By Farmer Al Akhigbe

“The heart (of Nigerians are) deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.” – Jeremiah 17:9 (parenthesis mine)

I would have inserted “Nigerian leaders” in my parenthesis, but I won’t because, the leaders did not become leaders without the people.

A country that do not take its education and healthcare seriously is not fit to be independent. I don’t care about sentiments, Nigeria’s independence is a curse. The colonial masters would have done a million times better if they were still on the saddles.

If you see the rot in the educational sector and still dispute what I’m saying, you’re part of the problem.

If you have been to our hospitals and still doubt what I’m saying, you’re part of the problem.

I lost my both parents to the crassness of medical personnel and inadequate medical facilities.

My father had a sore on his ankle. My brother thought it was cancerous because it would heal and open up again and again. The man was okay o, still farming his thing in spite of it.

A medical doctor advised my elder brother that he could cure it permanently through grafting. Brother made the arrangement and sent dad to the doctor who operated a private clinic. In the process, doctor cut a certain nerve in the leg that he couldn’t treat. Dad cried in the resultant pains until he died. I cry each time I remember that my dad cried. For him to cry means it was really agonizing. He didn’t deserve such death.

My mom was seldom sick. She was in her late 70s, and the only time she was rushed to the hospital for a low CBC, she died.

They said she needed blood transfusion. I was skeptical about it and recommended Catholic vegetables. The hospital, a specialist in Irrua, did not even have the blood type in stock.

Brother’s wife was a matron there. After a few whispers with a few colleagues, blood showed up.

I was not excited. My skepticism grew instead. Where did the blood come from? Certainly not from the blood bank: they didn’t have the blood type. Was someone operating a blood bank in his/her office drawer?

Long story short, they did the transfusion and discharged her the following day after tests certified her okay. She got home and died the same night.

Just like that!

I know that death can happen to anybody at anytime. But the number of people that die through lack of qualified medical personnel and adequate medical equipment is far higher than those that die through inevitable circumstances.

When you experience some of our doctors, you’ll wonder if they studied beyond basic biology in school. Why will anyone be surprised? What should be expected of a dead education system? I’ve seen a lawyer who couldn’t write ordinary application letter. I won’t be surprised to see a doctor who doesn’t know beyond basic biology.

We don’t have a system.

When you enter some of our health institutions, you’ll wonder if you are in an abattoir. That day I entered the A&E of Irrua Specialist Hospital, I couldn’t breathe. I had to run out before I fainted. It was like a makeshift clinic in a war zone.

Yet, we have DGs, commissioners, honourables, senators, ministers, governors, president that are Nigerians. They’re paid in millions and misappropriate in billions.

Yet, we have Nigerians who spend their miserable lives hailing the Messianism of the MIS-leaders.

Can’t you see we’re deceitful and desperately wicked to ourselves?

They say it’s not easy to lead. It’s another wicked lie. Leadership is not difficult. It doesn’t take expertise; it doesn’t take education; it doesn’t take muscles. It just takes a heart of compassion for the led, and an ability to make decisions.

Should I steal this billions available or should I rather put it in a project to benefit my people? Should we increase taxes or reduce our salaries and allowances?
Should we invest in education or build political monuments? Etc.

Every resources (human and natural), expertise, intellectualism are at the disposal of the leader to use and make life better for the people.

But will a Nigerian do the right thing?


Farmer Al Akhigbe (c) 2020