THE WORLD with Sunday Oyinloye

This is not my dream

Nigerians  are good at debating political issues and also good in commending or condemning actions of those in government. You can’t really blame some of them because  a few in government have turned themselves to masquerades and are mere  entertainers rather than policy makers or lawmakers. We have seen elected persons dancing literally naked in the market because they do not have shame or conscience.

We live in a country where people react to issues before thinking about issues. It is a nation where people don’t think independently and a country where people don’t ask questions, maybe until very recently. Though a great country, we live in a society where everything is based on religious, ethnic or political sentiments and where the so-called political analysts  blindly queue-up behind their choice politicians.

Nigeria is one of the few countries in the world where people don’t ask questions on what they read in the social media. Many are educated but largely ignorant. Nigerians hardly discuss  sound economic issues, but when it comes to politics, you see many self-styled political analysts making all forms of comments.

There has been so much energy wasted on debates about the performances of those in authority .The truth of the matter is that many politicians in Nigeria get into office before thinking about what to do for the people. Some are working on blueprints  developed  by other people, they simply do not have any input in drafting programmes, they are implementing.

I have said it repeatedly that as a nation, we are not getting our priorities right. For instance, why is it that corporate organisations in the country most times hunt for talents in the entertainment industry rather than science and technology? Why are they not using their  huge profits to hunt for the best young farmers or youth who have made breakthroughs in seed multiplications and other aspects of agriculture, do we think at all?

Many businesses that have foreigners behind them in the country  don’t  give anything back to the Agricultural sector which is critical in transforming the nation’s economy.  They also give little to the development of science and technology because they want Nigeria to perpetually depend on their countries for most of our needs. But can you blame them, when they are operating in an environment where anything goes?.

Some years back, I watched a science exhibition organised  for secondary schools by Nigerian Television Authority  and I shed tears for my dear country. Tears not because the boys and girls were not good, but because of their talents which might eventually be wasted. After the programme, what went to my mind was why can’t government put all of them in a Science Academy, fund the academy properly and make them to carry out more research on areas that can enhance our economic and scientific development.

What have we done with the results of past research works in our institutions of learning?  Many  brilliant Nigerians have come up with great inventions in the past which were not developed. The situation has not changed because it is the same old  players in different uniforms that are directing the affairs of our nation. Why allow people to die with their inventions and ideas? Why can’t Nigerians open debate  of this very important issue instead of wasting  time discussing politics that will not take us  anywhere?

It is disheartening that most of the things that generate interests in Nigeria are those that have to do with politics and not how to bring back the Kano groundnut pyramids. They are not issues of how to revamp cocoa plantations in the South-West or how to make the East produce palm oil for exportation.

The roads are bad in many parts of the country, yet we have legions of Engineers seeking for jobs. We have rocks that could be blasted and used to fix our roads. We have bitumen that could also be used but buried unexplored in Ondo State. This has not attracted our elites and politicians, what they are after is looting, looting and nothing but looting.

As a nation, we need to re-order our priorities and focus on things that can help us grow. There is much mistrust and hatred in the land just because an average Nigerian is selfish. An average Nigerian thinks about his religion and tribe first, he seems not to care about what happens to other people around him as long as he is comfortable. An average Nigerian seems not to care about the future of his country, he seems to care only on what is happening on the political front because politics is business in Nigeria.

This is not the dream of our founding fathers; this is not my dream for Nigeria, a nation very dear to my heart. The earlier we retrace our steps the better, so that we all can have a secured future and a nation we can be proud of.