Nov 12, 2014


I just tried taking a quick nap during my lunch break but I couldn’t because 2 of my colleagues were passionately discussing the current Nigerian political situation and the insecurity in the North-East. I bet you know how that goes, with the sad taste Boko Haram has left in our mouths and how justice seems only for those who can afford same, both were full of complains and sadness.  

One is a mother whose child is in one of the higher institutions in the North and she wished she could transfer her daughter to a school down South, the other just wished our political representatives could be selfless rather than go to the National Assembly to fatten their pockets, egos and obtain government contracts. In fact she wished the military could come take power from these rascally politicians and probably shoot them all, well that was her opinion, before the Nigerian SSS start looking for me. kindly note that  I am totally pro-democracy, thank you.

Anyway, since it was getting hard to nap, I joined the conversation, I told them how I believed the Nigerian democracy will evolve and how the citizens had a duty to compel govt. on all levels to deliver. However, stomach infrastructure seems to largely influence our actions and thoughts. When mounting bills are knocking on your door and the government doesn’t really input in your daily life, it becomes a luxury to spend time trying to make governance work since the so called political office holders are too distracted by party allegiances and personal ambition to pay attention to the day to day duties of promoting Nationhood. 

One truth I believe is that Nigerians need to wake up and make government stand straight. We have so much power standing together that politicians must live in fear of public backlash if they do not deliver. While reading my constitution, I realized the Nigerian book compels citizens to take Nationhood really serious and goes to the extent of providing duties for every Nigerian citizen. Section 24 of the constitution says;
It shall be the duty of every citizen to – 

  • abide by the constitution, respect its ideals and its institutions, the National Flag, the National Anthem, the National pledge, and legitimate authorities; this goes beyond learning how to recite it o.  
  • help to enhance the power, prestige and good name of Nigeria, defend Nigeria and render such national service as may be required; be a good ambassador of Nigeria, don’t be involved in 419 scams, yahoo yahoo, fraudulently lodge our monies in foreign accounts or commit crimes only to run away from England dressed as a woman, don’t give out pardons to well established government thieves either.
  • respect the dignity of other citizens and the rights and legitimate interests of others and live in unity and harmony and in the spirit of common brotherhood;
  • make positive and useful contribution to the advancement, progress and well-being of the community where he resides; don’t squander public funds, destroy public infrastructure, make a mockery of your political office or be a cog in the wheel of progress, all because you are a local champion and you want to receive egunje.
  • render assistance to appropriate and lawful agencies in the maintenance of law and order; and  this is difficult because the Nigerian police work on a first come, first serve basis, na who first complain and pay money na him get case, you can even go and report and they will say you are the culprit, I wonder how those guys think sef.  
  • declare his income honestly to appropriate and lawful agencies and pay his tax promptly. GEj doesn’t like this one sha because he refused to declare his assets a while ago.

If we followed all of the above, maybe things will get better. 

adedunmade Onibokun, Esq