SACRIFICING ONE REGION FOR THE OTHERS

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In the previous post, we noted that the faulty system of the Nigerian society is beneficial to some people who now prefer the status quo. They accept the condition (in which foreign companies extract resources, cheaply possess, process and resell the products to Nigerians) in exchange for foreign privileges. The few people who benefit from this structure were identified as foreign companies, politicians, civil servants, union leaders, some businessmen, religious leaders, traditional leaders and their dependents; while some other Nigerians struggle to either provide services or secondary goods from imported materials.

 

The proceeds from the Nigerian oil business is deemed as privilege instead of payment because they are given to a Nigeria that is dependent on the foreign companies for the extraction, calculation of quantity extracted and determination of the prices for the amount stated by the foreign ‘gods’. If it were to be called rights, then the Nigerians could refuse the trade, extract the resources for themselves, process it and utilize it. But the dependence changes the language of the whole trade to accepting whatever is handed to the national oil trade representatives, both figure of resource extracted and the price to be paid for the resource as benchmark.

 

Since some people are benefitting from the arrangement, would it be reasonable to assume that the dispersion of privileges would eventually reach everybody. This is an attempt to answer the second question in the project of RestartNaija: Could the benefits reach to others eventually, since some people are already enjoying? The demarcation of Nigeria along regions makes it easier to allocate resources for a well-spread and relatively balanced development. However, despite the demarcation for spread development, representatives in the smaller quarter of the nation’s constituencies rarely think of equitable distribution of development, nor do they think of vacating the offices. Even when they do, they install puppets through whom they continue to share massively in the foreign privileges.

 

Yet, even if the representatives are just in the distribution of benefits and development to all the units of their constituencies, would it be enough to cater for the general needs of Nigerians in the different regions. The population of Nigeria continues to grow exponentially, while the foreign privileges continue to reduce and thus, may never go round to the people who need them.

 

Why restart when some people are already developed and are enjoying?

The government of Nigerian between the period of 1985 was tagged a tenure of the evil genius because the style of leadership was mostly inclusive. The handsome leader was accommodating and calculative in his style of governance. He appoints a head of a ministry from a region of the nation, who he eventually replaces after some months with a person from another region. The news was that he tried to create a balance of benefits among the different regions, states and tribes of the nation. Hence, people from different regions waited patiently for their turn to reap from the national privilege through one of its representatives who is appointed to head a ministry.

 

Despite the accommodating disposition, the nation did not grow industrially in their sense of productivity, because that style of equitable distribution of benefits from the foreign privileges introduced a sit-down-and-wait type of laziness. It introduced a view of public office as a position through which are sent to obtain their share of the ‘national cake’. The heads of ministries understood that they might be replaced at any moment, so they desperately gather all the benefits they can within their period in office. In fact the value of industry and hard work in the different cultures and ethnic groups in Nigeria, which had been sick got paralyzed by the introduction of the regional distribution politics.

 

In response to the initial question, we observe that it is not possible for the benefits from the foreign privileges to reach every section enough for the sustenance of the Nigerian people. Even if it will get to everybody, should the country remain in the state of dependency on the foreign privileges or should it teach its citizens to learn how to extract, process and distribute these resources that are being exploited by the foreign companies and resold to Nigerians at high prices? Your answer, I believe is as good as mine.