INTERVIEW: Jonathan worse than Abacha — Pius Adesanmi

Pius Adesanmi

In this interview with Musikilu Mojeed and Ibanga Isine, Pius Adesanmi, a professor of English and African Studies at Carleton University, Canada, speaks about his writings, his activism, the way Nigeria is governed as well as his future political plans.

What is your impression of Nigerians and the challenges their country is facing at this time?

I love Nigeria and Nigerians so much because we are a bundle of contradiction. You see so much… I don’t want to call it poverty but existential challenges in every layer of society. In spite of this, everybody is still happy. People are still bubbling everywhere and I love Nigeria for that.

You are supposed to be in Canada. Why are you in Nigeria at this time?

There are a couple of reasons. Some are immediate and some are remote. The immediate is that I have some lecture events to attend. One was the NBA International Literary Colloquium which held recently in Mina. I was the keynote speaker. I also attended the 60thbirthday of Pastor Tunde Bakare of the Later Rain Assembly. It was a weeklong activity which culminated in a public lecture and a book launch in Lagos. I was invited to present the 60th Birthday Public Lecture. I had two lectures and an opportunity to come back home. It’s always good to come back home and enjoy the communion of kindred spirit.

Are you not going to stop by in your hometown in Kogi to take some palm wine because in one of your writings, you talked about how you salivate for the early-morning palm wine?

That was in a lecture I delivered two years ago titled, “Face me I book you.” I was reminiscing about that part of life in the village while growing up. My father had a palm wine tapper who would come at 5a.m. every morning. When my dad passed on about five years ago, I inherited his palm wine tapper. Only that this time around, he calls me with his blackberry phone from the top of the palm tree which shows that things have changed a lot. Fortunately, during this visit, I am not able to go all the way to Kogi which needs more surveillance visits from me. By and large, Kogi is not a state that is governed to my satisfaction and if I am complaining about any other state in my own attempt to be transcendentally federalist in my engagement of public institutions in Nigeria, I think there comes a time I should situate it a lot more in Kogi State.

What do you mean by saying Kogi is not well-governed to your satisfaction?

Looking at all the indices of underdevelopment and backwardness in this country, I think you could go back to Kogi again and again to cite examples – whether it is Millennium Development Goals, infrastructure or anything. There is little or no governance going on there as far as I am concerned and people like us who come from there need to pay attention to that. We need to let the authorities know that while we are concerned with the broader issues about Nigeria that Kogi State is also in our focus and that we have not forgotten that we have to also look closely at what is happening back at home in Kogi.

How are you copping living in Canada given your likeness of palm wine, the wine tapper and other delicacies from home?

You really don’t want me to get away with this palmwine business. But I think you are using palmwine as a metaphor for much deeper issues around dislocation, exile, displacement, nostalgia and home. You have been there and you know it’s always a struggle. You make do with what you have. On the surface, there is always a bottle of palmwine which is not the real thing but at least has the fragrance of the real thing. You make do with that. I like using one expression that as much as possible, try to photocopy Nigeria. Try to photocopy the culture and photocopy what makes Nigeria tick and reproduce it over there but always bear it in mind that photocopies and reproductions are not the real thing. So in the Diaspora, you must essentially make it a duty to always come back once in a while. I will give you an example since we are in the spheres of alcoholic metaphors. In the first half of last years, you know I recently attended a fellowship in Ghana and being based in Ghana for one year afforded me multiple opportunities to come home to Nigeria. I came once a month. At that time, everybody was almost into Alomo Bitters.

So I got into Alomo Bitters and the sub-cultural world of signification. Every alcoholic drink has a culture and subcultures surrounding it including modes of socializing, discuss engagement, banters and all that. But when I came back after a break of just three months, everybody is talking about Origin. Having gone for only three months only and hey, if you are talking Alomo Bitters, Nigerians have moved ahead. It is now Origin, Origin, Origin. I put that up for my Facebook followers and used that as a metaphor for much broader, much deeper and much significant things that you miss out when you stay away for too long. Somebody was in this country in July and came into the discourse of Alomo Bitters just to come back three months later to meet the discourse of Origin all over the place.

You were talking about nostalgia, displacement, exile and the associated problems and excitement about home. It does appear and it shows in almost all your writings that you miss home, you love Nigeria and Africa. Why can’t you come back home and invest your potentials in the country and continent?

Pius Adesanmi and Okey Ndibe. Pius serving himself palm wine wile Okey enjoys swallow.
Pius Adesanmi and Okey Ndibe. Pius serving himself palm wine while  Okey enjoys pounded yam.

Well, I think there are multiple ways to do that. First, at the political level I am not very sympathetic to the idea because you know a lot of my detractors will either try to blackmail me or try to coble me into some kind of emotional and psychological position from which some of my ideas and positions and engagements on national issues could be delegitimised. Like saying, if you love Nigeria so much, why not come back, or you are not even in a position to speak about some of these things because you are not based here. So at that political level, I am not sympathetic to their points of view and I don’t think that location ordinarily delegitimises ones mode of engagement with Nigerian especially in modes of intervention on issues of advancement. I am not sympathetic to that sort of argument. At another level, I like to think of it in terms of my fundamental attachment to Nigeria and my unimpeachable devotion to her development at the intellectual level especially – that is my constituency. In this case, my location is not mutually exclusive as an errant global cosmopolitan intellectual. I also take that identity quite seriously and this idea of being at home in the world so that the business of Nigeria and I hope you are not going to box me into a position that will make me say something that will make you remember the Yar’Adua days. I am going to say that the business of Nigeria should not necessarily be subjected to the strictures of location. You should not necessarily be here to make the intellectual business of Nigeria relevant and useful. In fact, I always tell people that I am much more useful to this country in terms of my contribution to her intellectual development than I could ever hope to if I was based here. Out there, I have more resources at my disposal to help individuals in universities and schools back home in Kogi State. I have more opportunities to throw out to colleagues over here in terms of development and grants. There are windows I am privileged to open up to my fellow Nigerians that I may not essentially have if I were here. Most of these factors make it possible for me to be there and still maintain a certain level of relevance.

You have a punishing schedule and at one point you collapsed in Frankfurt in July, maybe out of exhaustion. Why are you highly sought after?

I am almost tempted to tell you to ask those who invite me give you the reason. I don’t know. Maybe there is something they think I have and they like. Maybe there are some kinds of contributions they think I can make, not just to Nigeria because the engagements I have are mostly about issues of Africanist knowledge production and capacity building. I get invited a lot and I crisscross the continent giving lectures on the politics of generating knowledge in Africa, about Africa in the 21st century.

Does it have something to do with the fact that you are bilingual?

I think that helps a lot. People used to tell me back in the day, I don’t know whether that is true anymore because now I do a lot things in English Language. Back in the day, people used to tell me that if I stand behind a curtain speaking French, you would find it really hard to say that I wasn’t a Frenchman. I speak the Peruvian French. Yes, being bilingual means that I have one leg in Anglophone Africa and one leg in Francophone Africa and these are traditions, cultures and political issues are thrown up.

Are you also familiar with the culture of these places too?

Oh yes. My good friend and poet, Ogaga Ifowodo, who is back in the country and contesting for the Federal House of Representatives, used to grumble that I was becoming too “Frenchified” for his liking. So if you go into French studies the way I did, you know all my degrees are in French and I spent time in France. Even before going to school to study French, I was already exposed to it because of the peculiar circumstances of my upbringing back in Kogi State. I was partly raised by a French Reverend Father. If you take all that into consideration, you will see the rooted “Frenchness” I got into in this Anglophone giant (Nigeria). I have a strong French/Francophone background and didn’t only study French to acquire the language. When France colonized a part of Africa, they came with a philosophy of assimilation, “frenchification,” which means that whatever is your base culture isn’t work keeping. They brushed away everything and they pour frenchness into you. Part of that philosophy was built into the training of French graduates so they acquired the French culture and civilization along with the language.

You are a cultural icon and a respected writer but you are also a social critic which is where most of your writings are focused. You have criticized the Nigerian establishment extensively and tend not to see anything good in the country and those in power. What do you really want?

There are two things that are being conflicted here. When the spoilers and wasters of our potentials and boundless opportunities want to delegitimise my position, they will say I don’t see anything good about and in Nigeria instead of saying that I don’t see anything good about them or the way they are ruling. And that is part of why I am dissatisfied, that is why we are struggling because you have these guys who in order to continue to rule this country the way they are ruling and when I say ruling, I am using it interchangeably with ruining. There is a distinction between ruling and leading. That’s why I call them rulers and not leaders. Therefore, if I say they are rulers, I means they are ruining the country because they are not leading the country. One of the levels of resistance one must bring up against them is the equation of their own personality and overinflated ego with Nigeria so that if you criticise them, you are criticising Nigeria. If you say that X is not a good leader, then they unleash social media attack dogs on you. There is a constant case of sly misrepresentation and I do not agree that I do not see anything good in Nigeria. That is what our detractors think. My problem is that there so many things that are fundamentally annoying about this country which cause restiveness and dissatisfaction. There is very little things about the way the state, our mechanisms, our institutions function in ways that fundamentally alienate and dehumanise the citizens. I can go into specifics.

On my way to Minna, I took pictures of a Federal Government road construction in progress – a 21st century road construction in progress in this country. On the surface, you could see this fine layer of bitumen or tar in a stretch of macadam which is really nice to behold. But when you look closely, you find out that the layer is very thin. With all the machines and heavy-duty equipment, the contractor has just poured the thin layer of bitumen on sand in the 21st century. You want me to tell you the layers of corruption that went into the making of that road which is going to be washed off during the next rainy season so that it will be rewarded to our friends so that we take part of our cut. That’s just one example.

Are you referring to corruption in the country?

It’s everything.

Are you saying that nothing right is happening in the country?

That is not what I am saying. What I am saying is that a lot is being done wrongly which overwhelms whatever it is they are doing right and in the 21st century; we have absolutely no basis being overwhelmed by mediocrity, by substandard and evil. By the way, I perfectly understand and what I am talking about is not just limited to those who are ruling this country. There is an overwhelming ethos and general subscription to mediocrity as a standard and it has generally been accepted in every facet of our lives and it applies to the citizenry. In fact, I am happy that you are making me talk about our leaders now. For over a year now, I have been writing about the psychology of followers which is fundamentally wrong and we have to work on it. When you come into Nigeria, one thing which amazes me is the proliferation of “Nollywood” homes – lovely residential buildings. People are building very lovely homes all over the country and you could say to some extent that there is some level of middleclass empowerment that has gone into that process when you see all these duplexes, bungalows and very nice things. You could call that development – right? Yea, that is an index of socio-economic advancement. But when you go inside those houses, something as simple as finishing is wrong in a N10 million home. You may be tempted to ask what government has got to do with toilets not flushing properly in homes that also have bad plastering and doors that are not properly fixed in a N10 million home. Years of accumulation of mediocrity, years of the accumulation of the substandard even when there are regulations. That is what Nigeria paid for. It is not that there are no rules and edicts in the books. There are always there so that by the time you are building those homes in Lekki, in Banana Island, in Maitama, in Asokoro or these other areas, you see the façade of excellence outside but when you go inside, you are forced to ask, ‘what’s going on here?’. Why are we in this permanent state of rebellion against excellence? That’s the fundamental question we must answer.

You have criticised successive governments in the country and now we want you to look back and tell us which the worst government in Nigeria is?

Pius Adesanmi2I have come to a situation where I think that that question is no longer legitimate in the case of Nigeria – that is the transcendental comparison of the badness of successive government. Here is why I say so. Every time we face one government in its present, you thought it was the worst. Then the next government will come in and you say wait a minute, looks like we had it better in the previous administration. We thought there couldn’t be a worst government than Obasanjo’s administration. Then Yar’Adua came along and acquired the dubious distinction of being Mr. Snail who didn’t do anything but allowed the country to be dysfunctional. So we thought that quite bad and his 7-Point Agenda didn’t seem to go anywhere. I thought that was quite bad and screamed and screamed. His illness was capitalised upon by the so-called cabal and all those things that went on. Now this guy (President Jonathan) tags along. When you look back at Obasanjo and Yar’Adua, you find out that whatever was wrong with them now seems like child’s play. I have been home multiple times since President Jonathan came to power and I just don’t know or understand what he is up to. The weight of corruption has gotten so bad. In fact we are not even in position to complain about corruption because we now have bigger problems with him which makes corruption look like Boy Scout play in the field. We now live with layers of impunity that would make Sani Abacha ashamed of himself. But under Abacha, one would have the excuse that we were under a military rule. We have now democratized impunity. Under the military, there is the monopolization of impunity by the soldiers but what is going on under President Jonathan, am sorry to say is democratization of impunity at every level. Every Nigerian now exercises impunity in their little fiefdoms. I was on the road recently and somebody brought an MLS Mercedes Benz jeep and parked it facing the wrong side of the road. He just packed the car wrongly and left to attend to his own business. That Mercedes jeep suggests a number of things about the owner, assuming it was driven by the owner and not his or her driver. Ownership of that kind of car in this society suggests at least a minimum level of education, a minimum level of taste, a minimum level of culture and means to have bought it in the first place. Why did this person park in the middle of the road facing the wrong side of the traffic and goes away. That is impunity. Market women have impunity, taxi drivers have impunity, and everybody has impunity.

Reuben Abati was more critical of government than you are but today, he is on the other side. When people criticise government, it is difficult to know what they want. If you are given a job in government or a contract, would you still speak the way you are speaking now?

That question always assumes just like when I was reading the defence of my friend during the latest attempt by the Jonathan government to smear him. It is wrong to think that one is screaming because you want to draw attention to yourself or because you are waiting for your turn. I don’t know what motivated Reuben Abati to do what he did. But I am going to take a step at it and I hope it will be an indirect way of answering your question.

Reuben badly, tragically, and sadly underestimated the institution he had become. He misread the icon he had become. He misjudged the fact that there is no service he could ever offer to Nigeria that would be superior to what he was doing in the past. Reuben is a first-class brain. That brain, that intellect, that power. May all of that not fail us at the most critical moment of our lives. That is what I see when I always think of Reuben Abati. I hope that a time will not come when I am going to underestimate my own self because, considering what I have been doing, the activism, the writing, effort, the energy, are all thankless jobs that sway me from the legitimate job that puts food on my table. I am only extremely privileged to have the kind of employer which identifies with what I do. They like my service to the community, service to humanity and that’s why I haven’t run into problems. I strongly hope that a time will not arise when I will make two mistakes implicit in your question by underestimating the value of what I currently do, which I consider to be a contribution to my fatherland.

Secondly, and this is the most important part, people mistake service in government as the only way to serve Nigeria. They tell me, Prof, you are making noise now because you have not been called upon to serve or to come and eat and I asked them, who told you I have not been called upon to serve and how can that be possible in today’s Nigeria that I will be doing the sort of thing am doing and at the level at which am doing them, the audiences I have not only in Nigeria and I will not be approached? That is not possible. It is not thinkable because I know places I have messed up these guys very badly. It is not every time you go public that you go and beat your chest in terms of the impact that you have. Knowing that you will be asking for specifics; let me tell you something. I am in the capital of a major Western power which increasingly is becoming a very attractive destination for Nigerian government officials. They have messed up and everybody knows them in London and they are not taken seriously officially. They have also messed up very badly in the United States of America and nobody takes them seriously in the official US. They are seen as clowns. Now they come to Canada with all kinds of intergovernmental, multilateral, bilateral this and that. There are always delegations coming. I am also well-known to the Canadian authorities. Do you how many times the Canadian will phone me and ask questions about visiting Nigerian delegations? They will tell me they are hosting a delegation of Nigeria and ask what my take is. I always tell people who have the kind of opportunity I have; like when a foreign government is seeking your opinion not about your country and about certain people who are coming and why they are coming, that is another opportunity to serve Nigeria.

Sometimes I look at the names and say these people are wonderful Nigerians; fantastic representatives of the Nigerian people and the interest of our country. Most times when I see the names and why they are coming, I tell the Canadians the people are not serious. For example, there was a time some of these clowns in the Senate came. I think they were doing constitutional review and it has been going on forever. So I got an email from the Canadians saying they were going to host a delegation of Nigerian senators. They said the Nigerian lawmakers were coming to study the Canadian Federalism. They told me that an entire Senate Committee was coming to study federalism in Canada in preparation for the process of restructuring Nigeria and ask whether I would like to attend their presentation. I thought within myself how Nigerian senators would come to understudy Canadian federalism. Of course I saw the name of Smart Adeyemi, the senator representing me, on the list and I laughed. I asked the Canadians who were going to host them what they know about Nigeria that these jokers should come here to study what Nigeria has been practicing right from the 60s. We had true federalism when we had the regions then and that is what the Canadian government is practicing. Ottawa has very little say in the affairs and economy of each of the province. They own what they produce. Ottawa is in charge foreign affairs, military and a few other sectors. I insisted that they didn’t need to come there and should be made to stay back home to find out how true federalism was implemented in Nigeria in the 60s. And those were some of the things I have the power to do out there.

You keep on complaining about mediocrity while people like you keep distancing yourself from government. Are you saying that if the Jonathan administration invites you to come and serve you will decline?

I find a little bit of blackmail in that question when people ask. If I reject an offer from the Jonathan government, it means I don’t want to serve under the administration and that should not be equated with not wanting to serve Nigeria.

But why won’t you want to serve under Jonathan government?

Why will I want to serve under a government that is dysfunctional in everything? I would be a hypocrite. It would take a change in the DNA of the Jonathan government to make me agree to associate myself with that government.

If Nigeria is handed over to you and you are asked to change two things about the country. What would those things be?

It is leadership by personal example. I have been speaking about it. It has disappeared completely from this country but it makes it so easy for good followership. A followership is as corrupt as the Nigerian followership has become and which is the biggest problem this country has. A country can survive corrupt rulers but no country can survive a corrupt followership where everybody in their own little corners have ethos of cutting corners in everything. What legitimises cutting of corners for the followership is because those who are in charge of things are doing it. All it takes is one day in the life of a president where a clear message would be sent through symbolic and evident-based action that impunity is no longer tolerated, it will reverberate throughout the country. It would create a miracle. The followers cannot do anything outside the personal example of their leaders. It will take only one day for a leader to make his life an example to the followers for things to change. It will take the renunciation of the present government ethos which has corrupted everybody. There is no level in our lives that has not been corrupted. Even kids now have the mentality of getting things quick by cutting corners and every time people cut corners, they cheating the country. it is important to point out that the act is not as important as the mentality that says such action is right and the legitimacy comes from people in government.

From your informal conversations, you seem to like Ghana a lot. Why it this so?

Pius AdesanmiThat’s where the example comes in. Don’t forget that Ghana also has problems of corruption and a very sharp North and South divide and strong tribal flashpoints. Ghana has all that but they have that layer which makes you as a Nigerian very uncomfortable. To some extent, they have power, water and other basic things to some extent. And you begin to wonder why we couldn’t do better as Nigerians. For example, we were celebrating the 50th Anniversary of African Studies at the University of Ghana, Legon. It was a long week event with international conferences and dignitaries coming from every part of the world. It was Kwama Nkruma’s pet project and they were celebrating it as a national event. The event was rounded off with a banquet and the President of Ghana, John Mahama was going to chair it. The event was going to start at 9pm and I asked a Ghanaian colleague to pick my Nigerian friend and I on the way. When the guy picked us we got there at about 9.10pm and we found people milling around, chatting and about two people were already seated on the high table including the chairman of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, UNECA. I was looking at my time and it was almost 9.20pm and I turned and told my Ghanaian colleague that I thought their country was different and concluded that their president also comes to events late. He looked at me and said Prof what are you talking about? I said is it not President Mahama we are expecting? He pointed to the high table and said, that’s him sitting there. Of course I had seen the picture of the president a thousand times and not that I didn’t know him. Mr. Mahama was there on the high table and chatting just like any other person in the hall. I didn’t recognise him because of the ease of our access to the hall. I found out that the president was already seated before we arrived and had been sitting there all the time we were moving around and even passing in front of him.

Are you saying there were no security operatives near the president?

My brother there was no sign that a president was in the room and the two of us who were Nigerians were shocked. The Ghanaians didn’t understand why we reacted that way. I tried to tell my Ghanaian friend that if Nigeria’s First Lady, Patience Jonathan was coming to the campus, about 12 kilometers to the venue could have been sealed a day earlier. But here was a president sitting inside and we walked in without being checked by any security operative. It was shortly after that the master of ceremony announced that the programme was about to begin. But the president was just bouncing back and forth and mingling with people showing the demystification of power. If I heard siren in Ghana in a year, it was an ambulance or the police. So look at that? If power is seen as ordinary and that is taken as a philosophy from which a leader operates, he will understand the importance of showing example to his followers.

Your last book was “You Are Not a Country Africa.” When are we expecting another work?

I have three books in the works now. Two of them will come out soon and one of them is for my primary constituency, that’s the academia and the second is a sequel to “You Are Not a Country Africa,’ which involves the collection of my satires on Nigeria. I don’t know who will publish that. I heard from the grapevines that PREMIUM TIMES in collaboration with Richard Ali’s outfit will be publishing that book.

You seem to be doing a lot of your writings these days on Facebook and you seem to be reflective. Why do you do that?

I have realised the power of social media and that’s part of my beat as a scholar of culture. Fundamentally, I do literary and cultural studies and that is my professional designation. We try to study what we call the location of culture, the demography that I study to impact on are there. I have to locate my knowledge generation there and so I take what I do on the social media very seriously because my goal is to educate beyond the classroom.

You write on a daily basis on a lot of issues spanning from Africa, to the world and so on. How do you find time to do all that?

I find time out of no time and that it why I keep collapsing.

Are you hoping to collect some of these post on the social media into a book or something?

A lot of people have suggested that I need to do a selection of some of my best post for publication. If you look at Eduardo Galliano’s recent books, I have forgotten the title. Galliano is that guy who was so famous to the intellectual world but became known to the global public. Hugo Chavez held up one of his books at the UN while abusing George Bush. His latest book is a 400-page snippets that he had been taking from Facebook. I am inspired by that work by Galliano and I think I am going to look at that after we’ve finished the PREMIUM TIMES book.

Your friend Ogaga Ifowodo came back and is trying to raise funds to contest for a House of Representatives seat. When are you going to take that kind of step?

You know there are a lot of Facebook groups calling on me to come and run for Senate. That’s the question I cannot exclude but when you asked me about the Jonathan government, I excluded it. An elective position is a totally different ball game. I don’t think I have what it takes now to afford it and that is in terms of the nitty-gritty of the process. No matter how good you are, no matter how good your vision is and all that you still have to do things the Nigerian way. So am I able to do some of these things like the question of godfathers, factions and all that. Of course in my own case it would be any other party but the PDP. But can I do that now? It’s not that I don’t believe in it but I know that Ogaga could not have come without first having a very wide consultation with his people. He is my brother and we have been talking extensively. In fact I am not ashamed to say that I started preparing him because I believe in him. I believe in what he is doing. If somebody is trying to go in, in a way that is not totally like that of Reuben Abati to capture legal spaces, then we have to encourage such people. But I have had very pragmatic discussion with him to understand that there would be compromises. When you know that is a fact, then you have to prepare your mind for it but don’t lose the core of what you are about. In some cases, you will have to be maneuvering and there may be a particular godfather to make happy otherwise you will not get the nomination.

When is yours likely to happen?

You have boxed me to a position. Let’s look at 2019 and see what will happen.

What position are you considering? Governorship?

I can never be the governor of Kogi State.

Why?

Thank you for asking me that question. If we don’t restructure Nigeria, we will keep moving from discontent to discontent. I am an Iyagba or Okun man. We belong to the Yoruba race. When we were part of Kwara State, we were a part of the Yoruba majority in the state. So they yanked the Okun out of Kwara State and threw them into a state where they are sub-minority of sub-minority. Mathematically, for an Okun man to become governor of Kogi State, you will have to secure the magnanimity of the Igala majority and the cooperation of the Ebira. There are so many factors to overcome. So it is mathematically impossible until the Igalas get tired because they have the number. But who gets tired of governance in Nigeria.

So in that circumstance, you will be thinking of the Senate?

You really want me to make a commitment? It is a theoretical possibility and that’s my academic way of giving you a no answer.


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  • True Nigerian

    I thoroughly enjoyed it! This is another true Nigerian. This is the inspiring Prof in his most relaxed, and yet most engaging and brilliant self.

    These are the people that can fix this rotten hellish enclave called Nigeria, if only the vast majority of the peoples (voters) of this country will stop reasoning like headless chickens and stop their tolerance for odium and the arrogance of it in the name of governance.

    King Ahab often complained to Jezebel about one “useless troublesome man” (actually a very useful man, prophet and patriotic citizen) named Elijah. I am just wondering how many times Jonathan must have complained to “mummy” Patience about this wonderful citizen and tireless Professor. Hahahahahaha!

    Changi! Changi! Changi!

    Sai Mai Gaskiya!
    Sai the Patriot whose time has come!

    Sai Buhari! Sai Buhari! Sai Buhari!

    • tope alabi R

      where is boko hari’s certificate?

  • bintinlaiye

    Unfortunately, your people asked for the breakaway from kwara. Being the most educated of the then to be Kogi state, they erroneously and foolishly believed they could override the much bigger Igalas and Ibiras. Now, they are suffering for their self-inflicted problem. They and you inclusive, must live with It!

  • MrFesh+Ifebuche+Paschal

    “I love Nigeria and Nigerians so much because we are a bundle of contradiction”
    Summarises the view of this unfortunate young man. What a contradiction in telling us this administration worse than Abacha regime. We hate GEJ but we are never in doubt if Abacha was better loved.
    Nigerians in diaspora tend to have one i-better-pass-you kind of mentality. Look at their condition overseas and you will see how much they struggle to make ends meet.
    For their pocket sha.

    • tope alabi R

      people like him are best disregarded and ignored,am sure he doesnt even have a voters card.If he has any tanjible thing doing in abroad he wont be in Nigeria begging for lectures to speak and collect daily bread.I had previously advised him to think about going into agriculture atleast thanks to GEJ the sector is now booming

      • True Nigerian

        Well, your comment is quite typical of many Nigerians who are suffering from stockholm syndrome, and many of us are.

        Just read yourself: “If he (Pius) has any tanjible thing doing in abroad he wont be in Nigeria begging for lectures to speak and collect daily bread”.

        It’s really a pitiable mentality. Joseph Stiglitz is a world class economist, a nobel prize winner and US-based academic. In the last 6 months alone, I know he has been to 8 countries speaking to governments, private organisations and social reform movements. I guess it means he really doesn’t have anything meaningful to do in his country or perhaps, that he is begging for lectures. Thomas Piketty is a French economist whose book on economic inequality is a masterpiece. From the Whitehouse to Russia through to the Pacific and the South America, he is on the road on weekly basis discussing what he has written in his book. He is also very critical of the current government of France for many reasons. No French person has abused him or asked that he should be ignored because he has issues about the wrong governance in his country. If he was a Nigerian, you would say that he is travelling around because he is a hungry beggar and should be ignored or because he has nothing meaningful to do with his time.

        The Professor that supervised me when I was studying abroad was a leading expert in her field and was sought after by countries, companies, governments, world-class learning institutions and intergovernmental organisations across the world. In the first 4 months of my project under her supervision, she had been to more than 8 countries on speaking engagements. Her salary in the university was $300,000 per annum with a research funding of more than $1m every year for nearly 6 years. I guess she was travelling because she was begging for where to speak or begging bread!

        It’s unfortunate!

        • Ogeez

          True Nigerian, thank you for taking the time out to contribute as much as you did. Indeed the information gap in Nigeria is huge. I enjoyed reading your contribution and it resonated with me.

        • Ayelala

          that man is suffering from inferiority complex. Nigerians living in the advanced countries actually make better citizens. They are more and better educated. Their civic consciousness is more advanced,they pay their taxes and are mostly law abiding.
          Pius happen to be one of only a handful Nigerians you can actually call a professor.
          Put the diaspora and the ones at home in separate countries and say go.
          The country of the diaspora will definitely be a better country.

        • samiis

          a good number of Nigerians are far from being realistic about their arguments on deep national issue like this, these categories of Nigerians are the real woes of this nation is battling with. sincerely, it beats my imagination having the likes of @MrFesh+Ifebuche+Paschal and @tope alabi R thinking and commenting this way… it a pity!

    • True Nigerian

      The reason I read comments here and take time to respond when I have time is that I’ve seen that the information gap in Nigeria is quite deep. So I often take my time to try to educate people when the opportunity comes and if I have time to spare.

      I have lived abroad before returning to Nigeria. Nigerians who live abroad don’t go there with the expectation that they would not struggle. Oyibo people at the craddle of their careers also struggle to make ends meet. Making ends meet is a challenge for every private citizen in this overly capitalist world. However, some countries make social mobility easier than in other countries. In most of the developed places that Nigerians travel to, they are guaranteed that the governments of their host country will not obstruct their dream if they are brave and hardworking enough to pursue that dream; they can expect that where they need to get a form or certification, they will not be required to bribe any official in order to get that form or a signature of the official who should sign it for them; they know that if they merit a scholarship, they are likely to get it, even from Oyibo professors who may not like the skin colour of the recipient; they know also that after all their struggles, if they eventually succeed to give themselves the footing they need, they will be rewarded for all their efforts. These are significant differences on the potentials of a human being.

      The highest job offers I got before leaving Nigeria when I travelled the first time were paying laughable sorry amount in the name of salary. In Abuja where the jobs were located, the salary would barely pay my transportation each month from my home to the work place. And yet, I also needed to live in a house, needed to eat, needed to go to church, needed to wear good clothes, needed to have something to give to others who needed my own help. And of course, in the country where we are born, unless you are froma very rich family, children also have to provide for their siblings and, sometimes, even for their parents. Which takes me into one of the significant factors which most of you often ignore each time you start making mockery of the legitimate struggles of a Nigerian in the diaspora. Here is the point: 60 to 90% of the struggles faced by a Nigerian abroad exist because of the problems created for him right inside Nigeria where he comes from. A Nigerian abroad would work so hard to earn a living in his host country. And then he is confronted by the demon of the terrible poverty of the people he or she has in Nigeria. He or she does not solve his own problem, but instead, he solves the problems that are in Nigeria. His sister is going for surgery, she is at the point of death, but the doctors say they cannot operate because the patient is yet to pay a cash deposit. It doesn’t happen in any other country. And so the poor Nigerian who should be saving money to obtain a licence or further training on his career would then have to send his earnings home so that his sister will not die. I know Nigerian doctors abroad who were making money in Nigeria. And yet, the reason they give for leaving the country is because they say the medical system in the country is unbelievably inexistent. I mean, these are doctors speaking; these people who know enough to treat themselves and their loved ones.

      And then the next month, it will be his mother or father who is in Nigeria that is sick; another month, the federal government increases the price of fuel and the price of everything also doubles. And for a Nigerian who is still in his or her early career abroad, it is a double trouble. Often they would already have enough responsibilities back home, and then some corrupt looter in the name of President doubles their bills without even knowing it; afterall, there is no social security provision for the populace that are meant to bear that extra burden.

      So this is why the official figures of the World Bank shows that the remittances from Nigerians abroad in just last year alone was $22b. That is more than half of Nigeria’s national budget for a year. So ask me where the money have gone into since there are no mega businesses sprouting up here and there from Nigerians abroad. It is because most of those remittances constitute the real economies of most of the 70% of our people who are officially and scientifically reported to be living on less than $2.00 per day in a country where people also pay with cash for medical treatment and pay cash for their school fees, buy dirty water from the tanks. Basically, the government is there to collect taxes, sell oil and then loot the proceeds back into their pockets. $22B dollars worth of money transfers into Nigeria by the citizens of this country who live abroad is not really a joke. It also does not sound like the earnings of people who are struggling to make ends meet.

      The truth is that if the problem that Nigerians in diaspora are compelled to solve in Nigeria is taken away by the useless leaders here, Nigerians abroad will take over their host countries. And I say that as someone who has experienced both lives. As a scholarship student when I was abroad, I needed only 40% of my scholarship allowances for rents, bills, transport, etc. If I wanted a car, I could buy one for an equivalent of N80,000 in my host country. That would be less than 30% of my monthly scholarship income. But I could not afford a car because after my rent and my bills, nearly every other cent was being sent home to Nigeria to help somebody forgotten by the useless Nigerian leaders who simply do nothing for the fat salaries they earn. And this was a scholarship that was given to me by an institution in my host country then, not from Nigeria. Yet, 60% of my scholarship income had to be sent home to Nigeria to solve problems of the people back home.

      So when next you want to discuss the struggles of Nigerians abroad to make ends meet, please contextualise it and say it with a measure of reflection. Nigerians abroad are incredible and we should have some respect for them and see them as partners, if only we really want to move this country forward as citizens. Overall, this country is a drag on the potentials of its people whether at home or abroad. Nigeria, in its current state of disrepair and disrepute, always has a way of damaging the progress of its own citizens everywhere in the world. That fact constitutes about 80% of the struggles of a Nigerian abroad.

      $22b is not a chicken change. Remember that your president was recently looking for where to borrow
      $1b to fight boko haram. He could easily give Nigerians abroad the right
      to vote and by so doing get them together under one umbrella which he
      can use to borrow money from them.

      • MrFesh+Ifebuche+Paschal

        Keep deceiving yourself ok. Of you were offered a job in Abuja that can barely pay for your transport for the month then it is below working as a mason. I worked in Abuja for neatly 2 years.

        That Nigerians in diaspora spend 22billion is neither a news nor surprise. They sweat through their bone narrow to send it. It is an African thing, that tie that keeps us responsible to our home no matter how far we go away not just how overtly successful we are abroad.

        I repeat what I said, most Nigerians in diaspora have this I too know mentality cos they find themselves in a better organised society that other people worked for centuries to get, thinking th at because they are there are suddenly better than the rest at home. They mostly struggle to make ends meet. It is not derogatory but stating the fact. We take pride in being hardworking but then we make the mistake of assuming that people back home are lazy or less civilised.

        Take it to the bank.

        • MrFesh+Ifebuche+Paschal, NOT

          True Nigerian’s response requires deep reflection which you are not capable of doing. If you understand what he has written and the fact that the leadership of the country is plain irresponsible, then you are on the right path to redemption. Unfortunately, it appears you are still far from that. In the meantime, keep wallowing in your justification of leadership mediocrity that continues to drive your existence into extinction.

      • Apata

        Your well stated articulation deserve a high five.

  • larry

    I always like reading Pius’s articles and posts ,you can tell why he is a Prof.

    • Johnson

      Do your mean fake Prof or Illiterate Prof? which one?

      • larry

        ?.

  • taiwo

    You cleverly forgot to mention how many times you have lobbied for appointment in GEJ s administration and was turned down.Aggrieved people congregationAPC

    • tope alabi R

      All the angry men congregating in APC will soon be taught the lesson of their lives by Tinubu the maximum ruler.He is only using them for the time being in his evil genius of a plot to seize power indirectly through OSIBANJO his boy knowng fully well that grandpa buhari will not survive the rigours and demands of the office for 4years not to talk of 8

  • tunji braimoh

    we know your antecedents here in kogi.You owe your daily bread to Tinubu and is ready and willing to sell your mother for a pot of messy puttridge i only blame who ever went to interview a nonentity like you

  • warry

    This prof is making a mistake o. For example, in road construction when you see a mixture of bitumen and sand on the surface, it is called priming,just to prepare it for the placement of real asphaltic concrete later, after sweeping of the sand. Our prof does not know that what he saw was only priming.

    • ayobami olla

      Stop decieving yourself. We all know how they have been cutting corners. I was once giving a project to be executed like that and I turned it down. Let’s join hands to right the wrongs in our society.

      • warry

        You cannot call priming wearing course to deceive the public sir. Which ministry did that and please give the name of the pro jest so that people can confirm it. Benin Ore road or Abuja Lokoja Road,is it like that? A liar is worse than a witch, because a lie lead to the destruction of an entire Society

    • shegxy

      Pius never said he never knew its been called priming..are you sure you read the interview very well, what pius was saying is that the materials that was been used for the priming is too thin and its substandard. please read the interview again

      • warry

        Priming must be thin. Sorry if I didn’t make that clear enough for you

  • larry

    Buhari can we see your certificate ?

    • tope alabi R

      he has torn the one they gave him in arabic school when he joined boko haram

      • ayobami olla

        Thank God for democracy. You are free to keep voting the current government. We will vote Buhari/Oshibajo

  • tope alabi R

    You will never see anything good in his administration so far your personal pocket is not lined.Nigerians are very much aware of all your evil plots to hijack pa buhari and rape the country silly and will never allow that.Showing where you and your fellow rabble rouser ndibe are drinking palmie only shows you guys for the unserious loafers you are.Fooling around and spewing trash when all serious and great men are thinking and working assidously to bring the country out of the prevalent economic meltdown happening globally

    • ayobami olla

      So none of the issues he raised made sense to you? You are part of the problem on Nigeria. So things are okay here? Name wao!

  • ayobami olla

    The consolation we have is that for the first time since 1999 we now have a strong opposition party and the ruling party PDP is rattled. The PDP did not foresee the unity in the Allignment that formed the APC. Jonathan’s popularity is dwindling as Nigerians are now discussing issues, something the PDP was never prepared for. The ruling party must work hard to convince Nigerians this time, otherwise their case will be like that of Sri Lanka. The electorates of that country had voted the serving president out of office for corruption and security related issues, a scenario similar to Nigeria’s.

    • Yusuf

      they have no time to repair things and infact no intention to repent. Its oviously a game over

  • orkar

    If there is any semi Yoruba man from Kogi state—that I have little or no respect for its this man–called Pius—-the most brainless—–human–I have ever seen on planet earth—-writers are supposed to use their gift of the pen and the head- to help transform the societies in which we reside in—but read some of the APC SPONSORED articles penned by Pius from head to toe-u will feel like crying for the nation state of Nigeria—His intellectual contributions towards the development of a sound platform concerning the national discourse-has always been about Dame Jonathan—and the president–period—–Remove him from these two—-and u see the nakedness ati emptiness of Pius———-What has a private dinner with Okey got to do with us—-who cares if he drinks Palm wine or chews goro daily in Canada———-Buhari has no certificate to show the world that he intends to relate with should he win the elections–and all he can say is that the president is worst than the abacha that BAUHARI HIS MENTOR SAID NEVER STOLE A DIME?——————–there are intellectual–but if this one–who belongs to the class of cut and nail—–thinkers- is to be regarded as an intellectual—then we are in trouble——-patriotic writers discuss issues not personalities—that they cannot even match intellectually–in their own field of specialization–boko haram was not created by Jonathaan–they started in 2002–when his half uncle obj was in the saddle—inside ASO ROCK–

    • Titi

      Chai Igbo man no get sense, a world class professor is brainless while a world class idiot like Jonathan is not brainless

    • hamza usman

      Orkar ar you aware of the fact that you are a fool?pls reply me

      • Uwem

        I will reply on Orkar’s behalf. Go back to your native land, Chad.

      • MrFesh+Ifebuche+Paschal

        Let me join uwem in replying for orkar, I can pay for your transport to Chad.

      • Huck231

        He is not a fool; and I join him in saying that you APC/Tinubu boys are lost souls. You guy are just acting out what you forefathers did against Nigeria. So we are not supprise

      • Crorkror

        and I join all of you to help orkar to reply. Never again will poverty
        stricken North & West come close to power and control the resources
        of the East & South. Tufiakwa! Never again.

        • Baba

          Not is never poor. In fact, the richest man in Africa, Dangote is a northern while the typical northerner is a proud farmer who can feed himself and supply the excess to southerners like you who wait for handouts from foreign oil firms that pollutes your environment and pay you peanut as compensation.

    • shegxy

      And it shouldn’t result to an attack, if pius is not an intellect.. i will only ask who are you? or probably you’ve been jealous
      because you are nobody as well

    • Ola Seun

      And you kept reading and following him!

  • Yusuf

    u are reducing his presidential powers; he is worse than Abacha, IBB and Shagari put together, more tyrannical than ABC, more corrupt than IBB and more clueless than Shagari (IBB currently said he is a saint in comparison with Jonathan even though a die hard supporter of Jonathan)

    • Huck231

      Just shut your mouth. You all are just die hard blood suckers. You lack the knowledge of what you are talking about. To your pain, he will be there as president in 2015.

      • Baba

        Who? Not again this failed C in C

  • Mike

    President Goodluck Jonathan at the flag-off of his re-election rally in Lagos on Thursday challenged his opponent and presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), General Muhammdau Buhari, to explain to Nigerians how he spent his Defence budget while he served as the nation’s Head of State.

    “He did not buy a single rifle”, he announced, referring to Gen Buhari while he served as a military Head State, lamenting that Nigeria “had great soldiers but who had no arms”.

    However, database record obtained from the Stockholm International Peace Institute indicates that the quantity of military hardware purchased during Buhari’s tenure triples that of Jonathan.

    • Baba

      Is that not a great feat for Buhari who has not bought a single rifle yet crushed terrorism (maitasine uprising) during his 20 month old regime that still represent the hallmark of patriotism, discipline and anti corruption. That’s why we are clamoring for his return.

      • Okey

        False. Maitasine happened under Shagari and was crushed by Shagari. Buhari stirred up BH that we are now battling with.

  • _Proudly Niger Deltan

    COMPLETE NONSENSE!
    Sometimes I am amazed how much irrelevant and unnecessary attention is given to these clownish economic greener pasture immigrants who claim to be democracy loving and more patriotic than the Nigerian scientists in the Niger Delta who despite JTF harassment and savage attacks have been able to invent better environmentally friendly methodology of refining their crude oil, called ‘Electric refinery’.

    Just look at them eating as if it is their last meal on earth. In 1936, long before Pius’ own father was born, Nnamdi was already a PhD holder and lecturer at Lincoln University in the US. But he came back to Africa, to Nigeria to contribute and chase out the undemocratic British. But one yeye Pius goes to hide in Canada in 2015, 79yrs after another Nigerian chose the path of participatory patriotism, and he begins to vomit rubbish about our dear president. Nonsense.

    Nnamdi’s West african pilot Newspapers would never condescend abysmally to the levels of conspicuous partisanship in media coverage of news as is the case with PT & Co. Otherwise, why has PT suddenly increased its negative stories as election date gets close? Fani gave some interviews too. General Wilson, a commander of MEND also gave an interview few days ago. Why did PT not publish these interviews? Bcos they are not to Bkokohari’s advantage? Nonsense!…But my resources are not for aliens. NEVER again!

    • Maria

      Azikiwe did not hold PhD in 1936. He had only masters. ” Azikiwe was born on November 16, 1904, in Zungeru, Northern Nigeria. His parents were Igbo; his father Obed-Edom Chukwuemeka Azikiwe[3] (1879–1958), a clerk in the British Administration of Nigeria[4] and his mother was Rachel Ogbenyeanu Azikiwe.[3] Nnamdi means “My father is alive” in the Igbo language. After studying at Hope Waddell Training Institute, Calabar,[5] and Methodist Boys’ High School Lagos, Azikiwe went to the United States. While there he attended Howard University, Washington DC,[6][7] before enrolling and graduating from Lincoln University, Pennsylvania, in 1930. He obtained a masters degree in Religion from Lincoln University in 1932 and another masters degree in Anthropology from University of Pennsylvania in 1934.[8][9] He worked as an instructor at Lincoln before returning to Nigeria.”…Source Wikipedia.

      • Mariana

        …I put it to you that @Proudly Niger Deltan, while posting his comments would have stated the date of Azikiwe’s PhD based on “irrefutable presumption” ….

      • Clay

        @Maria, what have you achieved by reeling out Ziks biography. What’s the point.

  • Okey

    I don’t if the boy, Pius Adesanmi, know some of us keep track of his comments/write-ups. Not long ago, the same Pius Adesanmi wrote in Sahara Reporters that it was unfair to remove Jonathan and take power back to the North as that was his reading of the only the reason that drives the quest of the anti-Jonathans.

    What makes a scholar is identity, not drifting with tides. That’s unscholarly. If at at all, a motor park character – you “load” passengers to the route where passengers more.

  • Kokori

    Oooooooooooooooohhhhhhhh……Pls stop the distractions. Where is the certiPicate?

  • Nene

    Who is this Pius? Is he a Nigerian?

  • Chico

    Rubbish. Waste of valuable time reading this trash

  • orkar

    Pius the discourse is on Buharis–certificate biko–

  • Shuaibu Bola Victor

    BREAKING NEWS! BREAKING NEWS!! OPEN YOUR EYES TO SEE THE TRUTH, MY BROTHERS IN THE NORTH!!!

    “Reports
    are flying that Northern leaders who had hitherto supported Buhari may
    be making a U-turn in the February elections after reports that the
    general may be having a serious health problem.

    This is following the online rumors that Buhari collapsed during his presidential campaign rally in Calabar.

    Even though the APC denied the report, it has given cause for worry,
    and the North has become wary, after they were ‘sidelined’ after
    Yar’Adua died in May, 2010 be…fore completing his tenure, a
    development which led to the abrupt shift of power to the South-South
    under the rulership of incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan.

    “The
    North is beginning to rethink the promised support for Buhari in view
    of reports that he is suffering from a certain ailment which is believed
    to be wearing him down. There are also reports that the elders are
    pushing to cut a deal with Jonathan to complete his tenure in 2019 but
    extract a promise that power would be returned to the North via a
    younger and energetic Northerner,” a source said.

    “If anything
    happens to Buhari, power will return to the South-West less than a
    decade after President Obasanjo left Aso Rock. The prospects are grim,
    both for the North and even the South-East that is queuing for their own
    turn,” another Northern top personality is reported as saying”
    —NIGERIAN BULLETIN

  • Okey

    “How To Mark Time As A Northern Elder While Waiting For The Presidency By Pius Adesanmi

    Sometimes when an op-ed touches a raw nerve and enjoys wide circulation in Cyberia, there’s the one reader who bypasses known public channels of communicating with me, invites himself into my gmail inbox, and insists on not leaving till he gets an answer to a particularquery. This type of reader comes to your inbox with his own chair in case you are thinking of not inviting him to sit down. Sometimes, I answer the query behind the back of the public. Where the query is of public interest, I answer the question here on Facebook or in my column.

    by Sahara Reporters

    May 10, 2014

    Sometimes when an op-ed touches a raw nerve and enjoys wide circulation in Cyberia, there’s the one reader who bypasses known public channels of communicating with me, invites himself into my gmail inbox, and insists on not leaving till he gets an answer to a particularquery. This type of reader comes to your inbox with his own chair in case you are thinking of not inviting him to sit down. Sometimes, I answer the query behind the back of the public. Where the query is of public interest, I answer the question here on Facebook or in my column.

    I’ve had one such gmail visitor since my treatise on northern elders went public. My gmail visitor is a very polite gentleman who claims to be from Zamfara state. His query: do we still have common purpose in seeing Goodluck Jonathan out of Aso Rock in 2015? More on his “we” later. He has very nice things to say about my op-ed. He says there are many places in the north where the things I said about northern elders are now discussed in hushed tones by members of his generation. I assume
    he is generation selfie: thirty-years-old and below. Again, his question: do we still have common purpose in sending Goodluck Jonathan out of Aso Rock and taking power back to the north in 2015 in the interest of justice and fairness?

    There is a lot to digest here. The anti-Jonathan camp is huge in Cyberia and cuts across every geo-political zone in the country. Even the international community has finally begun to see what we have all been screaming about, judging from the near unanimous verdict of the headlines of their major media and the talking points of all their key figures all the way up to Hillary Clinton. They now see the cluelessness, the incompetence, and the callousness we have been talking about. Those who are savvy in reading their signals and messages would have noticed the choreographed nature of it, from Washington to London
    to Paris. It simply means that The White House, 10 Downing Street, and The Elysee have reached a conclusion about Goodluck Jonathan based on the reasons we have been screaming and writing about since 2011.

    But beyond this unity of purpose in seeing Goodluck Jonathan go in 2015 lies a parting of ways on the definition of justice and fairness. There are certain assumptions on the part of many in the northern brigade of the anti-Jonathan camp in Cyberia that must now be addressed. When our friend in Zamfara talks about a “we” united in the desire to free Nigeria from the incompetence of Dr Jonathan in 2015, the vision of that “we” must now be scrutinized. In essence, when Pius Adebola Adesanmi and Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai say that “we” want Jonathan out in 2015, are they saying the same thing? Are they in perfect consonance? When my friend from Zamfara and Dapo Rotifa, Agbaosi Sevezun Gloria, Petra Akinti Onyegbule, Yommi Oni say that “we” want Goodluck Jonathan back in Otuoke in 2015, are they saying the same thing?

    No, there are two different sets of “we” saying opposite things here.The “we” of El-Rufai and my new friend from Zamfara have an understanding of justice and fairness that must see power return to their own corner in 2015 – a corner still massively overdetermined by a bunch of cruel, wicked, greedy, and patently anti-north northern elders.These northern elders are anti-north because the regain of federal power in 2015 translates to only one thing for them: renewed access to oil blocs and licences, renewed access to juicy federal contracts fed byoil revenue, renewed access to juicy federal appointments fed by oil
    revenue. The common northerner is not and has never been in their calculation. Outside of their narrow interests, polio, VVF, illiteracy, and backwardness can continue to ravage the north for all they care. The north of today, home to some of the world’s worst statistics in povertyand underdevelopment, is a product of their over three decades of chokehold on the Presidency.

    The second set of “we” is saying something totally different. Take my own case for instance. I have explained things privately to my new friend from Zamfara. I am sorry he ever assumed that my own definition of justice and fairness is for Jonathan to leave in 2015 and for power to return to the north – in the hands of the northern elders I describe above. I am not responsible for his erroneous assumptions sha. If I am saying that Jonathan needs to go in 2015 for all the reasons I’ve been writing about, have I told you that I am tired of a south-south presidency? I am saying that the south-south cannot tell me that the clueless, incompetent, uninspiring, and wholly corrupt Goodluck Jonathanis the best they’ve got to fill that slot. Have I told you that I am
    not interested in a Donald Duke presidency? Have I told you that I don’t have a wishlist of bright, smart, and inspiring compatriots from the south-south? The only obstacle to my wish is APC – she will never do the needful, the revolutionary, by fielding a fantastic south-south candidate with Kwankwaso or Ribadu serving as running mate.

    And when the south-south is done in 2019, have I told you that my understanding of justice and fairness will involve a shift of the presidency to the north? Have I told you that I am not interested in an Oby Ezekwesili or a Sam Amadi or a Chidi Odinkalu presidency for eight years after the slot of the south-south? That many Igbos are deceiving themselves that they are having “their turn” now with Goodluck Jonathan does not mean we should accept that logic. Ebele Azikiwe is Ijaw from the south-south, not Igbo from the southeast. We should sympathize with the Igbo who are “enjoying their turn” through him. It is evidence of the psychological violence visited on them by this country. That you have been so thoroughly worsted that you are willing to agree that an Ijaw south-southerner is filling your slot by default is evidence of the colossal injustice and unfairness that is Nigeria. So, my own sense of justice and fairness says that there is a southeast turn after the south-south’s turn.

    And when we have gone round this tour of justice and fairness with an Igbo Presidency of eight years, when the presidency truly and genuinely ought to return to the North, will my friend from Zamfara, Nasir El Rufai, and the “northern elders” who are always giving orders on behalf of “the North” agree that a Presidency occupied by northerners such as Sam Nda-Isaiah, Pius Adesanmi or John Danfulani is a fulfillment of the North’s desire to regain the presidency? If they disagree, why?

    And while waiting for their turn after the Igbo, northern elders can spend their time gainfully by learning that there is such a thing as life outside of Federal contract patronage and oil bloc distribution. They can apply themselves to a robust vision of an agricultural revolution in the north, bring back cotton and the groundnut pyramids they neglected and destroyed while feeding on oil, and transform the region to the world’s number one supplier of onions and tomatoes. Above all, they can spend their waiting time working with the rest of us on a redesigned, genuinely federal Nigeria in which no region shall need the feeding bottle at the centre. If we do this, they may not even need their do or die battle for the presidency any longer.

    • sanky

      whom do we trust in these troubled times

  • nikky

    All this people that will stay outside Nigeria and think they can just analyse the problem of Nigeria with their big big grammer, how can you compare Nigeria with Ghana? Is there Boko Haram issues in Ghana? Are there up to 250 ethnic groups in Ghana? Does Ghana have selfish region that think power and governance is their birth rite? Pls leave this your strategy of seeking political attention cos even if you’re the last choice, you’re not qualify to work under GEJ administration cos you don’t have anything to offer. Tell your APC and Boko Haram sponsors that they should hire another desperate individual cos you were not able to deliver.

  • samson john

    I dnt knw y u will compare GEJ wit Abacha d difference is clear,GEJ as tried for dis country dan any pass president

  • OKON

    interesting read ……………..

  • dave jacob

    Reuben’s brain is empty!!!

  • Ibraheem Aruna

    “Every Nigerian has a Price ………….” Former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
    I have a lot of respect for the Present minister of Agriculture in Audu Ogbe and the Present Minister of Science and Technology, Mr Ogbonnaya Onu. Let me hope that they will intervene to protect us as responsible officials representing a government. This is of utmost importance as we have a very weak health system that is incapable of tolerating the consequences of Genetically Modified crop production.

  • Emmanuel Maluba

    Excellently sound editorial commentary, except to note that the (International) Institute of Tropical Agriculture in Ibadan is not “Nigerian”. We are just enjoying the advantage of its being sited in Nigeria. The ownership is multinational and multi-agency and so do the benefits of its research.
    All the same, thanks for bringing to the fore, the danger that some people are trying to push Nigeria into just because they want to make money. I pray government halts them.