El-Rufai on Friday: These Cowards
The rising popularity of social media among young people has become such a nightmare for Nigeria’s rulers that are afraid of openness and information symmetry, that the Jonathan administration is spending a whopping $40 million to read their emails, romantic exchanges and other ‘subversive’ exchanges. Interacting regularly with young people on Twitter and Facebook gives the older generation both hope and concern.
‘Dada Olusegun is one of those young people that have been making positive contributions in cyberspace. He is just 25 years old! He attended Awori Ajeromi Grammar School in Lagos and graduated from Ladoke Akintola University of Technology Ogbomosho with an honours degree in Pure and Applied Chemistry! Yet like many of the multi-talented youths we have introduced on this column, Dada writes as if he studied humanities, the social sciences or even literature.
Dada was very active along with Yemi Adamolekun, Japheth Omojuwa, Chinedu Ekeke, Seun Fakuade, Zainab Usman, Momoh Adejoh and Amina Saude Mohammed and numerous others during the #OccupyNigeria movement that successfully resisted the imposition of the surreptitious Jonathanian tax called ‘fuel subsidy removal’. He is a talented writer cum social change advocate. He is a regular political columnist on #EkekeeeDotCom and contributor on numerous online blogs and newspapers. He is a gifted public speaker who is also involved in youth empowerment and enlightenment.
Today, Dada issues a call to action and appeals for Nigerian citizens to end their lethargic acceptance of bad governance, looting and impunity by claiming to be neutral. Indeed, Dada thinks such people are simply cowards. Do you agree? It is my honour and privilege to introduce another vigorous young voice, Mr. ‘Dada Olusegun for your weekend enjoyment.
– Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai
Let me put it this way: I have seen many things in my life. I have seen certain people who treat passivity as some kind of heroic action. There are people who say, “I just want my job, my family, and my religion and I will leave politics out of my life.” Passivity isn’t heroic, it’s cowardly! It’s the lazy man’s easy way out. But I see it beyond laziness.
Let me say this to those people: you’re idiots! While you’re asleep in front of your own life, they are screwing you. While you shut your mind to national issues, they are mentally gang-raping you. While you’re living out your life, they are ripping you off; they’re pulling the carpet from under you, tripling national debts that your children and grandchildren will not be able to pay till they die.
You’re idiots for closing your eyes exactly when your eyes should be open. You’re morons for thinking that the present day government will take care of the people if not put on their toes and forced to do so. You’re blind for thinking that the corruptly rich will not do everything in their power to keep their stranglehold on you; you cannot be passive while the missiles of corruption fall on your head and the heads of your children. You cannot be passive while they destroy your life and the lives of your children. You cannot sit there and pretend to be neutral. You cannot be passive when people thousands daily die due to negligence of government. You cannot be passive when the military sworn to protect your lives and properties kill and maim you and your children on the altar of the war against terror. You cannot afford to be passive. No you cannot.
Your destiny is in your hands, the destiny of your generation and the generation after yours. Let me tell you this: it’s either you become politically active or you risk a complete destruction by those in power. You either become politically active or your unborn children and grandchildren will curse you even in your grave because politics is too important to be left in the hands of “the politicians”. It is even worse to leave it in the hands of criminals who know no difference between state purse and personal pocket. Who will loot the entire treasury, in the drop of a hat.
Our direct participation in politics both now and during and after every election is compulsory for the growth of the society and the welfare of the humans living in it. Our contract must never stop with voting anyone into power, but prevailing upon them to perform. Only with our direct participation in politics will power truly belong to the people.
Enemies of Nigeria are on the prowl, only our combined voices can throw them out. The Edo and Ondo state gubernatorial elections have shown that it is possible for us as a people to resist all forms of electoral malpractices.
I also understand that your ilk, the Mister-mind-my-business, didn’t participate in the Edo election. Your church and family and job and business and holiness and righteousness were all more important to you than the good of the society you live in.
When the vigilance of those you call fools now cause those in power to get responsible and build roads, you will want to drive past them. When they build good schools, you will want to pull your kids out of the low-quality but unreasonably expensive buildings called private schools, to put them in the government owned ones.
We saw how your ilk in performing states pulled their kids out of those private schools when they saw that a responsible government can actually build good schools.
You sit under your religious leaders who enjoin you to honour thieves in government with their silence and you swallow such messages without thinking them through. What they fail to tell you however is that without the Reverend Martin Luther Kings’ of yesterday, there could never have been a Barack Obama today.
You are an enemy of this country.
But the country must move on with or without you or your cowardice masked in passivity. We will defeat all the enemies and put our nation back on the path of growth and change.
Did I hear you say I insulted you? Well, whatever I say here will be better than what your great grandchildren will say on your grave, if this nation fails.
Wake up, my friend, wake up!
Olusegun Dada can be followed on twitter @DOlusegun