Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Failed State

I started writing this post in September. As I type this, it is 07.38pm, 8th November 2010. yes. I didn't blog at all in October. I am quite lazy like that, but I do appreciate the fact that some of you keep coming back to see what randomness has left my head and is laid bare for the world to see. You know I do this for both of us, you guys, and for my sanity. Sometimes I have so many things I wanna talk about but then I don't have the words. Do you know that feeling? I have recently discovered I do not know how to express myself properly. For a lawyer this is a horrible discovery, thank goodness I do not have to represent any poor person in court. I shudder at the thought of the Judge tossing me out. Let me give you an example, I was trying to explain to my colleague about how NNPC ceded a portion of their rights in certain Oil Mining Leases to a foreign oil company and I kept rolling my hands round and round. I said... "NNPC/ I mean the government, gave a percentage of the.. the .. the thing" She stood there with a blank look on her face. What I wanted to say was "NNPC made company X a co-venturer in the Joint Venture" The words "Joint Venture" eluded me for several minutes. It's sad though. I have decided however, that I need to slow down when
speaking to avoid looking like a bumbling idiot in the work place. I mean, what's the point of knowing what I know and not being able to express myself. Surely I'm no more than he who has no idea. At least his own mouth is closed!


Ok I've told you guys what I've recently discovered about myself. Let me tell you what I originally wanted to tell you in September.. or was it August?

Ok so NEPA (PHCN) Power generating and distribution company in Nigeria. I think that description is a failed one though, because they are neither generating nor distributing any power... Anyway, I digress, So NEPA went on STRIKE!! Yes, delayed I know but really how does a company like NEPA go on strike? Only in Nigeria. I don't think our leaders know how much of a failed nation we are without constant power.
I just got back from holiday somewhere in the North east of England; and as with everytime I'm out of the country, the joy of knowing that there would be no sudden power cut (barring all unforeseen circumstance). So i dashed down to Tesco one beautiful morning to grab muffins, a pack of 4 muffins cost £1.50 which is approximately N360. In Chocolat Royal, a coffee shop / pattiserrie of some sort in Lagos, one muffin... One muffin is 350 naira. i was about to go off on how I was being ripped off in Lagos. Why was I paying the price of 4 muffins, for 1 muffin? Then I remembered that Chocolat Royal had a huge power generating set which it left on for 20 hours in 24. Businesses provide power for themselves, this pushes up operating costs and in order to break even, they have to push up retail prices.. Hence, the end user is inadvertedly paying for the lacuna in the infrastructural development of this 'great' nation.. It's truly sad.
So Nepa went on strike for about 5 days, and a lot of people said they were blissfully unaware of NEPA's strike because they'd not had power or 'light' for weeks anyway, I was scared. I mean, we usually have light at night. It was a sad situation though, because it further demonstrated the fact that Nigeria is a failed State. What business does NEPA have going on strike????

Issue number2.... Nigeria's 50th Anniversary. Nigerians donned the cloak of patrioticism on the 1st of October. They told themselves they had something to celebrate. 50years of Independence from the British Colonial masters. The city was awash with what a friend of mine calles 'Massive DeyDererism' (Dey Dererism is the act of engaging in 'hand falling' behaviour. Loosely translated to mean self delusion). So my people went about on that day, wearing a touch og green and going about with hearty smiles and ready to slay those of us who didn't quite get in the groove of the 'festivities'. i wasn't the only one who was not quite happy. Apparently, millitants were also unhappy with the splurging in Abuja and decided to ensure they were heard. More than 8 lives were lost in explosions which disrupted the celebrations.
You see, I live in a country where there is truly no hope. I hear some of you already trying to close the page, you think I'm being a pessimist? Ok hold on a minute, think about the young people you see around you now in Nigeria. They are after all the 'future' right? They are the 'hope' which some of you see right?? How many young people are honest & hardworking? How many possess the integrity to stand for what they belive? How many people are willing to engage their brains and not be led by 'false prophets' and not allow themselves to be fed garbage?

I'll continue to urge everyone I know to brighten the corner where they are. Do your bit, don't drive like savages, have a little sense of integrity, be honest and hardworking. Be the change you want to see in Nigeria. It sounds like a cliche I know, but really, this country's problems are not going to go away at the rate we're going. We need a change of mentality.

I think I've made you guys sad enough... Lemme stop here. See you when next I'm able to shake off my block. :)

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