A lot of Nigerians have expressed the wish that the white man stayed longer in Nigeria. They cite the case of South Africa where prolonged colonial rule resulted in their advancing far better than Nigeria to the extent that a lot of Nigerian’s troop to SA these days to make a living and the biggest companies in Africa today are SA owned. To a lot of people Nigeria’s independence was pre-mature! The rice never don them bring am down from fire. We should put Nigeria back into the fire so that it can get well cooked before we can all enjoy the Nigeria of our dreams. Azikiwe and company may have perceived the “ukpo” (aroma) and was so quick to bring the pot down and now the food is all spoilt. And even worse is that the greedy politicians have already gone so far in eating the damn pot of rice and are so neck deep that one wonders if they will ever let anyone put the pot back on to the fire.
But like my senior colleague Sir Vic will say; we are here now and have to remedy this. One straight way as the heading says, is to get Oyibo back to finish the cooking they started. If you think that is not possible, wait until we realize that we are already doing that in so many areas of our lives right now. Think of any big profitable company in this country and tell me if it is not run by an Oyibo. At a minimum the Dangote refinery that we are all waiting to save us from the dollar and fuel strangulation is ran by one. That refinery is coming on-stream this year or next and I suspect all this fuel price increase is to position their Oga at the top to be the richest man on earth while our people suffer. I told you, the politicians are eating, don’t make noise! That one is story for another day. Including the $1.5 billion they have marked for another round of chopping in the name of refinery turn around maintenance.
Away from big companies, which better school for Lagos is not run by an Oyibo? And that is for those that want their children here oh. The very upward struggling middle class actually take theirs to UK for proper British secondary education. You see they have already preferred Oyibo and have already re-colonized themselves without the rest of us; including our President that is there right now to seek routine medicals. As I write, even my Alma mata have hired Oyibo to bring back the old glory of our school. I never enjoyed the glory days but only heard about it from tales by moon light but I believe the story all the same and saw with my korokoro eyes the showers, water systems and water heaters they used! I only enjoyed the trees and grasses which mother earth preserved for us.
But that my old school is hiring Oyibo is not a surprise. The old students had been mulling how to bring back the glory and God used one of us to kick-start that dream and its coming to fruition. The interesting thing is that the campaign to get back the school, is looking at a benchmark with some schools in the country ran by no other than the Catholic Church. The old boy’s aspiration is to compete with the likes of Loyola Jesuit College or the Jesuit Memorial College of this world. So you see Peter Obi the former governor of Anambra state knew what he was doing when he handed over the schools in the state to the Christian missions. Thereafter, it was no surprise Anambra came tops in the national examinations. Peter Obi by doing that already realized the need for that re-colonization I am talking about. The colonial era had the best schools ran by Christian or religious missions. I was in one of the Jesuit schools the other day and wondered at the serenity, ambiance, and peacefulness of the environment. The work ethics was out of this world. I watched as the labour hands clocked out via a finger print machine at the end of their workday ensuring they had put in the days labour to earn their wages. I simply wished that someone could contract out the leadership of this country to the priests running the school. And these are Nigerians oh.
As it stands now almost all areas of our lives including our President have been re-colonized by either the churches or the Oyibo’s except the political space and that is where the matter lies. How can we convince the greedy politicians to take their mouth out of the undon pot of rice so that we can put it back on the fire? Even the small experiment of using electronic voting to conduct a credible election was so bashed that INEC denied shamelessly of having a server! Anything to bring order and sanity is truncated because they know they will lose out in a competitive and transparent system. A transparent system that will cook the rice properly; ensuring that it rises to its potential and be enough for everyone to enjoy is what Nigeria needs and the earlier we get on with such a system the better for everyone. If it means inviting Oyibo to come rule us for a while to conclude our civilization course cut short by a pre-mature independence; so be it!
Obidike Peter is the Author of Aladinma: eighties to nineties
He wrote from www.peterobidike.com and firstname.lastname@example.org
Sunday 28th March 2021
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