Take a moment to think about this. Right from the amalgamation of the North and Southern protectorate, Nigerians have played territorial politics rather than humanitarian politics.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
The colonial Masters who merged Nigeria into Southern and Northern Nigeria did so for their selfish interest.
They intended to have Nigerians divided along ethnic and religious lines forever to ensure that there will never be unity amongst them, hence, the need for sectional politics and politicians, rather than humanitarian politics and politicians.
The West plays politics of human development or humanitarian politics rather than territorial.
The Western nations work at developing their citizens not their territory. They ensure that their citizens are paramount in all their goals not mere country which is just a geographical area that the name can change at any time. So, they work vigorously in ensuring that citizens are empowered, through education, quality health care, quality shelters, affordable food programs, provision of world-class infrastructures, etc, knowing fully well that once you build the citizens, you have invariably built a great country.
Sadly, in teaching us politics they taught us that of divide and rule, in other words, sectional or territorial politics.
Has it ever bothered you as to why we have issues such as federal character, quota system, and dichotomy in exams, especially between the North and South?
Are you aware that tribalism, corruption, ethnicity, nepotism, bigotry, greed, religious intolerance selfishness in Nigeria’s political space is a result of this sort of politics played by our leaders?
If every Nigerian is empowered equally educationally, would there be a need for a quota system? NO. The best will be picked irrespective of where they come from.
If all Nigerians can afford basic health care, quality foods, good electricity, water, roads housing, and essential things that allow for growth, how many Nigerians will pay attention to the person at Aso Rock and where he or she is from.
The reason for the agitations and most social vices is simply out of years and years of neglect of the citizenry.
Check properly, it has been the same story since 1960. The same story of corruption, nepotism, bigotry, greed, selfishness, religious intolerance, ethnicity, and others like them nothing has changed, same story, same blame game same song, same accusations, and counter-accusations, from generation to generation.
WHAT IS THE NIGERIAN FACTOR?
Some say the Nigerian factor is corruption. Is it all about corruption? What sort of corruption? Is it just financial corruption? NO. Corruption encompasses everything, from your mind to how you see it, analyze it, and carry out things with a motive to selfishness and greed. So, in everything a Nigerian does, it’s with the motive of what do I, my family, friends and associates, people, the area gets first, not with the mindset of what does the generality of the people get.
Have you ever taken time to find out that Nigeria’s pre-independence politics were characterized by sectional politics with each leader thinking of his/her area first, rather than the people that are the Nigerian person?
Everything then boiled down to how to develop my area first rather than how to develop the Nigerian person.
With this mindset from the colonial masters and carried on by our pre-independence and independence leaders and politicians of divide and rule or sectional and territorial politics, the foundation for the destruction of the Nigerian nation was solidly laid.
So, rather than think of how to empower Nigerians irrespective of their territory, religion, tribe, and ethnic affiliation, we were more interested in pursuing regional, tribal, religious, and ethnic interest first and this has so far brought us where we are now.
ADVANTAGES OF HUMANITARIAN POLITICS OVER SECTIONAL OR TERRITORIAL POLITICS.
Humanitarian politics does not give room for ethnic consideration, neither does it allow room for religious sentiment, corruption, greed, selfishness, bigotry, and many more! Its objective is to ensure that those around them benefit from everything that they deserve regardless of status, gender, tribe, religion, race, ethnic and class. In other words, putting the people above the country because the people is the country, and without the people there won’t be a country.
This is the advantage the west and other civilized, and serious-minded, developing countries have. It’s a politics of developing their citizens first and not the territory which is just a geographical area. This is the political narrative that we need to pursue as a people not wanting to develop our area first which leads to all the challenges we face today.
Check out leaders, they all get to power with the sole aim of tribal, religious, and ethnic sentiment whether as president, governor local government heads, and the rest. it’s all about my people and my area first, not about humanity, not about Nigerians.
Have you been to a bus, bus stop, or other busy area and witness a woman in labor? Practically, you will see all the women gather around her with some removing their wrappers or any other materials to protect her privacy. Before you know, some of them will become nurses, others midwife’s all in a bid to ensure that the woman delivers safely.
At this point, no one bothers about her tribe, religion race, or color they are all united in ensuring that she and the expected newborn wellbeing comes first. The same scenario applies at the accident spot, most people rush to the place to assist the victims regardless of religion, color, race, or tribe. All are united in one cause, that, which is to see to the wellbeing of the victims.
Until Nigerians and their leaders begin to see fellow Nigerians from the point of being there for them and providing their needs irrespective of where, who, and religion they practice, we will most likely not come out of this or worst of all, unnecessary shed our blood on the altar of selfishness.
CAN WE CHANGE THIS POLITICAL NARRATIVE? As a country, NO. As Nigerians, absolutely YES.
NIGERIANS. THE POWER TO BUILD NIGERIANS LIES IN YOUR HANDS.
Shadrach Chidi Onye
Public Affairs Analyst
Founder Interdependent Community