Nigerians are waiting for a messiah-leader to come save them


Ozodi Osuji

     In his book, The Trouble with Nigeria, Chinua Achebe said that Nigeria needs a leader or leaders to save her from the deep hole it has dug for itself. Nigerians’ tendency to disgusting corruption has produced an anarchic and chaotic environment. They live in a world where they must bribe rag tagged police officers (those are filthy, apparently they no longer take showers and smell like feces…when the British were there, at least, they made them to take shower and wash and ironed their clothes and looked like decent human beings, now they look like they stepped out of the jungle) on the street corners to walk or drive by him.

     Nigerians bribe to go to hospital, to have medical doctors see them and to do anything. It is a royal mess, nothing works, it is total breakdown of morality, law, and order; folks live in (Thomas) Hobbesian state of insecurity and life is nasty, brutish and short.

     They diagnose the cause of their problem as one of lack of leadership. All 150 million of them are looking for the messiah-leader to drop out of heaven to come save them.

      Each of them is afraid to lead and get shot at and killed by the thugs that hijacked the criminal’s empire’s government.

      Well, messiahs and leaders do not fall from heaven and if you wait for heaven to send them to you you will wait until you die.

      If you want good leaders, messiahs you become one. Be the leader you ask for and that is all there is to it.

      Set goals and mobilize people and materials and use them to accomplish those goals. Africa does not have universal leaders, such as Alexander the great, Julius Caesar, Genghis Khan, Napoleon Bonaparte, Otto Von Bismarck, Adolf Hitler, Winston Churchill, Joseph Stalin, Mao Tse Tung, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Franklyn Delano Roosevelt.

     Why can’t the continent produce such men? It is because the people are cowards and lack vision; they all want to live at all costs, even as slaves just so they stay alive. Apparently, no one taught them to live like warriors and if needs be die fighting for public good. They live like despicable and contemptible people.

    May be, soon, one such heroic leader would emerge in the thieves’ haven called Nigeria? If in twenty-five years no such leader has emerged in Nigeria, as Professor Patrick Lumumba said, the country might as well be recolonized by white or Chinese folks; the people in it right now make one want to throw up.

Ozodi Osuji

October 29, 2021

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