It begins to add up why we have the kind of results we have in almost all facets of life in Nigeria. Nigerians believe firmly in praying for little effort producing harvest in abundance; so much that it has become a philosophical approach to life relationships and business among Nigerians. Take a simple example in something like confectionary available in our markets. What consumers are requested to pay for such products is so insignificant that it effectively takes away their franchise. The price they pay is so minuscule that we cannot even complain when we discover that we have parted with money for chaff.
I love Nigeria and I want to see Nigeria in a position to contend with other viable and respectable nations of the world; however do I sincerely and joyfully consume products that are produced by manufacturers established in Nigeria? The answer is no!
Again, the syndrome of ‘let’s just start’ is the culprit of choice and I make no ceremonies of fingering the syndrome as suspect. In every area of life, our approach is half-hearted and we expect the very best results because we have the capacity to wish and to pray. We pray in the same way we worship or traditional deities making very loud demands and spiritedly feisty gesticulations believing that we can manipulate the god we believe in.
Good thing, we are faced with the reality of the undesirable fruits that we have produced. The 2012 Olympic Games in London, England has further highlighted our mediocrity. In the so many years that I have known of the Olympic Games, there has never been a more agonizingly disappointing outing for Nigeria as this one. Let every man leave President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan out of this result. After the lack-luster performance of the Nigerian football team at the 2010 world cup in SA, GEJ recommended that we take our acts back to the drawing board; Nigerians protested like spoiled brats and lambasted him with vituperations. What Nigerians failed to see is that it is not just about the amount of money that government pumps into sports at the dying minutes but many hours of dedicated hard work in training and practice. A sports man who intends to excel must practice so much it becomes a way of life and I am sure that our sports people have not yet practiced to this point. Such a man must practice even when there is no tournament or competition. He must practice as a matter of necessity like the badger would cut and chew wood and other plants to prevent its teeth from growing out of its mouth. A sports man who has his eyes on gold must be convinced that he has worked hard enough to earn gold. He must feature on international fora and mingle with sports men and women of like mind. It requires time, great sacrifice and many tears.
I have been agonizing about the abysmal results being recorded against Nigeria at the London Olympics and wishing the agony would end soon enough. In fact, I did not want to make any further reports on the events but it became clear to me that it is the same thing that plagues all areas of life in Nigeria. Nigerians have lost the essence of building from scratch having become fixated with fast-food/take-away mentality of processing life. What I am saying is that we now prefer short-cut approach to making sacrifices of our time and resources. I had the opportunity to watch some movies made by Nigerians in Nigeria and London; it was clear that a lot of money had been spent but quality leaves a lot to be desired. I reasoned that the works of great performers like Hubert Ogunde and Duro Ladipo produced several years before now are way beyond what this crop of actors, actresses and movie producers and turning out for consumers to pay their hard-earned money for.
Nigerian politicians are not trained for leadership positions they occupy and they find it easy to speak from the abundance of their heart without finesse or decorum. Some of them openly show total disregard for members of the public and the office they occupy not because they are not well brought up but because they do not have the necessary training to conduct themselves in public office and as public servants. In essence, they are not competent to occupy the position they do; I feel good classifying them as quacks.
I emphatically and confidently conclude that not a single area of human endeavor is spared; not even religion or romantic relationships.
I am also comforted to believe that ‘a problem identified is a problem half-solved.’ We do not need to continue setting up committees and panels for investigating poor results; we have the results and the root causes sitting side by side. Time is the issue; we must put time into practicing for what we desire to achieve. It starts one man at a time; start by brightening the painting in your bedroom so you can see the clutter and litter easier.
GOD bless Nigeria.
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