10/nigerias-indigenous-currencies/

revolvy.com (2018). Bank of British West Africa. Accessed 15 Ocy 2018. https://www.revolvy.com/page/Bank-of-British-West-Africa

Tutu, B (2018). 5 Things to Know About the Gambia Independence Day. Accessed 21 Oct 2018. https://www.africa.com/5-things-to-know-about-the-gambia-independence-day/

PEACE! PEACE!! PEACE!!!

Manuals of religions

 

by
Babatunde Fagoyinbo

Prologue
As much as possible, this write-up shall divorce personal opinion but draw out objective assessment or explanation of passages from the Holy Bible and only quote the noble Qur’an respectively. Learned writings will be assessed in reference to the Scriptures. Comments on this write-up should avoid name-callings, insults or threats. Comments should reference appropriately the Holy Bible, the noble Qur’an, or the Opele Ifa as the case may be. Any commentary not in line with this shall not be published and may be spammed.

This site aims at peace, national development and progress. The proprietary is Christian and believes in the spread of Christianity. The proprietary believes that God, who created the Heavens and the earth is capable of creating man in such a way that he shall have no option than to be Christian but in His infinite wisdom, He has given man free will to choose to or not worship Him.

INTRODUCTION

Engineering Workshops

I was to be posted to the Maigana Agricultural Workshop and oversee the one in Dutsin Ma while Omafuvwe was to be posted to Kaduna Garden Agricultural Workshop andoversee the one in Samaru Kataf. We were to

Mahuals of Religion

undergo some training at the repair and maintenance workshop in the defunct Funtua Agricultural Development Project, FADP. It suited me very well because my ambition, then, was to establish a heavy machinery repair and maintenance workshop as a business.

 

Mr Ferguson was the officer in charge of engineering services in Kaduna and was to arrange for the training programme but he never did. I tried everything possible to ensure he arranged it but he did not. Alhaji IAD Dutsin Ma was the boss in our Department

Of all our Divisional Engineers, two were very serious with their assignments. Their monthly reports were always on schedule and detailed. They are Salisu Mani in Mani Agricultural Division and Ango Abdullahi in Maigana Agricultural Division. Ango was very particular about the posting because he wanted me around so that we would relate to each other. He encouraged me about Maigana and assured me that there would be land for farming activities.. He once invited me to see his barn in Maigana.

Over time, Ango began to feel that I was not interested in coming because my fiancée didn’t want to live in a rural community.

“Don’t worry yourself about that your fiancée,” he once said, “I’ll introduce you to my niece, a daughter of Emir of Zazzau.”

Practical Sermon

On one of those days that I went on visits to the divisions, I met the absence of Salisu when I got to Mani. This was unusual! The staff assured me that he would soon be back. He came back to the office very late. I couldn’t carry out the assignment that I went there for that day. I had to wait till the next day. He apologised on arrival and gave the cause of his late arrival.

“The grave had been dug.” Salisu began. “There was a madman sitting under a tree nearby. We all believed that he was oblivious of what was going on. We offered the necessary prayers. Just when the corpse was to be placed in the grave, the madman jumped up with a shout of ‘Wait….Wait….Wait.’

“We all got distracted and focused on him. He gently approached us and asked ‘You want to put him here!….Alone!….What of his houses?…. His wives?….His cars?…. His horses? Are they not going with him?’ We all became sober. A lesson had been taught. A sermon had been preached. It was more heart-penetrating than the Imam’s sermon. After the burial, none of us could immediately move away. We stood in groups; ruminating over the mad man’s observations”

PEACEFUL WORKING TOGETHER

We had 12 Local Governments and thus 12 No Agricultural Engineering offices across the State under my supervision (Farm machinery hiring Service), each with a Divisional Engineer. Funtua and Kankiya Local Governments were under FADP. Abdullahi Ango and Salisu Mani are of the Hausa-Fulani extraction. They were the closest to me among the Divisional Engineers, notwithstanding the fact that I am a Christian. Each time that I visited their stations, it was like a brother-come-home. I stated earlier that one of them advised that in the case of my fiancée not willing to settle with me in a rural community he would introduce me to one of his nieces who happen to be the daughter of the Emir of Zazzau. This was in 1979

Omafuvwe and I shared an office with our immediate boss who was, then, Agricultural Engineer I. He was fully Fulani from Zaria; no mix. We used to tease him on why he could come from a family that had not mixed with the Hausa ethnic group without any misgiving. We all cracked jokes told stories and discussed issues together without any consciousness of ethnicity or religion. We were all about the same age; may be within 3-year bracket at most. I remembered a day that we visited a Fulani friend of one of us. The wife prepared lunch for us and when she brought it, passed it to the sitting room through a door blind. I was new in Kaduna then. I refused to eat. Our host had a discussion with his friend in Fulfude. A few minutes later he called the wife to come and greet us. The wife did. After her departure, both friends started to tease me and said that they hoped I would join in the meal.

It was on our way back that my colleague told me that he didn’t have to explain before the friend realised that it was probably because the wife wasn’t seen by me that I didn’t participate in the meal. He just told him that I was new in Kaduna. That was “Understanding”.

In my graduate class, my classmate requested that I should add him up for my lunch because he would not be able to go home for lunch. I told him that I had chicken soup and that I slaughtered the chicken by myself. “You are a Christian. Islam does not require me to turn down what a Christian offers because he knows our don’ts. If he offers haram the sin is his, not ours. Maa’ida: 5: “This day are (all) things Good and pure made lawful unto you. The food of the People of the Book is lawful unto you …. (Lawful unto you in marriage… chaste women among the People of the Book…”( Salih, 1997; Quran, 5:5)

Very often his wife would send roasted grated chicken to us and we would jolly over it. He was the only Muslim within the four of us; one of us is a converted Christian. Our jokes, our fun talks, and our discussions never hurt anybody. This was up to 1981.

RELIGIOUS MISDEEDS

I read some articles on religious misdeeds that equate religious intolerance with religious fanaticism. I see religious intolerance as an extreme case of religious practice while religious fanaticism is the practice of religion that makes the practitioner unreasonable in his thoughts and deeds but not with intense hatred towards practitioners of other religions.

In reality, every religious tradition is permeated with certain fundamental values relating to peace, love, sacredness of human life and human security. For many religious scholars, the essence of religion is life and the law is love. Unfortunately, these religious values have been displaced by modernism and its emphasis on secularisation. The consequence is that the modern religious universe is being subordinated to a partial group and individual values, instead of standing above them.

Religious intolerance: In simple terms, religious intolerance is the inability of an adherent of a particular religion to acknowledge, accommodate and accept the right of others to live by another faith different from his own and seeks to force their ideology on others through intimidation and is more than happy to break the law and commit religious blasphemy, including, murder, arson, looting, etc. in the name of his deity.

Religious fanaticism is an extremist sub-set of fundamentalism which makes the practitioner see only their own point of view. Fanaticism has an uncritical zeal or with an obsessive enthusiasm related to their own devotion to their religion

Religious fundamentalism: One could be a fundamentalist in any given religion and believe in the literal truth of their holy scriptures. Most practising Christians, Muslims and animists follow this strict dogma. A religious fundamentalist acts mainly within society’s law, and while it may pain them that secular society doesn’t adhere to God’s will, they recognise and respect that they are part of a larger community.

Previous Opinions

Let me, at this point review some opinions that have been presented by other learned people. I have copied the points that I believe to be relevant at this point and presented them unedited. Capitalization and periodicity at the beginning and end of each point have been inserted due to autocorrect prompting.

I will try, as much as possible, not to introduce my own bias but make quotations from the scriptures to buttress my points.

Ekanem and Ekefre (20313).

  1. Historically, religious intolerance dates back to the 1980s when the Maitasine sect emerged. This was Muslims against Muslims
  2. The north, which is predominantly Moslem see everything with the spectacle of religion. People see things from the perspective of the religion they practice. This may not be an issue as it cannot be stopped.
  • A deep reflection on religious intolerance in Nigeria will reveal that the problem is deeply rooted in the north. And this is the part of the country where the illiteracy rate is the highest. This is important but not absolute. I bought the plot of land on which I am resident from an MSc holder in Estate Management. He studied in the USA. When I needed a plot of land for a shop I discovered that he had changed his office. I called him on phone only to start asking me what I thought about Shari’ah. I told him that’s not my problem only for him to reply “What do you mean? Shari’ah is a must. Anybody who doesn’t support it must be cut down…”I didn’t see any need for further discussion

. Nuzhat (2014)

  1. Jihad results in the speedily spreading of Islam especially in Northern part of Nigeria…Then gradually it also spread in Southern part of the country mostly in Eastern region of the country. Islam spread is in the Western Region
  2. Islam is a religion which provide complete code of conduct for every human being and in Islam perspective all the Muslims are part of Islamic Ummah. The Qur’am provides Code of Conduct CoC for its adherents; the Torah provides CoC for Christians and Judaists; Orunmila provides CoC for Ifa worshippers; etc. More discussion on this will be made below.
  • People from both religions are not in state of accepting each other. This is only in the Core North. My uncle attends Church with us each time we had family functions. We usually joined him in our primary school days in fasting. Then, I was in my hometown. When he went for Hadj, the family renovated his house before he came hack- Unknown to him
  1. Muslim fanatics consider that Nigeria must be an Islamic State. Only in the Core north and among the Fulani-Hausa extraction only.
  2. The other part consider that it must be Christian State. Christians have never sneaked Canonical laws into the constitution, have never made attempts to lobby for the formation of ‘Christian States’ and no State Governor had ever banned the teaching of Islamic studies in schools nor enforce the teaching of Christion religious study in Islamic and Qur’anic schools
  3. Colonial masters play a vital role in the growth of ethnoreligious conflicts… Other ethnic groups teamed up to bring the Igbos back into Nigeria. Ethnic clashes had been there before the colonial masters but started thinning out in their time. Ethno-religious crises resurfaced 20 years after the colonial masters have left. For example, Mjr Gen Nwachukwu’s mother was from the royal family in Katsina, his father was a Roman Catholic Christian.

Mou and Mou (2017).

  1. It is not clear whether these are more prevalent among the illiterates and the less educated or even among the educated Nigerians as well. Only statistics can show this
  2. Among these categories of the most educated Nigerians are the University academic and administrative staff as well as University students. ABU Zaria and KadPoly are typical examples of hot spots of religious crises

Bolatito (2013)

  1. Government to address the conflicting duties of allowing people to exercise their religious freedom and maintaining national security. Govt is biased towards a particular religion
  2. There is need to reconcile religious freedom and national security. The need is for Nigeria to be a secular state

Njoku and Njoku (2013)

  1. Religions connotes socio-political, cultural and spiritual phenomenon with overriding influence in individual and community life of most members of the Nigeria population, and has been often suspected and accused of anti-social activities. The truth needs be told. There is only one religion that sparks up violence in Nigeria
  2. Solutions proffered after each crisis had no lasting grip on the Nigerian society to assure the uninterrupted development of the country. This is because the implementation is skewed.
  • Tolerance, dialogue, and government provision of employment opportunities would generate mutual understanding, forgiveness, spirit of live and let live in the arbitration of religious crises in Nigeria. The government can only facilitate the provision of employment opportunities. What Government should do is to ban the Almajiri culture except for Imams channel their children into the Almanjir system. They send their children into western education and encourage the masses to mass procreate for Almanjir system: a case of self-interest.

nairaproject.com ().

  1. No religious conflict in the nation is purely religious without ethnicity playing its way in it. Politics is the trigger.

Anele, D (2012).

  1. The clergy…ignore or downplay the damaging effects of certain explicit injunctions contained in “holy books” on the behaviour of believers.
  2. Many verses in The Holy Bible and The Holy Quran stipulate, endorse and promote discrimination, intolerance and violence against unbelievers
    1. Slay them wherever you find them…Idolatry is worse than carnage…Fight them until idolatry is no more and God’s religion [Islam] reigns supreme…(2: 190-193).
    2. Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it…(2: 216).
  • He that denies God’s revelations should know that swift is God’s reckoning (3:19). Knowing God’s capability to deal with issues concerning Him does not confer judgment of offenders against Him on man. Items (i) and(ii) need full discussion

Gott (2015).

I decided to include this because its definition agrees with my idea of intolerance while most of the other authors classify intolerance with fanaticism and fundamentalism. I agree with his recommendation in item (iii) below

  1. Fundamentalists act within society’s law, and while it may pain them that secular society doesn’t adhere to God’s will, they recognize and respect that they are part of a larger collective.
  2. Fanatics, on the other hand, are an extremist sub-set of fundamentalists who see only their own point of view. They seek to force their ideology on others through intimidation and are more than happy to break the law and commit religious blasphemy, including, murder in the name of their God.
  • What we must do in order to move forward and flourish as a species is to get out of our own way, and stop damaging ourselves!

DISCUSSION

Anele (2012).

Anele described himself as a humanist. This implies that he does not understand what spirituality is. On what ground, then, does feel he can discuss spiritual issues? A humanist worships his brain, the education he has attained, the authors of the books he’s read as well as my own person if he reads this write-up.

Going straight to the issue at hand:

The clergy…ignore or downplay the damaging effects of certain explicit injunctions contained in “holy books” on the behaviour of believers.

This does not apply to Christians because the Holy Bible enjoins Christians to “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me” (John 5:39, KJV). He further advised His disciples in the Great Commission “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth… Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: …” (Matt 28:18-20, KJV).

Apostle Paul advised Timothy “These things command and teach. …, give attendance to reading, …to doctrine” (1 Tim 4:11-13, KJV). The Christian is responsible for his actions because he has access to the scriptures.

Many verses in The Holy Bible and The Holy Quran stipulate, endorse and promote discrimination, intolerance and violence against unbelievers.

In the noble Qur’an

Ironically, there are only two passages in the passage quoted that stipulate killing by Muslims. Notwithstanding (Al-Baqarah, 2:216) cautions that God knows best.

  1. “Fight in the way of Allah those who fight you …But if they cease, then there is to be no aggression except against the oppressors” (Al-Baqarah [2:190-193]).
  2. Fighting has been enjoined upon you while it is hateful to you. But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you and, perhaps, you love a thing and it is bad for you. And Allah Knows, while you know not (Al-Baqarah [2:216]).

In the Holy Bible

Humanist that he is, I was expecting Anele to debunk the victories that the Jews assigned to God, rather than believing it, he reported that the Old Testament “contains stories upon stories of destruction of lives and property carried out by Yahweh or executed at his behest by Israelites as punishment for idolatry.” Aneke’s case is like that of the pilot in the crashed Russian plane which black box reported that the last recorded statement of the pilot was “O God!”

I will ask Anele a few questions:

  1. If you nurture a billy goat to maturity and I come to your house and carry it away for myself, what have I done? Yahweh has all the right to punish man when he worships other gods beside Him since He is the One that created him.
  2. Assume that we live in the same neighbourhood. I am to attend a crucial meeting but my wife had taken the only car out and got delayed where she went to. I walk over to you for a drop where I can easily get a taxi but you turn me out, yet not doing anything but blame me for not envisaging her possibly not returning as scheduled. Then, barely two months later, your wife gets into labour, your car decided not to function, there is nobody among your neighbors around to assist and there is a curfew imposed at that time. Am I free to believe that it is the law of retribution that caught up with you or not?
  • What is a humanist problem when the children of Israel believed that it was Yahweh that fought their wars for them when they won and it is the same Yahweh that made them to lose their wars when they served other gods?
  1. What should be a humanist’s problem with the fact that Christians believed that it is their prayers that pushed Babangida aside from power and got Abacha out of the way of the permanent presidency of Nigeria? Or his problem with the Muslims’ belief that Makarfi was able to go through the governorship of Kaduna State live because of the prayers of Christians he cared about to the extent of nicknaming him, Michael?

Anele should please study the following table

APPENDIX: BATTLES

The Holy Bible and the noble Qur’an were in existence in 1939, or earlier, when Pa Nwachukwu (Igbo Catholic) married a Katsina lady (She is said to be of the royal family in Katsina) and produced one baby that grew up to be a General in the Nigerian Amy called Ike Omar Sanda Nwachukwu. This mother of all got her cousin to marry

Israel’s Battles _(Cont’d)

another Igbo Roman Catholic and Katsina did not burn. How can you start postulating that it is the doctrines of these religions that created religious intolerance? The closest ministers to Sir Ahmadu Bello were Christians.

Amb. Tanko Yusuf reported the case of a Christian Minister who didn’t go to Church because his wife had gone earlier with his Holy Bible. Sir Ahmadu Bello told him in which Igbo shop he would get a Holy Bible to buy that Sunday morning. The story claimed that Sir Ahmadu Bello paid for that Holy Bible. Though there are claims that  Sir Ahmadu Bello engaged in the propagation of his religion he did not result to killings

Nuzhat (2014)

Islam is a religion which provide complete code of conduct for every human being.”

This statement is not correct (Al-Baqarah [2:190-193]) quoted above allows the killing of human beings while the Holy Bible says “Thou shalt not kill” (Ex 20:13, KJV). (Al-Baqarah [2:216]) can be interpreted to allow looting of properties in times of religious crises. Very often crises spread because of the opportunities to loot innocent people’s properties whereas the Holy Bible says “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is thy neighbour’s” (Ex 20:17, KJV).

Qur’an 2:244. And fight in the Way of Allah and know that Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower support fighting.

The Holy Bible says “The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace” (Ex 14:14, KJV).

The Qur’an allows divorce 2:2:224 And do not make [your oath by] Allah an excuse against being righteous and fearing Allah and making peace among people. … 2:225 Allah does not impose blame upon you for what is unintentional in your oaths, but He imposes blame upon you for what your hearts have earned. … 2:227 And if they decide on divorce – then indeed, Allah is Hearing and Knowing. 2:228 Divorced women remain in waiting for three periods, …. 2:229 Divorce is twice. … 2:230 And if he has divorced her [for the third time], … Indeed Allah, of whatever you do, is Seeing.

The Holy Bible says “It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement: But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery” (Matt 5:31-32, KJV). Mark detailed Christ’s statement on the issue of divorce “… But from the beginning of the creation …. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Mark 10:4-9, KJV).

On oath, the noble Qur’an says that it is only what proceeds out of the heart that is binding 2:224-225. When you are making an oath to me, how do I know that it proceeds from the heart?

The Holy Bible explicitly says “…I say unto you, Swear not at all; …let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil” (Matt 5:33-37, KJV).

On Marriage Fagoyinbo (2018) stated the stands of both the Holy Bible and the noble Qur’an. While Qur’an accepts marriage with Christians and Jews the Bible describes such as unequal yoking.

On Paradise, the noble Qur’an states in Surah 56. AI-Waqi’ah Part 27 as follows:

  1. So those on the Right Hand …. And (there will be) Hur (fair females) with wide, lovely eyes (as wives for the pious), 23. Like unto preserved pearls. 24. A reward for what they used to do.

The Holy Bible says “For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven” (Matt 22:30, KJV).

Nuzhat stated that “Muslims are related to each other as being Ummah, either they are in any part of the word. But like every religion extremists in Islam are destroying the beauty of Islamic religion.”

“And hold firmly to the rope of Allah all together …you were enemies and He brought your hearts together and you became, by His favor, brothers. …” (Qur’an 3:103).

This is the basic tying together of Islam but knowing what humanity is, will you blindly submit yourself or child to an unknown and unproven individual?

  1. My friend was dating a Muslim girl but her father refused marriage between them. He decided to marry her off to an Imam in Osogbo some 30 years ago. About two years ago the father was sick and the lady came to see him. She also visited my friend and saw his children; all were either at the university or had graduated. She really wept that day and getting home she confronted the father. “Baba, thank you very much for ruining my life for me. I have only one child because I don’t see my husband when I should. We are only marking turns objects of sexual satisfaction, not love. My child cannot have a good education. You are sick, I come to see you but I can’t raise money for drugs for you. I’d to borrow money to come here and I’m waiting patiently because I don’t have transport money back. I’m waiting till somebody will come to visit you and give you some money so that I can take out of it for my transport. Had I known I would’ve defied you!”
  2. This is more pathetic. The father gave her in marriage to a Chadian who came and was lodging in the mosque. The father’s reason was that he must have been staying in the mosque because he was faithful; he didn’t reason it out that the man was rationalising his resources by staying in the mosque. The Chadian packed her and their offspring to Chad after some time and began to misuse the woman and her children in favour of his Chadian wives and children; his Nigerian wife and her offspring were subordinate to his Chadian family! This woman suffered in silence for many years until she could no longer bear it and had to look for another Nigerian living there to assist her in escaping with her children at great risk to their lives.

There are similar problems in Christianity but God gives us the power of discernment. A friend and colleague told me he was to accommodate a new convert. On asking him of where they met, he said that the man was implicated in a robbery. I just simply told my friend that I would inform the Director so that in the case of any robbery he (my friend) brought in a robber to co-habit with us. He refrained from the plan.

Within six months he came to inform me that the said convert packed all valuables in the Pastor’s lodge and carted them away using the Church’s brand new 505 station wagon.

The Holy Bible says “For the word of God is … is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb 4:12, KJV). A discerning mind demonstrates wisdom and insight that go beyond what is seen and heard. For example, God’s Word is “spiritually discerned.”  “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God…” (1 Cor 2:14, KJV).

I searched the Qur’an but this is the closest passage that I got to discernment “O men! worship your … then be on guard against the fire of which men and stones are the fuel; it is prepared for the unbelievers. …” (Suratul Baqarah: 21-25).

Next: THE FUNDAMENTALS OF THE MAJOR RELIGIONS

REFERENCES

Anele, D (2012). The Fundamental Source of Religious Intolerance (1). Sunday Perspectives On August 26, 2012 https://www.vanguardngr.com/2012/08/the-fundamental-source-of-religious-intolerance-1/

Bolatito, LA (2013). Modernism and Secularization: Towards a Reconciliation of Religious Freedom and National Security in the Realization of Peace in Nigeria. Canadian Social Science. Vol. 9, No. 1, 2013, pp. 135-146.

Ekanem, BSA and EN Ekefre (20313). Education and Religious Intolerance in Nigeria: The Need for Essencism as a Philosophy. Journal of Educational and Social Research Vol. 3 (2) May 2013

Fagoyinbo, B (2018). Religion, Faith, Emotion and Inter-faith marriage. Accessed 01 Nov 2018.  http://motresource.com/2018/10/14/religion-faith-emotion-and-interfaith-marriage/

Gott, G (2015). Religious Fanaticism is Dangerous. https://futurism.media/religious-fanaticism-is-dangerous

Mou, D and SP Mou (2017). Religious Intolerance on Nigerian University Campuses. International Journal of Politics and Good Governance. Vol. VIII, No. 8.4 Quarter IV 2017

nairaproject.com (). General Introduction. Ch 1 in Religious Conflicts in Nigeria: Issues and Solutions. https://nairaproject.com/buy-project/

Njoku, DI and NC Njoku (2013).Appraisal Of Religious Intolerance In Nigeria. International Journal of Theology & Reformed Tradition Vol 5, 2013 Page 121

Nuzhat, F (2014). Religious Conflicts in Nigeria and Their Impacts on Social Life. Global Journal of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Vol.2, No.4, pp.15-19, June 2014 Published by European Centre for Research Training and Development UK (www.ea-journals.org)

Salih, M (1997). Permissibility of eating meat slaughtered by Christians and Jews. Accessed 27 Oct 2018. https://islamqa.info/en/answers/103/permissibility-of-eating-meat-slaughtered-by-christians-and-jews

THE PLACE OF A CHRISTIAN QUEEN IN A NON-CHRISTIAN CULTURAL SETTING

Pictur showing the traditional induction of Prophetess Şilękunǫla Moronkę Naomi as the wife of Oba Ooni

by
Babatunde Fagoyinbo

INTRODUCTION

In the World of Traditional Religion

Ife, the Origin of Yoruba Culture

It fell on us to evangelise one elderly man one of those days in Teachers’ College. It was a sunny morning and the Baba was reclining on his easy chair under a strangler fig tree (ǫdan). The way we met hm made us believe that he was a well-to-do man. His house was moderate; a four-room, two-parlour, face-me-I-face you bungalow. It must have been built with sandcrete blocks. It has a balcony with well-designed handrest made of burnt clay bricks.

“Good morning, Baba.” We greeted, prostrating.

“Welcome, my children.” He responded and called on one of the children around to bring us chairs to sit on. We declined the chairs but he insisted. “You are from St Andrew’s, Abi?”

“Yes, Baba.”

“Some of you, school children, don’t prostrate to greet old babas like me. You only nod your heads. But you came in and greeted me as if I’m your father.”

“Baba, you are our father. We can even that believe you are our grandfather. You’re definitely older than our fathers.”

“What can I do for you, my children?”

“We bring good news to you, Baba.”

“Is the government sending me to Cuba?”

“Better news than that, Baba.”

“I know then, the Gospel!” He declared.

“Yes, Baba. The good news of salvation.”

“Jesus loves me! I know that He does. All my children are Christians. All of them.”

“Baba. Salvation is a personal matter. Your children’s faith cannot save you!”

“I’m an Ifa priest. I cannot change at this age. I’ve gone too far. I shall not disappoint my disciples.”

“Baba. Save yourself and save them too.”

“My children. Ifa is a belief in one God, Olodumare, Olodumare is the Creator of the heaven and the earth. Ęla is His grand Orişa, Ęla. Ęla had no earthly father. He was sent by Olodumare to correct our negative attitudes and reconcile us with Him. The people hated Ęla because he would not compromise their behaviour and conspired against him. He was slain. The life history of Ęla is identical to that of JEşus. We must have been part of the Jews. The Jews wrote their history but our own is oral history. And you know that in oral history there would be omissions and additions.

“Orunmila is the common name but His real name is Ela. He is the Father of wisdom the Witness to creation. When Olodumare created the universe, Orunmila was the only Orisa allowed to witness all of creation. Orunmila is the father of divination, our only guide through life. Orunmila is Ifa. Those who possess the wisdom of Ifa and have been consecrated are known as Babalawo. A Babalawo would be compared to a priest or a reverend.”

“But Baba, you believe in other gods.”

“Yes. They are His errand staff. You see the population of our land and how many countries there are. We approach Him through those other gods.”

“Baba, you are limiting God.”

“You believe that God uses angels. Don’t you?”

“Yes, Baba.”

“The problem with you children of today is that you see things only through your own angle. Don’t you see that you are also guilty of your accusation against people of traditional religions? You are limiting Him too.

“Since you know He is capable of doing all things by Himself He shouldn’t have angels. You see, these gods have their respective roles. Şango is in charge of thunder and lightning, Ǫsun takes care of Ǫşun River, Ǫya takes care of Ǫya River, Ogun is in charge of metals. He ordained Şǫnpǫna in charge of infectious diseases.”

“Baba. Our concern is your salvation.”

“Don’t worry about that. All my children are Christians. I raised no objection to their accepting JEşus. They have their lives to lead”

“Salvation is a personal matter, Baba!”

“I know. You think that God is wicked!. If I’m in the wrong, God knows. The fact that I raised no objection to their accepting JEşus is enough credit for me to His presence. If my Ifa worship is acceptable to Him, then I’ll have double honours.”

“Baba, please consider submission to Christ. Can we ask a question before we leave?”

“Even if your question will lead to others, I’m all ears.”

“Why do you worship Satan?”

“We worship Eşu, not Satan. Satan is Elenini, not Eşu. Elenini is even a coined name. The English language does not have a name for EŞU, just as the Yoruba language doesn’t have a name for Satan. EŞU is one of the Yoruba Orisa that was a great confidant of Orunmila. Eşu Odara is who travels between heaven and earth not only reporting our deeds but delivering our wishes, fears, prayers, offerings and sacrifices. Whoever made the error has done the worst for the Yoruba race. Just write down this oriki (Praise names). Please, my children, I’m not evangelising Orunmila to you. But please, don’t be ignorant of any religion around you

Eşu laalu
Ogiri oko
Onile OritaBakere ǫdada
Afęyinju legun lǫAyigbin !
Ǫba nilę Ketu
Egbe leyin ęlębǫ
Enini lęyin ęni-o-kǫrǫ-Odumare
Eşu ma şe mi
Ǫta mi ni ki o şe
Eşu, the honor of the city
The big and strong stone
Whose residence is road junctionBakere, the instigator
He who possesses eyes that are capable of chasing away bad forces
Ayigbin!
King in the city of Ketu
The support behind those who make sacrifice
The devil behind those who refuse God’s messageEşu, please, do not turn against me
It is my enemy you should turn against

In the Palace

In Yoruba traditional practice, an Oba is not a Christian, not a Muslim, not a Sango worshiper, not an Ogun worshiper, not….not….not. He belongs to all religions in his domain because he is expected to take part in every festival and has his own roles to play. However, within him he knows what faith he holds.

In this era of Christianity and its injunction, what should a Christian Oba do?

There are two possibilities, which are having accepted Christ before ascending the throne and ascending to the throne before accepting Christ.

Let’s look at the first two anointed kings of Israel. They have some things in common. They went through Judaic schools, were kings over the United Kingdom of Israel, they first started ruling over their respective clans and they were both anointed by Samuel. However, the thing that they did not have in common is crucial to kingship; trust

They were not chosen using the same criteria. Saul was given to them as a result of their rebellion against God. “…when Samuel was old… he made his sons judges …his sons walked not in his ways… took bribes, and perverted judgment. Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah, And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations’ (1 Sam 8:1-5). They asked for a king that would judge them like other nations and God gave them “Saul, a choice young man, and a goodly: and there was not among the children of Israel a goodlier person than he: from his shoulders and upward he was higher than any of the people” (1 Sam 9:2, KJV). That was the pattern of their kings among their neighbours. In the case of David God cared less of a man’s countenance “… the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature…ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to. And the Lord said, Arise, anoint him: for this is he…” (1 Sam 16:7-12, KJV).

King Saul was anointed by the God he could not fully obey (1 Sam 15:3-9, 22) and did not trust (1 Sam 28:7) while David had absolute trust in the God of Israel (1 Sam 17:37-46) and would ask Him for direction (1 Sam 23:1-2).

Darius (Dan 5:31-6:3; Dan 9:1-2) and Cyrus 2 Chron 36:22-23 () did not know the God of Israel but they did His will and God counted it for righteousness with Darius trusting in the power of the almighty (Dan 6:27-28)

Olori Şilękunǫla Moronkę Naomi Ogunwusi

Call to Responsibility

Queen Mothers are the epitome of power. They are women who have reached one of the highest positions of power. In Yorubaland, Olori Şilękunǫla  has been highly esteemed. Who would ever have believed that one day she would become the mother of all Yoruba? But God works His purposes out.

The call she has is a call to responsibility:

  1. To move Yoruba race back to the original place of honor;
  2. To take Christ to all palaces across the whole of Nigeria and the entire coverage of Ife and Oyo Empires;
  • To wake up mothers to the responsibility of establishing families in Christ; and
  1. To promote the unity of the entire Yoruba race.

Moremi did it and the Lord, our God, will equip her to accomplish the responsibility He has entrusted to her.

MARRIAGES IN THE BIBLE

The first recorded marriage in the Bible which was detailed is that of Isaac and Rebekah except for that of Adam and Eve which was by direct extraction of Eve from Adam’s body

Isaac Weds Rebekah

“But thou shalt go unto my country, and to my kindred, and take a wife unto my son Isaac. …And he said, O Lord God of my master Abraham, I pray thee, send me good speed this day, and shew kindness unto my master Abraham…Behold, I stand here by the well of water; and the daughters of the men of the city come out to draw water… And let it comes to pass, that the damsel to whom I shall say, Let down thy pitcher, I pray thee, that I may drink; and she shall say, Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also: let the same be she that thou hast appointed for thy servant Isaac; and thereby shall I know that thou hast shewed kindness unto my master… And it came to pass, as the camels had done drinking, that the man took a golden earring of half a shekel weight, and two bracelets for her hands of ten shekels weight of gold… And he said, Blessed be the Lord God of my master Abraham, who hath not left destitute my master of his mercy and his truth: I being in the way, the Lord led me to the house of my master’s brethren… And the Lord hath blessed my master greatly; and he is become great: and he hath given him flocks, and herds, and silver, and gold, and menservants, and maidservants, and camels, and asses… And it came to pass, that, when Abraham’s servant heard their words, he worshipped the Lord, bowing himself to the earth. And the servant brought forth jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment, and gave them to Rebekah: he gave also to her brother and to her mother precious things. And they did eat and drink, he and the men that were with him, and tarried all night; and they rose up in the morning, and he said, Send me away unto my master” (Gen 24:4-54, KJV)

Jacob Weds Leah, Rachel, Zilpah and Bilhah

“And Isaac called Jacob, and blessed him, and charged him, and said unto him, Thou shalt not take a wife of the daughters of Canaan…And Jacob loved Rachel; and said, I will serve thee seven years for Rachel thy younger daughter. And Laban said, It is better that I give her to thee, than that I should give her to another man: abide with me. And Jacob served seven years for Rachel; and they seemed unto him but a few days, for the love he had to her… And it came to pass in the evening, that he took Leah his daughter, and brought her to him; and he went in unto her. And Laban gave unto his daughter Leah Zilpah his maid for an handmaid. And it came to pass, that in the morning, behold, it was Leah: and he said to Laban, What is this thou hast done unto me? did not I serve with thee for Rachel? wherefore then hast thou beguiled me? And Laban said, It must not be so done in our country, to give the younger before the firstborn. Fulfil her week, and we will give thee this also for the service which thou shalt serve with me yet seven other years. And Jacob did so, and fulfilled her week: and he gave him Rachel his daughter to wife also. And Laban gave to Rachel his daughter Bilhah his handmaid to be her maid” (Gen 28:1-29:29, KJV).

Can you notice that Laban was instrumental in all the marriages? When parents desire that their children should marry into wealthy homes, don’t begrudge them. It has been like that for ages. Abraham stocked his servants to show that the wife was not coming into prosperity.

Ishmael Weds ‘an Egyptian’

“And he dwelt in the wilderness of Paran: and his mother took him a wife out of the land of Egypt” (Gen 21:21, KJV).

Samson Weds ‘a Philistine”

“And he came up, and told his father and his mother, and said, I have seen a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines: now therefore get her for me to wife. And he came up, and told his father and his mother, and said, I have seen a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines: now therefore get her for me to wife. Then his father and his mother said unto him, Is there never a woman among the daughters of thy brethren, or among all my people, that thou goest to take a wife of the uncircumcised Philistines? And Samson said unto his father, Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well. But his father and his mother knew not that it was of the Lord, that he sought an occasion against the Philistines: for at that time the Philistines had dominion over Israel…So his father went down unto the woman: and Samson made there a feast; for so used the young men to do” (Judg 14:2-10, KJV).

Boaz Weds Ruth

“When she saw that she was steadfastly minded to go with her, then she left speaking unto her…And Naomi had a kinsman of her husband’s, a mighty man of wealth, of the family of Elimelech; and his name was Boaz…My daughter, shall I not seek rest for thee, that it may be well with thee?…the man will not be in rest, until he have finished the thing this day…And the kinsman said, I cannot redeem it for myself, lest I mar mine own inheritance: redeem thou my right to thyself; for I cannot redeem it…And Boaz said unto the elders, and unto all the people, Ye are witnesses this day, that I have bought all that was Elimelech’s, and all that was Chilion’s and Mahlon’s, of the hand of Naomi. Moreover Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, have I purchased to be my wife, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance, that the name of the dead be not cut off from among his brethren, and from the gate of his place: ye are witnesses this day…So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the Lord gave her conception, and she bare a son…and they called his name Obed: he is the father of Jesse, the father of David” ( Ruth 1:1’ 4:17, KJV).

We can see connectivity and divine intervention in this matter.

Harvesting of Deeds

  1. Isaac reaped from his father’s righteousness. Even Eliezer, Abraham’s servant reaped from it
  2. Jacob’s deceitful nature was visited on him. There are more such visitations waiting for him ahead.
  • Samson did not keep to God’s injunction. He handled dead bodies, even of rotten dead animals and even ate from its product, took alcohol, married storage women, was fornicating, etc. God sill used him but he missed the benefits
  1. Ruth’s righteousness was repaid with absorption into the lineage of Jesus

QUEENS THAT BLESSED THEIR HOMES

Esther

Queen Vashti disobeyed the orders of drunken King Ahasuerus, her husband, and got divorced on the advice of the princes and for deterrence to women (Est 1:1-22). He sought a new queen, the most beautiful woman in the land. A young Jewish orphan, Esther, was chosen (Est 2:1-18).  She kept her Jewish identity secret under the instruction of her foster father, her cousin Mordecai (Est 2:19-20). Mordecai, a servant of the king, overheard an assassination plot and warned his master through Esther (Est 2:21-23). Haman, a descendant of Agag the king of the Amalekites, was promoted after the plotters were executed (Est 3:1)

Haman sought to kill not only Mordecai but all the Jews in the Persian Empire when he observed that Mordecai paid him no respect (Est 3:2-15). Mordecai informed Esther of the plot and together they fashioned a fasting prayer programme to avert the disaster (Est 4:1-5:14).

Ahasuerus remembered the source of the assassination attempt and sought to reward the informant. Haman recommended the award and was instructed to carry it out. It was a great humiliation for him to herald his arch enemy around the city of Shushan (Est 6:1-13).

Esther turned the tables on Mordecai through two banquets she gave, and Haman, being invited to the banquets committed grievous errors that led to his execution on the gallows that he prepared to hand Mordecai on (Est 6:14-7:10). Haman’s estates were given to Esther and his position given to Mordecai (Est 8:1-2)

King Ahasuerus mandated Esther to issue a decree that allowed the Jews to defend themselves against any attack in his name (Est 8:3-8)

Letters were sent throughout the kingdom repealing the decree and the Jewish people in Persia were saved.. There was great rejoicing, and an annual festival was celebrated to commemorate the courage of Esther and the deliverance of the Jews. This festival was called Purim Est 8:9-9:32). And “Mordecai the Jew was next unto king Ahasuerus, and great among the Jews, and accepted of the multitude of his brethren, seeking the wealth of his people, and speaking peace to all his seed” (Est 10:3, KJV).

Esther is described as beautiful (Est 2:7) and obedient (Est 2:10), and she appears to be pliant and cooperative. When she first learned of Haman’s plot and the threat to the Jews, her reaction was one of helplessness. She could not approach the king without being summoned and the king had not summoned her in thirty days, implying that she has fallen out of favour (Est 4:11) but in obedience to Mordecai’s persistent prodding, she resolved to do what she could to save her people,; staking her life “and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish” (Est 4:16, KJV). The pliant and obedient Esther had been transformed into a woman of action.

Abijah

“Hezekiah began to reign when he was five and twenty years old, and he reigned nine and twenty years in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Abijah, the daughter of Zechariah” (2 Chron 29:1, KJV). Hezekiah was born of an idolatrous father “Ahaz was twenty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned sixteen years in Jerusalem: but he did not that which was right in the sight of the Lord, like David his father: For he walked in the ways of the kings of Israel, and made also molten images for Baalim. Moreover he burnt incense in the valley of the son of Hinnom, and burnt his children in the fire, after the abominations of the heathen whom the Lord had cast out before the children of Israel” (2 Chron 28:1-3. KJV). From above passages, we will see that Abijah lived with wicked Ahaz for at least twenty-six years.

Lessons to Olori Şilękunǫla

Esther

When the king was sufficiently beguiled by her charms, she revealed her true purpose: the unmasking of Haman and his plot and her identity as a Jew and accused Haman of the plot to destroy her and her people. The volatile king sprang to the defence of the woman to whom he was indifferent to thirty-three days earlier; the power of prayer is demonstrated here.

Christian and Judaist scholars are troubled by Esther’s failure to live as a Jew: had sexual intercourse with and married a Gentile, lived in the Persian court and did not follow Jewish dietary laws. In addition, Esther has been taken to task by both female and male commentators for her apparent willingness to participate in Persian harem customs, and by Christian commentators for her evident bloodthirstiness in destroying Gentiles (Est 9:1–15).

I chose the Book of Esther to demonstrate to Christians (not only Olori Şilękunǫla but also males and females in a position that are subordinate) in a relationship with unbelievers in power that it is possible to achieve success in such positions without giving up one’s identity as a Christian. The Books of Ezra, Daniel and Nehemiah also demonstrated this.

Women are essentially powerless and marginalised members of society; notwithstanding the status of their culture, they cannot simply reach out and grasp power, as a man can; whatever power they can obtain is earned through the manipulation of the public holders of power. In this sense the exiled Jew could identify with the woman: he or she too was essentially powerless and marginalized, and power could be obtained only through one’s wits and talents. But, as the actions of Esther demonstrate, this can be done. By her faith, prayers, astutely using her beauty, charm, and political intelligence and by taking one strategised risk, Esther saved her people, brought about the downfall of their enemy, and elevated her kinsman to the highest position in the kingdom. Esther becomes the model for the mother of the Yorubas, Her Imperial Majesty Queen Evangelist Prophetess Olori Şilękunǫla Moronkę Naomi Ogunwusi.

“In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes, which was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans” (Dan 9:1, KJV). Darius is believed to be the son born to Ahasuerus by Queen Esther and so shall the Lord give you sons and daughters who will function for the upholding of the glory of God in Yorubaland.

Abijah

Abijah was married for at least, 26 years to a very powerful man who lived his life as described in 2 Chronicles 28 as summarised below:

  • He completely rejected the Lord and worshipped idols of all kinds (v1-2, v22)
  • He burned his own sons as sacrifices to idols (v3)
  • He was a complete loser as a leader (v5)
  • He was humiliated (v9-15)
  • He instigated everybody around him to all kinds of sin and crime (v19)
  • He shut down the Temple and prohibited everybody to worship God (v24)
  • He had obvious demonic anger outbursts, destroyed anything that had to do with God and completely submitted himself to demonic practices. (v24-25)
  • When he died, he was buried with no due respect or no regret outside the city cemetery (v27)

“And he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord, according to all that David his father had done” (2 Chr 29:2). He reconciled the people with God “He in the first year of his reign, in the first month, opened the doors of the house of the Lord, and repaired them. And he brought in the priests and the Levites, and gathered them together into the east street, And said unto them, Hear me, ye Levites, sanctify now yourselves, and sanctify the house of the Lord God of your fathers, and carry forth the filthiness out of the holy place” (2 Chr 29:3-5, KJV). And appeased God for the people“Now it is in mine heart to make a covenant with the Lord God of Israel, that his fierce wrath may turn away from us” (2 Chr 29:10, KJV)

Our Olori Şilękunǫla “ be not now negligent: for the Lord hath chosen you to stand before him, to serve him, and that ye should minister unto him, and burn incense” (2 Chron 29:11, KJV).  As your name depicts, she is destined to restore the Yoruba race to honour and the Lord our God, by the power of the Holy Spirit will grant her that favour.

REQUIRED ACTIONS

As the Grand-Mother or Grand-Queen of Yoruba, the responsibility is enormous on Olori. Remember that Queen Esther “has not been called to come in unto the king these thirty days” (Est 4:11, KJV) implies that she had lost favour with king Ahasuerus. But with prayer and fasting, God granted her favour. God will grant our Grand Olori favour in the name of Jesus. Esther knew what to obey, what secrets to keep when to appear, what to ask for, etc. not of her wisdom but of God’s guidance.

Olori should remember that “Ǫpa t’a fi na iyale wa l’ori aja fuo iyawo” (Young, 2018) but we pray that that whip on the rafter will not touch her. The whip that was used for Vashti did not touch Esther because she laid her problems at the feet of her God; so will it be for Olori Şilękunǫla. However, she must know that while Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi is the Baba of all Yoruba, she Olori Şilękunǫla is the custodian of his heart, his wife, his sister, his confidant and above all his mother. He is ever her last baby; irrespective of the number of births.

With her, God will reopen the door of honour to the Yoruba race> However she needs to:

Establish a regular meeting of all the Olori of all crowned Obas to be known as Council of Oloris;

Establish a League of QueenMothers which will be made up of mothers of proven characters, accomplishments and who would be known to have mentored younger women, irrespective of religion;

Establish a regular praying team that will focus on the restoration of the status of Yoruba in the nation, unity within the Yoruba race, understanding of our problems, restoration of productivity habits of the Yoruba race;

REFERENCES

Young  (2017). What Led to Olori Wuraola and Ooni of Ife’s Marriage Crash – Report. Accessed 26 Oct 2018. http://www.informationng.com/2017/08/led-olori-wuraola-ooni-ifes-marriage-crash-report.html

THE SOCIETY IS INSANE

Africans can survive without shelter throughout the year

by
Babatunde Fagoyinbo

Introduction

Ogoja Five

My first encounter with insane people was in the early 1950s. My mother had a shop along Jubilee Road; the road that links old Gbagi through Dugbe Market to Railway Station. The road is blessed with the presence of Bower Tower. I don’t know if the clock is still working. I do hope it is. This man was called Eegun l’ehin Oga (i.e. the chameleon’s back is all bones) or Eegun a di (tied up bones) ELO. I don’t know why he was so named because he was tall and muscular maybe my perception of him was child-based. But for his madness, he was dark skinned and handsome. There was another insane woman in his neighbourhood. I cannot really know whether the woman was beautiful or not, light or dark, short or tall.

I noticed ELO very much because his shed was about two stall distended from being directly opposite my mother’s shop. Both were positioned within a pole distance from each other. The two were always falling in and out of love, marrying and divorcing. ELO was very gentle except for about three to five days every moon-month; when he could be nasty and abusive. On two or three occasions, to my knowledge, he prevented hoodlums from stealing from my mother’s shop.

ELO went insane because he wanted to get rich quickly through money ritual. He usually made his confession about twice in the days of his ordeal every month “Sebi e so fun mi wipe ki nma sa ti mo ba ri won. Se e ko mo wipe nwon maa d’eru ba mi ni? Oju won da bi oju kiniun, iwo won da bi iwo efon, eekanna won da bi ti amotekun, bee ni ina njade l’enu won. E ko so fun mi bi nwon se maa ri. T’o ba je wipe e so fun mi ni n ba ti sa.” “Yes, I know that you warned me against being frightened and fleeing from them. Didn’t you know that they’ll frighten me? They looked like lions with horns like buffaloes and fangs like tigers yet breathing flames. You didn’t warn me how they would look like. If you did I wouldn’t have fled”.

On those days, he warned us to be content with what God gives. I was a child then

My second encounter was in the town where I finished my primary education. She was the wife of a community rich man. This was in late 1950 to mid-1960. I can remember vividly that she had two male children. I cannot be too certain that the girl I knew with her was her daughter. Her problem was like that of ELO. I think that immediately she became insane her family of origin took her for local psychiatric treatment and she remained there but in the moon-monthly cycle she would come to her husband’s house and make some trouble. After those days she would go back to her trade. She was making and selling alapa. There was nobody in that community who could match her sale. Her alapa was very tasty.

The day I had sympathy for most in my life was the day her first son flogged her with atorin. I cried my eyes to tiredness. A son whipping his mother! I couldn’t believe it. I went to him after, only to find him sobbing, too. He was about eight years older than me.

“Why did you have to whip her?” I demanded. Notwithstanding the difference in age, he respected me and related to as a brother.

“Baatunde, Baatunde, Baatunde!” He called, using the slur in the local dialect to pronounce Baatunde. “Will you be happy if your mother were in that situation?” The sobbing became more grave.

I started sobbing too. I was seeing my mother. Had I been in his situation, would I be able to survive? I empathised with him.

My elder sister said that the last time she saw the woman was about fifteen years ago and that she was normal.

“She even asked about you.” My sister said.

“About me! You are joking.” I responded.

“She asked about mum, you everybody up to our last born! (I won’t mention names).

The third encounter I had was at a fuelling station in Kaduna. It was during IBB-generated fuel shortage period. I queued up for fuel along Mando Road and this man surfaced and challenged me for driving his car which his father bought for him to cruise the town with. He demanded to know what gave me the boldness to pick that particular one among his fleet. He spoke fluent English; grammatically correct English. I sympathized with him. He was a young man; possibly about 42 years of age.

I know of several cases involving insane women and their children. One was in the Yakubu Gowon military era. She had a shed close to one of the tributaries of Ogunpa that crossed Salvation Army Road. Some women noticed that she was pregnant and the youth In the community confronted her. She declared that she had a husband and told them the days and time he used to come around. They tracked and got the man. He confirmed the relationship. He said that he’d been married for years without a child and was told by a diviner to look for a mad woman to sleep with. He tried this and it worked.

Asked by the youth about his plans, he said he would collect the child. The youth were not happy with that.

“What would be the fate of this child if its half-siblings start mocking him that it is a child of a lunatic?” They insisted that he should take care of the woman, as well.

That evening, he took the woman to the psychiatric hospital in Abeokuta. The youth organised with the man to assure them of continued care by taking two of them along with him anytime he was visiting the woman in Abeokuta. She delivered a set of male twins. The woman became normal.

The Ekotedo youth were made up of apprentice automobile craftsmen, apprentice tailors, clerical staff in ministries and some traders.

Another insane woman was dumped at that spot about ten months after. Questioned on where she came from, she was belligerent; accusing men of deceit. “You are all liars, deceivers. All you want is to sleep with me. Come now, if my baby will not push you away.”

She delivered four days after she was dumped there. Women in the neighbourhood noticed her rhythmic contraction that evening and continued monitoring her. They were there for her at delivery. The following morning health officials took her and the baby away.

Sometimes in the late 1980s, I was in Enugu for a programme. I came out of my hotel to pick a yellow taxi to the venue. Almost opposite KayCee Stores on Okpara Avenue was a lunatic shed.it must be about 7:30 am. I noticed a girl of about ten years entered the shed. She was in school uniform. I felt happy that the family of the lunatic woman was taking care of her. I believed that they had sent the girl to bring breakfast for her.

To my amazement, I heard the woman scolding the girl and accusing her of sluggishness. “You sluggish girl, if your teacher beats you for coming late to school, I’ll beat you again.” she declared. She muttered some words in Igbo which I didn’t understand. The girl rushed into the shed to pick her school materials. I believed she was living in that shed with her mother.

Insanity

Insanity is a range of both group and individual behaviours categorised by certain abnormal mental or behavioural patterns. It may manifest as violations of societal norms, sometimes, to the level of becoming a danger to themselves or others, however, not all acts showing indifference toward societal norms is acts of insanity. It is believed that the brain’s very structure and function are a product of the social environment (Lenroot and Giedd, 2008)

For many generations insanity has been tagged a spiritual/mental disorder. Most people believed that the victim had been possessed by some spirit or God. However, Hippocrates wrote ‘It appears to me to be nowise more divine than any other disease but has a natural cause’. Felix Platter and Robert Burton believed that it could be both spiritual and natural (BRAIN, 2016). Andrew Snape (1675–1742) is of the view that. ‘Distraction . . . divests the rational soul of all its noble and distinguishing endowments, and sinks unhappy man below the mute and senseless part of creation.’ Without reason, the appetites and passions will be released in their full fury. And the reason is, of course, the greatest benefit conferred on us all by civilisation. Without reason, we are no different from other animals (Frith, 2016).

Given that insanity reduced people to the level of beasts, it follows that they should be managed by the techniques developed for training animals. This means domination through the judicious combination of reward (kindness) and punishment (repression). Such treatment is largely confined to the poor and uneducated classes.

Pinel (BRAIN, 2016) believed that, if madness is related to ‘an organic lesion within the brain’, then ‘the insane are left to look upon their sickness as incurable’. The idea that brain disorders were incurable was overthrown with the advent of successful pharmacological treatments:

  1. Discovery of antipsychotic and antidepressant drugs in the 1950s. While they may not cure, these treatments certainly reduce the severity of mental symptoms whatever their cause (BRAIN, 2016).
  2. Brain disorders, such as schizophrenia, require physical treatments with drugs while mental disorders, such as phobias, require psychological treatments. Brain disorders are believed to might be more curable than mental disorders as the development of some pharmacological drug is possible (Banner, 2013; BRAIN, 2016).
  • New techniques for studying the brain, such as staining and brain imaging, have revealed clear abnormalities in many disorders (Marsh et al, 2008).
  1. When appropriately prescribed, antipsychotic and antidepressant drugs can give considerable benefits. On the other hand, these drugs undoubtedly have distressing side effects and have frequently been over-prescribed.

Of particular concern is the exploitation of insanity for financial gains by so-called healers who extorted the rich through the astrological bill, extorted foundations through diversion of funds to personal accounts and extorted the poor through the establishment of treatment centres that draw funds from the states (BRAIN, 2016). In developing countries, ritualists have been known to kidnap them for money rituals while power-seeking politicians have been caught either raping and/or luring the females for sex. Cases of their exploitation for other uses abound such as cutting off their dreadlocks, scrapping the hair on their private parts, exchanging or sealing their garments, etc.

Causes of Insanity

WebMD (2018) identified three classes of possible causes as biological, psychological and environmental.

Biological

  1. Some mental illnesses have been linked to abnormal functioning of nerve cell circuits or pathways that connect particular brain regions. Nerve cells within these brain circuits communicate through chemicals called neurotransmitters.
  2. Genetics (heredity) Mental illnesses sometimes run in families, suggesting that people who have a family member with a mental illness may be somewhat more likely to develop one themselves.
  • Infections: Certain infections have been linked to brain damage and the development of mental illness or the worsening of its symptoms.
  1. Brain defects or injury: Defects in or injury to certain areas of the brain has also been linked to some mental illnesses.
  2. Prenatal damage: Some evidence suggests that a disruption of early foetal brain development or trauma that occurs at the time of birth such as loss of oxygen to the brain may be a factor in the development of such conditions as autism spectrum disorder.
  3. Substance abuse: Long-term substance abuse, in particular, has been linked to anxiety, depression, and paranoia.
  • Other factors: Poor nutrition and exposure to toxins, such as lead, may play a role in the development of mental illnesses

Psychological Factors

Psychological factors that may contribute to mental illness include:

  1. Severe psychological trauma suffered as a child, such as emotional, physical, or sexual abuse
  2. An important early loss, such as the loss of a parent
  • Neglect
  1. Poor ability to relate to others

Environmental Factors

Certain stressors can trigger an illness in a person who is susceptible to mental illness. These stressors include:

  1. Loss of a loved one through death or divorce
  2. A dysfunctional family life
  • Feelings of inadequacy, low self-esteem, anxiety, anger, or loneliness
  1. Changing jobs or schools
  2. Social or cultural expectations.
  3. Substance abuse by the person or the person’s parents.

Affliction

A fourth class is affliction.

There was this friend who was a year ahead of me in Teachers’ College. We entered the university the same year through Concessional Entrance University. He enrolled for Food Science and Technology while I enrolled for Agricultural Engineering. We both made the Preliminary Year successfully. I noticed some slight withdrawal from me but I never bothered abbot it realising the Senior-junior relationship in practice in the Teachers’ College. I never discussed it with any of our colleagues who mainly were my former classmate and those ahead of him. If the others noticed, they would feel the same way as I felt.

We were very close. I used to visit him in his hometown and knew many members of his family. He used to discuss everything that happened to him with me.

I was shocked the day he asked me not to call him by name anymore but rather walk over to him and tap him if I had anything to discuss with him. That reinforced the Senior-junior relationship idea in my head. It didn’t bother me, though. I was more concerned about my studies; realising my weak background in science subjects.

About two weeks later, he asked me to have a stroll with him. We walked to a quiet place and sat on the ground in the shade of a tree.

“Tunde” he called. I noticed that tears were rolling down from his eyes. I didn’t make any comment on that. “ I got into trouble during the holidays” he paused, looked at me and burst into weeping.

“I’m hearing you,” I said.

“B got pregnant for me.”

“Has A known about it?” I asked.

“Yes”

I knew the two girls during the holidays. I had a vacation job in his hometown and I used to spend most of my free weekend days with him. I knew he wanted to marry A, and we were both aware that B had another suitor proposing to her. It was, however, obvious that she preferred my friend.

“Your matter is simple. Go ahead with marriage plans with B and let A be free to search for somebody.”

“It’s not that simple. I love A and you know it.”

“But…”

He didn’t allow me to finish my comment.

“I’m not asking for advice. I’m asking for help. I’ve been afflicted with inanity by B’s parents. They insisted that I should marry their daughter but I’m not interested. That’s why I asked you, people, not to call me by my name but tap me if you have anything to discuss with me. They call my name in the daytime, they call me in the nights.”

“They’re not the ones afflicting you. You are afflicting yourself. Go back to them and promise that you’ve agreed to marry her. She’s not bad! She’s pretty and has a good disposition. They’ll forgive you and release you from bondage.”

“I’ll rather prefer to die than marry B.”

“From what you’ve said, these people are not planning to kill you but make you insane. You want to roam the streets in rags?”

“I’ll not do that.”

“Come to think of it, whether you die or rn mental, A ‘ll marry somebody else.”

“It doesn’t matter.”

“Remember Mr O.”

Mr O was in his final year in Teachers’ College when he came his first year.

“Yes. I remember vividly. But this is different. I remember that Mr O died about November 1969 and the fiancé was married by Easter 1970 despite her performance at the graveside.”

He didn’t return to campus after the 1973 Easter break. Two weeks into resumption, I went to his hometown to look for him. I couldn’t get any information from any member of his family; even his mother was mute. She showed no evidence of bereavement or any mishap to the young man. I left, frustrated.

As I got out of the house, an elderly man called out to me. I greeted him and moved towards him. I knew him. I had greeted him on a few occasions when I came to visit my friend and had had occasion to shake hands with him once.

After exchanging pleasantries he asked me into his sitting room upstairs, offered me a bottle of cold soft drink, Coca-Cola specifically.

“I’ve been expecting you. I know you’ll come to look for your friend.” He began. “I know that you’ll not get any information from the family so I decided to monitor you when you came and stationed myself outside so that I’ll see you on departure.”

I was shocked.

He realised I was shocked. He read it in me.

“You are surprised I said that eh? I’m sorry young man. I shouldn’t be poke-nosing into other people’s affairs. But this is a pathetic case. The young man had no friend in the family; even his mother. It’s getting late if you have to travel back today. I won’t delay you. The young man died three weeks ago. He committed suicide. He stood by a bridge and jumped into the road when a fast-moving truck was approaching. His body didn’t twitch. I believe he didn’t suffer the pain.”

I couldn’t control the sob. It swelled right from my heart.

Symptoms of Insanity

Signs and symptoms of insanity can vary, depending on the disorder, circumstances and other factors (mayoclinic.org, 2018). Symptoms of insanity vary considerably, can be numerous and affect emotions, thoughts and behaviours.

Examples of signs and symptoms include:

  1. Feeling sad or down
  2. Confused thinking or reduced ability to concentrate
  • Excessive fears or worries, or extreme feelings of guilt
  1. Extreme mood changes of highs and lows
  2. Withdrawal from friends and activities
  3. Significant tiredness, low energy or problems sleeping
  • Detachment from reality (delusions), paranoia or hallucinations
  • Inability to cope with daily problems or stress
  1. Trouble understanding and relating to situations and to people
  2. Alcohol or drug abuse
  3. Major changes in eating habits
  • Changes in sex drive
  • Excessive anger, hostility or violence
  • Suicidal thinking
  1. Sometimes symptoms of a mental health disorder appear as physical problems, such as stomach pain, back pain, headache, or other unexplained aches and pains

Treatment of Insanity

I lay no competence in discussing the treatment of insanity, however, there are instances of cure cited above; albeit through conventional psychiatric hospitals.

The Ogoja Five

Progress Oberiko (2018) wrote “I have seen them trekking long distances. I have also met them in the market making inquiries about where they could get a particular item to buy.

“They are inseparable.  They are always walking together. But the intriguing part is their communication.

“I’ve heard the man instructing one of his children who was walking sluggishly behind him as they trekked down the road; ‘Hey Dorcas, will you hurry up, C’mon girl, meet up with the pace’”. And I marveled,

Who are Sick?

In Yorubaland, the Oba s the father of all and he belongs to every religion. Be it Christianity, Islam or idol worship, he is expected to grace the occasions. In the Church, the Pastor is the father of every member of the congregation of the Parish, irrespective of his age relative to the ages of the members while his wife is the mother to all. I believe it is the same in the mosque. In reality, the paternity of a roaming lunatic is a function of his location at a particular time. If he is on a federal road he is the child of the President, on a state road he is the child of the Executive Governor and if on a local government road he becomes the child of the local government chairman

If a lunatic enters the palace in Yorubaland nobody dares chase him out, rather he is fed and taken care of. He is provided a place of rest and possibly changes his clothes for him; he is never forced to comply. It portends prosperity to the kingdom and general, a potent herbs man is invited for his healthcare.

In light of the above, the sanity of the following are called to question

  • The President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria
  • The Honourable Minister of Health
  • The Executive Governor of Cross River State
  • The Cross River State representative of the Honourable Minister of Health
  • The Director of the Federal Medical Centre
  • The CRS commissioner for Health
  • the Ogoja Local Government Chairman

Meanwhile, we need to say Kudo to our little daughter who is presently the sanest person in Ogoja.

Recommendations

In order to address the issue properly and integrate the family into the socio-economic development programme of the nation:

  1. The children should be adopted by the State Government.
  2. The parents should be put in a psychiatric hospital for treatment; not separating the couple
  • The families into which the parents were born should be identified and involved in the rehabilitation programme without entrusting any funds into their care; and
  1. Our little daughter, Progress Oberika, deserves an award: possibly retrained to be a caregiver in a welfare scheme for the rehabilitation of the disadvantaged persons

Let’s Look at the Sick!

The followings are really sick and need care. However, they are still at the stage of deciding if they need care or not

About to wed

This couple, their parents, whoever joined them together, the chief Bridesmaid, the Best Man and other members of the bridal train need psychiatric examination. Immediately Adam and Eve realised that they were naked, they sought for coverings.

Will this young man allow his wife to dress to her place of work thus? If he would will her place of work consider it ethical?

 

insanity in the House of God

The Pastor and members of this congregation need not just psychiatric treatment but also deliverance from demonic forces.

 

 

Can a Christian Marry a Muslim

In the light of (Judges 14:1-7; 16:1-28; and 2 Cor 6:14) every Christian that answers Yes needs psychiatric treatment for insanity while every Muslim that answers No should be examined in the light of (Qur’an 2:221; and 5:5) for they do not believe in their Holy Bible and Qur’an respectively.

 

 

 

 

What on earth is responsible for this? Drug or alcohol intoxication?

training for sodomy

IMPACT OF POPULATION GROWTH ON THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OF DEVELOPING COUNTRIES: NIGERIA AS CASE STUDY

by
Babatunde Fagoyinbo

INTRODUCTION

Population

Population can be described as the whole number of people living in the world, a region, country, city, or area. I am limiting the description to the application in human sociology. There is practically no reason for a complex definition of population.

Population growth

 

Population growth refers to change in the size of a population, which can be either positive or negative, over time; depending on the balance of births and deaths and alongside immigration and emigration. Population growth is measured in both absolute and relative terms. Absolute growth is the difference in numbers between populations over time; for example, in 1950 Africa’s population was 228,670,019 and in 2010 it was 1,049,446,344 (worldpopulationreview.com, 2018), a growth of 820,776,325. Relative growth is usually expressed as a rate or a percentage; for example, in 2010 the rate of Africa’s population growth was 2.6% implying that for every 1,000 people in the world, 26 more are being added per year. This has taken care of deaths, migration and emigration.

Factors affecting population growth

Table 1: Africa’s Population Growth Pattern
Trigers of Population Growth

Also important is the determined and consistent effort of governance, in Africa, to put the population in check through a vigorous enlightenment of the population, compulsory education with the parents contributing substantially to its cost and enlightenment through religiousorganisations and traditional rulers.Using the figure (Figure 1) obtained from www.economicshelp.org Pettinger (2017) discussed the triggers of population growth as economic development, education, quality of children, welfare payments/state pensions, social and cultural factors, availability of family planning, female labour market participation, death rates, immigration levels and historical factors/war. A detailed discussion of these factors, as affects Africa and its development efforts will be on a subsequent page. Table 2 shows the relative population growth by regions

Regions in the world by population (2018)

The Malthusian Trap and the Demographic Transition

Malthus’ was a strong voice against unchecked population growth in the late 18th and the early 19th centuries. His attention focused on population growth and food supply in England with special consideration to existing arable land and the level of technology available. He was of the view that by nature human food increases in a slow arithmetical ratio while man himself increases in a quick geometrical ratio unless he is constrained by want and vice. The increase in numbers is necessarily limited by the means of subsistence. Population invariably increases when the means of subsistence increase, unless prevented by powerful and obvious checks (Tushar, 2018).

Economic Development

Economy

There is a need to clearly understand what economy, development and economic development mean. Economy is defined as a social domain that emphasises the practices, discourses, and material expressions associated with the production, use, and management of resources (James et al, 2015). The economy is made up of the interactions among governance, the population and human and material resources and facilitated by such agents as individuals, businesses, organisations, or governments.

A given economy is the result of a set of processes that involves its governance, culture, values, education, technological evolution, history, social organisation, political structure and legal systems, as may be affected by its geography, natural resource endowment, and ecology. These factors give context, content, and set the conditions and parameters in which an economy functions.

There are three major types of economy:

  1. A market-based economy in which goods and services are produced and exchanged according to demand and supply between economic agents; either by barter or a medium of exchange with a credit or debit value acceptable within the network, such as a unit of currency;
  2. A command-based economy in which political agents directly control what is produced and how it is sold and distributed.
  • A green economy that is low-carbon, resource efficient, and socially inclusive in efforts to reduce and simultaneously enhance the global per capita use of natural resources and prevent the loss of biodiversity and ecosystem services. It generates growth and improvements in people’s lives in ways consistent with sustainable development.

Development

Development is the process that leads to positive change through the addition of physical, economic, environmental, social and demographic components.  Development adds value to the object. For a community, development results in a rise in the level and quality of life of the population, the creation or expansion of local income and employment opportunities with a determined and pragmatic effort to the sustainability of the available resources of the environment.

Economic Development

Economic development is the process by which a nation improves the economic, political, and social well-being of its people. The term has been used frequently by economists, politicians, and others in the 20th and 21st centuries. The concept, however, has been in existence in the West for centuries. Economic development has a direct relationship with the environment and environmental issues.

It is also essential, at this stage, to distinguish between economic development and economic growth. Economic development takes into consideration the totality of the economy as defined above. Economic growth is the increase in the market value of the goods and services produced by an economy over time measured conventionally as the per cent rate of increase in real gross domestic product (real GDP) and adjusted to eliminate the distorting effect of inflation on the price of goods produced. Increase may result from the amounts of inputs available for use (extensive growth) or more efficient use of inputs (intensive growth).

In economic growth, it is immaterial whether or not value is added. Increase in raw agricultural produce export, increase in the amount of raw iron ore extracted, etc. constitute economic growth.

Ingredients of economic development

Once again, creation blessing: “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth” (Genesis 1: 28, KJV), implants in man the capacity to use all the resources of the earth for his wellbeing. Biblical earth is not limited to the planet earth but every other creation that man’s technology can access.

For an economy to develop there are such ingredients requirements as:

  1. Human resources. What proportion of the population is literate? What proportion is skilled? How much training has been provided? What is their health situation? What is their orientation? Table 3 shows the dearth of factors that steer the populace towards productive economy in Africa as compared with some of their erstwhile colonial masters. Human resources development (HRD) views humans as resources to be trained, educated, and developed within the system of an organisation for the purpose of enhancing the productivity of the organisation through the expertise of its workforce Hogendorn (1996) stated that the premise of human capital theory is that investments made in educating the workforce and developing their skills (among other services such as providing them with nourishment and maintaining their health) would pay dividends for a country in its effort to develop economic viability and contribute to an increase in output per each unit of input;
  2. Material resources: availability and access. Pont-à-Mousson imports the bulk of the raw materials required for its steel industries. Natural resources availability in a given region makes it easier for people to acquire and use them. However, its impact on economic development is a function of the energy of mind; the attitude towards material things; willingness to save and invest productively; the freedom and flexibility of institutions; and/or robust political structure anchored on good leadership;
  • Good governance: Knack (1995) determines five main indicators characterising good governance: (i) corruption; (ii) legal framework; (iii) public administration efficiency; (iv) lack of contract execution by the government; and (v) expropriation. Knack aggregates above indices in one aggregated index, so named ‘property right index’, which is evaluated from 0 (lowest) to 50 (highest).
  1. Political stability that ensures human rights, justice and peace. Early action to address the root causes of crises, such as social inequality or low access to justice and security, is key to preventing brewing tensions from escalating into full-blown conflict which may eventually thwart every effort geared towards economic development;
  2. Development of a viable, sustained, and sustainable economic development strategy which can bring economic peace and tranquillity;
  3. Establishment and emplacement of economic infrastructure and institutions: Infrastructure contributes to economic development both by increasing productivity and by providing amenities that enhance the quality of life. Basic infrastructures that impact on economic development include but not limited to: power, energy and water supplies; transportation; healthcare delivery; safety and security of lives and properties. The services generated by infrastructure investment lead to growth in the production in two ways: (i) infrastructure services are intermediate inputs to production, and any reduction in these input costs raises the profitability of production, permitting higher levels of output, income, and/or employment; and (ii) infrastructure services raise the productivity of other factors. The lack of infrastructure or its inadequate availability a given location may repel flows of additional resources and outflow of investment. The poor state of energy production has forced such manufacturers as Dunlop, Michelin, etc. out of the country and forced most other manufacturers to close down (Manuaka, 2012);
  • Development of administrative capacities that can implement coherent policies to eliminate any unequal economic power relationship between the small economic and political elite and the average citizen;
  • Foreign trade: International trade is a powerful enabler of economic development. Evidence exists that increased participation in international trade can spur economic growth, which itself is a necessary condition for broader development outcomes to be realised through connecting global markets to developing-country producers and consumers (UNCTAD, 2014). International trade provides a critical channel for the flow of finance, technology and services needed to further improve productive capacity in agriculture, industry and These are needed in turn for structural transformation of economies. However, there must be policies that are complementary to the enabling power of trade with its impacts on economic and social development”.

Impact of population growth on economic development

Natural Resources Availability

Population places a demand on infrastructures, however, it is also known that population can contribute tremendously to the provision of infrastructures.

Natural resources are spaciously but not evenly distributed and they are limited either in quantity or in the rate of availability and varies in time. They are of two types: the exhaustible and the inexhaustible. Fossil fuels and solid minerals are exhaustible while winds and solar radiation are inexhaustible. Water may be classified as inexhaustible but it can be diverted and its interaction with the soil coupled with geological processes within the locality can create diversions. Each of these resources has its advantages and limitations; while the rate of extraction will determine the period over which fossil fuel and minerals will be available, the rate of capture of wind, solar and hydro energy will be determined by the available flow rate.

Infrastructural development is not limited by the availability of input materials alone but also on fiscal and human resources. Fiscal resources are required to put in place facilities that would be needed for harnessing and distributing the resources while human resources are required to strategically plan the harnessing, production, distribution and management of the output.

Effect of Population on Resources

Malthus (1766–1834) warned against uncontrolled procreation, however, he was not anticipating such developments as advancements in technology that now help with manufacturing and agricultural production; recycling and sustainable industrial production practices. There are definitely more dangers than anticipated by Malthus in such areas as access to basic resources like clean drinking water, transportation and housing to mention a few.

Population and economic development

It is a general belief that additional people provide a workforce necessary to generate goods and services. However, this applies where the raw materials, human resources and other factors like infrastructures for the production are available. It must also be recognised that the quality of the human resource addition to the workforce is significant in its input into the production system.

Africa can be rated based on its ranking in the factors affecting economic development in relation to the rest of the world:

  1. Human resources. Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest illiteracy rate of 35.7% among other regions given as Arab States19.3%; East Asia and the Pacific 4.3%; Europe and Central Asia 1.9%; Latin America and the Caribbean 6.8%; South Asia 29.7%. Nigeria’s illiteracy rate of 49% (Table 3) is much higher than Africa’s average. There are 21 countries within the assessed countries with 50% and above of their populations below the poverty line. African countries take a lion share of 16 countries with Nigeria ranking 5th thus making it difficult to raise capital for investment (indexmundi, 2018).
  2. Material resources: Fagoyinbo (2018) shows the availability of fossil fuels and other minerals of the African region alongside other regions. Africa ranks poor in relation to other regions in most of the resources
  • Good governance: The level of corruption is a good measure of the level of integrity of the governance. Of the 24 countries that score below 25 in CPI, Somalia had the least score with 10 marks and 13 of the countries are located in Africa. No African country was able to enter into the list of 17 countries that scored 75 and higher
  1. Political stability: In the state fragility index 13 countries score higher than 100 with South Sudan heading the list. 8 African countries showed up on this inglorious list (Wikipedia, 2018)
  2. Development of a viable, sustained, and sustainable economic development strategy: The logistic Performance Index (LPI) is an interactive benchmarking tool created to help countries identify the challenges and opportunities they face in their performance on trade logistics and what they can do to improve their performance. 13 African countries appear in the list of the 20 lowest ranked countries while there is none among the list of the 20 highest ranked.
  3. Establishment and emplacement of economic infrastructure and institutions: Healthcare delivery is an important infrastructure along with road network, water supply for all of domestic, industrial and agriculture. Among the lowest 20 countries in health delivery status, Africa takes a lion share of 18 countries with no representation among the highest ranked 20 countries (wikipedia.org, 2018a). With road network density measured in km per 1000km2, no African country is listed among the 20 countries having the densest while it registers 13 out of the 20 least networked countries (worldstat.info, 2018). Compared with Iceland that ranked 1st with 56,720KWh/annum per capita production of electricity, South Africa leads the African countries with a total production of 235,000×106 KWh per annum, giving an annual per capita production of 4,858KWh. South Africa ranks 60th in per capita production of electricity. Of the 10 least producing countries, Africa takes a lion share of 8 countries, with Togo ranking 218th out of 219 countries at a per capita production of 14KWh/annum
  • Development of administrative capacities: All 22 countries of the world with HDI below 0.5 are African countries; including Nigeria.
  • Foreign trade: WTO (2016) states “Africa’s exports experienced a significant 30 per cent decline in dollar terms in 2015. Accounting for about 40 per cent of the region’s exports, Sub-Saharan oil-exporting countries, such as Equatorial Guinea and Congo, were significantly affected by the 60 per cent decline in oil prices. Nigeria saw a decline of almost 50 per cent in its export revenues in dollar terms. This weakness was also due to a variety of other factors, including slow growth in North Africa and domestic and political turmoil. Growth in South Africa and Morocco was relatively better than the average for the region, with a less marked decline in the value of their exports.” It is to be recognised that most exports from African countries are raw materials. The dependence of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on oil exports and imports – particularly Nigeria, which accounted for 50 per cent of ECOWAS exports – resulted in its share of world exports falling to 0.5 per cent in 2015 from 0.9 per cent in 2012.

Conclusion

This article has not conclusively placed population factor in a position of retardation to economic development. However, it can be recognised that other factors that contribute to economic development can be depressed by population increase. Population growth is not really a depressing factor to economic development but it is certain that population should be allowed to grow in proportion to economic growth and development.

The impacts of high birth and death rates are increasing population size and density, rapid population growth and uncontrolled rural-urban migration which in turn heighten the problems of unemployment, underemployment, persistent poverty, urban slums, crime and political unrest. These all lead to increasing dependency burden on infrastructures requirements for economic development.

GDP and Literacy Statuses of African Countries

Next: We shall look at the infrastructures that the colonialists left behind and how Africa has built on them

Note:

This article is presented with the view of raising concern for the development of the “developing countries”, not to condemn any government but to create awareness and fashion out concrete paths towards development. While African nations will be the focus, examples will be drawn from other regions. It is hoped that peoples from other nations will contribute positively to the programme of fashioning out the path of development.

There is a Yoruba adage that says “Eepa npa ara ę o ni oun npa’ja, t’aja ba ku n’ibo ni eepa yio wa?” meaning “The dog worm is carrying out its extermination; believing that it is killing the dog, where will be its habitation at the demise of the dog?”

This applies to African (and their likes) leaders who are busy carting away the resources of Africa into foreign lands to keep for their children. The Lord who created us said “So shall my word ‘If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep. (Ex 22:1,KJV)’ be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it” (Isa 55:11, KJV). To those who assume that the grace has covered their iniquities “And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold” (Luke 19:8, KJV) to which Jesus replied “This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:9-10, KJV).

Kindly make positive contributions that will lead to development within your country and that will benefit the generality of the populace; not emotional contribution, if any view contradicts your own personal view. There is no one that is 100% right.

 

References

Fagoyinbo, JB (2018). Giants and Dwarfs of Africa. Accessed 04 Oct 2018. http://motresource.com/2018/09/30/giants-and-dwarfs-of-africa/

helpsavenature.com (2018). How Do Natural Resources Affect Economic Development? Accessed 03 Oct 2018. https://helpsavenature.com/how-do-natural-resources-affect-economic-development

Hogendorn, JS (1996). Economic development (3rd ed.). HarperCollins College Publishers. New York.

indexmundi.com  (2018). Country Comparison- Population below poverty line. Accessed 02 Oct 2018. (%) https://www.indexmundi.com/g/r.aspx?v=69

James, P; L Magee; A Scerr and M Stege (2015). Urban Sustainability in Theory and Practice: Circles of sustainability. Routledge, London, New York.

Malthusian Theory of Population: Explained with its Criticism

Manuaka, T. (2012). Government Policy Forced Us Out of Manufacturing – Mohammed Yunusa, MD, Dunlop Nigeria. Accessed 22 May 2012. Wednesday, 29 February 2012 http://www.tellng.com/…GbPVT8

Pettinger, T. (2017). Factors that affect population size and growth. Accessed 01 Oct 2018. https://www.economicshelp.org/blog/469/development/factors-effect-population-size-and-growth/

statista.com (2018). The illiteracy rate among all adults (over 15-year-olds) from 2005 to 2015* , by world region. Accessed 04 Oct 2018. https://www.statista.com/statistics/262886/illiteracy-rates-by-world-regions/

transparency.org  (2018). Corruption perceptions index 2016. https://www.transparency.org/news/feature/corruption_perceptions_index_2016?gclid=CjwKCAjwio3dBRAqEiwAHWsNVa6uSMGnvd_iYgew7oy1gL1uSISpJybEdnNCfpi0bRkai7zXOUE4_hoCDIkQAvD_BwE

Tushar, S (2018). Malthusian Theory of Population: Explained with its Criticism. Accessed 03 )ct 2018. http://www.economicsdiscussion.net/articles/malthusian-theory-of-population-explained-with-its-criticism/1521

UNCTAD (2014). The role of international trade in the post-2015 development agenda Note by the UNCTAD secretariat. Item 4 of the provisional agenda, Trade and Development Board Trade and Development Commission Sixth session Geneva, 5–9 May 2014 United Nations Conference on Trade and Development

Wikipedia.org (2018).  List of countries by Fragile States Index. Accesed 04 Oct 2018. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_Fragile_States_Index.

wikipedia.org (2018a). World Health Organization’s Ranking of the World’s Health Systems. Accessed 02 Oct 2018. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Health_Organization_ranking_of_health_systems_in_2000

World Bank (2018). LPI Global Rankings 2018. Accessed01 Oct 2018. https://lpi.worldbank.org/international/global

worldpopulationreview.com (2018). Africa Population 2018. Accessed 01 Oct 2018. http://worldpopulationreview.com/continents/africa-population/

worldstat.info (2018). List of countries by Density of road network. Accessed 04 Oct 2018. http://en.worldstat.info/World/List_of_countries_by_Density_of_road_network

WTO (2016). Trading patterns: Global and regional perspectives. Ch 5 in World Trade Statistical Review 2016

ENCOUNTER WITH ROYALTY: “PRIME PRINCE”

Pre-colonial empires and kingdoms in West Africa

by
Babatunde Fagoyinbo

Story! Story!! Once Upon a Time

A little story to herald this work in order to show what we were prior to western civilisation. This man would be my age. The son of the Ǫba of my hometown. I got disgusted by his haughty walk-style. I didn’t grow up in the community so there was no interaction between us. Sometimes in 1968, I saw him in the vicinity of the Post Office of the Divisional He

Governance in Pre-Colonial West Africa

adquarter; with his haughty walk. I believed that it would do him a lot of good if I talked sense into his head.

 

I called him by his father’s name adding the title Prince. He stopped and turned as if was neckless. He was about one pole away from me and across the road. He couldn’t figure the person that called him. He turned back and continued his movement. I called twice more; the same way as the first call. He reacted the same way. The fourth time that I called, I signified to him that I was the one calling him. I knew that within him, he was furious after sizing me up. But he didn’t know me and thus could not conclusively decide what to do.

I stood my ground; implying that he should come over to me. He considered it for about three minutes and then complied.

I didn’t give him any breathing space when he got to me.

“You are… ?” I began.

“Prince……..”, he took it off me.

I marked that.

“What brought you to the Divisional Headquarter?” I asked.

“Just felt like strolling.”

“That’s about seven and a half miles!”

“I didn’t tell you I walked the distance” he retorted.

“You said you felt like strolling”.

He knew I couldn’t have been a military man; considering my age. Should he snob me and leave? He looked at me with disdain but reconsidered the situation. He wasn’t sure what would be the outcome of our meeting. But he was at a loss. Armed Forces personnel had stormed the headquarter twice and carried young men off for conscription into the force. On the main road, middle of the town, he was sure that I was confident of myself. I’d made up my mind that I would deal with him if he misbehaved.

“Did you know me before?” He asked.

“How would I have known your name if I didn’t know you before?” I demanded.

He noticed another of his errors.

He raised his left hand to rest it on my shoulder but I pushed the hand away.

“You don’t do that to somebody you don’t know very well!”. that instilled some fear into him but he summoned up the courage.

“How did you know me?”

“I ‘ll tell you at the appropriate time” I declared. “By the way, do you have a problem with your vertebral column?”

“Why do you ask?”

“I want to know and I need to know”

I could notice some fear but he tried to mask it.

“No problems with my vertebral column”.

“What of your neck?”

“None.” He wanted to add the word “Sir” but the “prince” in him stalled him. I was enjoying the game but he was uncomfortable.

“Why then do you walk as if you have kyphosis?”

“What is kyphosis?”

“When you get home, walk in the front of a mirror then you’ll see how those who have kyphosis walk.”

“But that doesn’t answer my question.”

“I know. I don’t have to. I give it to you as an assignment. Most likely you don’t have the disease but you inflicted it on yourself psychologically.”

“You are insulting me!”

“I’ll just start now. If you move an inch I’ll deal ruthlessly with you.” I  stated with some force and paused a little; to let it sink.

It actually sank deep into him. I could see some sweat balls building up from the head and the neck area.

“Have you rolled a drum before? Empty one?”

“Me? No”

“Of course, you.”

“What of one filled with water?”

He offered no response. I knew that he was terribly angry with me and could’ve struck me but for the fear of not knowing who I was. I walked him to a nearby kiosk and bought two bottles of Coca-Cola. He asked for permission to change his own bottle to Sprite. I saw that I was gradually getting a result; for him to ask for permission. I then suggested that we sat under a strangler fig tree (ǫdan) with widespread shade. Fortunately, there was a long bench and no occupants.

In those days Nigerians were hardworking. You scarcely would find any civil servant leaving his duty without permission, and with valid reasons. Then, civil servants had duties, not offices. Things were working and people were dutiful. I took permission from my Headmaster to go to the Headquarters and I was to see the Divisional Officer for Education to endorse my University of London General Certificate of Education (GCE) application form. I’d been to his office and learned he was out and wouldn’t be back for about three hours. I seized the opportunity to do a few things in the town.

I had all my documents in one plastic folder which my Headmaster had pleaded I should give him but which I promised that I would not give out until I had finished everything that had to do with the GCE documentation. I hope I would still get another one to buy during the holidays when I would travel to Ibadan. I’d got the folder at the Kingsway Stores.

He tried to bring up light topics through which he could assess me but I ignored them; otherwise, I might not achieve my aim.

“You are lucky this encounter is not in…( hometown).” I began. “I ’d have been more ruthless with you. I’d have done what would bring us to fall foul of the law and got us arrested and I’d have tipped the police to keep you behind the counter until Kabiyesi comes to bail you out. I’d have told Kabiyesi  everything so he won’t have responded to the police alert until late in the evening.”

“Come off it. Kabiyersi would leave me in police custody! Not on his life.”

“If I ask him to allow you to sleep the night there, he will oblige me.”

“Who are you?” he demanded.

“It’s not for you to ask.”

“Does Kabiyesi know you?”

“No.”

”What then gives you the confidence to stop me on the road for this interrogation?”

I knew that I was dragging it too long. So I used this opportunity to drum a good sermon into his ears.

“……. (Prince). I’ve seen you twice in ….(hometown) twice with this your kyphosis walk and wondered how you got it. I’ve read of it in books but never seen anybody with a pronounced kyphosis like yours. My cousin told me that you are a prince. I asked him if that’s how princes and princesses walk in our hometown. He told me that you are the first son and the only one that walks like that”

“Who’s your cousin? He asked.

“What has that got to do with our discussion here?” I snapped.

He made as if to leave but I warned him that he dared not walk away on me. Otherwise, I’d be forced to take an action that would be more severe if it were our hometown.

“…….(Prince).” I continued. “What I want to discuss with you is for your own good and I’ll want you to listen attentively. In ….(our hometown) there are three ruling houses. If your father transits today, you cannot be the Ǫba. There’s no way the other ruling houses will not have their candidates. The battle will be between the other two ruling houses. If you contest, you’ll only lose your money. Secondly, you failed your West African School Leaving Certificate Examination. Your father is well educated for his time. There’s no town that will install an illiterate as Ǫba. I know that some of your brothers will be educated and one or two of them will be interested even if yours is the only ruling house. …… (Prince). I’ll advise you to drop your princely pride and go back to school.

“Didn’t anybody tell you that you’d disfigured your posture by this arrogant walk? You’ve been living in the past. The pre-World War II years! That you are the Ǫba’s son is immaterial. You’ll soon become irrelevant; after your father’s transition. You’ve been out of school for two years and it didn’t occur to you that you should resit your WAEC!.”

I showed him my documents and that I was applying to sit for the GCE examinations so that I could qualify for university admission. In those days Teachers’ Grade II Certificate was not considered as a qualifying level of education for university admission.

He was very appreciative. He escorted me to DEO’s office and we parted from there. His walk thenceforth became normal.

I discussed the incidence with my cousin when I went to     (hometown) two weeks later. He’d not met him but had heard comments about the change in him. He’d become humble and scarce. He was no longer man-about-town.

Why the Story?

Let me link you up to the theme I really want to bring out here. It was in Part I at the university. What they call 200 Level now. Our General Studies (African History and Culture) lecturer declared that colonisation destroyed the fabric of civilisation in Africa. I refused to agree with him. He threatened that if it comes out in exams and I countered him I would fail the examination.

Truly, the question came in the sessional examination. I didn’t think twice. I tackled the question to my belief: Colonisation did Africa much good. I articulated my reasons. To my amazement, I had an A in that course.

When we resumed the following session, I went to his office to inquire why I had an A. He replied that he couldn’t fault my points. He also was the son of a peasant and would never have got to where he was had African never been colonised. He told me he never looked at it in the light in which I looked at the issue.

If you are Yoruba can you remember the lives of Başǫrun Gaa and Ęfunşętan Aniwura? Do you know what it is to be installed as Chief Abǫbaku?

Neonaticide

Do you know that but for Christianity which came with colonialism, we would not have had the likes of The Right Rev (Col rtd) TE Ogbonyomi (rtd)? Somehow, maybe you too would not have existed except if your line is royal. It’s possible that royalty tussle would have eliminated your direct ancestors.

There are still vestiges of the horrible primitive tradition of neonaticide across the length and breadth of Africa. The Nation (2018) reported that the Gbajingala clan of Bassa Kuomo, Kulo, Gawu, Sabo, Guabe and Chibiri communities in Kuje Area Council still practice infanticice. Others are Gomani, Tekpese, Gurugi, Fuka, Lapa and Dogonruwa communities in Kwali Area Council, as well as Kaida and Kutara in Buari Area Council.

Twins, triplets, quadruplets and quintuplets are considered as evil children and are killed,  Also, such neonates and infants as those whose mothers die during or shortly after their birth are considered to possess dark powers that killed their mothers are culturally sentenced to death. Infants who are born with certain physical disabilities like cleft lips, deformed hands and legs, Down syndrome (possession of an additional genetic material which alters the course of development and causes such characteristics as low muscle tone, small stature, an upward slant to the eyes, and a single deep crease across the centre of the palm).

Any infant that grows an upper tooth first is considered unnecessary evil and it is also done away with. Orji (2018) further reported that in some of these communities the mothers of such babies are tagged as unclean for giving births to ‘forbidden beings’. Collison (2018) reported cases of intra-sex neonaticide in South Africa.

In Ethiopia, the Kara tribe carries out neonaticide on mingi birth (a child whose parents are not married. In the traditional Kara belief system this means she is cursed, unclean, full of sin, bringing malevolent spirits and bad luck to her family, village and tribe.). even in the case of traditionally married couples, permission must be sought from family elders before additional child. Otherwise, such a child is considered as mingi (Grant, 2012).

Healthcare delivery

An Anglican Communion priest had a small farm on his landlord’s farmland and adjoining his (landlord’s) farm. On a Saturday, he was to leave for the farm at about the same time as his landlord and he, thus, offered the landlord’s son a ride on his bicycle. Along the way, they fell down and the child had some bruises that bled. The landlord caught up with them, made some incantations and the bleeding stopped, the bruises also healed up instantly; leaving no scars.

Back home in the evening, the priest went to the landlord imploring him to teach him the technology. The landlord refused and specifically told him that he would teach only one of his sons; and that would be the one he loved most. He did not survive his son’s primary school years. The knowledge died with him.

The attitude remains with us till date.

Ritual Murders

Ritual killings cut across the whole of Africa (IHEU, 2010; IRBC, 2012) due to the fact that many people still believe that the use of charms and the performance of ritual sacrifice can fortify them spiritually, enhance their fortunes in business. Earn them victory in elections or protect them from harm, disease, poverty, accident, death or destruction.

Pre-colonial slavery in Africa

Enslavement in Africa resulted from war captives, as a form of collateral for loans or to take care of default in loan payback.  The captive is actually the ęru while the collateral is iwǫfa. While the iwǫfa has the opportunity to be free after payment of the loan, the slave can only be set free at the will of his master or find a way of escape. Very often slaves get integrated into the families. Matured slaves are married for by their masters but the offspring remain the property of the master as well. A lot of them have been integrated into the families among the Yoruba.

Ęru, in Africa enslavement, was usually on a small scale. Such slaves are well treated. We cannot ignore acts of wickedness on the part of some slave masters which, generally, is condemned by the community. The Yoruba has an adage that says “ǫna l’o jin, ęru ni baba” (his birthplace may be far, the slave was born of a father). Beautiful female slaves were, sometimes loved by young men in the family and sometimes permission sought to marry them. Women married into the family generally were not in favour of such marriages as the slave girl had been elevated to their level. The punishment usually meted out to such slaves was a restriction to the eating of some unpalatable foods in the first week following delivery. Such slaves, after knowing that the diet was assigned to them as a result of punishment usually turned it into a forced-practice through the proclamation of a cure (eewǫ) that for every delivery such diets should also be administered, otherwise some unpleasant consequences (to the child and/or its mother) would result.

Conclusion

Many writers have accused colonialism of stripping Africa’s people of the dignity of building their nations on their own indigenous values, institutions, and heritage. This write up has not totally condemned the African culture. The reader should understand that we are trying in this programme to fashion out our path to rapid economic development.

There was a time when Nigeria wanted to create a situation that would halt the education pace of the south while accelerating that of the north so that they can be at par. It led to the creation of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board. Nigeria learned to its chagrin that it was a fruitless exercise. The northern states later observed that the individual state government had to establish programmes that would improve the educational pattern as it deemed fit.

There were three separate missions from Europe to Africa: the trade mission; the expedition missions which eventually led to occupation and gradually disintegrated to colonisation and governance; and evangelisation. South Africa is one country where occupation did not disintegrate into colonisation and governance. The expedition and trade missions worked hand in hand but the evangelisation mission depended only on sponsorship from concerned Christians in their home countries and brought education along with the gospel.

There is also the claim that modern African state is the product of Europe, not Africa. It should be recognised that Europe states are also the products of amalgamation and disintegrations. There is no nation that is completely homogenous in ethnicity.

Modern African state is actually the product of degeneration resulting from our own selfish knowledge-hiding nature that makes us keep knowledge hidden in our skulls; not documented for widespread use.

Next: We would look at the Impact of Population Growth on the Economic Development of Developing Countries: Nigeria as Case Study

 

Note:

This article is presented with the view of raising concern for the development of the “developing countries”, not to condemn any government but to create awareness and fashion out concrete paths towards development. While African nations will be the focus, examples will be drawn from other regions. It is hoped that peoples from other nations will contribute positively to the programme of fashioning out the path of development.

There is a Yoruba adage that says “Eepa npa ara ę o ni oun npa’ja, t’aja ba ku n’ibo ni eepa yio wa?” meaning “The dog worm is carrying out its extermination; believing that it is killing the dog, where will be its habitation at the demise of the dog?”

This applies to African (and their likes) leaders who are busy carting away the resources of Africa into foreign lands to keep for their children. The Lord who created us said “So shall my word ‘If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep. (Ex 22:1,KJV)’ be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it” (Isa 55:11, KJV). To those who assume that the grace has covered their iniquities “And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold” (Luke 19:8, KJV) to which Jesus replied “This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:9-10, KJV).

Kindly make positive contributions that will lead to development within your country and that will benefit the generality of the populace; not emotional contribution, if any view contradicts your own personal view. There is no one that is 100% right.

 

References

Collison, C (2018). Intersex babies killed at birth because ‘they’re bad omens’ posted on 24 Jan 2018 Accessed 10 Oct 2018. https://mg.co.za/article/2018-01-24-00-intersex-babies-killed-at-birth-because-theyre-bad-omens.

Egede, D (2018). DEAD ON ARRIVAL: Inside Abuja communities where twins are still being killed at birth. Posted January 21, 2018. Accessed 09 Oct 2018. http://thenationonlineng.net/dead-arrival-inside-abuja-communities-twins-still-killed-birth/

Grant, R (2012). Saving the condemned children of Ethiopia Richard 7:00AM BST 14 Apr 2012. Accessed 10 Oct 2018. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/ethiopia/9189136/Saving-the-condemned-children-of-Ethiopia.html

IHEU (2010). Ritual killing and human sacrifice in Africa. Intrnationl Humanist and Ethical Union. Accessed 10 Oct 2018. https://iheu.org/ritual-killing-and-human-sacrifice-africa/

IRBC (2012). Nigeria: Prevalence of ritual murder and human sacrifice; police and state response (2009-2012), 20 November 2012, NGA104218.E, Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada Accessed 10 October 2018 http://www.refworld.org/docid/50c84a6d2.html

Orji , S (2018) ‘They ensure each twin baby dies’: the secret killings in central Nigeria. Posted on Fri 19 Jan 2018 Accessed 10 Oct 2018. https://www.theguardian.com/working-in-development/2018/jan/19/twin-baby-dies-secret-killings-nigeria-remote-communities

SR (2018). Exposed: Abuja Village where Newborn Twins are Hanged to Death ‘because They are Evil’ MAY 22, 2018. Accessed 10 Oct 2018. http://saharareporters.com/2018/05/22/exposed-abuja-village-where-newborn-twins-are-hanged-death-because-they-are-evil%e2%80%99

COLONISATION AND THE FATE OF AFRICAN COUNTRIES: NIGERIA AS CASE STUDY

By

Babatunde Fagoyinbo
moteginf@yahoo.com

INTRODUCTION

Colonisation

This write up will look at the issues of colonisation with particular emphasis on how it has affected, is affecting and is likely to impact development in Africa as a whole and Nigeria in particular.

It is a journey towards economic development and welfare of mankind. A journey that will assist us to bring ourselves into the plan of creation; manifest the fullness of God’s blessing at creation: “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth” (Gen 1:28, KJV).

The purpose of this long journey is to map out the path towards effective and purposeful nation-building beyond emotion, ethnicity, religion and partisan politics. Obasanjo (of Nigeria) demonstrated the solution to the last three of these ills in his first tenure (1999-2003) as civilian president when his cabinet cut across all political parties, religion and ethnicity but could not divorce himself from emotion. We would rate him high but, notwithstanding, emotion affected his administration and lowered his score on the success chart if it were quantified.

This journey of nation-building will be long and needs your participation irrespective of your nationality, residency or religion. The journey is likely to be tortuous but I believe that if we devoid ourselves of unnecessary emotional attachments we shall all benefit and manifest the output of God’s blessing at creation.

What is nation building?

The United Nations Organisation (UN) views nation-building as the process of establishing civic order and governmental functions in countries that are emerging from a period of war or other types of upheaval (Pan, 2005). Can we strictly apply this definition to the situation in Africa? Are we going to view the period of colonisation as the period of upheaval? Should we consider such countries as South Africa, Zimbabwe, South Sudan etc. as the only countries that are building up their nations?

What happens to such countries as Nigeria that was in clans, ethnic groups and empires but was forcefully re-grouped, amalgamated and colonised for governance?

When we consider the essential ingredients of nation-building as enumerated by the UNO thus:

  1. Sufficient financial resources;
  2. International political will;
  • Time;
  1. Security: guaranteeing citizens a safe environment;
  2. Political reform: building a civil society, developing strong local and provincial governments, and ensuring freedom of the press and other civil liberties;
  3. Economic reconstruction: restoring economic infrastructure by establishing lines of credit for business, restarting industry, and creating jobs, especially in the agricultural sector, which accounts for most of developing countries’ gross domestic product; and
  • Strengthening legal institutions: ensuring a functional and independent judiciary

A good consideration of the UN’s definition shows that there is no nation-building going on in Africa. Can we thus truly say that there is no nation-building going on in Africa?

Let us view nation-building as a multidimensional concept involving the active participation of the entirety of the population  in various walks of life and involving the dedication and hard work of its citizen, result-oriented planning on the part of the Government towards harnessing the potential of its human and material resources, reducing the social and economic disparity that exists in the society and creating an enabling environment, wherein individuals can live freely and attain their best in life. Keeping these in mind, we shall be able to assess the status of the environment in which we are in terms of nation-building.

It is to be noted that the ingredients enumerated by the UN are essential for the healthy building up of a nation.

An Examination of God’s Blessing at Creation

A critical examination of the blessing will break it into its components. The blessing equipped us with the rational, judicious and sustainable utilisation of the resource abundantly made available to mankind. The components are: be fruitful; multiply; replenish the earth; subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

Be fruitful

Fagoyinbo (2016) stated that fruitfulness implies bringing forth useful results and end products that benefit mankind. King David revealed in his Psalms the significance of and the requirements for bearing fruit “The righteous shall flourish …” (Ps 92:12-14) while Jesus Christ stated the impact of “Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit”  (John 15:8) which can be accomplished by “He that abideth in me, and I in him…” (John 15:5).

Multiply

Multiplication is necessary because of the two other components of the blessing without which it would have been difficult; since man’s spirit is contained in his shell that has limited movement (Fagoyinbo, 2016). To His faithful, He says “That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore…” (Gen 22:17).

Replenish the earth

Fagoyinbo (2016a) highlighted the resources that God made available to mankind as

  1. Terrestrial resources made up of the sun, the moon and the stars;
  2. Atmospheric resources made up of the clouds, the wind and microorganisms;
  3. Land resources made up of vegetation, the beasts, the birds, insects and microorganisms;
  1. The earth resources made up of minerals, soil, moisture and microorganisms; and
  2. Water resources made up of aquatic animals and microorganisms

Fagoyinbo further stated that the components in item (i) are without man’s physical reach and thus cannot be polluted by him. To date, there’s been no deterioration recorded of these terrestrial resources. God wanted the same for the resources contained in items (ii) to (v). They are within man’s reach and man needs to replenish them, in quantity and quality, for the continued existence of life; thus, the component of the blessing known as “replenish the earth”.

Subdue it

For the seven years or more, when Adam tended the earth in loneliness, there was no reason to subdue the earth in the sense of “bring into bondage” (Fagoyinbo, 2016b). After the formation of man, not creation, and his acclimatisation with his domain, “the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it” (Gen 2:15); this was his second placement in the Garden, the first placement being without responsibilities.

Fagoyinbo further stated that to be able to effectively rule over the earth there would be the need to effectively cover the terrain and access the interior. Thus, man has to devise means of accessing the resources within the earth’s crust, explore the depths of the oceans, access the top of mountains as well as move over the face of the earth. Developing the means of doing these is what God referred to as subdue.

Have dominion…

God’s concept of dominion was and still is over the other creatures; not man (Fagoyinbo, 2016).

That God is against man domination of man is contained in His response to the Children of Israel ’s demand for a king to which God replied “…Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me … yet protest solemnly unto them, and shew them the manner of the king … He will take your sons, and appoint them for himself… your daughters to be confectionaries, … He will take the tenth of your sheep: and ye shall be his servants. And ye shall cry out in that day because of your king which ye shall have chosen you; and the Lord will not hear you in that day” (1 Sam 8:7-18).

Notwithstanding man’s wickedness and rebellion, God is still compassionate: “And God saw that the wickedness of man was great …But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord” (Gen 6:5, KJV). God’s compassion manifests greatly in “And the Lord smelled a sweet savour; and … said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground …” (Gen 8:21-22, KJV).

Resources Availability

Natural Resources

Very often Africans project Africa as highly resource-endowed. In coal reserves, Africa lags behind Asia, Europe and North America. In natural gas reserves, Asia and Europe are better endowed while Africa is the least endowed continent in oil reserves (Table 1).

There is no African country within the 18 countries having the highest gold holdings (Table 2), South Africa is the only African country that entered into the 10 highest iron ore producing countries in the world (Table 3) while DR Congo and Zambia ranked 6th and 7th respectively among the 10 highest copper producers (Table 4). South Africa leads the world in manganese, platinum and tied with Australia in titanium production while it ranks second in palladium production (Table 5). No other African country is able to rank highly in solid minerals, fossil and nuclear fuel resources and gemstones

Table 1: World Fuel Reserves by Region

Table 2:Top 20 according to the World Gold Council’s latest rankings

(as of September 2018) (Wikipedia, 2018)

Table 3;:List of countries by iron ore production

Table 4: List of countries by 2017 copper production (Wikipedia, 2018b)

Table 5: Lists of countries by mineral production (Wikipedia-, 2018c)

Agriculture

An examination of global arable land (Table 6) shows a steady increase across all the regions; with the exception of Industrial and Transition countries where decline began respectively in 1997/81 and 1997/99. The increases are likely to have resulted from: development of high-yield crops; increased irrigation schemes; Increase in the use of fertilizers; Improved market access, regulations, and governance; better use of information technology; adoption of genetically modified (GM) crops; land ownership reform with productivity and inclusiveness in mind; and step up of integration into Agricultural Value Chains.

Figure 1: While there is a need for modernisation for small-scale farming activities, large farm development needs to be encouraged

With the highest area of arable uncultivated land in the world (Douglas, 2015) but having most farms at less than 2 hectares, attainment of food security and adequate nutrition will require governments efforts at agricultural modernisation. Nwanze’s statement that Africa does not even need to tap into uncultivated land reserves to feed its people (Dougas, 2015) should be seen as an effort to keep Africa’s agriculture at subsistent level. In the event that Africans refuse to progress others will do it and carry the benefits to their countries (Alexander, 2015).

Much of Africa’s failures in agriculture result from poor land governance and ownership. Land reform has had mixed results on the African continent (Binswanger-Mkhize, 2014) but changes that clearly define property rights, ensure the security of land tenure, and enable land to be used as collateral will be necessary for potential productivity gains.

Table 6: Total arable land: past and projected (FAO, 2003).

Reality

In the good old days, when we were introduced to History as a subject, and which could also be studied at the University level, we were made to understand that it is the study of the events of the past, relating them to the present and using their outcomes to predict the future. If this is true, then, I am amazed at such frivolous accusations that the colonial masters were responsible for the socio-economic and political woes of developing economies.

Colonisation in Africa

There were two countries in Africa that were not colonised: Ethiopia and Liberia. The statuses of these two countries are not found to be remarkably better than the colonised countries. On the high GDP of 10.20% annual growth rate Priewe (2010) surmised “In 2000, Ethiopia was the poorest country on the globe in per capita GDP – a mere 124 US$ in current prices, as compared with current 910 US$. The main finding is that the take-off was driven by heterodox monetary and fiscal policy which targeted public expenditure for infrastructure. This triggered an increase in domestic demand, reinforced by strongly rising terms of trade under buoyant growth of the global economy until 2008. The combination of favourable factors induced strong productivity leaps mainly in agriculture and lifted millions of smallholder peasants, at least, partially out of subsistence economy toward participation in markets. Aggressive expansionary macroeconomic policies triggered bulging fixed investment, much beyond a narrow public expenditure boom.”

 Table 7: GDP and Literacy Statuses of African Countries

Table 7: GDP and Literacy Statuses of African Countries (cont’d)

Table 7: GDP and Literacy Statuses of African Countries (cont’d)

3Liberia’s growth rate stands at 2.50%, ranking it 42nd position out of 54 African countries.  Ethiopia ranks highest on literacy level at100% while Liberia ranks 40th with a mere 43%. On Human Development Index (HDI) Ethiopia ranks 41st at 0.406 while Liberia ranks 39th at 0.413 within the region; France, UK and USA respectively scored 0.952, 0.946 and 0.951. Liberia has a high rank, 6th among 50 countries ranked, in political stability at an index of 0.55 while Ethiopia falls to 44th with a score of -1.57.

Very important is infrastructure provisioning to assess a nation’s economic development programmes. Ethiopia ranks 34th among African countries by annual electricity production of 98 KWh while Liberia ranks at 38th at a production of 73KWh. In healthcare delivery, Ethiopia is ranked 44th position among African countries and 180th in world ranking while Liberia is rated 50th among African countries and 186th in world ranking. France and United Kingdom ranked 1st and 18th respectively in health and provide 8,336KWh and 12,866KWh of Electricity respectively per capital.

Note:

This article is presented with the view of raising concern for the development of the “developing countries”, not to condemn any government
but to create awareness and fashion out concrete paths towards development. While African nations will be the focus, examples will be drawn from other regions. It is hoped that peoples from other nations will contribute positively to the programme of fashioning out the path of development.

There is a Yoruba adage that says “Eepa npa ara ę o ni oun npa’ja, t’aja ba ku n’ibo ni eepa yio wa?” meaning “The dog worm is carrying out its extermination; believing that it is killing the dog, where will be its habitation at the demise of the dog?

This applies to African (and their likes) leaders who are busy carting away the resources of Africa into foreign lands to keep for their children. The Lord who created us said “So shall my word ‘If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep. (Ex 22:1,KJV)’ be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it” (Isa 55:11, KJV). To those who assume that the grace has covered their iniquities “And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold” (Luke 19:8, KJV) to which Jesus replied “This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:9-10, KJV).

REFERENCES

Alexander, D (2015). The Biggest Opportunity In Agriculture May Be In Africa, And China Is Seizing It. Accessed 20 Sep 2018. https://www.forbes.com/sites/danalexander/2015/07/09/the-biggest-opportunity-in-agriculture-may-be-in-africa-and-china-is-seizing-it/#2f339d482a65

Binswanger-Mkhize, HP (2014).  From failure to success in South African land reform. African Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics Volume 9 Number 4 pages 253-269.

cia.gov  (2018). Unemployement rate compares the percent of the labor force that is without jobs. Accessed 212 Sep 2018. https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2129rank.html

Douglas, K (2015). Forget uncultivated land – Africa must produce more on existing farms. Accessed 20 Aug 2018. https://www.howwemadeitinafrica.com/forget-uncultivated-land-africa-must-produce-more-on-existing-farms/49524/

Fagoyinbo JB (2016). Understanding God-Ordained Destiny. Accessed 15 Sep 2018. http://gracefullyaged.com/2016/10/31/understanding-god-ordained-destiny/

Fagoyinbo, JB (2016a). Replenish the Earth (Gen 1:28). Accessed 15 Sep 2018. http://gracefullyaged.com/2016/10/31/replenish-the-earth-gen-128/

FAO (2003). Crop Production and Natural Resource Use. In World agriculture: Towards 2015/2030, An FAO perspective. Jelle Bruinsma (ed). Earthscan Publications Ltd London

i.pinimg.com (2018). Colonisation of Africa. Accessed 20 Sep2015. https://i.pinimg.com/originals/74/12/06/741206308acedc3e3bad60e3a1aae8cb.jpg

IMF (2018). GDP per capita, current prices  https://www.imf.org/external/datamapper/NGDPDPC@WEO/OEMDC/ADVEC/WEOWORLD/AFG

IndexMundi (2018).  Country Comparison- Population below poverty line (%) Accessed 21 Sep 2018. https://www.indexmundi.com/g/r.aspx?v=69

newworldencyclopedia.com (2018). List of countries by Human Development Index. http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/List_of_countries_by_Human_Development_Index

Pan, E. (2005). UNITED NATIONS: Nation-Building. Accessed 06 Sep 2018. https://www.cfr.org/backgrounder/united-nations-nation-building

Passi, A. (2018). Why Nation-Building is the Need of the Hour for a Country Like India. Accessed 06 Sep 2018. https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/310289

theglobaleconomy.com (2018). Political Stability- Country rankings. Accessed 20 Sep 2018. https://www.theglobaleconomy.com/rankings/wb_political_stability/

Tradingeconomics.com (2018). GDP Annual Growth Rate | Africa. https://tradingeconomics.com/country-list/gdp-annual-growth-rate?continent=africa (2018)

transparency.org (2018). Corruption Perceptions Index 2016. Accessed 21 Sep 2918. https://www.transparency.org/news/feature/corruption_perceptions_index_2016?gclid=CjwKCAjwio3dBRAqEiwAHWsNVa6uSMGnvd_iYgew7oy1gL1uSISpJybEdnNCfpi0bRkai7zXOUE4_hoCDIkQAvD_BwE

Wikipeda (2018). Gold Reserve. Accessed 15 Sep 2018 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gold_reserve

Wikipedia (2018a). List of countries by iron ore production. Accessed 15 Sep 2018.   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_iron_ore_production

Wikipedia (2018b). List of countries by copper production. Accessed 15 Sep 2018. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_copper_production

Wikipedia (2018c). List of countries by mineral production. Accessed 15 Sep 2018.   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lists_of_countries_by_mineral_production.

World Energy Council (2018). Energy Resources > Coal. World Energy Resources 2016. Accessed 15 Sep 2018. https://www.worldenergy.org/data/resources/resource/coal/

World Energy Council (2018a). Energy Resources > Oil. World Energy Resources 2016. Accessed 15 Sep 2018 https://www.worldenergy.org/data/resources/resource/gas/

World Energy Council (2018b). Energy Resources > Oil. World Energy Resources 2016. Accessed 15 Sep 2018 https://www.worldenergy.org/data/resources/resource/oil/

world.bymap.org (2018). Production of electricity by the countries of the world. Accessed 21 Sep 2018). http://world.bymap.org/ElectricityProduction.html-

worldatlas.com (2018). List Of Countries By Literacy Rate. https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/the-highest-literacy-rates-in-the-world.html.

GIANTS AND DWARFS OF AFRICA

Joseph Babatunde FAGOYINBO
moteginf@yahoo.com

1.0      INTRODUCTION
1.1      A Giant

Mythical Giants

In human term, a giant is a person larger than usual (Figure 1). “Giant” is the English word commonly used for monsters of human appearance but prodigious size and strength. There are also accounts of giants in the Old Testament of the Holy Bible. They were:

  • The Nephilim (Genesis 6:4-5) who were destroyed in the flood of Noah’s time (Genesis 7:23);
  • The Anakites (Numbers 13:28-33);
  • The Emites (Deuteronomy 2:10);
  • The Amorites (Amos 2:9)
    The Rephaites (Joshua 12:4);
  • The Magogs led by Gog the chief prince (Ez 38, 39; Rev 20:8); and
  • Goliath (1 Sam 17:4), the only giant that was recorded to live among humans, from Gath and with a height of 6 cubits and a span (about 2.9m / 9ft 6in).

Samson, the Hebrew power man, was not said to be a giant but a man of extraordinary strength (Judg. 15:7-13). He was granted supernatural strength by God in order to combat his enemies. He performed heroic feats such as wrestling a lion, slaying an entire army with only the jawbone of an ass and destroying a pagan temple.

In various Indo-European mythologies, gigantic peoples are featured as primeval creatures associated with chaos and the wild nature, and they are frequently in conflict with the gods.

1.2 A Dwarf

A dwarf is a person of small stature due to medical reasons, usually somebody with an average-sized body but unusually short limbs, or somebody with growth hormone deficiency. Many dwarfs are successful in businesses, acting, science, etc. They marry and produce healthy children, who also contribute to the socio-economic development of their respective communities, nations and the world

1.3 Implications of the Use of Giant as a Qualifying Title

Nigeria probably adopted this title during the Gowon regime because of its ability to deal decisively with the civil war, its huge natural and human resources, coupled with its overwhelming population, and also its efforts in successful intervention in the crises within the African continent which earned it some huge respect by the international community.

Taking a spiritual look at this title it can be deducted that Nigeria’s problems are associated, in part, with the adoption of Giant as qualifying title. In the Holy Bible all giants ended up as failures or were cursed; even Samson that was not described as a giant lost out at the end of his life. In mythology, all giants worked against the gods.

1.4 The Need for a Glorious Title Based on Accomplishments

From independence through to the 1st republic Nigeria had direction with its lean resources: the Western Region (including the Mid-West) pursued education vigorously. Agriculture, health, sports, communication, etc. were not downplayed; the Northern Region also did not downplay education. Greater encouragement was given to those willing to attend schools than it was in the West; the proportion of the population seeking education was limited in the Northern Region, thus the government had to put in greater incentives.

The Ahmadu Bello administration jn Northern Nigeria ran an integrative governance that was not biased against any faith, though some critics claimed that he had an Islamisation Agenda; one of his ministers reported an incidence when Sir Ahmadu Bello wanted to leave a message for one of his Ministers for a short discussion after Sunday Service only for the telephone to be picked by the Minister himself. The Premier was shocked that he, the Minister, was not already in the Church that Sunday morning. The long and short of the story was that the Premier told him, the Minister, where he could get a Holy Bible to buy, attend Church service and come later for their discussion. Sir Ahmadu Bello knew which Church each of his ministers attended, he was aware of their respective times of service, he knew which bookshop would be open and the Minister could get a Holy Bible to buy, and above all, he encouraged his Minister to attend to His God before attending to him. It was also said that the Premier offered to refund the cost. If he had an Islamisation agenda it was not a “be converted or die affair”: he was propagating the religion he knew and believed in.

The Ironsi Military Regime was probably too short to develop a direction. The Gowon era was initially bedeviled with secession. It later had to put the secession into check when there was a pull out by the Eastern Region. The end of secession rolled into the Reconciliation, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction stage. The Gowon Regime should be credited for ending a 30-month civil war without guerrilla warfare as the aftermath. The Regime also commenced the development of National Policies: a few of which were completed before being ousted out. These accomplishments probably led to the adoption of the qualifying title.

Aside from its resources, Nigeria does not qualify for a title by accomplishments.

2.0 NIGERIA TODAY

There is a need to access Nigeria through how international assessors see it; not the way Nigerians observe it internally. International assessments are logical, quantified, scientific, unbiased and reliable.

A look at accepted economic indicators and Nigeria’s rating will assist a good assessment and possibly give governance opportunity to redirect their plans (Table 1). There may be a need to adapt these assessment methods to also give the States self-examination tools. Table 1 presents indices of some socio-economic indicators of development for selected African countries and one country each from Europe/North America, South America, Asia and the Oriental.

The indicators selected are Power Production, Human Development Index, Technological Index, Literacy Rate, and Global Peace Index in relation to the Land Size, Population and Annual Budget of each of the selected countries.

2.1 Power Production

The Transmission Company of Nigeria recently declared that power generation has gone up to 4,286 megawatts, as against the 3,700 megawatts that are being insinuated in the country: considering the huge amount invested in PHCN, this is not an achievement. Nigeria ranks 32 in land area, 9 in population but 70 in power production. Three African countries Algeria, Egypt and South Africa rank 53, 26 and 15 producing 45200, 143500, 268100 x 106 kW-hr/yr respectively as against Nigeria’s 20130 x 106 kW-hr/yr. Nigeria’s population more than triples the population of South Africa. If computed on per capita basis Nigeria will still rank lower than such countries as Namibia and Zambia.

The poor state of energy production has forced such manufacturers as Dunlop, Michelin, etc. out of the country and forced most other manufacturers to close down (Manuaka, 2012).

2.2 Human Development Index

The Human Development Index (HDI) provides an alternative to the common practice of evaluating a country’s progress in development based on per capita Gross Domestic Product (GDP). It is a summary measure of human development that is published by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

HDI is a comparative measure of life expectancy, literacy, education, standards of living, and quality of life for countries worldwide. It is a standard means of measuring well-being, especially child welfare.

Table 1: Indices of Development for Selected Countries

It is used to distinguish whether the country is a developed, a developing or an underdeveloped country, and also to measure the impact of economic policies on quality of life. The index was developed in 1990 by Pakistani economist and Finance Minister Mahbub ul Haq and Indian Nobel Laureate for Economics, Amartya Sen.

Nigeria is ranked 156 at index 0.459. Nigeria is surpassed by Algeria (96, at 0.698), Angola (148, at 0.486), Egypt (113, at 0.644), Ghana (135, at 0.541), Kenya (143, at 0.509), Namibia (120, at 0.625) and South Africa (123, at 0.619). It falls into the Low Human Development group

2.3 Technology Index

Garcia et al (2006) observed that science and technology are central elements of a dynamic growth process because technical knowledge is a driving force for rising productivity and competitiveness.

Technology index denotes a country’s technological readiness. The index is created with such indicators as companies spending on R&D, the creativity of the country’s scientific community, personal computer and internet penetration rates.

At 2.99 Nigeria ranked 86 globally trailing after Egypt (64, at 3.68), Ghana (77, at 3.21), Kenya (71, at 3.31), Namibia (65, at 3.66), South Africa (39, at 4.33), and Tanzania (82, at 3.12).

2.4 Literacy Rate

Literacy is the ability to read and write one’s own name and further for knowledge and interest, write coherently, and think critically about the written word. The inability to do so is called illiteracy. For statistical purposes, UNESCO defines a literate person as someone who can read and write a short simple statement about his/her life. In recognising its impact on poverty, health, active citizenship and empowerment, the development community recognises the fact that illiteracy is a condition that denies people opportunity.

Literacy encompasses a complex set of abilities to understand and use the dominant symbol systems of a culture for personal and community development. In a technological society, the concept of literacy is expanding to include the media and electronic text, in addition to alphabetic and number systems.

Nigeria ranks 189 globally at 61.3% literacy level. Algeria (177, at 69.9%), Angola (176, at 70.1%), Egypt (174, at 72.0), Ghana (183, at 67.3%), Kenya (142, at 87.4%), Malawi (168, at 74.85), Namibia (138, at 88.8), South Africa (147, at 86.4%), Tanzania (178, at 69.4%) and Zambia (158, at 80.6%) all surpass Nigeria.

Over two-thirds of the world’s 793 million illiterate adults are found in only eight countries, namely Bangladesh, China, Egypt, Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, and Pakistan. Among the countries contributing the highest illiterate population. Nigeria also has the highest rate of poverty at 67.98 %.

2.5 Global Peace Index

The Global Peace Index (GPI) is an attempt to measure the relative position of nations’ and regions’ peacefulness. The study is the brainchild of Australian entrepreneur Steve Killelea and is endorsed by individuals such as Kofi Annan, the Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, former Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari, Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus, economist Jeffrey Sachs, former president of Ireland Mary Robinson, and former US president Jimmy Carter (GPI, 2010; Vision of Humanity, 2012). Factors examined by the authors include internal factors such as levels of violence and crime within the country and factors in a country’s external relations such as military expenditure, its relations with neighbouring countries and the level of respect for human rights.

Nigeria ranked 146 at 2.801 falling in the rank of the least peaceful countries in the world. Every other African country listed in Table 1 has a higher level of peace. From 2007 to date, Nigeria has consistently ranked low in the index, signifying worsening state of the nation in terms of peace and security in the past five years. The latest ranking conflicts with the Nation’s proclamation that Nigeria is safe for investment, despite incessant bomb attacks that had killed and is still killing many people, especially in the North, kidnapping in the East and resurgence of militancy in the Niger Delta.

Table 2: Nigeria is one of the 8 Largest Contributors to Global Illiteracy

3.0 WHAT WAS IT BEFORE?

In the curriculum handed over by the colonialists, there were such subjects as Civics that deals with social sciences and the local culture, Geography that deals with the earth sciences and History that tells of stories relating to explorations, navigation, religion propagation and the past relating to the presence of the localities.

In most of the religion-based schools, there were orchards filled with palatable and tempting fruits that no student dared pluck. Those who went through such training are the ones that are being circulated in governance when they should be relaxing in their “armchairs” and giving advice to the younger ones in governance. These are the same people in administration up till the late 1970s when an ex-student could apply for transcript through the Post and Telecommunications Department (P&T) and it would be attended to with despatch, when a Youth Corps Member would apply for refund of his/her caution deposit from his former university and it would be forwarded within a fortnight through the P&T, when an applicant did not need to know the location of a university before the day of his/her enrolment.

Our leaders up to and including Gowon’s regime were patriotic:

  1. Awolowo, Chief Obafemi: He was an astute businessman before he went to study commerce and eventually law. He was trading in cocoa produce. He practised land law and there were claims that he received his fees mainly through land ceding. He was wealthy for his time and left a substantial estate.
  2. Azikiwe, Dr. Nnamdi: A well-learned man of repute. He was a journalist and owned a newspaper publishing; which platform he used for his contribution to the struggle for independence. He also probably made some wealth before entering into politics
  3. .Balewa, Sir Tafawa: He was a teacher turned politician. He left no substantial estate even as the Prime Minister.
  4. Bello, Sir Ahmadu: He was a teacher turned politician >He was committed to the emancipation of the Northern Region. He was not wealthy and left no substantial estate. There was a story that those who murdered him, in a coup, wanted to show off his loot and thus brought the security safe in his house to the open. On blowing same open the safe was found to contain one shilling and the address of an English friend: if this is not the truth it would be near; considering the status of the estate he left behind;
  5. Gowon, Dr. Yakubu: Ousted from office as a young man, he subsequently went into exile in the United Kingdom, where he enroled for a degree programme and furthered to acquire a Ph.D. in political science as a student at the University of Warwick. He lived in north London and integrated himself with the English community. He served a term as Churchwarden in the local church. On his return to Nigeria he formed a non-denominational religious group, Nigeria Prays. He is also involved in the Guinea Worm Eradication Programme as well as the HIV Programme with Global Fund of Geneva. Gowon founded his own organisation in 1992 called the Yakubu Gowon Centre. The organisation is said to work on issues in Nigeria such as good governance as well as infectious disease control including HIV/AIDS, guinea worm, and malaria;
  6. Okpara, Sir Michael: He was a strong advocate of what he called “pragmatic socialism” and believed that agricultural reform was crucial to the ultimate success of Nigeria. He never owned a house of his own while he was in government. His friends and beneficiaries had to build a house for him in his home place after his return from exile.

What really went wrong between then and now? Fagbadebo (2007) reported that the Nigerian state is a victim of high-level corruption causing the retardation of national development and a ceaseless cycle of crisis arising from peoples’ discontent against the government. He further stated that corruption became legitimised, especially during the Babangida and Abacha regimes (1985-1998), with huge revenues, but wasteful spending, and nothing to show in terms of physical developments

4.0 ADDRESSING THE ISSUE

Late Chinua Achebe said that “the trouble with Nigeria is simply and squarely a failure of leadership”. He is of the view that “the major problem is the unwillingness or inability of its leaders to rise to the responsibility, to the challenge of personal examples which are hallmarks of true leadership”. His claim can be substantiated with the following:

  1. There was an insurgency that gradually developed into civil war after the failures of several dialogues. The insurgency was put off through what was described as “military action”. The antidote “military action” left no splinters in the form of guerrilla warfare: a feat for Nigeria;
  2. Towards the end of Babangida Administration, into the short-lived Sonekan’s interim leadership, the banks had lost the confidence of the people. The Abacha regime quickly restored the integrity of the banks; although many of them failed out;
  3. An erstwhile Minister of Communication declared that telephone was for the “rich”: Obasanjo Regime made telephone available to all and sundry (Fig. 2): breaking the dominance of Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL);

    Telephone is now ubiquiyous
  4. From Babangida regime, all through to the Abacha regime fuel scarcity was the order of the day but Obasanjo was able to put this in check and there was most of the time free flow of fuel:
  5. The tenure of Namadi Sambo as Executive Governor of Kaduna State brought the trains out to roll again on the tracks: thus, easing transportation along Kafanchan-Kaduna-Zaria and spurring the Nigerian Railway to wake up: this act has resuscitated the Lagos-Kano line;
  6. Nigerians were made to believe, and are still being told, that there is subsidy on fuel but Abacha made us aware that profit was being made on fuel: the Abacha regime sold PMS for N11.00/litre and a declared N4.00/litre profit was ploughed into the Petroleum [Special] Trust Fund (PTF) that funded the national facilities and infrastructures rehabilitation programme of the regime; Subsequent administrations have resurfaced the subsidy issues and Nigerians have also refused to ask how Abacha was able to gather profits he utilised for infrastructures rehabilitation and where the subsidies of the subsequent regimes surface from; and
  7. Raji Fasola Administration’s capability to handle the menace of solid waste management in Lagos metropolis.

Table 3: Price Fluctuation of Premium Motor Spirit From 1977-2012
(N1= 100k; N165=US$ approx., by 2013)

4.1 What are the Problems?

To be able to salvage Nigeria there is a need to identify the problems, identify their sources and proffer solutions. Nigeria’s problems are known and are solvable. Every Nigerian believes that it is the other Nigerians that should address and carry out the solutions while he/she is excluded from the solving process.

4.1.1 Corruption

Every prominent politician has spoken against corruption and advocated integrity but how many of them can boldly claim to be free from gratifications from establishments for the passage of budget drafts (Adeniji, 2012)? The fuel subsidy issue is still fresh in memory (Ajayi, 2012). Also of note is Alamieyeseigha’s pardon (Odebode and Olokor, 2013) notwithstanding that Nigeria as a whole and the judiciary were ridiculed because of the man: is there any justifiable reason for the pardon on a crime committed by the recipient?

Public officers embezzle with impunity: allegedly under covers of higher authorities (Razaq, 2004; Bajulaiye, 2007) while those elected to govern involve themselves in money laundering. Iyaniwura (2013) reported that in 2001 when former President Obasanjo tried to look into the US$12.4 billion that disappeared under IBB’s regime, it was said that all records with the Central Bank of Nigeria that were relating to the scam had disappeared. But in 2005 when the House of Representatives wanted to impeach the President, the records suddenly reappeared.

Every prominent traditional ruler has pleaded with governance on ending corruption but conspicuously and flamboyantly confer traditional titles on corrupt politicians and so-called statesmen and those who have displayed wealth acquired through doubtful means: some get implicated in acts of malpractices (thepost, 2012; Information Nigeria, 2013).

Notable “men of God” mount the pulpits and rostra to preach against corruption and malpractices but many are known to bootlick politicians, wealthy retired military officers and businessmen of doubtful characters for gratifications and sponsorships (Olokor, 2013). The Christ Embassy’s complicity in Sheraton Hotels’ N39m loot is a case in point (Ajaero, 2003).

4.1.2 Divide and Rule Approach

Caulcrick (2013) aptly summed this up thus “The government of Babangida created a relief valve for dissent by allowing dual nationality for Nigerians. That masterly act allows the untouchables in the society to have a window of escape to other lands, instead of confrontations with the government of the day as the effect of SAP began to bite. It would have been the children of influential people who would most likely have been born in the West and not those of the masses. They, most probably, would have been the ones to champion the dissent to the government. With them out of the way, it was a picnic for that government to dish out unpalatable meals to the populace”.

4.1.3 Deception

On what basis was the title “giant” adopted? As shown above, the title is spiritually damaging. No sane person ever names his child Cain or Judas. Nigeria ignorantly assumed that the rapidly diminishing and unsustainable oil money, the vast unutilised land, the vast water resources that flow through the land into the Atlantic unused, the uncontrolled solid minerals that are being exploited unofficially and the high poverty-stricken illiterate population are enough qualifying factors for leadership of the continent: the United States of America is able to lead the world because it is resourceful and productive. Europe was able to explore and colonise Africa because it is adventurous and enterprising and such developing countries as India are able to lift up their economies because they are progressively determined.

From the establishment of the Nigerian Civil Service by the British colonial power in 1861 it has undergone several reforms (Ogunrotifa, 2012). Every effort from post-independence era to the contemporary times aimed at improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the federal civil service by successive governments in Nigeria have failed to cause the civil service to deliver efficient service to the people. Ogunrotifa further observed that it suffers from obsolescence, lethargy and a lack of enthusiasm in carrying out government policies. He noted that most of the previous reforms largely failed because of plethora of factors: lack of political will to implement the reforms on the part of the political leadership, politics, sentiments and mediocrity that have undermined and ensured that the recommendations of several committees were never implemented to the letter, government attempt to reform civil service out of the way of its capitalistic foundation without taking a break from the status quo, and conscious attempt at ignoring democratic practice in the management of civil service.

Very often Nigerians blame their woes on the colonialists; however, somebody needs to reveal the documents the British colonialists left behind stating that:

  1. State Executive Governors should concentrate on money laundering and not service delivery;
  2. The refineries should be kept inactive to ensure regular importation:
  3. Natural gas should be flared to ensure that Nigeria does not have too much money;
  4. Mandates of research institutes should be distorted to ensure non-performance;;
  5. Extension agencies of the various agricultural establishments should be detonated to allow for food importation;
  6. Government properties should be sold for a pittance; many beneficiaries sold minute portions of the containing lands to pay for the properties, built houses in their hometowns, bought cars and still had millions in their accounts;
  7. Productive and honest officers should be rationalised out of service to allow for mediocrity;
  8. The railway transportation system should be discontinued;
  9. Funds for establishing and rehabilitating public infrastructures should be embezzled;
  10. Facilities and infrastructures should not be maintained; etc;
  11. Civil Service should be made inactive;
  12. National Assembly should decide their own emoluments; carting millions of naira on a monthly basis while civil servants are pegged at N18,000 monthly

 

Mythical Giants

5.0 WAY FORWARD

Presently Nigeria does not need a qualifying title: Nigeria needs an aspiration; an aspiration that is related to the Vision 20 2020. But Nigeria also needs to review that vision based on where it is in relation to the target (Table 4). Nigeria threw away the flying elephant because elephants do not fly.

Nigeria should cease to be a giant because giants do not succeed. Giants do not develop; they die out. Nigerians are interested in titles: Alhaji; Hadjia; JP (Jerusalem Pilgrim); TP (Town Planner); QS (Quantity Surveyor); Surv (Surveyor); Senator (Even after the expiration of term); Hon. (Notwithstanding that he never raised or contributed any meaningful discussion to any bill); Engr (Even when he never entered the walls of a Trade Centre/Technical College); His Excellency (Notwithstanding that no developments are visible in the state attributable to him after his tenure but state revenues laundered into his accounts kept outside the shores of the land. Because Nigerians love to be entitled, they believe the nation also should.

Note: This write up should have been published 2013 but there was an oversight that made it unpushed. Until a reference was to be made to it was it discovered that it was still in a draft form. The conditions of Nigeria have not changed much.
Though economic growth is declared, economic development does not translate into improved wellbeing of the populace. The NASS people cart home millions monthly but states are owing civil servants their basic salaries of approximately N35,000.00/month for upwards of eleven months

Table 4: Economic Indicators of Level of Industrialisation

REFERENCES

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Ajaero, C. (2003). New Tune, New Dance Steps. Sunday, June 01, 2003. Accessed 30 Mar 2013. http://www.newswatchngr.com/editorial/prime/nigeria/10601114929.htm

Ajayi, Y. (2012). Fuel Subsidy Probe: Oil Biz Magnate, Femi Otedola Confirms Bribe to Lawmakers.-THISDAY Newspaper, June 11, 2012. Accessed 1 Apr 2013. aharareporters.com/news-page/fuel-subsidy-probe-oil-biz-magnate-femi-otedola-confirms-bribe-lawmakers-thisday-newspaper

Bajulaiye, O. (2007). Nigeria: N85bn NPA Scam – Bode George Still Under Probe – EFCC. Daily Trust, 7 December 2007. Accessed 30 Mar 2013. http://allafrica.com/stories/200712070164.html

Burgis T. (2010). Ibori Arrested in Money-Laundering Probe. The Financial Times, May 13 2010, 6:12 pm. Accessed 30 Mar 2013. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/74f70a64-5e95-11df-9266-00144feab49a.html#axzz2P1nl1b13

Caulcrick, S. A. (2013). Information – Weapon to Combat Nigeria’s Societal Ills. Accessed 29 Mar 2013. http://nigeriavillagesquare.com/articles/samuel-akinyele-caulcrick/information-weapon-to-combat-nigerias-societal-ills.html

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Garcia, R. M; R. Kohl; A. Ruengsorn; and J. Zislin (2006). Nigeria Economic Performance Assessment. A report produced by Nathan Associates Inc.for review by the United States Agency for International Development

GPI (2010). Endorsers. Global Peace Index. Institute for Economics and Peace 2010. Accessed 29 Mar 2013. http://multivu.prnewswire.com/mnr/prne/iep/42434/docs/42434-endorsers.pdf

Information Nigeria (2013). Traditional Ruler, 18 Others Arrested Over Sale of NDDC Transformers. Accessed 31 Mar 2013. http://www.informationng.com/2013/02/traditional-ruler-18-others-arrested-over-sale-of-nddc-transformers.html.

Iyaniwura (2013). Interesting Things About IBB, Nigeria’s Only Military President. Accessed 2 Apr 2013. http://iyaniwura.com/interesting-things-about-ibb-nigerias-only-military-president/

Manuaka, T. (2012). Government Policy Forced Us Out of Manufacturing – Mohammed Yunusa, MD, Dunlop Nigeria. Accessed 22 May 2012. Wednesday, 29 February 2012 http://www.tellng.com/…GbPVT8

Odebode, N. and Olokor, F. (2013). Alamieyeseigha still under investigation –FG, UK. Punch, March 16, 2013. Accessed 30 Mar 2013. http://www.punchng.com/news/alamieyeseigha-still-under-investigation-fg-uk/

Ogunbodede, E. F; , Ilesanmi, A. O. & Olurankinse, F. (2010) . Petroleum Motor Spirit (PMS) Pricing Crisis and the Nigerian Public Passenger Transportation System. The Social Sciences, Volume: 5, Issue: 2, 2010 pp113-121

Ogunrotifa, A. B. (2012). Federal Civil Service Reform in Nigeria: The Case Of democratic Centralism. Vol. 1, Issue 10 (October 2012) Journal of Radix International Educational and Research ConsortiumISSN: 2250–3994

Olokor, F. (2013). CAN Crisis Deepens. January 24, 2013. Accessed 30 Mar 2013. http://www.punchng.com/news/can-crisis-deepens/

Razaq, A. (2004).This Sacred Cow Called Bode George. Accessed 30 Mar 2013. http://www.nigerdeltacongress.com/tarticles/this_sacred_cow_called_bode_geor.htm

thepost (2012). King Pirate names Oba, prominent Nigerians as sponsors. thepost September 19, 2012. Accessed 1 Apr 2013. http://thepost-ng.com/king-pirate-names-oba-prominent-nigerians-as-sponsors/

Umunna, I. (2010). Making Lagos Green and Beautiful. The African Courier, 2010. Accessed 1 Apr 2013. http://www.theafricancourier.de/ …beautiful&catid=77:politics&Itemid=805

Vision of Humanity (2012). A Measure of Peace. 10th Dec 2012. Accessed 29 Mar 2013. http://www.visionofhumanity.org/info-center/finding-a-measure-of

 

World Statistics [sorted by Area][Stats were last updated 07-Dec-2008]

World Statistics [sorted by Area][Stats were last updated 07-Dec-2008a] adjusted for ranking

CIA (2012. Budget expenditures 2012 Country Ranks. CIA World Factbook 2012. Accessed 28 Feb 2013.              http://www.photius.com/rankings/economy/budget_expenditures_2012_0.html .

Wikipedia (2012). List of countries by electricity production. Accessed 26 Apr 2012. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_electricity_production

Wikipedia (2012a). List of countries by Human Development Index. Accessed 23 Oct 2013 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_Human_Development_Index

Nationmaster (). List of Countries by Technology Index. http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/eco_tec_ind-economy-technology-index

Wikipedia (2013b). List of Countries by Literacy Rate. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_literacy_rate

Wikipedia (2012c). Global Peace Index. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_Peace_Index