When God wanted to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah, Abraham intervened and pleaded with God. The all-knowing God knew that the cup of Sodom and Gomorrah was full to the brim; but Abraham with his human flesh, and taking advantage of his closeness to God wished for a different scenario. Our father Abraham never knew the degree of the decay in Sodom and Gomorrah, so he reasoned that his plea would change the mind of God. Abraham opined that the father of creation should not destroy all the people in Sodom and Gomorrah because of the malfeasance of few and God agreed with Abraham.
Abraham gave God a number that could be found in Sodom and Gomorrah that could prevent God from destroying the city, but our loving God chose a number fewer that what Abraham gave and promise to spare the city if found. Abraham kept running to God with lesser number and God even agreed with Abraham for least number and at last no one was found to be in God’s good book in Sodom and Gomorrah that the city was subjected to utter destruction. Before this mayhem, God allowed Lot and his family, relatives of Abraham to escape but instructed that they should leave Sodom and Gomorrah without turning back. But Lot’s wife, could not forget her kitchen pestle used in pounding “akpu”, so she turned back and she became a pillar of salt. Sodom was irredeemably immersed in sin that at a point, their peak of iniquities, the people of Sodom surrounded the house of Lot, urging him to bring the Angels that slept in his house, who came for a message, so that they would have carnal knowledge of those Angels.
If God should turn His searchlight on Nigeria, nobody will remain when judged in terms of corruption, the love of money, greed, moral depravity and wickedness. Almost all Nigerians are corrupt and I don’t care what anybody says, removing his human imperfection, there may be nobody like Buhari in Nigeria today. None is free from criminal intents: politicians, judges, traders, market women, lawyers, teachers, civil servants, workers in private enterprises, corporate executives, the military, academics, students, parents, actors and actresses, youths and even children. The arms deal-the Dasukigate has opened the abysmal iniquities of Nigerians. The moral decay in Nigeria speaks to high heaven, though in a different degree of sins, but our nation is in an equal race with Sodom. Relatives kidnap those that fed them in times of need for money and sometimes murder them and still collect ransom money. One does not dare keep a house help nowadays and a moment that an eye is turned, he or she organizes armed robbers or other type of criminals to either steal a master’s child for ransom or burgle the house. How did we end up in this manner?
Just hear this: when I was doing my research, I wanted to carry it out in Nigeria and that was a problem, in the sense that my school due to human subjects’ rights violations wanted me to do my research in USA. But I wanted to do my research in Nigeria as some Asian students usually do. For the fact that Buhari just took office with the mantra of change, I was a bit relieved that I thought I would not have much road block. I sent letters from my school requesting permissions from Federal Ministry of Education and another from the enterprise, where I would actually carry out my research. After back and forth, I did receive the permission letter from the corporation, but someone in Federal Ministry of Education Abuja demanded $2,000 from me to get the simple letter. When I discovered that I could even get the letter from state ministry of education, I veered my direction and got the letter with much anguish. I came to Nigeria and stayed for two weeks for my research work and went back to USA. This may seem little to the uninvolved, but I knew the sleepless night I passed through due to our corrupt way of doing things.
I have consummated dealings with many people ranging from professors, civil servants, business men, students and folks from my village to artisans, none of the situations had a happy ending. I left Nigeria in 1994, it was not like that then and now everybody’s eye is red and they can kill for even a matter that involves one naira. Nigeria has decayed and there is no difference today when compared with Sodom and Gomorrah of thousands of years past.
Some Nigerians abroad are even worse than those at home. Corruption is not seen as dirty practice any more. Out of 160 million Nigerians, it is hard to get 100 people with integrity and pure hearts. Before the collapse of Nigeria, the Ivory Towers used to be the custodian of ethics and morality, university teachers were living on a different world. But with the monetization of Nigeria, the university campuses became cesspool. No thanks to Babangida and, real academic work became forgotten alternatives; grades for money or a bout of sex with a willing lazy girl. I know Nigerians are smart people, but to me and to many, first class graduation may not be what it used to be. Our politicians destroyed the remnant of morality in Nigeria that even the wife of a local government chairman would not allow other ladies to breathe a fresh air.
Before the arrival of Buhari, the monies that were meant for capital projects were converted to personal use by presidents, ministers, head of government institutions, civil servants, governors, commissioners, military personnel and by those that found themselves in the position of authority. How come in Nigeria, it is hard for one to find complete tarred kilometers of roads? No pipe born water and ten minutes stead power supply all over the nation are mirage. From Babangida to Jonathan and those that served with them require jail terms, especially Babangida and Obasanjo.
President Buhari needs to do lots of job and he should not relent in his dogged fight against corruption. The President should be ready for name calling and the 16 years rule by PDP brought Nigeria to her kneels, so he has to focus on those people that superintendented Nigeria for that that unholy years. The 16 years destruction spared nobody and truthfully, finding a clean Nigeria is just like searching for a virgin a maternity ward. Is it not a shame that Nigeria cannot power the kilowatts required by our industries, individuals, homes and offices? Is it not a shame that Nigeria cannot supply clean water to her citizens and why should our roads be places of carnages?
The corruption of yesteryears are shown today by the stark helplessness starring at all of us at this time the price of crude oil has nose-dived. When we were swimming in the ocean of petro dollars; sensible technocrats could have advised our masters to diversify the economy that ran and still running on mono rail. Oil, oil that is not renewable, that can run out of tomorrow or rendered useless by the attraction of alternative source of energy as it is the case now; yet our pinhead politicians never paused one day and thought wisely.
In absence of oil money, it has blown open that no state in Nigeria is viable. Ahmadu Bello University, Obafemi Awolowo University and University of Nigeria, Nsukka were not built with oil money. Ground nuts, cocoa fruits and palm nuts did the magic. An Igbo proverb has it that it is good for the breeze to blow, so that it will be shown that a reverend father is not wearing trousers. States were created just to appease certain politicians and not on viability; the creation of states had just enriched some rogues and left the people more impoverished.
With what is happening in the world economic and industry landscapes, the price of oil may still come down to the 1982/83 era when a barrel was $7; we hope it will not go to that extent. Iran has come to international oil supply and the slow economic dynamics in China may compound our problems that Nigeria may find it difficult to finance some of our critical imports. In the good old days, instead of our governors to sit at home to plan, they rather hovered around for match making; their daughters and sons wedding this or that with state fund and come and see brainless politicians and contract seeking rogues ; only in Nigeria.
Buhari, General and President, squeeze these rogues to vomit our national wealth they stole and do not have mercy on any of them. I maintain, no any other Nigeria can ever do this because most of them are rogues and you cannot throw a stone when you are living in a glass house. People in Diaspora are counting on you and the international communities are counting on you also, so press on, press on. The Almighty will give you the strength. The fight against corruption should be carried out with fairness. I didn’t like a situation in which Olisa Metuh was in handcuff to court while some of other accusers went to court without handcuffs; this was not good. Please, Mr. President, the fight should not be personal. Many will say that it was because Olisa is an Igbo man and you cannot blame them.
Chukwuma Iwuanyanwu, a concerned Nigerian writes from Los Angeles.