Of patriotism and sycophancy: The Nigerian example
Supporting your president and urging him on even when it is beyond argument that he is progressing in error is not patriotism. It is nothing short of mindless sycophancy.
In a nutshell, patriotism simply means loyalty to your country as a whole, not your president as an individual. The president of your country deserves your support ONLY to an extent to which he is doing only the things that are in the best interest of your country. The moment he starts working against the interest of your country, you owe it to yourself, your country and your fellow citizens as both moral and legal duty to withdraw every form of support for such a president and start treating him as the number one enemy of your country because that is exactly what he has become.
Placing the interest of your president over and above that of your country is anything but patriotism. Your country is bigger than your president who is nothing but your employee elected to serve you for a fixed period of time after which he will vacate the office.
Choosing your president over your country and supporting him in RUINING your country is tantamount to treason. It becomes worse when your much-touted love for this president was borne out of illicit gains your association with him is gifting you with. It’s even worst when you, a private citizen, collect monthly pay from the government or its representatives through the backdoor just so you would churn out satanic lies and demonic propaganda in support of the government, thereby riding roughshod over the pains, wars and woes of your fellow citizens inflicted upon them by the same government.
No sane citizen of a free nation-state should ever confuse blind loyalty to his president or any other government official, elected or appointed, as patriotism. Blind loyalty is no loyalty. It is as criminally deceitful as the peace of the grave yard which is no peace at all.
If a conflict arises between the personal interest of your president and that of your country, there can be no argument that every citizen with even the tiniest strand of grey matter upstair should consider the interest of his country paramount and even sacrifice the president if need be, in order to save his country. This, right here, is the right and sensible thing to do because while you can easily replace your president, you cannot replace your country.
A man who spends most of his time looking for errors in the way and manner his government pilots the affairs of his country IS NOT an enemy of his country. He is the most patriotic of them all, his intention notwithstanding, because in a government presided over by men whose brains were not located in their poo-poo hole, the fault-finding mission of such a man will almost always keep the government on its toes, thereby bringing out the very best in them to the benefit of the entire country.
When a man spends most of his time supporting EVERY action of his government and doing hash tag of #IStandWithMyPresident every now and then including when this president of his is clearly hurting the entire country, such a man is a certified enemy of his country and the people there-in. He is no patriot. Matter of fact, mentioning the term “Patriot” and the name of this blind supporter of the president in the same sentence amounts to subjecting patriotism to mockery.
As a citizen, you don’t need to #StandWith your president or any of your elected representatives. The only time it is okay to stand, sit, jump, run, crawl, walk or even fly with your president, governor or any other representatives is when they are contesting election because then, they are candidates soliciting votes from you. But the moment they get elected to serve you, they stop being your candidate and start being your employees who should be closely monitored and held to their campaign promises.
Your government is the people you employ to use the instrumentalities of state and your resources (not theirs) to protect your lives and property and provide basic services for you. Your president is as much your employee as your personal driver, cook, gardener etc.
By casting your vote for your president, you have already gifted him with enormous power to make or mar your collective destiny as a people. He has the entire armed forces at his beck and call. He is comfortable beyond words. The notion that an employee who has been so empowered still need you, his employer who lives a life very distanced from the comfort he enjoys, to #Standwith him before he could do the same job for which he is receiving outrageous salaries and allowances, is a very silly notion. Idiotic, even!
No president, no matter how powerful, should be considered greater or more important than a whole country.Nothing kills a government faster than surrounding itself with a very large horde of unthinking political idiots and ‘arseholeric’ leeches far drunk in the highly poisonous wine of bottom-less sycophancy laced with blind partisanship.
There is no task more tedious than rescuing a country where the number of sycophants far outweighs the number of patriots.Regardless of your political or religious affiliation, as long as you are a Nigerian or you have any stake in this country, you owe it to both men and God to rise up and contribute your quota towards rescuing this country from the firm grip of these dark-hearted men (The Cabal) who have hijacked it and are currently playing Russian Roulette with the destiny of over 180 million of us using the name of Muhammadu Buhari who it has been proven beyond doubt, is gravely ill and currently too sick to discharge the duties of his office.
To restructure or break up, you must first retrieve your country from conscience-less usurpers.‘Winter’ is almost upon us. If we keep cowering in fear of these political terrorists, we might just wake up someday and discover that we no longer have a country to restructure or dissolve.
Time to act is now!
Ogbu, a social analyst, wrote from Port Harcourt.