(…. Nigerian masses culpable)
The problem of Nigeria is not the activities of corrupt politicians, but the accomplice of “innocent” masses. Much of the accomplice is accomplished through culpable silence. It is under our nose that the whole nation is decaying, yet we do nothing. We don’t even sincerely condemn the activities of those responsible. Some even go as far as justifying their criminality. You hear some clichés like, “it is his time to chop”, meaning it is the opportunity of anyone in power to make money through embezzlement of public fund.
The most worrisome are the silent majority who believe they have no business with governance or how the nation is ran. These ones are only interested in personal achievements and care little about national or community development. Many of whom condemn politics as business of evil men, hence the common saying that politics is a dirty game. This is complete surrender of national, state and local leadership to the “evil men” whom the so-called “good men” still expect to construct roads, provide electricity, build hospitals, equip schools, develop agriculture, pay salaries, and alleviate poverty and so on.
The elite prefer talking about tribes, defending the indefensible for no logical reason barring protection of tribal interest. Instead of words matched by action, the elite dwell in criticism propelled by ethnic bigotry. If the learned friends who have been expending great energy in criticism of Chinua Achebe’s memoir on Biafran war had channeled such resources to sincerely condemn the lootocracy going on in Nigeria, we would have had another great cities like Lagos and Abuja. These are what we all loss daily through criticisms fueled by tribal protectionism instead of desire for nation building.
Today, the Arab nations are re-defining their future just like European and American nations did in the past. They are talking. They are saying something about their future. But disappointingly, we are still in tribal war within one nation. Can we shed this garment of tribalism and break the silence?