How dare you become so outstanding? Why do you want to approach the game with a different rule? Who the hell do you think you are to introduce us to your imaginary dawn of a new era of responsibility? Damn your passion for business unusual. We don’t wanna have all of that here. Why? Perhaps, because there can only be peace when we remain a benighted nation, when no one tries to do better or be different and entropy be our state of mind!
This questions which I also tried to answer were my musings when I read the story about the so-called inconsistencies in the names of Dr Muheeba Farida Dankaka, Chairman of the Federal Character Commission (FCC), by motley of individuals that claim membership of an obscure group, Youth and Leadership Initiative Group, aiming to project itself into reckoning by riding on the respectable names of Dankaka. This is one attack too many, albeit the most ridiculous of certificates forgery allegations!
This malicious and discernibly detractors master-minded show of moral shallowness and nationalistic indifference by the rented motley of youth only demonstrates a loss of capacity for righteous indignation. The paradox here beats my imagination. We have a country where we crave development and all round attitudinal and corporate governance rebirth. We desire world best standards in all facets of our national life as we see in other climes. We claim to abhor the stagnation culture that has been our bane.
We go to our spiritual fathers in the Lord and our baban mallam, babalawo or mai magani to subdue the evil eyes, cast out the witches and wizards that are eroding our efforts and stunting our growths yet we throw muds at our pathfinders. Who does that? A nation does not grow when some persons are relentlessly committed to sophistication in the pull-them-down game. To think that some youth have caught the disease is most horrifying!
From the diverse and relentless attacks on Mr President for his avowed and stand-alone efforts to cleanse the Nigerian political leadership of its Augean stable identity to the numerous but ineffectual jabs at Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna state for daring to be the first with a new leadership style, a clear pattern he has formed. Then they attack the likes of Mr Sunday Edet Akpan, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Science and Technology. They always look for issues to prod on. No one who is about something is safe from their evil machinations.
These enemies of the nation, the profiteers of our decadent system only pick on the nation’s visionaries! What they do is clever but is it fair, is it facilitative of our much desired nation-building initiatives? Or to go by the name of the so-called LYGEL that has become so arrogant in the comfort of the assurances of its veiled sponsors to give the respected chairman of the FCC a resignation ultimatum, is it the appropriate way to groom the youth for leadership in a nation that aspires to greatness? No, let energies be dissipated on initiatives that prepare the youth for leadership not witchcraft.
Recently, the nation suffered great embarrassment which exposed the collective fatuousness exhibited in the pressurising of Dr Kemi Adeosun into resigning from her appointment as finance minister over an unclear case of NYSC participation. Adeosun came into our national polity with fresh ideas, enthusiasm and energy. She was excelling, contributing to the reshaping of our economy but what did the Association of Domestic Nigerian Enemies do to her? Good a thing that the court ruling vindicated her, good a thing that we were lucky to find a worthy replacement for her in the equally passionate and serious-minded but utterly humble Madam Zainab Ahmed, the woman of the powerful silence who works tirelessly to ensure our economy remains on track despite varied shocks. What if things had gone awry altogether?
It cannot be that the Senate erred in their clearance and confirmation of Dr Dankaka to assume duties as chairman of the FCC. In some parts of our country, women still change their names to reflect their marriage identity, and for that matter too, variations in the spellings of names in our societies is quite understable Whether it be Muuiba, Muheeha (afterall she is Yoruba and they have their peculiar pronunciation of certain words. I apologise), Aliu, Aliyu, Ali, Yakub, Ya,aqub, Nabila, Nabeela, Mariam, Maryam. They all pass and we understand unless records prove differences in identities.
Muheeba is a great woman. From her days at the Kaduna Commerce Chambers, she has maintained a steady belief in her abilities and the greatness of our nation. Things cannot be different now. Greatness has its price in responsibility, hence rather than be dispirited, I believe this recent attack should serve as her inspiration because one cannot accept responsibilities and think it will be an easy sail. You will be involved in social and political intrigues; you will get involved in the problems or even be convulsed by the agonies of the ecosystem of your responsibilities but the bigger picture of what you must do for the nation as dictated by the laws of our land and as charged by Mr President should spur you on. Our nation is drowning, more serious dangers which require meaningful unified efforts to tackle threaten our survival yet what a so-called youth and leadership initiative group could find time to do is go to a press conference to malign a woman at work, ready to stand for a long time in toil and dedication. Such a shame!
Nonetheless, Mr President gave Dr Dankaka a task – to end job racketeering, ensure evenness and fairness in federal appointments, and take necessary steps to reposition the Agency for greater impacts. If she can’t get support, at least we should be decent enough to allow her to focus. As Oscar Wilde will say, “we are all in the gutters, but some of us are looking at the stars”.
Wada writes from Abuja via [email protected]