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Let’s Take Back Our Communities, Our Country… Together, Deliberately!

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As we celebrate 100 years of being together as a nation, many of us ask, ‘why are we celebrating? What do we have to celebrate?’

Yes, we do have reasons to celebrate. We are the most populous country in Africa. In fact one out of any group of 5 blacks in the world is a Nigerian. Nigeria boasts of a nobel prize for literature in addition to other well known prizes in literature. Nigerian engineers, doctors and scientists are achieving great heights in various countries around the world. We have survived near-wars and security threats on every side.

However, most of our successes and achievements have been accidental. Accidental in the sense that, as a nation, we lack structures, systems and processes that are designed to lead us to progress, deliberately. There is no deliberate, sustainable and concerted effort towards progress in our nation. For years we have lived on accidents, miracles and good luck, for years we have done/ complained about the same thing over and over again and have expected a different result, for years we have developed what we term as a fire brigade approach to everything, even our personal lives.

Indeed, we have achieved unintentional successes by accident. However, imagine what could happen, the possibilities that awaits us, if we, not the government, if you and I come together and deliberately aspire and plan for progress and success in this land.

True the government’s role cannot be denied. However, while the government gets its acts together, which may take a very long time, we the citizens, the private sector, the educated, the learned, you and I need to come together and do something.

Let’s take back our communities, our country together, deliberately.

Let’s insist on literary and debating societies in our schools.

Let’s bring back science clubs and JETS competitions.

Let’s gather together and sponsor the children of the poor to the best of schools.

Let’s show good examples to our domestic staff and encourage them to unleash their potentials.

Let’s form community groups and build our own community health centres, hire our own doctors and nurses, we are already doing this with our neighbourhood security watch anyway.

Let’s stop converting our green spaces and football fields to housing estates.

Let’s encourage the artists, the athletes and the artisans towards excellence.

Let’s not forget our doctors, teachers and engineers.

Let’s return to agriculture, start from your gardens.

Let’s change our values, ethics and our definition of what is right.

And if you are a policy maker or have access to the politicians and policy makers, don’t keep quiet, stop playing ‘parlour politics’.

Lobby for scholarships, for better funding for education and for healthcare.

Lobby for an enabling environment for businesses to thrive.

Lobby through the social media, newspapers and magazine on practical steps to move forward as a nation.

Let’s do something!

This is not utopia, this is our future, our responsibility.

If we don’t take action now, and we think things are bad now, we will be at ground zero by the time we wake up. We will wake up, I’m sure about that, but I pray to God, that we will have something to wake up to and we wouldn’t have arrived too late.

Too late to restore our infrastructure, our fundamentals, our businesses

Too late to guarantee security of lives and property

Too late to stand in the committee of nations.

Too late, too late, too late

It’s already started happening, our children used to travel abroad for university education, secondary education has followed suit, very, very soon, if we sit down and do nothing, our children will start primary education from the UK and US.

Fellow Nigerians, enough of the fire brigade approach to everything, let’s take back our communities, our country together, deliberately!

Let’s do what we have to do, so that we can do what we want to do.

Photo Credit: madamenoire.com

14 Comments

  1. Bleed blue

    May 27, 2013 at 9:00 am

    I’m with you oh! We can’t keep talking about solutions without actually starting to DO something!

    I’m starting with the man in the mirror jare. One by one, let’s do this!

  2. ty

    May 27, 2013 at 9:15 am

    i agree, Nigeria is a great country and we have d potential to be great people, the main problem is greed, everybody wants to grab as much as they can, not thinking of the consequences. all of d problems in nigeria, d underlying factor is greed!

  3. Tosin

    May 27, 2013 at 9:23 am

    I read this with interest, and seconds later, I read this: “Europe became, for me, a network of points – mainly cities – which I can quickly join together in an affective map that moves them nearer to each other in my thinking, in direct proportion to the distance … [and someone said] in 1956, “We have made Europe, now we must make Europeans!?” ” in buala.org/en/to-read/on-how-to-build-a-european
    Nigeria, and Africa, are what we make them.

  4. Haba

    May 27, 2013 at 9:24 am

    Na so una go write epistle, yet nothing shall be done on naija. Mscheww! Abegi, make i chop puff puff dey watch una.

    • Bleed blue

      May 27, 2013 at 9:47 am

      Excellent reasoning Haba, very productive contribution!

  5. nene

    May 27, 2013 at 10:24 am

    i like this. nigeria is no.1 for me any day. no matter how many times i travel and whoever i meet, i am happy in my country. i don’t know about other people. i schooled abroad and wen i told people i was coming back, they said i was stupid, but God knows i love living in Lagos, and seeing people in the village every christmas, and also travelling to beautiful cities. wen i have kids, i will also make them love Nigeria as much as me. i already started making a change in my community right from when i came back, and i hope others follow suit. Nigerians have to start caring about now and the future of our children. we need to build our country, with or without our leaders.

  6. Theresa Omoronyia

    May 27, 2013 at 11:02 am

    This is a wonderful article Felicia!…with practical ways of making positive contribution. Thank you.

  7. Mz Socially Awkward...

    May 27, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    “Bet”… how, na? Ehn? With all the millions of Nigerians wey got frozen visons that refuse to see the way forward? Even if you dey try show dem way, dem go insult you say make you shift from road, make one 419-enriched millionaire come show dem how to “hammer”? Until those of us with limited understanding are willing to imbibe your words, Nigeria is on a very long thing.

    Mass re-education is the first step in a long process of taking back our communities and our country. Even the ones you think should know better will shock you with their views on certain issues. I agree that we can all start with our own individual environments (eg. sponsoring brilliant children whose parents can’t afford the cost of good education) but we can’t go far until the masses agree on what is good – no scratch that – what is the best thing for them.

    Truly, my spirit dey willing but my eye don see some kain things even amongst my own so-called enlightened generation…

    • Teddy Bear

      May 27, 2013 at 3:41 pm

      I totally agree with you. And this is the case with a lot of people. Nigerians as group have lost hope; have been burned thrice over and as a result have become cold and jaded towards fellow Nigerians. A lot of people say they are ashamed to be called Nigerian for obvious reasons. While I understand their sentiments I do not share nor agree with them. I feel like we have to help ourselves and the most unfortunate and frustrating part about it is that we have the potential. My goodness! What about the young man a couple of years back that built a helicopter out of junk? That would have been a perfect opportunity for our government to sponsor his schooling so that maybe, one day he could build or design weapons for our military. No. They don’t even think that far. They are too worried about the mundane. Abegi! Seriously, what if some crazy country decides to declare war on us? Or better yet what if a natural disaster occurs? Smh….It’s gonna take a lot of blood, sweat and tears but I’m still hopeful that it can be done.

  8. nich

    May 27, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    be careful so that your village people will not kill you…………..or kidnap you. honestly the talent in nigeria and africa is great. why it is true that we have to do something and can do something, the foundation has never been set. with all the mineral resources in africa yet no african nation is close to any western country in terms of infrastructural developement except south africa. at that it is still going to take south africa about 35yrs before they can reach nations like germany or canada. crime rate and poverty rate in south africa is still very high.

    Singapore was rated the richest nation in the world last week, followed by norway, the united states, dubai and switzerland. except for the united states, none of this other countries boast of the the level of mineral resources that african countries have and yet the hope for a brighter future is nowhere. i somewhat agree with this writer but withe the level of cultural differences that exist in nigeria my take is that the church can bring developement and prosperity to nigeria. it will not stop them from spreading the word of God. if all the big churches in every state in nigeria that has more than 200 members contribute N80,000, the can choose one 3-5 project every year in their various states and accomplish it, water, road, solar energy, primary and secondary school, security patrol, state ID cards. The government has failed but the collective will of the people from the different churches can birth a revolution in nigeria. Some of our villages can be turned to hong kong. The project can start from capital cities and spread to local governments. This can even challenge the government to be more productive and accountable to the people.

    Outside GEJ there only 4 nigerians who can move this nation in the right direction, fashola, oshiomole, akpabio, Mallam nuhu ribadu, rochas okorocha. The leader of a nation has a lot to do with developement of a nation. until nigerians wake up, such hope is nothing

  9. candyjay

    May 28, 2013 at 11:34 pm

    i totally agree with this writer i have not given up on Nigeria and never ll i shall do my best and leave the rest for God i pray everyday for my country,this is exactly what i was telling some of my friends the other day that we as Nigerians should start with the little we can to help people the thing is we can do it but we are always after what the peaople ll say and of course people ll always be negative its up to us to be strong and positive and then they ll shamefully join us but it all depends on who ll take the lead?,who ll take that giant step?, who ll go first?

  10. Mae

    May 29, 2013 at 8:42 am

    I’m confused. What year are we counting our ‘nation-hood’ from? If we became a nation in 1960 where did 100 years come from? Or is it just me?…:s
    Could someone please help me clarify? Cos i think i might be missing something about Nigeria’s history…

  11. Nadia

    May 31, 2013 at 12:27 am

    Mae, Nigeria was amalgamated in 1914 by Lord Frederick Lugard of Britain. Essentially, Nigeria became ‘Nigeria’ geographically and name wise in 1914, which will be a hundred years from next year, 2014. Hope this helps 🙂

  12. gloria .e. wadiri

    June 9, 2013 at 7:28 pm

    lk4 is gone

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