Letter to our politicians
These were nagging questions, nagging thoughts that were versions and portraits and figures and images that were collectively part of my mental voyage as I spent ample time walking, thinking, meditating and trying to write about our country.
The source of my image-making power which is my sub-conscious mind moved and moved toward political action in our country as I paced about in the serenity of my wonderfully quiet abode of plain living devoid of material things that tantalize our politicians everywhere, materials things that our politicians crave, and which have turned them into exploiters, speculators, avaricious financiers who have unleashed in our country economic inferno preventing workers, including university lecturers and professors, from enjoying minimum wages corresponding to their labours.
Who says our politicians are currently not the worst people who represent the worst and the very worst of modern Nigeria? Who says this New Year will change our current politicians, the very worst we have ever seen in our country, from usurious oppressors to powerful economic planners and people of aesthetic integrity and solid political, judicial and cultural principles?
Of course, we know that the majority of our politicians love material possessions and belongings which explain why they seek elective and non-elective political offices and positions. They are blinded by their love for material possessions, which really possess them, and have no order within them to give or spread in our country. They are too order-less to give themselves order and to spread order in our country.
The nightmare that is our country for many years now cannot enter a new dream now, cannot enter a new dream yet because the visions of our politicians are visions of deception – visions that cannot give us light, clean air, water, roads on land, sea and air.
Yet they are ever prepared to create and inspire violence that will sustain outrage and volatility in the land.
Obviously what our politicians call visions are nothing but promises that they don’t really mean to keep, and which some of them have not kept.
At best, they are mere promises of people, of politicians without honour and who don’t possess the heart of the real person of honour, who we can value as a model for an outstandingly exceptional Nigerian worker “living amid mundane times and hostile forces.”
What we must let our politicians know is that their countrymen and countrywomen need the necessities and essentials of life and existence: the necessities of food, shelter, clothing and fuel, that is, fire or light they need to beat poor health, to dominate their environment and to elevate themselves as human beings.
That we are telling this to our twenty-first century politicians speaks volumes which indicate that to discover the reality of this set and class of our politicians is the labour of labours.
Perhaps to make our task easy we must get precious and congenial help to rid our country of these pests infamously from an odd and absurd world of “fetid, cloacal nightmare of oozing mud, pus, and excrement.”
If our country must not permanently malfunction economically, politically, culturally, educationally, our pests and demons of pests must brutally be flushed out of here in a healthy season of soldierly flurries of structured soldieries.
But our politicians are a special breed who cannot be harangued to do for their compatriots what they must do for their compatriots.
They are too engrossed in their harmonics of vanity to refine themselves, to hear or listen to their haranguers, and to let the wind of paradise of happy politics sing to them.
Our politicians, the majority of them, think we envy them. They think that when those who write and talk to them to behave decently, to use power decently and productively on behalf of us all, they think that the haranguers do so out of malice and out of jealousy.
They think that we want all they have – their luxury, opulence, power to obstruct justice, to condone nepotism and cronyism, to deny us freedom, to pervert all that are dear to us, and to turn our country to a hellish hell that is darker and blacker than darkness and blackness.
How wrong they are! Obviously, several critics in civil society organisations, labour congresses, academia and members of various professions and sundry technocrats who at one time or the other, in times past, confronted our politicians with words of steel are in their fold as their cohorts or “boy-boy” or “maids” today giving them blind obeisance.
But there are many others outside the “boy-boy” syndrome who celebrate candour and truth to which they pay worthy obeisance and which they will forever worship.
Indeed, they will concentrate their energy to worship ruggedly forever the power of truth without compromising their principles.
With mounting intensity they will continually chant words of truth to our political lords whether or not the lords of power understand the chants.
As the elections approach, we will hold them, especially all of them in offices and positions, to account.
Now, the real essence and import of this short epistle whose didacticism those who undertake to interpret to our politicians, should interpret to them as they share our wealth on their rafts and horses is in the form of this short story of Diogenes, an ancient Greek philosopher of self-sufficiency and simplicity of life:
“Diogenes was apparently acquainted with Alexander the Great. Although Alexander was rich, powerful and famous, Diogenes was unimpressed. On one occasion, Alexander saw Diogenes sunning himself.
He walked up, stood over Diogenes and asked whether there was anything Diogenes wanted, the suggestion being that Alexander would use his power to supply it.
Diogenes replied that he wished Alexander would stop blocking his sun. Alexander was impressed by Diogenes’s independence; he reportedly said that if he couldn’t be Alexander, he would want to be Diogenes.”
Indeed, those who send words and any letter (such as this one) to our political leaders are messengers from God’s paradise, God’s messengers to them to mend their ways and to do good – and only good – deeds for their people and country.
Haranguing journalists, columnists and non-partisan critics and commentators in the land are God’s runners of errands showing our politicians that they are going and have gone astray. They must pay the price – unless they hearken. Will they? The answer is in the lips of the coming one who must come.
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