Sometimes I wake up and I am drenched with tears. And the matter is: God, why and how did a country called Nigeria come to this sorry bend? God, is it then possible that you can give us Biafra? And we will, yes, we can save it and make it one of the greatest of nations of the world, a pride of the black universe. And after having done that we may return to save Nigeria or what remains of her. Nigeria, even for her worst enemies, deserves more than being the hell she is. Lord, can you give us this new Jerusalem? And the tears won’t leave me.
Why is Biafra savable and not Nigeria? That is a thesis that is easy to prove but should not delay us here. For those interested, certain hints of it are in my latest book, The University-Media Complex: As Nigeria’s Foremost Amusement Center. To summarise, we have not found a formula to live together. Thus what remains now, till we find such a formula, is to wander apart. And this is for our collective good.
Anyway, the important point is that Nigeria as is is runny disaster, a nation ruled by chaos. Thus if only to save the face of black humanity, we must do whatever sacrifices that are called. Otherwise, the black man may not stop being a synonym for failure.
There is no more time. If Nigerians cannot hang together in peace and as one piece, let them strive and blossom in their several wholesome pieces. It is now getting bloody shameful, no puns intended, to be Nigerian.
And the tears run. The black man and his universe as are and are self-presented, are in near-complete state of disrepair. And the Nigerian of course is the archetype of being black. Look at the deaths, look at the poverty, look at the chaos and pure primitiveness, even barbarisms, of our leaders in the highest places, and ourselves in the lowest valleys. Just the other day, for instance, the Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir el-Rufai, was confirming things. Parts, the largest parts of Nigeria, in his words, are in similar states as the worst of the world, typically Afghanistan. That’s a part of Nigeria as is. Point is, however, the rest of Nigeria has nothing to cheer. They are waiting to be sucked in by this Afghanistan-like hell. We are, don’t forget, one body polity. Do we still need to wait any longer before we act?
Next, the worst angle to the Nigerian collapse is not really leadership as canvassed by self-interested partisans. The truth is insistent that no other parties have failed Nigeria than her scholars and thinkers. And this is to the extent that these two tribes existed in Nigeria. A caveat. I may not exactly be Nigerian. I am Oru. Things happen.
It’s this leadership wrong diagnosis that has led us into many cul-de-sacs. We just act mindlessly. Nobody has thought out the Nigerian question. And without the Nigerian question fixed, the point is that Nigeria as a system will not work and is not workable. So why Nigeria is not working, is not because Buhari is an evil or bad leader? Nigeria is not working because, as a system, Nigeria is not workable. And the failure of designing a workable Nigeria, we warn, is not a leadership brief. It is a scholar’s vision. How best to make Nigeria work is a thesis question, not a leadership act. If the scholars fail at it, the probability that a leader will stumble on the correct formula is lower than zero.
So, if we can’t fix the nationality question, the best is to quickly come to a roundtable. The point is clear. The Fulani have brains like the Taiwanese. It thus follows that they can turn themselves into an industrial behemoth given even Taiwan-like barren lands. So, why not give them a Ruga Republic and stop this bloodletting?
So also for the Yoruba. The point is that the Yoruba, just like the Fulani, have the numbers and brains to form a separate nation and prosper. They don’t need oil to do so. Israel, Taiwan, etc, are just examples to spur them on. So, let us free ourselves from the natural resource curse and tap into the human capital blessing. This is the least we can do for ourselves.
Even the smaller sub-nations of Ijaw, Ishekiri, etc, are one and all blessed enough in numbers and brains to be on their own. So, let us let them have their oil and the rest of the others will not be shortchanged for this. In fact, conceding them that is our liberation.
And these things can be worked out over roundtables. Of course, that will not be the end of history. With time, it may please the players the Hause/Arewa, Egbesu, Biafra/Igbo, Yoruba/Oduduwa etc, republics, to come together in a more workable, less bloodthirsty and prosperous union.
As things stand now, Nigeria is turning into an industrial killing fields for citizens. What is now left is for us to think the unthinkable and save our black humanity. We must wait no longer. It is us that are being waited upon. And I woke up. It was as in a dream. Ahiazuwa.
The coming Boeing bailout?
Readers of this column would have read one of our penultimate pieces. It was on wanting to solve hard problems with soft skills. There is a beautiful story illustrating this. And it is the story of Boeing, an iconic American manufactory, and how it is gone belly up.
And if you remember, our own Professor Pius Adesanmi was a victim of the Boeing crash. What we may not know is that it is the Nigerian style stand-alone managers managing technical Boeing Industries that led to the many crashes. With the Boeing tragedies, scores died, including our own Adesanmi. In the Nigerian live version, as many as 200 million are at risk. Ronu.
The piece is a wonderful read. We are including the link for persons who may wish to read the whole article. Below is an excerpt.
“Let’s start by admiring the company that was Boeing, so we can know what has been lost. As one journalist put it in 2000, ‘Boeing has always been less a business than an association of engineers devoted to building amazing flying machines.’
“For the bulk of the 20th century, Boeing made miracles. Its engineers designed the B-52 in a weekend, bet the company on the 707, and built the 747 despite deep observer skepticism. The 737 started coming off the assembly line in 1967, and it was such a good design it was still the company’s top moneymaker 30 years later.
“How did Boeing make miracles in civilian aircraft? In short, the civilian engineers were in charge. And it fell apart because the company, due to a merger, killed its engineering-first culture.”
“In 1993, a Defense official in the Clinton administration, Bill Perry, called defense contractor CEOs to a dinner, nicknamed “the last supper.” He told them to merge with each other so as, in the classic excuse used by monopolists, to find efficiencies in their businesses. The rationale was that post-Cold War era military spending reductions demanded a leaner defense base. In reality, Perry had been a long-time mergers and acquisitions specialist working with industry ally Norm Augustine, the eventual CEO of Lockheed Martin.
“Unlike Boeing, McDonnell Douglas was run by financiers rather than engineers. And though Boeing was the buyer, McDonnell Douglas executives somehow took power in what analysts started calling a ‘reverse takeover.’ The joke in Seattle was, ‘McDonnell Douglas bought Boeing with Boeing’s money.’
“The merger sparked a war between the engineers and the bean-counters; as one analyst put it, ‘Some of the board of directors would rather have spent money on a walk-in humidor for shareholders than on a new plane.’ The white collar engineers responded to the aggressive cost-cutting and politically motivated design choices with the unthinkable, affiliating with the AFL-CIO and going on strike for the first time in the company’s 56-year history. ‘We weren’t fighting against Boeing,’ said the union leader. ‘We were fighting to save Boeing.’
“The key corporate protection that had protected Boeing engineering culture was a wall inside the company between the civilian division and military divisions. This wall was designed to prevent the military procurement process from corrupting civilian aviation. As aerospace engineer Pierre Sprey noted, military procurement and engineering created a corrupt design process, with unnecessary complexity, poor safety standards, ‘wishful thinking projections’ on performance, and so forth. Military contractors subcontract based on political concerns, not engineering ones. If contractors need to influence a senator from Montana, they will place production of a component in Montana, even if no one in the state can do the work…” https://mattstoller.substack.com/p/the-coming-boeing-bailout.