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Opinion

 Nigeria@60 amidst desolation and Penury

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By Abba Dukawa

 

“The purpose of government is to enable the people of a Nation to live safely and happily, government exists for the interest of the governed and not for the governors” (Thomas Jefferson 1743 – 1826).

 

No one will discount the progress made in several areas of our national life since the country gets its independence from British colonial masters. Nigeria contemporary’s countries that gotten statehood with our country are now in the league of developing nations. In spite of our enormous wealth but our dear Nigeria at 60 independence, the citizenry well being is misery because each passing day Nigerians swallow the bitter pills administered to them by their leaders.

 

At this moment the country and citizens witness the Diamond anniversary of our nation’s independence amidst harsh conditions. Because the Talakawas living standard in the country only moves from bad to worse because three squares of meals beyond reach therefore the anger on display is a reflection of the true situation in the country.

 

The leaders have perfected their manipulatory skills such that even civil society groups, professional bodies, and religious organizations have fallen to the spell of poor leadership as if they are no more rational beings so to speaks the guilt weighs more on the followership, who have allowed them to be manipulated, deceived, abused, used and dumped by the leaders who should be there to protect their interest. Nigerians have been disappointed to the greater level with the development shape our country in the last six decades where every sector is decaying due to the lack of political will of our leaders and proactive citizenry role.

 

As the nation celebrates its diamond still our leader’s taken citizens for granted because of citizens’ failure’s to make a concerted effort in ensuring that the right must be done. We can either celebrate or sober reflections on major problems bedeviled us as a people and nation It critical look at the role of followership It must be reiterated that every Nigerian is a major stakeholder and therefore owes it a duty to salvage Nigeria from the quagmire of poor leadership. The success or otherwise of leadership will not be in isolation of followership. Both leaders and followers are guilty in the event of failure of the state. The support given to leaders in Nigeria, always allowing them to have their way in almost everything is the guiltiness of the citizenry.

 

May 29, 2015, marked new dawn with the inauguration   PMB’s as the new president after beating the then sitting President at the polls with high hopes and expectations from the citizenry that President Buhari would lead Nigeria’s turn-around and create the basis for its improved prosperity.  Unfortunately, the person we brought into the office in 2015 as Mr. No-nonsense” is disappearing, the notion of if Buhari catches you syndrome no longer scares anybody, as we all can see. Sai Baba diehard supporters get mad with the way things moving where our perceived Lion King is encircled by jackals and hyenas and even rodent one that not is fighting for the administration is having a field day.

 

Despite all these set backed Nigerians exercise tolerant with the hope that President  Buhari would lead Nigeria’s turn-around and create the basis for improved and prosperity Nigeria five years of the administration all the hopes became disillusioned. There is growing resentment against the current government by the citizens because the administration’s inability to speedily address the challenges inherited from the previous administration.

 

It is time for the government to be sensitive to its policies which will not look like on anti- masses despite the billions of naira being pumped into numerous Infrastructure projects still, Nigeria’s have infrastructure deficit which will hit $878bn making it hard for businesses to prosper. More than 100 million Nigerians are languishing in poverty with a life expectancy of 48.8%. Nigerians will celebrate independence amidst suffering nearly half the population living in extreme poverty. The World Bank has predicted sluggish growth this year coupled with unemployment.

 

Nigeria @60 the national education sector so depressing,  major roads in the nation were in a state of despair and almost every sector is not promising. The state of security, electricity, health, is so embarrassing. Nigeria celebrates its Diamond Anniversary amidst desolation at sometime battling for survival with mind-boggling skyrocketed foodstuff prices due to foodstuff merchant’s impunity but the masses are being punched.

 

What the masses are experiencing now is like what they have passed through in the late 80s.  The only difference that the populaces are at the mercy of foodstuff merchants unlike in the 80s when government securities agents can storm the warehouses which foodstuff merchants hoarding essential commodities and sold them out at subsidizing rate.

 

Interestingly Nigeria at 60 independence problems with the country has been identified by most analysts and social commentators as the absence of true leadership.  This I believe is just one aspect of the truth or reality.  The reality of the matter is simple Poor leadership in the context of bad followership throughout the ages in every society that has evolved successfully, social reform and change are initiated by followership and not necessarily the leadership.

Both leaders and followers are guilty in the event of failure of the state. The support given to leaders in Nigeria, always allowing them to have their way in almost everything is the guilt of the citizenry.  In fact, citizens are regretting to say that our yesterday as a nation was better than today. There are no indices to show that citizens tomorrow will be better.

 

Dukawa can be reached atabbahydukawa@gmail.com

Opinion

Harvard University Library Has 20 Million Books- Dr. Yushau

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Dr Muhammad Jameel Yushau

 

By Dr. Muhammad Jameel Yushau

The Harvard University experience is incomplete without discussing the abundant #learning opportunity offered by Harvard University library.

Harvard University has the oldest university library system in the United States. The library was established in 1638 and there are 28 libraries currently under the #university library system. It comprises 20 million books, 700 staff, 6 million digitized and publicly available items, 1 million maps and spatial data sets and 400 million rare items that include photographs, letters and manuscripts as stated by the university library page.

Harvard library

Harvard’s library

The Widener library, which is the largest and located at the Harvard Yard is where I enjoy spending part of my weekend. Widener library is an architectural edifice and a tourist attraction. Many visitors to Massachusetts State visit Widener Library as part of their touristic voyage.

A student is allowed to bring at least four guests to study in the library. So myself and my family utilize this opportunity especially during the weekends.

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The Widener library was named after Harry Elkins Widener, a book collector, businessman and 1907 graduate from Harvard University. He died in the titanic accident of April 1912 along with his father. But his mother survived. The surviving mother gave $2 million grant to start the library in the name of her son. In addition to the 6 million digitized items, there are materials in 450 languages in the library.

Students at the site

Students at the site

Takeaway: The backbone of a university is the quality of its library. Contributing to the library is not the exclusive preserve of the university, but a public responsibility.

Dr Yushau is a candidate for the Mid-Career Master Program in Public Administration, and Editor-in-Chief of Africa Policy Journal

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Opinion

Collective action essential on Climate Change Action

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Jibril Salisu Nainna

 

By Jibril Salisu Na’inna.

President Muhammadu Buhari’s article that was recently published by the Washington post was apt and represents a strong voice of reason not only for Nigeria or Africa, but the whole world.

It is easy to rate it appropriately as an article conveying the right massage for humanity at a time the crisis in Ukraine is deflecting attention from the grim climate changes that are causing despair around the world.

The article has exposed the level of imbalance in some global agendas in which some countries and regions do not show sufficient commitment so long those countries or regions feel less affected by the devastating impact of climate change.

It is indeed true that the big economies are unwilling to stop or reduce their emissions that are responsible for global warming and climate change. And they are also shy of making the requisite agreed financial releases necessary to mitigate the impact of climate change,especially in developing countries.

President Muhammadu Buhari was on point when he advised the rich countries not to create the impression that the world cannot invest in its own safety against climate change.

“Don’t tell Africa that the world cannot afford the climate cost of its hydrocarbons — and then fire up coal stations whenever Europe feels an energy pinch. Don’t tell the poorest in the world that their marginal energy use will break the carbon budget — only to sign off on new domestic permits for oil and gas exploration. It gives the impression your citizens have more of a right to energy than Africans,” he said.

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It can be recalled that the rich countries that contributed most to the climate crisis and pledged that to spend $25 billion by 2025 to boost Africa’s efforts to adapt to climate change as the continent continues to struggle with drought, cyclones and extreme heat, as reported by Africanews.

But they have, sadly, failed to make that promise good.”Governments have repeatedly failed to meet their commitments to the $100 billion fund for climate adaptation and mitigation in the developing world — for the mess their own industries caused.”

 

Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt where COP27 is holding has reawaken the consciousness of Africa to demand equal input and enough action with overall sincere commitment to confronting and mitigating the adverse negative effect of climate change facing the world especially the developing and poor countries with very low or no contribution to global carbon emission.

Indeed, Nigeria is not left out of the adverse crisis, the president reminded the world that Nigerian case was not different where he said “Part of my nation is underwater. Seasonal flooding is normal in Nigeria, but not like this. Thirty-four of the country’s 36 states have been affected. More than 1.4 million people have been displaced” it is a verifiable fact, of which Jigawa state of northwestern Nigeria is the most affected state this year.

Nevertheless, for Africa to adopt resolutions of the conference fully enough, countries that made pledges to support developing countries must be committed and any source of survival that must left for the good, must firstly be substituted with an alternative means.

COP 2022 must be a truthful rise to act collectively so as to see more meaning and right actions taken ahead of next conference in 2023.

Jibril Salisu Na’inna is a student and pan Africanist wrote from ABU Zaria.
Jibrilsalisunainna @gmail.com

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Opinion

Intervention Of Elder statesman :Way Out For ASUU- FG Face OFF

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Abdurrahman Joji Adamu

 

Abdurrahman Joji Adamu

The leadership of all University based unions should seek the audience and intervention of General Abdussalami Abubakar regarding the crisis and uncertainty of the Govt to address issues lingering in our Federal Universities, because the Federal government in my opinion, has adopted “competition” as the conflict mechanism tool to defeat ASUU and other University unions, The government is trying to satisfy their own desires at the expense of the other parties.

ASUU had in over the years being going on strikes, whenever they are on strike they table huge demands for the government to look into and addresses them, some of these grievances got considerate hiring by previous regimes and administrations. Part of the successes of ASUU strike overtime gave birth to tertiary intervention fund, which without tetfund intervention our Universities could have been like community public secondary schools.

This time around, the eight month strike had degenerates alot of war of words. looking at the aggressive nature of government ministers on the issue, series of meeting to resolve the strike were proved abortive until the intervention of the speaker of house of representative whom in his capacity and wisdom tried his best, ASUU agrees to back off.

It was apparent that all the striking unions were all tired and some are even ready for a fallback position. But the government in it inhuman nature has refused to give a compassionate attention on the matter by paying backlogs salaries to enable people go back to work, the repercussion had made so many of academic staff having no passion for their jobs anymore.

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Former president Goodluck Jonathan sometimes ago gave a highlight on how he solved the problem of ASUU then, in single day, without doubt we consider the statement of the former President as a challenge posed on President Buhari in order to take clue and expedite measures to resolve the strike issues, but the president gave an absent minded attitude on the lingering issue.

The essence of Government at whatever level is to provide leadership and service to the people. The arrogant nature of both ministers made negotiations deadlocked all times.

Those who think they are too big to serve should not be brought near public offices.

Ministers must not only be suitably qualified for their posts; they must also be willing to serve with all sense of expertise and humility.

With the inability of the ministers to make ASUU- cease fire on these stagnating negotiation and crafty promises, i think the president should re-visit the constitution in order to comprehend his presidential powers and duties accordingly.

 

 

Elder statesmen are seen globally as eminent senior members of a Nation especially : a retired statesman who unofficially advises current leaders. I believe the General can make peace out of these dilemma our Universities are facing. In record we have seen how the General chaired the peace accord committee in 2015 election and without doubt the committee conducted a brilliant work by making the power of incumbency irrelevant and opposition taking over the government.

I think the academics should search for a war veteran like him who has also fulfilled the promise of relinquishing power, perhaps he would advise the government impartially so they would understand.

 

Abdulrahman Joji Adamu
Write from Kano

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