My son asked me a question yesterday. He said, daddy is their anything worse than Corona virus? I answered immediately, bad leadership. He smiled, in his own childish way. He was satisfied.The incident triggered my thinking. Why is he satisfied? Why not probing further? Anyway, he can be forgiven, he is a 9yrs old boy. We can waive it off in our usual expression in Yoruba, ” ki lomode mo”? A way of saying a child didn’t know anything in Yoruba language. It is sad that many adults in Nigeria don’t go further than my son has gone. It is like we are all used to bad leadership. We take It as our fate. No wonder it is a perennial problem.
Everybody wakes up everyday bombarding heaven with request, blame God for what He has made available even before we ask Him. Nigerians watch everyday, things Working in other climes. We envy them, wishing it to happen here too. We think, why am i not in this place? Why creating me as Nigerian? My God! The answer is why not you? I love this song, “gbogbo wa la lowo si/2ce bi Nigeria se dayi, gbogbo wa lalowo si” Meaning, all of us contributed to the way Nigeria is now. We Nigerians do the same things all the time and expect changes. Infact not doing anything about a problem, amount to doing something.
I know the problem agitating the mind of average reader of this article is, what can we do to the issue of bad leadership? If they are Yorubas speakers, they can even add ” a fi suru o, orun nyabo ni kii soro enikan”. Meaning, we must be patient, if heaven is going to fall, it will not be on one person. I hear that every time, even in my bedroom. You ought to know who I’m talking about. It makes me boil honestly. Atimes we look up for help to come from America, Britain, China and other countries. These countries can’t help us to solve the problem of bad leadership. Infact they will exploit it, to develop their countries. Only we can solve this problem of bad leadership.
The first step we need to take is to ask ourselves this question, do we have good followership in Nigeria? The answer is no. Bad leadership doesn’t develop in a vacuum. Bad followership is the incubator of bad leadership. With the kind of followership we have in Nigeria, it will even be a miracle to have good leadership. Firsly,we don’t vote right. We beclouded our reasoning with sentiments of different kinds when voting. Secondly, average Nigerian look for short cut to do something, we by pass due process in getting something done. If there is any pressure average Nigerian put on our people in the position of leadership, it is to bend rules to favour us. So our orientation of followership must first change before we can get good leadership.
The second step we can take is, we must learn how to put our leaders in government on their toes. We need to demand accountability. Our civil societies have slept in this country. They have been compromised. Pressure groups are failing us. Where are yesteryears NLC, CDHR, NANS? Especially, those vibrant non civil organizations of the military era? Where are the media houses of yesteryears filled with the journalists skill of investigative journalism? Gone are the days these organizations mentioned here forced government to reverse their decisions that are causing hardship on the citizens. They need to come back for us to have good leadership.
If we are not ready to take these two steps for a start, what it means is, we are not ready for good leadership. We should stop disturbing heaven with our prayers. We should stop envying the developed environments. The citizens their took these steps and even more, that is why they are enjoying their good leadership. Nigerians, please stop behaving like my nine year old boy, smiling only when he heard bad leadership without probing further.