The plane crash involving the corpse of the erstwhile governor of Ondo State afforded a lot of Nigerians another opportunity to pour our anger on our leaders. Most people in Ondo state took sides; supporters of Mimiko and Agagu hurled insults at one another and their principals. Sadly, “we the people” never thought about our own contributions to the decay Nigeria is today. In supporting and commenting on a friend’s post on Facebook I would write what I titled, “My Random Thoughts on Leadership and Followers in Nigeria”.
I have always wondered: How many employees amongst “we the people” can say we perform our duties without asking for bribes? How many business people can boldly proclaim we don’t induce people for unjust favors? How many graduates can lay claim to never bribing a lecturer or plagiarism? How many of us have never sought to influence our relatives in government to take their own share of the national cake? Amongst “we the people” are those who certify projects that never existed as completed. We certify aircrafts that were grounded for months under the guise of maintenance as being worthy to fly. We forget that our relatives may one day be in it. We justify our actions by saying “my Ogas at the top are taking their own share too”. We tame our raging conscience by claiming the spoils of evil doings as unmerited favor. We take our blemished offerings to our places of worship to have them blessed by spiritual leaders who cleanse them with prayers. When caught out, we feigned repentance to a just God whose judgment surely awaits us when we least know of. Then we celebrate our spiritual and mental nakedness again with thanksgiving in the place of worship.
Our leaders hear our protests of hunger for development; but also scent our greed. Yes our collective greed! They toss us scraps to quiet us. The one who gets the scraps; to his rat hole he scurries, comes out to howl for more. When he gets enough to be a leader; he tosses pieces at us. We push him up the ladder, expectant that he will remember us in his thievery kingdom. Hurray! A new leader is born. Let us never forget “amongst us the leaders were born; for we molded them”.
Truth to us is an amorphous building; the façade we see depends on the side of the street we stand on. An act by your brother is a crime; same act by my brother calls for celebration. We the upcoming generation deceive and delude ourselves as heroes of the future on social media. In the darkness of our hearts lie our plans for our nation. I wish Facebook can auto update the thoughts of our hearts towards Nigeria. That twitter can tweet what entices us to positions of leadership while we lay asleep.
We the people stand united not only by our calls for justice but also our greed. Deception is the ointment with which we beautify our faces. In the day we deplore the poverty and chastise the robbers of today. At night, in the depth of our soul, we hope tomorrow for our chance to despoil our nation. We the people are as guilty as our leaders.
If our nation must improve and succeed, we the people must work on our thought processes and our collective orientation. We must remember that no nation is made up of leaders alone. It takes the collective effort of us all to build a thriving society.
Good morning my fellow Nigerians.
11 thoughts on “My Random Thoughts On Leadership and Followers in Nigeria by Olakunle Sanusi”
This is one article tercitly loaded with unmitigated reality of our national life as a people. But come to think of it, is it not the case that these collective shenanigans that have defined us as a people are inborn in us as our thought system as a people seems to be the same when it comes to issues bothering on corruption? May the Black Race retrace its steps to the path of true communal truth that gave essence to our humnity!!! Good work Kunlexscrew!
Hmmm. Oluwasogo, bros. Thanks for your comment. You’re right But then, “inborn in us”? I’m not sure about that.
Kunlexy, u are not sure about my fear that propensity to be corrupt is inborn in man, neither am I. However, corruption has become a hydra-headed monster ‘we all’ celebrate from the streets of nations in Africa to the palaces and seats of government. It has come to be seeing as the norm and anything contrary to it has no place of ‘honour’ in our social and political lives. The other day I pointed out to a party leader the need to work on a project that will not cost much but will be of great benefit to the community. He turned it down for no reason other than the fact that the project is not capital intensive and as such, there won’t be avenue to feed fat from the cost of such project. To him, I am not a good adviser, regardless of the fact that my proposed project will cost the govt little or nothing and serve greater number of people as well as generate money into the coffer of the govt. Thank Jah that there are people like u out there who can still alley my fear and assure me that corruption is not inborn in the black race. Thank u.
Sure, now no doubt at all. You’ve said it all. Rather than inborn, it’s an acquired trait, adopted from our Big Brothers. And I hope we soon enough start getting our ways right AGAIN. Thanks for your insights, Oluwasogo.
Interesting write up. I didn’t read all tho
Hmmm…well said,i pondered over ur subject matter.it’s a great write-up but i put most of the inculpation on our bad leaders.They’ve made life so miserable for the common man like myself.When poverty pays one a visit,one can hardly severalise between the GOOD and the BAD.An average Nigerian has straightness,it’s our regretful situation that changes our people’s mental attitude.Our condition has gone so bad that one only thinks of what to eat.Our environs is not conducive for any creative thinkinzg.The creativity in us has faded away.We are just here hoping for a better day which might not come in our lifetime.
Hmmm, I agree that whatever state we’re in is an imposition more or less especially by the conditions afforded by our leaders. However, do we allow external factors, beyond ourselves, to control And determine our destiny? Of course, not.
Muribaba, I agree that our ‘leaders’ should bear most of the blame. The point I seek to impress upon our consciousness is our own culpability as followers. In the most developed countries of the world people do go through tough times. There is a planting and germination phase before reaping. The average Nigerian person just wants to reap immediately. How do we rationalize the thought processes of an undergraduate whose father has five houses and three cars yet still ventured into “yahoo yahoo?”
”Planting and germination phase”, germination doesn’t take place on an unfertile farmland.Our policies don’t protect the interest of a common man,The rich get more and the poor get poorer.Cost of running governance in this ‘stinking country’ is uncalled for. Replenishment of our unfertile farmland might be a good idea.Concerning ‘yahoo boy’,i see discontentment running in his blood vein.
Good one Kunle. You have brought home the real truth about our situation. Each of us has in one way or the other contributed to the rot and decadence in our dear country. Those who are not stealing directly from public coffers, offering or obtaining bribes, are caught in the definition of ‘chichidodo’ as exemplified in Ayi Kwei Amah’s ‘The Beautiful Ones Are Not Yet Born’. Most of us expect our people in government to turn our situation arround, knowing well that they cannot do so without stealing and we applaud them when they steal! We all have a share in the blame and duty to make Nigeria a better place. We need an ethical revolution. We must purge ourselves of this prevalent attitude of corruption and its criminal acceptance,, otherwise Nigeria will never be a better place.