Clemens Westerhof said qualifying for the African Cup of Nations is a birthright of the Super Eagles of Nigeria. Guess which country is conspicuously missing in action again as you get wallowed with religious issues.
By Adeola Aderounmu
This past week, as usual, l have listened to some Nigerian radio programs, read Nigerian headline news and followed keenly Nigerian discussions on the social media.
These past few days have been dominated by matters relating to religion, the opium of the Nigeria masses.
In southern Kaduna, there are evidence to show the persecutions of christians. Genocide under the watch of Mr. El-rufai should hopefully lead to his trial and total annihilation from politics in the future (if Nigeria should suddenly become a normal country).
This is the country where a criminal like Ibori became a governor and other top level criminals have also gone to occupy both local, state and federal positions. Nigerians hail them and forget their sins.
Invariably though, it would appear that the cold war in Kaduna’s politics and tribal game of thrones got matured and became blown open. The brewing had been there forever.
Some people have also warned about the APC and some people have stated that the APC-Buhari mandate came with an lslamic agenda. The unfortunate massacre in southern Kaduna at this time, and the silence of Mr. Buhari on the matter is either a bad coincidence or a credence to the allegations against the APC-Buhari mandate. Either way, it does no one no good.
The other distraction bothering on religious matter plaguing Nigeria at this time concerns one of the pentecostal churches in Nigeria and their super general overseer. The man Adeboye is so powerful he is a god to his followers. For people like him who became gods to their followers, laws were made. For him specifically, a law was discarded.
There are more fatal distractions. We all got used to the religious gangsters in the North. Boko Haram, nototrious for abduction and rape of women remained established. Nowadays they hardly make the news for their religious views. After fulfilling their sexual orgies, they continue to find both soft and hard targets daily across north-eastern Nigeria especially. The bombing of Adamawa is still so fresh.
You can imagine how many times you will hear the falsehood that the potent terror group has/had been defeated. It’s like you cannot get rid of a monster that you created by yourself.
So, if you are interested in research on a people who love to be distracted and deceived, take a trip to Nigeria. If you also want to analyse a people who are easily distracted, come again to Nigeria.
For those who have their eyes on the ball all the time, they know what time it is now. This weekend the most important sport tournament in Africa, the African Cup of Nations started in Gabon.
When l told one of my colleagues that Nigeria did not qualify for the competition after he wished me goodluck for the tournament, his eyes nearly popped out of his face in both disbelief and shock.
As he walked away from me, l could not find the expressions to explain why Nigeria was missing in action. When he returns to work after his leave in 4 weeks, the tournament would have been over. So, my shame is postponed for 4 weeks.
But who remembers this?
When former super eagles coach Clemens Westerhof was in charge, he said that no one should ever worry about Nigeria qualifying for the African Cup of Nations. He puts our minds to rest forever on the matter. In his words, he said ”to qualify for the ACN is the birthright for the Super Eagles of Nigeria”.
Since 1994, other nations may have become better, that means Nigeria should have become the best too over the years. But that was not the sequence, sadly. Nigeria as a country may have gone to bed since 1960.
Nigeria is missing in action and many of us, thousand of miles away from home are covering our heads in shame. Our people at home remain distracted by the major impediments to their growth and development, religion and religion-related matters.
Rather than bemoan the decline and even the dearth of national sport activities in Nigeria, our people are discussing religion. They did not even come out to fight for the super falcons. They did not use the opportunity of the super falcons’s protest to call for accountability in the sport ministry.
Our people are boasting of exporting religion especially churces back to Europé and America. Our minds are definitely wasted. How can our hearts not ache for this growing tragedy?
Apart from sports, there are many things too numerous to mention that should draw the anger and engagement of our people. What can happen if we hypothetically take this energy and committment away from religion and place it on one of Nigeria’s prominent problems, say lack of electricity for example?
Lack of electricity is a major contributor to the recession in Nigeria. Despite all the monies that our criminal politicians have stolen and continue to steal from the treasury Nigeria would still not have gone into a recession if only there is constant power supply. Today is not the day to prove that theorem.
The sacking of Mr. Obazee shows that things can actually happen if the Nigerian government and the people become sincere to themselves. A swift change was made as a result of personal ego and ambitions. Why is it difficult to effect the changes that would rub on the common good of all?
The hullabaloos about religion, lslam and Christianity, are never going to be over in Nigeria and sadly too, the problems will stay because our energies are focussed on the wrong issues. The people are permanently distracted because the truth did not even set them free and it also appears to be too late to make religion a private matter for the people of Nigeria.
If l had a magic swerve or swagger, l would redirect the rage (waited all my adult life for it) to the biggest problem with Nigeria which is the political problem.
Nigerians will know no freedom until the country’s number one problem which is the politicial problem is solved. Religion will never solve Nigeria’s problem. The best that religion can do is to break up Nigeria, violently.
Mr. Buhari and the self-serving executive and legislators sitting down in the comfort of their mansions in Abuja will not solve all the problems in Abuja. How can they solve the problems of the people of Idanre, Okokomaiko, Akwa, Chibok or Moniya?
There is no greater insanity of a political system where almost anything that affect 200 m people depends on one man.
The knee jerk responses will remain the hallmark of this reactionary, redundant system of government in Nigeria. The greater proportion of the third generation of post-independent Nigeria, about 100 m people, is already wasting away in abject poverty, extreme penury and hopelessness.
With the failure of governance and Nigeria currently in recession and therefore a failed country, the churches and mosques will still be there to receive this miserable proportion of the population living from hand to mouth and suffering amidst abundance resources.
Religious institutions will not be converted to factories to provide work and wipe away hunger and frustrations. The Nigerian government will continue to neglect civil responsibilities while sending folks on tourism to Mecca and Jerusalem with taxpayers monies.
Life will always be short and not many people count their days or months to actually know this. Instead we opted to even devalue those days on earth. We demean the essence of life. It’s the same cycle of idiocy.
Just when we thought our clamour should move towards cooking by induction if our electricity is improved, we got a rude shock that the people are now cooking with firewood even in western Nigeria, the part of Africa that was most advanced in the earlier parts of the 20th century.
What a tragedy!
Believers are rejocing over the sack of Mr. Obazee. Nigeria is definitely a one chance ride for all. Well done all for keeping up with the distraction games. Even with your academic intelligence (and too bad for those deprived of the right to education), it helps your politicians to continue to enslave you in your belief that the solutions to your problems lie in religion rather than the use of common sense and the application of social and civil responsibilities.
My colleague loves the game and even though he left South America many years ago, he kept his eyes on the ball and he knows the game. He loves it and he believes in Nigeria. He often spoke of her exploits at Atlanta 96 especialy the game against Brazil.
I’m glad his eyes didn’t pop out of his face. But our people back home are still busy killing in the name of religion. They are busy wallowing and hallowing in the name of imported religions and missing the simple essence/purpose of life- to live and let live.
No greater fatal distraction!