September 16, 2016 – Buhari, APC Change Promise Has Failed, Nigeria Is Sinking, Mr President Must Act Now – Samuel Ufot Ekekere
DOES #BUHARICHANGE BEGIN WITH ME OR YOU?
For some time now, I’ve beem out of the blogosphere. I’ve covered my head in shame for the last one year. Some persons assumed I was a one time show, a writer who was seizing the moment. I wasn’t. I was just watching, and I couldn’t write. I couldn’t make out what was becoming a disaster, a nation for which I had huge hopes of change arriving.
I hear people cry every day. Life is increasingly becoming unbearable. My customers complain of failing businesses, I visit the market and I can no longer afford the same meals that my little salary could afford just a year back. So PDP was good? I hear people ask. Maybe, maybe I reply. Who did you vote for? They’d ask. No one in particular, I reply. Off course, I knew it wouldn’t count and it never did.
As I read through news blogs daily, and I’m inundated with events in this nation, I knew this was not the change we bargained for. This was not the freedom we thought we should have. This was not the one dollar to one naira that they promised us. This was not the blossoming economy that we shouted change for. This was not the freedom of expression we had assumed we would get. This was not the united Nigeria that we thought change was going to foster. This was not the N50 per liter of fuel that they promised us.
Don’t mind me, but when I heard that gas pipeline explode just behind my backyard, I knew it had never happened before now. Change had truly arrived and I was feeling increasingly less secure than I had always felt. This change is one that makes the president afraid of visiting his countrymen in various parts of the country and the police and army can’t guarantee his safety.
No one is saying the truth. Everyone seems confuse about the direction our great nation is heading towards. We hear today that Nigeria is technically in a recession, tomorrow we are not in a recession, next tomorrow, the nation’s economy is improving. We are left confused.
Those “ogas at the top” claim to understand what we are going through but do they? When they don’t know how much a plate of meal cost, how would they know what we are going through? Ok they watch on TV and see the huge lines that form in the IDPs scattered around Borno and they claim they know. They know nothing. They don’t know that three cups of Garri now cost N100 when 6 cups used to go for the same prize a year ago.
Now they tell us that the promised change wasn’t for the economy. They fool us with false inflation rates, they claim 14%. In actual sense the inflation is galloping. It is at about 200% and it is itching badly. We are dying slowly and no one is helping out. No one is telling the truth to us, Nigerians are being fooled again and this time around, we are being quiet about it. Those voices that shouted change are now mum, their lips have being taped.
Have the girls returned? We are waiting for the girls, and they are coming. I hear the girls even refused to return. They love it better with the militants who I hear care so much about them than the uncertainties of being free, of joining their parents at the IDP camps who can hardly afford a day’s meal. The girls are wise. Those who propelled the Bring Back Our Girls campaigns and jumped on the streets at the slightest opportunity just over a year ago must be looking amazed at their inability today to step on the streets. They are now a nuisance to public peace. Haba!!
UP NEPA!!! We are still familiar with these shouts but they told us we’d have 24hours power in no time. Sadly, we don’t produce half as much as we did just over a year back. And those small “I better pass my neighbor” generators that we used to manage at ten thousand naira now go for about twenty five thousand naira and the cost of petrol has doubled. Those power distribution companies even increased the cost of their power while they don’t even provide it. Is this change?
I hope I’m not arrested once those ogas read this. I can no longer stay quiet. Some of my cronies I hear are in police custody or have being in and out. It seems every one doesn’t want to say something yet the campaigns are on TV “if you see something, say something”. I am seeing something and I am saying something.
When did naming a dog become a life threatening event? Please note, I just named my goat Buhari. I want my goat to be famous just as that dog. I want it to be on social media, to be watched on TV and to be announced on radio. I want the goat to also be a democratic martyr, the first martyr goat just like that dog. If you are looking for my goat to kill, just Google “Buhari the goat”.
I am proud to be Nigerian but I doubt that I’d accept to be a “murmurous” Nigerian. I came through university with a first class; I created so many records to attain this feat. You see why it is difficult to understand and accept what’s going on in this great nation. I read ten books everyday especially on leadership. I know that when the ship is shaking, you can check on the leader. Nigeria is shaking, Mr. President must answer.
There’s hardly no day I enter church without my pastor asking us to “pray for those at the helm of affairs, pray for our president”. I am praying but how long will the prayer continue before answers arrive. They ask me to fast and I fast, yet I see no changes. The politicians tell us now “change begins with you”. How?
What should I change after all the prayers and fasting.
The change campaigns have started. The problem is they expect us the majority Nigerians who can’t afford a single meal to change. They want the change to begin from us who are praying, starving and paying taxes to them when they know that when the river source is clean, it’s only a matter of time before the lower part of the river is clean. They have to clean the top first, common Nigerians like you and I can only follow.
Is it possible that Mr. President will do without his motor arcade and his retinue of aides every time he travels? Is it possible that the president’s children who are studying abroad return to Nigeria to complete their studies? Is it possible that Mr. President gives out his salary to the almajiris who flock all around our communities? One cannot think about changing a system when he cannot change himself.
Except our leaders can undertake a hunger strike for our nation, except they will come down to the common man and become like them, and bear as we are doing the challenges of a dead economy, except those men in agbada will give up their costly attires and come down simple to work Nigeria dirty, we are certainly in another propaganda program.
I’ve changed already, what change do they expect from me? I no longer eat fish and meat; I manage crayfish for my soup. I ate two cups of garri, now I eat one. I transported on keke at every turn, now I work the distance. I bought two shirts and one trouser per month, for the last one year, I’ve had to visit the tailor to mend my worn and oversized clothes because I can’t afford new ones. I scarcely eat rice, and if I do, adding palm oil to it is all I do to make it jollof. I’ve lost weight.
They promised to change us but now they claim we should be the ones changing ourselves.
Nigerians, we’ve being shortchanged. It’s time to plan to change them.
We don’t just have to change ourselves, we’ve got to get out on the streets, and we’ve got to revolt.
I can’t be patient anymore else I’d be dead soon. It’s time to shout out, enough is enough, Mr. President, Change your change package, we are dying.
About the author: SAMUEL UFOT EKEKERE
Twitter @ naijasoars, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/naijasoars , Tel: +2349055530115