MAKE IT COUNT

2011-Elections

A few sips of my favourite wine, then I was embraced by sleep. But even in that state I got to look at Nigeria, my darling country. This Nigeria looked different; I needed the sun rays to remind me that I was in Nigeria. I realized that I was involved in a system where it was only normal to smile, where happiness was knitted in the skin of everyone. Everything seemed to work, but then reality drifted in. The failed system envenomated my perfect dream, the fan stopped rolling and I felt the heat sift in, in a few minutes I was in between my dream and reality. I was actually enjoying electricity in my dream, but then I could feel the heat all over my skin. It was a very complex situation for me and I eventually woke up with a heavy sigh. If I was the matrix then I would have happily stayed in my dream world, but that’s all fictional. My soggy shirt is the least issue at the moment; I think there is a shared disillusion amongst Nigerian citizens. I have taking out time to engage in healthy arguments with a couple of Nigerians, and the joint response has been dispiriting. Most people are of the notion that Nigeria cannot be revamped, and that It will take more than an election to resuscitate the country. It’s puzzling and saddening to see that a vast majority of us have obliterated the possibility of having a perfect Nigeria. I look at the issues that we are facing presently, and I think we shouldn’t solely blame it on bad governance. I think the citizenry have been asleep for too long, perhaps we have been enthralled in our dream world, because that’s the only place we see the “perfect Nigeria”.

I was privileged to meet with Fela Durotoye sometime last year, and I immensely enjoyed what he did with his slide show. He tried to represent how far certain countries had come in the past 30 years, and the pictures were taking from an aerial point. Sincerely, there has been no change in Nigeria! We can look at Saudi Arabia that was a desert just years ago, and how far they have come already. My convictions will only be mine, unless I do something about it. Your opinions will only be yours, unless you do something about it as well. It’s almost impossible for a week to pass without hearing people argue about the government and Nigeria in general. Whether it’s the motor park, hotel lobby, fuel station everyone seems to have an idea of how to move this nation forward. I want to look at our individual opinions as small cells that need to come together to form a bigger unit, and the only way to integrate and try to convert our opinions into actual results is by taking part in the election process. I saw a coupon some years ago and it read “if you don’t like politics, think twice because politics likes you”. A lot of us have never voted in our lives even when we are qualified to vote, we don’t think we have to, we also don’t think our votes will change anything. To be candid, when we drive through the bad roads or complain when the electricity goes off, that’s politics at work. We can change all that now, the time has come. I urge you, with all vehemence to participate this time around. Make those opinions count.

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