In many ways, and for too long, politics has been sickeningly uncharitable to Nigeria and Nigerians. Look at our winner-takes-all mindset and reality. Look at the loss of our sense of humanity and modesty. Look at our barefaced p-d-pilification and a-p-cilisation of everything we represent.
Pray, who builds a country the way Nigerians do Nigeria? Look at our government-people relations. Look at our top echelons’ horrendous quality. Look at how our very existence has been infected by sheer nepotism, monumental corruption and crass hypocrisy.
Even a diehard patriot looks at our indices and gets a sense that Nigeria is a lie in progress. This year, the country is a century and six (counting from amalgamation) and all of six decades old (since independence) but neither the country nor the people look it. Yet, we carry on smiling, hi-fiving and knuckle-’chopping’ because everything is fine, purportedly. Our degree of self-deprecation defies and annoys logic.
Still, the beat goes on. We keep singing and dancing. We only stop celebrating and begin protesting, à la Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, the moment the tune turns against us or our interest (namely, political party, religion or ethnic group). Until then, even with Nigeria burning, nothing spoil.
Nigerians hate Nigeria. Nigerians hate Nigerians. We feel nothing for each other. To us, lousy politics is fair as long as it favours us.
We seek victory, power, money at all costs. In the process, we discard intrinsic human values of love, care, empathy, sympathy, etc. We poke fun at the weak, the poor and those who haven’t won. We are hardly magnanimous in victory, forgetting that no one winsm, or loses, forever.
Enter Chief David Lyon, the Moses of Bayelsa. The All Progressives Congress standard-bearer was declared winner, against the run of play, in the governorship ballot of the oil-rich state. It seemed the tribunal, appeal court and somewhat the Supreme Court had given him the all-clear. He was 24 small hours to the Promised Land as governor when (goodness gracious!) the Supreme Court landed him a blow that knocked him out, bombing away his mandate, at least for the next four years.
I am PDP but, in this matter, my entire being (body, soul, spirit, everything) is with the APC man. Imagine it was me, or someone in my party. This isn’t about the propriety of the Supreme Court decision. Not being a lawyer and not given to helpless academic adventurism, I never lose sleep for things above me.
This is about the timing of the David Lyon misfortune. In addition, this is about the witchy reaction of a tiny minority of Bayelsans who don’t like him as well as those who think they love him more than he loves himself. Above all, this is about the extraBayelsa social media community. It’s a crying shame how we squandered a golden opportunity to prove that, although regarded as higher animals, we are not animals.
Listen to me, persons across both divides. First of all, you so-called supporters, who went on rampage, destroying governmental and nongovernmental resources, must bow your coconut heads in shame. Next time, either take your neanderthalism to the court headquarters in Abuja, where I believe you would find ready cure for your madness, or travel to Owerri and acquire sense for modern-day protestation. Nigerians had since imbibed nonviolent direct action as propounded by India’s Mahatma Gandhi, accentuated by South Africa’s Nelson Mandela and so masterfully showcased recently by Nigeria’s Emeka Ihedioha’s people in Imo State.
We cannot 24/7 mouth rule of law, but at every turn resort to jungle justice. Nigeria is not a jungle. In spite of and despite our collective treachery and insanity, Nigeria is a beautiful land. Nigeria deserves better.
Second of all, the person who with snide remarks posted the David Lyon inauguration dry run photos online, complete with those who made them go viral, must realise that was mockery taken too far. The man didn’t make himself governor-elect. He committed no crime rehearsing his swearing in. It’s a sin to deride people in their lowest moments: the thing is to console or pray for them.
Don’t be swayed by the new normals of a worldly church, a churchy world, animalistic man and humane animals. Watchers of Nat Geo Wild see animals humanely standing up for each other. On the other hand, watchers of you-know-which channels see the despicable transmogrification of humanity into animals: cheating, envying, fighting, hating, killing themselves. Or is man, in reality, lower animal?
You mock Chief Lyon today and unwittingly open an account to draw from, someday. It is not a prayer. It is how life is wired. Stop pouring scorn on people hit by the storms of life.
It doesn’t matter if they brought the mishap on themselves. Sen. Biobarakuma Degi-Eriemienyo, the former deputy governor-elect whose educational or name discrepancies attracted the full weight of the law, may not be as bad as many of us in high offices whose forgeries stink to low heavens. No, I don’t approve of Sen. Degi-Eriemienyo’s faux pas. Yes, I want man to live right, do right and embrace forgiveness always.
Rather than denigrate people who are down, learn (the way of God, tact and humility) from their experiential trajectory. That engenders fear of God and love for man, which dovetail to compel me now to put aside my pdpishness and empathise and sympathise openly with APC’s Chief Lyon, knowing this is an emotionally challenging time for him and his. While hoping no more shockers lurk in the Supreme Court for Bayelsa until perhaps 2024, here’s congratulating PDP’s Sen. Douye Diri who, having taken over as governor has shown early signs of promise and political smartness with that conciliatory visit to former President Goodluck Jonathan. Going forward, his deputy, Sen. Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, and he should reach out to and integrate Chief David Lyon fully, since that last-minute extreme bad luck in the homeland of Goodluck could have befallen anybody! God bless Nigeria!