|Goke Butika, The Author|
"The probability that we may fail in the struggle ought not to deter us from the support of a cause we believe to be just."---Abraham Lincoln.
News from different templates and platforms are not too cheering, though we have some headlines which constituted distractions to our experience lately. It is now commonplace for the people who ought to play decency to resort to methodical beggings; workers who ought to be shoulder high are now walking with their tails wrapped in their laps; government officials who are fond of flaunting peacock arrogance are now gentle as jelly, and our governors are now talkative because they have to appeal to matter and spirit to convince us that they are not the cause of our collective sufferings.
To those who could not reason beyond religion, our contradictions (poverty, failed education sector, fuel shortage, insecurity, man inhumanity to man and political imbroglio) were caused by the spirit or celestial realm to teach us about the mightiness of the Supreme force. While those who have strive to divorce God or Satan from human affairs believe that successive governments had mismanaged our resources all along, and the attendant results is what we are experiencing in the country now.
I am tempted to support the latter position on the mismanagement of our country, because it appears logical and straight in discussion, but a situation like this demands a deep thought process called a priori approach if we care to abandon the confusion of illusion and delusion the two positions have presented.
In the first place, what are the indicators to identify from the metaphysical position of the spirit as the cause of our nation which is still flinging on the cliffhanger whose hooks have loosened and struggling to give way? To the determinist, everything we are passing through now had been conditioned in the highest form, and that we are helpless. However, a thinker would ask, why the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Ethiopia and Ghana are working and Nigeria with all resources is perambulating on the edge of recession? Can we say, God is kind to those countries and wicked to Nigeria? If no, why the difference in thinking and institutions? It goes on like that.
Yes, it is belabouring the obvious that Nigeria has been unlucky with leaders, because those who were elected in the immediate past and far past turned out to be opportunists, we know because they messed up the opportunities given to them to better the lots of the country people, and I elect to be silent on the incumbent leaders because they are still on the job, and it will be unfair to pass judgment on the people with four year mandate to be critiqued in nine months. Hence, the second position of cause of our trouble seems inviting, but I need more than that.
From my volitional concept, I think I place the cause on the struggle of the elite and the poor, compelling me to retool the dialectics of this situation. The poor are in millions, they have the population, and electorally, they have the power to change their leaders and situation, while our elite holds the power of superstructure, where slogan and manifestoes of the parties are designed, where resources are deployed for political struggle and where the good or bad leadership is authored.
A look at the dialectics will show us that the elite must rely on the poor to achieve their set objectives, but quite interesting, the poor of this nation have never negotiated for their well being using their power, because the elite class has a way of using the common denominator (money) to wrestle the power from them. And it is simple-the elite class will just warehouse the money that belongs to everyone, allow the poor to suffer hell, and when the election is approaching, they release the crispy naira of smaller proportion to the leaders of the poor, and the poor will begin to divide into pro and anti elite; there would be no debate on good governance again, but on "good man" with inexhaustible wallet.
The followers of the poor class would begin to pick perception about the big spender, and bombard his place with the shout of "hosanna", they would throw caution to the wind and ready to fight for the man who has a second address abroad. Meanwhile, as the poor are fighting outside, the elite class are counting the cost of their investment and designing ways of recouping their money. So, the interest is no longer collective, and the diagnosis of the suffering of the masses does not matter anymore.
Give it to the "boy scout" of Ekiti, Governor Ayo Fayose, he finds himself among the elite class, but his mind is on the street, hence, his incongruences become volatile and confusing. It is strange because his character is neither fully elitist nor "poorish", and the only way to manifest the confusion is "stomach infrastructure" he personified. Look, the man recognizes the poor of the poor, but desires elite class, and that is the struggle of two opposites.
Meanwhile, the national leader of All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Tinubu seems to be angry with the arrogance of Petroleum Minister of State, Ibe Kwachikwu who just told us to lose hope on fuel queue at our filling stations, because "he is not a magician" and he hits him hard on why he failed to massage the empty ego of the poor masses-that is negation of the negation in the dialectics of the struggle.
What is the way out? The only credible way is for the poor to truly identify a face that would speak for them and the person must have conquered his greed, because the elite will certainly offer a price, irresistible price in terms of money, position of authority and women. Though very difficult to get such a character. Can I be that person? Ha! I have tasted the two sides already-poverty and comfort and I am no longer neutral, because I have chosen side of comfort like any mortal. Can you be that person? I doubt it, but somebody from the blue could match the quality if the poor get it right. Until then, the difference between six and half of a dozen is difficult to find.
Certainly, Tinubu does not fit the frame, because he is a leading light of the elite class. More so, he is 64 years now, on passage of mortality. The first step is for the poor masses to put up a thinking cap and dissect the antics of the elite before taking position, unfortunately, the poor does not have a congregation like association or church, but everywhere.
(This article is dedicated to Bola Tinubu's 64th birthday.)
Goke Butika, is a journalist of continental exposure.