America excels in many areas due to ingenuity. Every state of the union is unique and, in its uniqueness, finds a way to meet the needs of its citizens
I have often wondered, like many other immigrants in the United States of America, why America is so strong in many aspects and could provide an abundance of amenities to its citizenry. What makes the American systems — the political and economic systems — strong? Though there is no utopian system in the world, yet the American experiment, with some of its imperfections, has proven to be the best in the world.
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Going back to the question, the answer is simple and could be found in a combination of factors—spirits. The spirits include that of service, hard work, and the spirit of collective drive to succeed. Also, freedom to fail or succeed, inalienable rights enshrined in the constitution, personal responsibility, healthy competition, and most importantly, the spirit of ingenuity have strengthened the structures of the American system.
One may fairly conclude that while cycle of progress pervades the American economic and political systems, cycle of corruption permeates the systems found in most African countries.
America excels in many areas, including science, technology, and medicine due to ingenuity. Every state of the union is unique and, in its uniqueness, finds a way to meet the needs of its citizens by managing its resources creatively and prudently. Minnesota, a beautiful and most highly ranked livable state, has a good number of lakes, the great Mississippi river, and enjoys the four seasons of the year: winter, spring autumn, and fall. Agriculture thrives in the State. Minnesota is the home of both Vikings Football and Twins Baseball Clubs. In the presidential elections, it is considered a safe blue state.
American ingenuity is also evident in Minnesota. That could be seen in the magnificent and the biggest mall in USA, Mall of America, situated in the suburb, Bloomington, of the twin cities of St Paul- Minneapolis metropolitan area. The Mall of America is simply splendid! The Mall of America, a tourist attraction, is a globally renowned largest family entertainment center. It is the largest fully enclosed shopping complex that housed various stores, including nightclubs, about 10 movie theaters, and other countless entertainment options. The Mall of America attracts millions of visitors every year.
A few years back, I was in Bloomington, Minnesota for an event. Ever since then I reminisce occasionally on the beauty of the place. During my trip, I had the opportunity to visit the Mall of America twice in one day. I admired the ingenuity that went into the concept, design, and actual erection of the mall. One of the visitors to the Mall on that day spiritedly described the complex in one word, “stupendous”. Stupendous is not limited to the aesthetic structures that could be found in the United States. The current political process in the country whets my appetite for a cycle of desired change in my home country Nigeria.
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I was reminded by the incessant rain in Nigeria this year about lack of infrastructure as shown in two past foreign reports. First, the BBC reported in November 6, 2012 that poor drainage infrastructure caused the flooding of the affected areas. It said, “Our correspondent says that poor drainage in Nigeria’s cities makes flooding likely after heavy rainfall. This is said to be the worst flooding in 50 years.” Secondly, the Huffington Post reported on November 5, 2012. that “Heavy seasonal rains typically cause flooding across Nigeria, as drainage can be poor in areas and people live in flood plains. However, the flooding this year was exacerbated by heavier than normal rains that cause officials in both Nigeria and neighboring Cameroon to open strained dams.”
That meant that the federal government knew there was a problem of flooding in some areas because of a potential breach of the dam due to age and dilapidation and no corrective measures were taken. Besides the dilapidated drainage system, network of express roads need to be repaired. The construction of the new Niger Bridge is yet to commence. These deathtraps were well known to the federal government whose responsibility it is to protect lives and properties of Nigerian citizens.
Well, as I stood a few yards away to admire the Mall of America, I imagined how Nigeria could have been if the leaders had not been wasting the country’s resources. Also, I thought about how effective the center could be if the leadership pool was not contaminated with corruption. I had no choice, but to muse.
I hope our leaders, who must have clocked enormous frequent flyer miles to the western world, are learning and applying the American ingenuity in Nigeria, especially in the healthcare system. Nigeria’s poor health care system is a drag on the national economy. It also gives rise to medical tourism to other countries, particularly India. Medical tourists from Nigeria is boon to India, whose hotels, airlines, hospitals, and other sectors share in the windfall from Nigeria’s medical tourists. Obviously, those who can afford to travel abroad for medical treatment are not sated with the quality of health care in Nigeria. However, their travel abroad seems to be draining the limited resources of the country. This money could have a multiplier effect if spent in Nigeria.
It’s abundantly clear that the sustainability and viability of a country’s economic and social growth depend largely on vibrant health care sector of that nation. No nation can maintain a steady economic growth in the absence an adequate health care system. Healthcare issues have been enigma in the life of Nigeria and its citizens. Again, solving the puzzle requires an aggressive approach from the federal, state, and local government. Healthcare problem is a national emergency and it should be considered as such.
This is truly a time of reflection for all Nigerians, especially in these concluding months of 2018. It is time the past and present leaders started working together to reflect on how to address the following issues for the benefit of Nigeria’s citizenry and the country’s global status: poverty, health care, economy, corruption, ethnic and religious violence, electoral reform, judicial system, and others. Meaningful progress in those and other areas is more urgent now than ever.