By Dapo Thomas
Dear GOD, our nation is on the brink of collapse. We are in deep crisis and national turmoil. It is written, when a nation is going through such chaos, it is because GOD is angry with the leader(s). If therefore, President “Goodluck” Jonathan and co. have offended you, why are you punishing us, the innocent citizens?
This is neither blasphemy nor a sacrilege; it is the truth. It is obvious that you are behind all these calamities. Nigeria used to be your anointed but not anymore. We have assaulted your grace beyond redemption and the culprit is our President; the man you imposed on us or the man we enthroned by force. Either way, the man is an error. But who are we to blame you, the unquestionable GOD? With this piece, I am taking a risk. I am risking my relationship with you but I am asking you to show some understanding and have mercy on me for my frankness.
Nothing happens without your knowledge, we have been told several times by our catechists. How come that Jonathan found himself in power when you knew he would make us poorer? How come you allowed Jonathan to rule our nation when you knew we would end up in ruins? Why did you give us a leader that would be dancing Azonto when our girls are still marooned in unknown grotto? Why did you allow the emergence of a leader during whose reign death has become cheaper than it was before? Why did you not prevent the enthronement of a man that does not believe that stealing is corruption? Why did you favour a man to power that will not know the whereabouts of the citizens he is meant to protect? Why did you give us a President that would confess his helplessness in helping grieving parents to retrieve their abducted daughters? Why did you put in power a man that will not accept responsibility for the missing girls and have the courage to resign? Why do we have a President that talked as if those who abducted the girls were from outer space? What kind of President would be dancing Skelewu and Kukere when the newspapers are daily awash with news of people being blasted or roasted by Boko Haram? Why did you give us a man that likes the glamour of his position but lacks the rigour for the position?
The President insinuated that there is the possibility that the girls have been taken out of the country. GOD, now you know why I keep asking you for protection for me and my household. It is because, like the Chibok girls, we are mere statistics to my state. You asked us to call on you in times of trouble, GOD, there can be no better time to cry out loud for help; we need help in this country. Can you imagine over 200 girls being taken out of our country without our security agencies knowing how it happened. On behalf of other citizens of this nation, I am crying to you once again that we are in serious trouble with this man in the saddle. In the Bible, we read about Kings who protected their citizens at the risk of their own lives. Some of the Kings even went to war against their attackers to show how much they loved their subjects. But this our own President is not going to any battle nor is he protecting those who went to the battle and those who are the objects of the battle. Instead, he is busy dancing Skelewu and Azonto at political rallies asking for a second term when his first term is full of the blood of the innocent. Why should a man who cannot identify, unmask, confront and subdue Boko Haram and their sponsors for the past two years expect us to return him to power? It is an egregious insult and display of moral deficit that the President is asking the people of this country to return him to power when there is evidence that GOD Himself is angry with his government.
GOD, please take a good look at our nation and see if there is any sign of governance. The whole nation looks so dry and vacant. All you will see is a nation soaked in vanity with men running helter skelter in search of power to boost their aura. You will see a nation that is rebasing and yet declining. We are growing but into a monster that people scorn and scoff. You will see a people that have been stripped of their existential value by their own government. GOD, take a look at our nation, you will see government but you can’t see governance. The men in power are too lazy to ponder. In other countries you have visited, I am sure you would have seen how happy their people were. I am telling you the truth dear GOD that our people are not happy. We are tired of this man in Purdah. He looks gentle and harmless but I can tell you that these are no virtues. This is deception writ large. When a man’s history to the top is replete with a measure of “greedluck”, there is a mystery that we need to unlock. GOD, please take a good look at our nation and see the extent of venality in our land. Our land is seriously contaminated. Death and evil walk brazenly on the streets playing hide and seek at whim I am told of a young man who made first class in History from one of our first generation universities, but failed to find a job eight years after his graduation. He later died of renal problem.
GOD, why are the people being punished for the failure of their leader(s)? Why is it that the leaders are fumbling and the citizens are dying? The Nyanya victims; the abducted Chibok girls; the daily victims of Boko Haram; the millions of jobless graduates, the innocent victims of ethnic conflicts, the languishing pensioners, the physically and mentally sick people lacking medical attention and the millions of citizens that are hungry and suffering in silence.
It is sad that our nation no longer possesses the positives of the past that brought us fame and name. The horrendous reports people read everyday about Nigeria showcase our talents in the evil industry. There is no more pride in honesty. People now scramble for a share of the national cake not minding the fraud involved in obtaining the cake. We hear of billions of naira being voted for projects during FEC meetings but these billions and projects have become bottomless pits for the nation. Those who smile to the banks are oblivious of those who groan to the graves. The state has lost its relevance as citizens troop to the church for what the state fails to give them: security, hope, comfort, peace, prosperity and miracles. The state itself needs miracle. It is under threat and under siege by bandits of wealth. Our nation is bleeding non-stop.
These days, our President is always seen in the company of “powerful” men of GOD. If he is not visiting them in their churches, they are visiting him in his Villa. At least, those are the people we see in the day. Why should I gossip about those who visit our President in the night? Night visitors at the Villa are on the “exclusive list” and any gossip about them is a threat to “national security”. But what is responsible for these visitations? Is our President asking for their prayers and blessings for second term or for Boko Haram? Dear GOD, this is a rhetorical question. Don’t bother to answer me because you already know why. He even went as far as visiting the Pope at the Vatican with “Mama Peace” who recently threatened to cause commotion in Borno State if the girls were not returned. His photographs with the Pope were celebrated with ‘Azontos’ funfare in major newspapers.
But before he could transfer the Papal anointing to Ayo Fayose in Ado, my good friend, Kayode Fayemi, the governor of Ekiti State, a very calculating and pro-active character, was also at the Vatican to receive his own Papal blessing ‘live and direct’. The photographs were also in major newspapers. This is to let you know that people really want to neutralize all his moves. If he had told the Pope sweet things about his government, I am sure Fayemi would have set the records straight just as I am doing in this my angry letter to you. We wont allow anybody to collect cheap divine blessings for second term.
GOD, if you are wondering if this is a letter or a prayer request, I will tell you it is everything rolled into one. It is a letter, a prayer, lamentation, explanation, supplication and interdiction. All I want is for you to consider all that I have written in this letter when that man prays to you for a second term. Please don’t answer him. He is not serious.
* Dr. Thomas teaches History at the Lagos State University (LASU), Ojo.