There are numerous practices and conventions in the civilized climes that have tailored the socio-economic matrix in the direction of humanitarian expedience.
If humanitarian exigencies would predetermine policy preferences of our state governments like it is obtainable in advanced democracies then the description of democracy as the government of the people, by the people and for the people would begin to resonate with the people.
In Africa and most of the Third World countries, democracy and the people have become inexplicably strange bedfellows with mutually exclusive tendencies.
It is trite to mention the gravity of hardship being experienced by the average Nigerian particularly the state civil servants, who have been so dehumanized by non-payment of several months of salaries and emoluments and with absolutely no buffer of palliative from any quarter, a situation that has subjected many to a scavenging status or a default mode of perceptual borrowing. The most notorious in the debasement of life expectancy index is the denial of pensions and gratuities payable to the geriatric class.
For instance many of the retirees in Oyo state are battling with one terminal ailment or the other, the treatment cost of which their gratuities can easily defray.
The unruffled response of the state government to this humanitarian crisis is reprehensible.
May I hereby appeal to Gov Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo state and other governors still owing retirees and treating the situation as the least priority project to at least isolate a segment of these senior citizens who are vulnerable to terminal ailment and pay them with immediate effect. This can be sorted out with verifiable medical checks and certifications. For instance retirees that need kidney transplant and all manner of surgical medical procedure may not survive the state government’s complacent actionable timelines, which are mostly indeterminate. The best and the most humane policy option would be to identify and prioritize payment to retirees with life threatening ailments as means of placing value on sanctity of life and mortality.
Allowing these critical aged demographics to die needless deaths when there are options at the disposal of the governors is the most appalling national disaster.
Any nation that ingratiates the aged and the young has a quixotic destiny with posterity.
► Bukola Ajisola wrote via [email protected]