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10 Questions for the Nigerian government!

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When Kema Chikwe began to ask questions a few days ago about the inconsistencies in the Chibok story, the nation was enraged asking her how on earth she could doubt that 234 girls had been abducted but the thing is the inconsistencies surrounding the story can no longer be ignored.

A lot of discussions on various platforms have gotten me thinking. There are so many unanswered questions and we the people of Nigeria demand answers from the FG!

Here are some of the questions Nigerians are asking:

Why is the government failing to act on obvious leads?

Why hasn’t the offer of international organizations and other countries to assist us been embraced by the FG?

Why have the neighboring countries not been compelled to produce concrete information on the whereabouts of these girls who may have crossed their borders?

Why has a list of names of girls abducted along with picture identification not been released to the press?

Why does the principal of the school have conflicting stories about the incident?

Why is the government not declaring a state of emergency, why does it seem like business as usual?

Why is the total number of girls abducted and released constantly changing?

Why did the armed forces do nothing when news of the camp where the girls were being held was circulated?

Why were the accounts of the escaped girls as well as eyewitness accounts not used to formulate strategies to track down the abductors?

Why is a committee being set up to look into this instead of emergency action?

I still believe there is a lot of fear, hidden threats, political propaganda  and blackmailing going on behind the scenes that’s the only thing that can explain why everyone in power seems to be going about this the wrong way.

Two bomb blasts and over two hundred girls missing and the most we have gotten out of our president in the last few days is his response to the untimely death of the VP’s brother. Are the other deaths and losses not as important? Why are we not getting updates on what exactly the government is doing about the issue and what breakthroughs they have had so far?

The government was elected to serve the people and we the Nigerian people deserve answers. Presidents have resigned over smaller incidents and even though I am not agitating for the resignation of Mr President, I would love to see more action. The snail speed response reeks of political propaganda. Who has Nigeria by the balls Mr President? Who has crippled us to the point where we can no longer intelligently respond to crisis situations?

Surely Boko Haram is not the problem, they are merely a tool. Mercenaries in the hands of someone more powerful. But if the blood of our citizens is the sacrifice you have chosen to offer to this unseen menace then I must ask what it is you would gain in the long run. Mr President be a hero- a great man would do far more with much less than is at your disposal. Dare to be different or save your neck and vacate the seat for someone whose courage surpasses yours but please do not give in to blackmail, do not let fear cause a complacency that will make you stink before your nation. Tell us what is going on. Talk to us, your people are far from stupid.

I wonder how you sleep at night. A shiver runs down my spine when I think of those little girls. It’s crazy to think about the suffering, oppression and torture they go through every single day that they stay within the enemy’s camp. How would you feel if your own daughter was kidnapped? Mr President you are a father not just to the nation but to your home. Fight, again I say fight!

#bringbackourgirls

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Posted by on May 3, 2014 in Inspirational

 

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2. An Open Letter to Boko Haram!

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Dear Terrorist,

I see you sitting at a table planning your next raid, mapping out the trail of death and destruction that will leave many orphaned and others homeless. Collateral damage you call it. For a better cause you reason. You turn a blind eye to the weeping mother who lost an innocent child or the confused child sitting beside his dead father, murdered in cold blood.

You want to make a statement, you want the world to listen up, to respect and tremble before your sovereignty. You dream of bringing world leaders to their knees and causing a revolution that your generations will sing about proudly…
  But have you ever stopped to wonder about the lives lost, the sorrow and the pain you inflict on the weakest of mortals who have in no way wronged you? Their only crime is their association to your object of hate. All is fair in love and war you chime. Ruthless and unforgiving is the trademark you wear with pride but permit me to ask; ‘Has there ever been a successful terrorist mission?’ You don’t lack the skills, the men or the firearms but inevitably you lose the war each time even after several battle victories.

  A wise man once said only a fool does the same thing over and over and expects a different result. Don’t you think it is time for a change? Nelson Mandela touched more lives with his love than Osama Bin Laden did with his hate. It is more than mere statistics, only the living can corroborate this story.
   I see the pride in your eyes as you gaze upon your son, I know how much you want to protect him, for you see we humans are not so different after all. We love, we fear, we fight, we hope. The very same feelings your offspring evoke in your heart are the very same feelings that those whose loved ones you brutally take away feel within their hearts. Come reason with me Boko Haram, let’s make love and not war, you can be heard even without the roar of violence. Touching a life with love causes the kind of revolution that generations of blood shed cannot achieve. Let’s fight for peace for a change.
    Don’t be sucked into political propaganda shrouded in religion. Allah would never approve of the killing of the innocent. You kill Muslims and Christians alike which makes a mockery of the religious disciplines that govern your fight. Please don’t be a pawn in the hands of selfish men. They promise you gold and silver and make you believe you are fighting for a worthy cause but what good ever came out of killing off the weak and defenseless in a nation? The people you kill are not the enemy. It belies your strength and colours you in cowardice when you target those who could never fight back.

   My dear terrorist, it is 2014 and new battle strategies are necessary. I need you to take stock of what you have achieved in the last year. Nothing has changed, your demands are still not met and before long the people of Nigeria will get used to your terror the way we have accepted maternal mortality rates and road traffic accidents. Now is the time to make a change. I urge you to see things a little differently. Today I am bringing love to the table, it doesn’t make much sense but within its embrace lies the greatest weapon. Let do things differently, yes we can!

From a concerned citizen!

 
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Posted by on March 5, 2014 in Uncategorized, X-Files

 

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1. Where are our children?

1. Where are our children?

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If you don’t live in the North, Boko haram is as real to you as Idi-Amin was to the Americans (catch my drift?) Down South we have regular bad guys, the usual suspects you might say; PHCN not giving power, NNPC hoarding fuel and Fashola creating new taxes. Our lives are pretty mainstream. Death isn’t interested in us, it’s too busy reaping our siblings up-north. Who is Boko Haram? Why are they still faceless? Why do they pick on the poor, the young and the innocent? Taking lives that the government of Nigeria is too busy to account for. We don’t have the resources to wage a full fledged war on Boko Haram they say, yet billions are spent on the Centenary celebrations. Our soldiers shudder at the surprise attacks and timidly march in to do damage control after yet another mishap. Where are our children Nigeria? Where are the young girls abducted from their homes? It’s been weeks and their fate no doubt has already been sealed as their parents go to bed each night with unshed tears. Where are our children Mr President? We created schools to give them hope and not to be abbatoirs for the slaughtering of our young. Why does Boko Haram go free? Why will not a man arise and put an end to this scourge? Boko Haram toys with us, taking from us little by little, avoiding those areas and people deemed sacred so as not to incur the wrath of the powers that be. Nigeria why do we tolerate Boko Haram? Like an open gutter beside one’s house, the stench coming in as intermittent whiffs every time the wind blows North. Where is the unity we sing about in our beloved anthem when every man only watches over his own home and family and interests? Why have we not arisen and driven out this scourge from amongst us? Are we waiting till they come down South or begin to kill the children of the rich and powerful one by one like the angel of death which passed over Egypt killing all of the firstborn sons? Dear Mr President please remember that not even Pharaoh was spared. The whole country mourned. Boko Haram is a group of men, they eat, they sleep, they bleed and they feel. They can be stopped and they can be annihilated. They are not gods, nor superheroes and definitely are not invincible. I have no respect for any group that preys on the young and the innocent. I have no respect for any group that murders a defenseless man. I am a Nigerian and today I reject you. My people reject you, Allah rejects you. You fight alone and will die alone, your blood will be an abomination to your land and an eternal shame to your clan. Boko Haram the God of Nigeria will see to your annihilation and since our president and armed forces are  unable to give us the salvation we desire, one will spring up who will set Nigeria free. A Moses will arise. For him alone will I cast my vote in 2015. Nigerians arise, we need a leader who will kiss Boko Haram, fuel scarcity and power shortages goodbye. Let’s start with the basics and better things will follow. We have a chance at a new beginning next year, do not recycle, shine your eyes Nigerians. You are not better than those who mourn in the North over the constant bloodshed. This is the little you can do. Act right, Vote right! ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! Have a good night Chutzpah fam, xoxo

 
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Posted by on March 5, 2014 in Inspirational, Life

 

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What’s in a name?

Today it took me an hour more than usual to get to work because the roads were blocked by students of the University of Lagos protesting President Jonathan’s bombshell name change during his Democracy day speech yesterday. Apparently I was one of the lucky ones. People have had to abandon their cars and walk because  Third mainland bridge, parts of Herbert Macauley and Ikorodu road have been taken over by multitudes of protesters. The lecturers, non academic staff, old students and postgraduate students haven’t been left out as the crowd constitutes a mix of the old and young, learned and not so learned all united in a common cause.

Did Jonathan err by changing the institution’s name? Are UNILAG students making too much of a big deal about it? Democracy is government of the people, for the people and by the people. Isn’t it an irony that on Democracy day, a singular action could cause such an uproar? Or are the people fighting another fight?

T.O was one of the people that started a petition against this name change yesterday and so far 5000 people have signed it (http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/referendum-against-unilag-change.html). She says most of the people fighting this battle are doing it for the wrong reasons. Here are excerpts from her note titled “Shame on me, Shame on you. Shame on us!”

If you think your school UNILAG too good to be renamed after MKO Abiola, shame on you!
If you protested because you think being called a MAULITE is too razz shame on you!
If you supported GEJ and said, this rebranding is a good way to honour MKO Abiola, shame on you!
If you protested this name change under the delusion that UNILAG is a ‘brand name’ shame on you!
If you have said this PDP people again, shame on you!
If you have said, this yoruba or south westerners people again, shame on you!
If you jeered and laughed at ‘dem UNILAG people’ shame on you!
If you said Ife was changed to OAU so what is the big deal, shame on you!
If you made jokes and created bb images disrespecting UNILAG, shame on you!
If you have said, 3 days from now it will all be over, shame on you!
If you as a UNILAG patriot have exchanged words with non UNILAG students on this matter, shame on you!
If you viewed the referendum but ‘yimu’ at us saying, there is no point, shame on you!
If you shook your head, sighed and said “jobless people, this would lead no where”, shame on you!
If you have said let me see how far they will go before I sign shame on you!
If you said this is their problem, shame on you!
If you have said, kini big deal, shame on you!

Shame on you, shame on me, shame on all of us.

Well shame on almost everyone then! She outlines her reasons for wanting the petition signed and the old name restored and they are mostly centred on the poor quality of our educational systems, the breech of protocol involved in the name change as UNILAG was set up by an Act of Parliament and she amongst others believes a bill should have been sent to the National Assembly for the change of name and lastly, the government’s marginalization of the late MKO Abiola’s recognition to only the South-Western regions of the country.

Every protester on the street today has a reason for braving the cold rain and walking miles just so their voices can be heard. Like all issues in Nigeria, those not directly affected have scorned, jeered and chastised. The protests remain peaceful and only time will tell if they shall be fruitful but I believe that this is more than just the name UNILAG. This is about President Jonathan painting a wrecked car. This is about him sweeping under the carpet issues that are of utmost importance and again focussing on the mundane. Will the name change solve the problems in our country’s educational sector or in the institution for that matter? Will Boko Haram stop killing the innocent or fuel prices come down? Will the name change eradicate corruption? The country is neck deep in trouble, debt and dirty politics and this has just given a group of Nigerians another reason to #occupy. My friend K says “If you can’t help, do no harm!”. Many Nigerians are starting to dread Presidential speeches and this defeats the purpose of the speech. Speeches should give the nation hope and something to believe in and Nigerians desperately need this.

We appreciate the gesture behind the name change and the fact that the President sought to give honour to whom honour is due and I believe that all the students acknowledge and respect this but Nigerians want more than a name-changer, they want a situation-changer and they do not see how a name-change will better the standard of education at the UNIVERSITY OF LAGOS! A few like my friend F, see it as a good thing and the beginning of new things for the institution while some see this as mere political propaganda but the majority fear that the new name will affect the international brand of excellence the school has struggled to create against all odds, over decades. While this may be an accurate prediction, some consider it plain vanity but all agree that we as a people are tired of Nigeria’s method of re-branding. If my car’s bad, fix the engine, don’t paint the car. Don’t use an expensive rug to cover a man-size hole in the floor. We need solutions, we need change! We are tired of pilot programmes, we are tired of commencements of new projects, we are tired of launches, we are tired of naming ceremonies for middle-aged men! Let’s see a project through to the end. President Jonathan we beseech you to proudly work towards being able to show us all the achievements of your government before 2015 and not what you were able to start because “It’s not where you start – it’s where you finish that counts.” When Nigerians are happier, you’ll discover they are much easier to govern. The staff and students of UNILAG are unanimously against this decision, only a strong president will give in to his people, only a great man will relent on a decision- ego aside, if it will bring peace and harmony. Are you that man? I’m very sure there are other ways to honour a great man. How about making June 12 a public holiday? MKO Abiola day perhaps?

And as for the UNILAG staff, students and alumni my friend B has this quote by Shakespeare for you; “What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell just as sweet.” No name change can take away what UNILAG stands for or what it represents. The people make the school. Yes the constitution allows for freedom of expression and peaceful assembly but please keep it peaceful, enough blood has been shed in our nation already. Do not taint the name of your great school by acting any less than a GREAT AKOKITE would and if the new name persists, remember that; ‘The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance’.

And to the rest of Nigeria remember that: “Nothing great has ever been achieved except by those who dared believe that something inside them was superior to circumstances.”

Have a great day peeps…xoxo 😉 😉 😉

I am proud to be a UNILAG alumnus!!!

 
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Posted by on May 30, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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