By Bayo Oluwasanmi
We’re living in a fast changing world. New and strange things happen every day. For this reason, before anyone can lead he must learn something about this strange new world.
Any leader who does not master this mercurial context will be mastered by it. A leader must know who he is, what his strengths and weaknesses are, and how to fully deploy his strengths and compensate for his weaknesses.
A leader must also know what he wants, why he wants it, and how to communicate what he wants to others in order to gain their support and cooperation.
Most importantly, a leader must know how to achieve his goals.
History is full of leaders who rewrite history in delivering their nation from oppression. Similarly, we have leaders who end their life in failure and dishonor.
Their great potential with equally great moral collapse mirror the condition of the nation which becomes so corrupt and degraded that even shocking brutality and immorality no longer cause the people to blush.
Time flows like a river, history repeats.
Many years of social, political, and economic upheavals and in particular since Mr. Jonathan assumed the leadership of our nation, has left us with no place to hide.
Most if not all of our nation’s progress and prosperity have become breakdowns instead of breakthroughs. Our freedom and democracy have become a license to practice anarchy.
As a people, we’re no more interested in new ideas but in recipes and slogans. We have replaced the public good as the supreme object of our republic with few elected rogues and parasites.
The idea of public virtue has been overrun by personal greed and corruption. We have become a permissive culture. And the nation tethers on the brink.
The elected representatives of the all powerful federal government with overflow of resources have refused to acknowledge what is happening to our people. And the cost of a spectator leadership of President Jonathan can better be imagined than quantified.
A nation without public virtue and a common vision cannot survive. Mr. Jonathan is driving the vehicle of state with no national sense of purpose by looking at the rear view mirror.
Well then, it is fair to say that President Jonathan so far is incapable of taking control of his domain – Nigeria. He has no guiding principle or overarching vision for the country.
One day, a man named Goodluck Ebele Jonathan sat down at his desk, pulled out a sheet of paper and wrote across the top: “Goals for My Presidency.” Then he began to compile the goals of his presidency:
• To lose all sense of moral values.
• To forfeit all executive authority in Nigeria.
• To strip and strap the poor to the bones.
• To remove the oil subsidy in order to make life more unbearable for the poor.
• To create means and ways to further enrich the robber barons.
• To squander the nations resources on salaries/perks of legion of ministers and advisers.
• To strangle the judiciary of any fairness and justice.
• To turn Nigeria into a desert of infrastructures.
• To decree corruption into law by turning blind eyes to treasury looters.
• To become tone-deaf to the cries and agitations of Nigerians who elected him.
• To become Africa’s newest emperor and Nigeria’s bully.
• To exert no influence for good in the community, town, country, and the world.
• To lose everyone and everything dear to Nigeria.
• And to grant pardon to criminals, and thieves and other saboteurs of our economy.
Ridiculous, strange, you say?
Then consider this: President Jonathan accomplished everything on that list.
His lack of integrity, foresight, will, passion, and incompetence left a leadership vacuum which daily increased the misery of the people.
I have said it times without number in this medium and elsewhere that a leader is not a spectator. That’s not just a glib maxim. Good leaders engage the world. Bad leaders entrap it, or try.
I believe you don’t need to know where you’re going, provided you know whom you’re following. Unfortunately, in our own case it is a double whamming: we don’t know where we’re going; neither do we know whom we’re following.
Greed and violence, distrust and spiritual apathy are eating out the very heart of our nation.
The democratically elected president now turned an autocratic acolyte of Abacha and Babangida is unusually getting the attention of the outside world.
Previous ruthless and clueless despots and now Jonathan have taken Nigerians for granted and for a long walk. Now, we’re being pushed to the wall. It’s time to fight back.
Deranged by the false belief that Nigerians are timid, lethargic, apathetic, and easily coerced and cowered, the present administration believes it’s going to be business as usual. Time will tell.
It is one of the great paradoxes of our history that under a democratic system of government the citizens are being treated as sub humans.
It is safe to say that we’re better off in the days of our ex-dictators. After all, they were not elected.
It is also a cutting irony that an eccentric, odd-looking president with comical decisions with all intents and purposes had successfully subverted our democracy. In running the affairs of the nation, we’re now witnessing play by play comedy and tragedy to the point of sublimity.
The president’s twisted morality coupled with his unyielding determination to set example of how to go down in history qualifies him as a failed and dishonorable leader.
We have chosen a president who chained us to his car as captives, bewildered and deceived, we’re moving on in gloomy procession toward the ditch – in which there is no hope of life, toward night to which comes no morning!
Mr. Jonathan’s actions and inaction should serve as the launching pad for us to recapture and reclaim our country and our future. We can’t wait indefinitely, our patience is running low!
Warning: Despots and tyrants do not easily embrace reforms or surrender to the general will of the people. It’s going to be a prolonged battle. So Nigerians, brace for the worst. Be prepared to sacrifice the immediate comfort and convenience.
History is on our side!
*** We cannot drive a car forward by looking at the rear view mirror. We cannot use shoes as hammers, newspapers for umbrellas, and finger nail to tight a screw!