THE BEST OF THE GOOD IN US

For those people (and leaders) who like to blame the masses and exonerate the leaders who, as they say, afterall emerged from those same masses and from those same people… well, as logical as your argument is, I would nevertheless like to say this:

This is the magic and importance of leadership -:
If you aspire to leadership and campaign for it or willingly accept an appointment to it, you thereby indicate your willingness to be better than the masses, to be an example for the masses and to pull, inspire, chaperone and lead the masses out of the wrong towards the right. You indicate your certainty that you KNOW and UNDERSTAND the masses, from out of whom you also arose. Your campaign is an assurance that you know their weaknesses and strengths, their qualities, history and idiosyncrasies, their needs and problems. And that you know how to pull them together and bring out the Better Them. The best in them.

No one expects you to be perfect, but they expect you to strive towards perfection. If they experience you doing so, they will be ready to forgive you your shortcomings.

Blaming the masses is not the solution. The masses are yearning and looking for a leader – a GOOD leader. And that’s why they voted for you. They believed in your rhetoric and put their faith in you. Now YOU have to lead them towards what is better – instead of turning around and blaming them.

Especially in a young country whose institutions are still weak and forming, where there is mass under-education and massively one-sided congregation of wealth, we need powerful circles and groups of leadership personalities to break into the driving seat on all levels and power the birth of the best of the good in us. One day we will hit that critical mass that tips the scale. Good people really need to stick together and work together – because evil people always do. Irrespective of colour, class, cut-out, conviction and creed – on both sides.

The leader should first give his best, his honest and noble best; and then leave posterity to be the judge. Don’t blame the masses, don’t blame the people. Blame the leaders. If you are not ready or able to lead, do not step forward in the first place to ask for or accept the staff of office. If you do that, then you represent the worst of what you condemn in the masses.

From now on, we want leaders who represent and reflect The Best of what is in the masses of the peoples. This is what Nigeria needs now. This is what Africa needs now. Afterall, there is a reason why leadership is called “public service”.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije

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NIGERIA: IN NEED OF LEADERSHIP

It’s serious. More serious than we think. Nigeria is a rudderless ship out on a stormy sea. Forget all the rhetoric; in truth most people do not want Nigeria to break up. But we need new Leadership. Intelligent Leadership. Dynamic Leadership. Progressive and vision-filled Leadership. Above all, fair Leadership that does not want any one part of Nigeria or any ethnic group or any demography to suffer or be left behind. We need the Spirit of Panafricanism in our Leaders.

It is the absence of all this that brokers the separatist volition. Nigerians are survivalists by nature. If they feel Nigeria is not working, they immediately start looking for an alternative. Either outside the country or within the country. It is the same impetus which makes people run away to distant countries that also makes them long for secession or, at least, restructuring. One way or the other, we all want to live in a new country, to hail from a new country, to belong to a new country, different from this Nigeria the way it is today and the way it has been going – getting ever worse – since independence. People want a new home, a real home, preferably in Africa. You think Biafra is a cry of war? You err. Biafra is a cry of help. A cry of desperation. A cry of despair about the state of Nigeria. A search for a better Africa. Biafra is a safety plan, in case the ship sinks – and I‘m sure Arewa and Oduduwa are exactly the same thing. It all depends on Nigeria.

Nigeria needs new Leadership. Badly! Leadership that really cares about ALL its people. Leadership that really understands the psychology behind the process and mechanism of growth. The growth of a society. Of a nation. Of its morals. Of its union. Of its capacity. The growth of its peoples. A Leadership that will champion a FAIR AND EQUITY-BASED AND GROWTH-FOSTERING CONSTITUTION. In the end, everything comes down to the Constitution.

The Titanic, unsinkable, sank. Rome, unconquerable, fell apart. The Dinosaurs, top of the food chain, went extinct. The sun set on the global British Empire. Never ever make the mistake of thinking that a country cannot fail and cannot break up. History has proven over and over again that it can. People need to wake up and take things seriously. Nigeria, the most populous Black Nation in the World, is in bad shape and needs a complete redesign, recalibration and re-orientation.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije

NEO-AFRICANISM

Nigeria has not yet had a Nigerian President. South Africa has had many Presidents, but only Nelson Mandela was a South African President. The others, before and after him, white and black, have all been just sectional leaders. Africa has had very very few AFRICAN leaders-of-state, Pan-African heads of government. Selfless father-figures and servants who are a father to all and a mother to all, regardless of ethnic or religious affiliation.

Why? Because it is not easy. It is not easy to place loyalty to high ideals above loyalty to tribe, religion, family and every thing else. When people come campaigning for votes and popularity, and they claim they will be „President of everybody“, „there will be no sacred cows“, they will be „everybody‘s friend and nobody‘s friend“, „everybody will be equal under the law“, they will rise above „tribalism and religious chauvinism“, they will not favour „their side above any other side“, etc etc etc…

Look at them carefully or just wait for it. In time, they have almost always turned out to be just a Big Fraud.
Why? Because it is not easy. Deep in their heart, everyone loves their ethnic nationality, their religion, their spiritual philosophy, their origin. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with this. It is normal and healthy. The question is: WHO loves the Truth and Justice MORE than he or she loves ANY OTHER THING? That is the Point. Who, above loving his tribe or faith, loves the progress of the Whole more than any other thing.

Not everybody is born to be a leader at the highest levels. Many are good enough to be administrators or guides or governors at lower- and mid-levels of groupings. But at the highest levels, only those human beings should qualify who have made the transition from healthy love of self to healthy love for all.

It is not easy. It requires honest and painful soul-searching. It requires self-unmasking experiencing. It requires self-conquest. It requires, not self-abnegation (for you cannot deny who you are, and anyone who denies who he or she is, is a liar or is still in the process of finding himself). It requires Ennoblement and Maturity. It requires elevation into Selfless Love.

These are the new kinds of leaders we need in Africa now and in the future. These are the people we should look for and encourage, instead of discouraging them. These are the people we should begin to awaken within our own souls. These are the Neo-Africans.

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.

HERDING INTO AN UNKNOWN FUTURE

Last year, President Buhari arrested Nnamdi Kanu, accusing him of urging Easterners to arm and protect themselves.

Today, ARMED herdsmen from our president’s own ethnic group have started falling on those same unarmed Easterners and on other unarmed peoples of Nigeria, killing, maiming, raping and slaughtering them and forcefully taking over their land. The spike in these activities has been all over the news for months, and rumours now abound that there is even a secret bill in the making to legalize the unconstitutional one-sided freedoms of these armed herdsmen.

President Buhari has not arrested or brought to justice any of his own armed kinsmen and fellow herders. Infact on this issue he has been uncharacteristically soft-spoken for an ex-soldier who has severally fumed of how he will use the military might and intelligence of Nigeria to crush any violent or armed groups within the country.

If this is not the cold cynical Conspiracy that it looks like, then it is a case of a president turning out to be more clueless, inefficient and inadequate than he accuses his predecessor of being. Choose one.

The world is moving ahead, leaving Africa behind to continue to wallow in our ancient small-minded animosities. The OAU was founded in 1963, yet Africa is still not united and still not honest with itself. The Biafran War ended in 1970, but Nigerians still don’t trust one another. We are in the fourth republic, but the law and the constitution are still being interpreted selectively. Caught between the opposites of Meritocracy and Federal Character, we have not yet solved the basic puzzle of what form our democracy should take in order to succeed long-term.

The Age of Oil is slowly coming to an End. During these decades of global oil-dependency, certain Non-African oil-producers have used the proceeds of the Oil Trade to catapult their nations from the dregs of primitive rural backwardness into mind-boggling heights of beauty, industry and technology. Today while we pathetically and anxiously monitor the price of oil daily like mindless helpless victims of a system beyond our control, some scientific nations are investing heavily in New Energy, rushing at a feverish pace to hurriedly create a parallel technological space that will eventually replace the fossil-fuel-based technology and infrastructure of yesterday. The economic dynamics of tomorrow will not be kind to Nigeria and Africa.

In the arena of social and cultural engineering, upheavals are rocking the universal human soul which will shape the global social dialectics of tomorrow. Displacement, migration and integration have become issues facing more and more nations and societies. Peoples and ideologies that have always been strangers to one another and seemingly mutually incompatible are now locked in an intense discussion on how to co-exist peacefully within the different contexts of their different social systems and nation-types. Those who bring the solutions will be those who rule the future.

Rapid advances in the synergising of equally dizzying advances in new forms of information and communication technologies keep opening up wider and more customisable possibilities for any person, groups of persons, peoples or nations who really want and are committed to progress – to source out, engineer and implement the solutions they need. Living in the transitional era of the matrix of all these forces, the times could not be more conducive for progressive African minds to finally achieve the leap out of the state and the sad image of a non-producing, non-inventing, self-oppressing, corrupt, beggarly continent to a self-dependent, socially secure, rights-protecting, technologically inventive part-carrier of the future. Knowledge, once the rarest and most sought-after power-broker in the world, has become a cheap commodity easily available to any serious seeker.

In the midst of all this, it is the more primitive problems that continue to bog us down. Ill-health, lack of education, corruption, power-abuse, tribalism, broken infrastructure, the lack of basic amenities, the lack of social security, the lack of a tourism industry, the lack of a culture of incubation of ideas and new technology, issues of human, civil and minority rights, insecurity, and the list goes on. And at the top is the baffling question of the paradox of why Nigeria, an African country, should make herself the crude battleground of two imported world-religions. At these present cross-road where only UNITY gives us a fighting chance to catch up with the global shift in technology and social re-engineering taking place. My favourite song in my village has very simple lyrics – “Idinotu, o bu ya bu ike.”: UNITY IS STRENGTH. When will African “Muslims” and African “Christians” figure out this little trick?

In an integrated world in which diasporan Africans globally are increasingly looking to the motherland as a source of inspiration, a fountain of ancient knowledge, a bedrock of self-respect, and a field of new progressive activity, self-mockingly the continent is momentum-wise worse off now than at the dawn of independence.

And now Fulani herdsmen have joined the fray in expansionistic dimensions last seen only before colonialism, taken up their walking sticks and their new sophisticated firearms and started brutally doing everywhere in the country the very thing the President said he would never condone or allow under his watch. Lailai.

We are watching. Africa is watching. Quietly?

– Che Chidi Chukwumerije.