Nigeria: A Tripod of Hate!

by Yahaya Balogun

“I fear evolution has inbuilt greed and aggression to the human genome. There is no sign of conflict lessening, and the development of militarized technology and weapons of mass destruction could make that disastrous.” ●Stephen Hawking

The number one New York Times bestseller, Angie Thomas’ new book titled: “The Hate you give” is a compelling book I am recommending to haters anywhere to read. Nigerian haters who dwell in self-hate will benefit immensely from the imports of the book. In a nutshell, the book chronicles the burden of black African-Americans in the dark periods of American history. That is, the Jim Crow era in America! The hate you spread in Nigeria may be counterproductive and consume you and many other innocent people. Politics, religion and tribal motives are the three nuances being weaponized now to destroying the fabric of the nation and the world.

Sadly, this concerning development is evolving at a rate we have never seen before in Nigeria! There are two groups of people in Nigeria today whom I term as ‘opposing forces in Nigeria!’ The first and second groups of these Nigerians believe differently that “Nigeria is a matter of time!” But the first group believes that Nigeria is a “mere geopolitical expression” that is irredeemably destined to disintegrate any moment from now. The second group of people believes that Nigeria is a bridge of hope if her people get their mojo to make it so. This writer is an incurable optimist who incurably belongs to the latter group of people (those who believe that Nigeria is a bridge of hope). You are allowed to call this writer a fantasized dreamer! But his dream of a new Nigeria through optimism is anchored on his courage of convictions, and the antithesis of the evolving global developments. It will get worse before it will get better!

Stephen Hawking’s instructive exposition above is premised on the current three nuances (Politics, Religion, and Tribe) in Nigeria. Nigeria is sitting ignorantly on a tripod stand of hate while love hovers her firmament. Politics, religion, and ethnicity are now being used expeditiously as weapons of hate to hatch an agenda: an agenda to destabilize and plunge the country into a lethal war. Nigeria is already going through the bedlam of crisis, false unity and conceited associations. It’s high time we renegotiated our unity through constructive conversations. Conversations that will redefine amicably our ill-conceived conception of administrative convenience as designed by the brutish British and colonial masters. At Nigeria’s infancy, everyone was jostling in the euphoria of glowing expectations of a birthed Nigeria. Abruptly, the military putsch punctuated the joy of launching Nigeria to Eldorado. Corruption was institutionalized, and it has become a way of life. Everyone is now motivated by instant gratification. Corruption in Nigeria can be defined as the inability of the corrupt people to eke or have access to the national cake like their counterparts. If a corrupt individual has access to the nation’s wealth illegally, corruption becomes an opportunity. There are so many Jonathans, Babangidas, Obasanjos, Buharis and Abachas in all of Nigerians!

Now, it is a big task to change a rotten system! It also requires an unfettered approach with vision, imagination and unhindered determination to salvage a contradictory nation. Nigeria must save herself from herself to achieve sustainable good results. Nigeria is a beautiful nation in a big bang of a nauseating mess, pangs of hate and lies. It’s unfathomable to see how Nigerians now openly traffic in self-hate to hate themselves. Most Nigerians are being weaponized or armed with hate by the politicians, religious bigots, and tribal zealots at the expense of their future. Our uncorrectable countrymen and women are now making a once-beloved country the forest of hate and divisiveness. So many ghoulish compatriots now hide under the canopies of politics, religion, and ethnicity to spread hate.

Meanwhile, some of our contemporary Nigerians do hate overtly, some do hate covertly. Before this period, it was greed and covetousness that were prevalent. Now, hate, greed, and ignorance are intertwined in the warped consciousness of the people. Our people need cognitive restructuring! People relish daily in this new normal of an abnormal situation. The majority of those people who traffic in hate are mostly religious people and corrupt toddlers of immediate yesterday. They are less knowledgeable in the odious history of Nigeria. A religious nation with religious entrepreneurs of hate and resentment is now in the trade of hate to make the people self-destruct.

I sympathize with Buhari and other patriotic Nigerians who are truly fighting daily to re-orientate and change the corrupt system. Corruption is a menace. It’s an institutionalized conundrum. It’s generally an acceptable way of life. It destroys, kills and wastes human and material resources. Whoever wants to fight corruption in a dysfunctional society must be ready for frustration, malignant abuse, and hate.

Moreover, deceit and ostentatious lifestyle are very prevalent in Nigeria. The naive citizens now dress themselves up in borrowed robes only to get grotesquely naked outside for the comic relief of the global community. For posterity’s sake, President Buhari is clearly left with only one existential option: to alleviate the sufferings of the impoverished people through people-oriented policies and programs. Anything short of this positive suggestion will spell doom for Buhari’s goodwill among his poor admirers and Nigeria. The president seems to be the one-man battalion with a multitude of nitwit-foot-soldiers. You cannot make any distinction between the two dominant political parties in our dysfunctional clime. The leaders and the led are mutually feasting on the carcasses of an unhealthy nation.

The two parties share the same genetic engineering and deformed DNA of corruption and graft. Their genomes are infected with hate and survival of the fittest. All party chieftains from both sides of the aisles; their wives, families, friends, acquaintances and those who get crumbs are fighting in the cocoon of corruption. Even the newly incubated parties do not fair better. They are all looking for how to fill up their pockets of corruption. In Nigeria, the more you (peruse) look through the nation’s mirror, the more you see the preponderance (bulk) of lies, deceitful behavior, graft and political opportunism of the political class and followers. Here in the United States, though, not a bed of roses, the more you live in a decent and functional environment, the more you are open to fulfilling your innate potential, and etch towards complete self-fulfillment or actualization.

Sadly, in our situation back home, the more you want to disentangle yourself from the murky waters of Nigeria and have your inner peace, the more you unavoidably finding yourself in the realm of the voiceless and hapless people in Nigeria. My willingness and reluctant mind are always prodded by the consciousness of guilt and ugly happenings in our country. The more I want to keep silent, the more my conscience becomes unsettling with the new normal of an abnormal situation in our bruised society.

Intuitively, those of us who are infatuated by the impending glory of Nigeria cannot keep quiet in the face of naughtiness. Our good conscience is now dangling and dwelling in-between the devil and the deep blue sea! Also, while we still have some men and women of good conscience and characters, you simply and absolutely can’t trust most people anymore—-and also, you simply can’t compromise and silence your own conscience and voice in our nation’s wilderness and contradictions. Contrary to the minds of the pessimists and naysayers in our midst, those of us who are incurable optimists will continue to keep the dampening hope alive in our beleaguered nation. Our hope is unquenchably alive!

May God earnestly heal our comatose nation and bring the country back to the path of peace and prosperity. AMIN!

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