BETWEEN MAN ANIMAL By Sunday Oyinloye

“The faithful man has perished from the earth and there is no one upright among men. They all lie in wait for blood every man hunts for his brother with a net that they may successfully do evil with both hands. The prince asks for gifts, the Judge seeks a bribe and the great man utters his evil desire. So they scheme together. The best of them is like a brier, the most upright is sharper than a thorn hedge”.

The above biblical passage from Micah summarizes the current situation in Nigeria, a nation blessed with human and natural resources but neck-deep in corruption, killings and other forms of evil. A nation which rarely experiences serious natural disasters but whose people have forgotten their creator. A people loved by God but who are not taking full advantage of God’s love for them.

It is not an over statement to say that Nigeria is in the hands of a few people who determine the destiny of nearly 170 million others. The rich in the country are like caterpillars while the rest citizens are the crops. The caterpillars are feeding fat on the crops destroying them so that they don’t have any future.

They are like frosts destroying the sycamore trees. The few controlling the wealth of the land are like locusts destroying farm lands.

The gap between the rich and the poor is getting wider, while a few a living in luxury, majority are living in abject poverty. Forget about the economic jargon that Nigeria has more middle-class people. The fact is that majority are hungry, terribly hungry. When people are hungry and the future looks bleak to them, they can do anything not minding the consequences of their actions.

Nigeria probably has the highest number of churches and mosques in the world, but majority of the people rich and poor do not exhibit the traits of those who know God.

In fact, many in position of authority and the rich go to churches and mosques during the day, but when it is night, they dine and wine with the devil, so their hearts become hardened and forget the plight of the common man.

From the North to the East, South to the West, the rate at which innocent blood is shed is very alarming. People do all sorts of unimaginable things to gain economic and political power. The evil in the land has gone from bad to worse. Those seeking power and quick money are trading on the blood of innocent Nigerians.

Most times when I look at the evils being perpetrated in the land, I shed tears. Why on earth should a man take another man’s life under any guise? I have asked myself severally whether animals are not better than human beings.

There is no doubt that God made us superior to other creatures, but many are exhibiting character lower than that of animals. I feel sad that a country I was so proud as a child (and even now) has become a society where human lives no longer have value.

It has become haven of bombers, kidnappers, robbers, pen robbers, cultists and other manner of people with evil tendencies.

We have fertile land that could be used for agriculture to make Nigeria the food basket of Africa, but the land is being used as camps by kidnappers, robbers and other blood-sucking groups.

Nigerians are suffering in the midst of plenty. You wake up to read bad news on daily basis and the so-called leaders will tell you that they are on top of the situation.

The high level of insecurity we have in Nigeria today points to the fact that successive administrations have not been proactive.

We have millions who eat what they see and not what they like. Yet there are others who don’t even know where the next meal will come from.

While millions are barely struggling to live, a few Nigerian are stealing our wealth and keeping same in their foreign accounts. They are building mansions at home and abroad even as poverty level remains high among the people.

Some animals move in groups in the bush to graze without hurting one another, but Nigerians kill for the same purpose because of greed.

The leadership of Nigeria should wake up from their slumber. This is not a time for story telling, this is not the time to justify or promote evil.

Some are stealing billions and getting away with it or at worst locked up and later released while majority live on an income of less than N20,000 per month. What a society you might ask.

There is the urgent need for government to find a lasting solution to the problem of unemployment and insecurity in the land, perhaps this will lead to a reduction at the rate of which innocent blood is being shed.

And for those who derive joy in shedding of blood, they should remember that the evil men do live after them. Again, I want to say that we have something to learn from animals.