How to save a drowning Nigeria from sinking, By Isa Ali Pantami

 

As a result of the unfortunate events that have engulfed our darling Nigeria, I fear for the health of the most important and most essential part of my body. That part that controls my rational faculties; that part that controls my intellect; that part that serves as a guide for the goodness of my body; that part that accommodates piety; that part that serves as the king and commander-in-chief of my body while the remaining organs are only lieutenants; that flesh that accommodates my motive and intention; that part whose quality becomes the pre-requisite of accepting my good deeds and that part that my Lord looks at anytime and always. And this is nothing else but my heart.

These events express the depths of darkness upon darkness that have enveloped Nigeria and fellow Nigerians. The darkness as a result of air and land tragedies which include the recent Dana Air crash of 3rd June, which swallowed over 153 people on board, in addition to unspecified number of people that were trapped and killed in their homes. And the darkness as a result of explosions that frequently terminate the lives of many innocent Nigerians; the darkness of the most essential institution of Nigeria’s political leaders- corruption. The darkness of the recent fuel subsidy probe chaired by Farouk Lawal which brought hope for Nigerians but in the end started turning out to be perhaps, the most inconsistent and terrible scandal in the history of the institution; the darkness of reprisal on innocent people with different religious and ethnic backgrounds; the darkness due to the 24-hour curfew enveloping masses in their homes with empty stomach, missing their daily obligatory worship congregationally. Elsewhere, the darkness as a result of kidnappings. Also on our highways, there exists the darkness as a result of armed robbery. The aforementioned vices and crimes are as a result of a self-inflicted monster, mischievously promoted by most Nigerian political leaders, i.e. injustice. Lucius Seneca argued that, “A kingdom founded on injustice never lasts”. My heart really bleeds for darling Nigeria.

Unfortunately and sadly too, nobody sincerely cares for Nigeria among our ruling class. The situation has always deteriorated or, if you like, gone from bad to worse. My heart bleeds for Nigeria. Perhaps all social vices, injustice and crimes that slowly, but surely, engulf our darling Nigeria are clear signs of a failed nation that invite Allah’s wrath and curse resulting from disobedience to Him through injustice, excessive greed, oppression, immorality and inhumanity. Our Lord has aptly and divinely analysed the unfortunate situation of an unjust nation. The Glorious Qur’an says: “Do then those who devise evil plots feel secure that Allah will not cause the earth to swallow them up, or that the wrath will not seize them from directions they little perceive? Or that He may not call them to account in the midst of their goings to and fro, without a chance of their frustrating Him? Or that He may not call them to account by a process of slow wastage for your Lord is indeed full of kindness and mercy” (Q16:45-47). Undoubtedly, it is as a result of His mercy and kindness that the situation remains only ugly and hazy without eliminating us entirely from the surface of Nigeria. 

A prominent international Christian writer Sir Noah Webmaster emphasised that, “All the miseries and evils which men suffer from vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery and war, proceed from their despising or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible”. Sir Noah’s opinion reflects what has been described by the Glorious Qur’an and the Holy Bible which aptly and unfortunately captures Nigeria’s sinking in the ocean of pandemonium. I always emphasise and try to stand by my word; this situation requires spiritual intervention or at least fighting all forms of injustice, because history has enunciated and vindicated that, no nation has ever been sustained and promoted with injustice. Alice Walker indicated publically that “All history is current; all injustice continues on some level, somewhere in the world”.

Furthermore, Nigerians must try and identify their individual crimes and turn to their Creator as soon as possible. I personally proffer the following as a solution, at least for now.

Firstly, repentance from major and minor sins and vices: Crimes committed by others always invite wrath and confusion to a nation, and the consequences are not restricted only to those who have committed them, but rather affect all and sundry. Look at the crime of corruption, fraud, selective justice, extra-judicial killings and misappropriation of public funds by the executive and public officers, while on the other hand masses are dying as a result of hunger and sickness that can all be addressed. Repentance has become the pillar for successful life in this temporary world and in the hereafter.  

Secondly, steadfastness in promoting goodness and enjoining others towards it: partaking in doing good, resisting evil and even repelling evil with goodness is of paramount obligation towards sustaining and advancing a country. Replying evil with goodness is a quality of exceptional people that every nation requires for stability and development. Please if you cannot beat them, don’t join them. Try to be steadfast and incorruptible.

Thirdly, striving for positive change sincerely: Striving tirelessly is an all-important factor towards attaining responsible change. Two ingredients are very essential for achieving focused change; these are sacrifice and supplication. I wish to remind us that, loosing hope is an anathema and evil and spiritually prohibited. There is definitely a positive change for Nigeria if and only if, Nigerians are sincerely and genuinely looking for it. Corrupters never succeed in fighting corruption. My heart bleeds for our darling Nigeria. May our Lord save our fatherland. 

Mr. Pantami (isapantami@yahoo.com), an Islamic cleric, is a lecturer at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi, and Ph.D Candidate (Computing & IT) in the United Kingdom

 

 

 

 

 

 


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