The mention of corruption in my last post was quite superficial. The problem of corruption in Nigeria is so deep that today, it has the country in a strangle hold. This is the country that cannot manage her social services, not one. Everything the government touches dies. Just to mention a few of them:
The Nigeria Airways: Nigeria does not have a national carrier, because the Nigerian airways died many years ago, and has since not been, and cannot be revived. Unlike the other many ill-fated services, no one offered or bought over the air ways services. This is because there was nothing to be gained from old rotten planes, no one wanted them for free.
The Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL): One morning we woke up to the news that NITEL now belonged to one small boy who believed that he owned Nigeria, a national treasure! How did that happen? Where were we when this happened? For the first time in Nigeria, there was such an outcry that the so called new owner of NITEL beat back into retreat. Since then, every new administration has mulled over how to give NITEL, this sitting giant, away to some fat cow without raising too much dust. NITEL is dead and can never be revived. We know that, they know that too, but it also a national treasure, and cannot be disposed of without its proceeds going into national development.
What about the Ajaokuta Steel Plant, another crouching giant, government controlled, never produced any steel product, billions down the drain, and more billions still. The government believes that by throwing oil money at projects, these projects will miraculously control themselves and survive. Those buying over these projects, the nationals, always ended up bringing in foreign experts to man and manage the projects. Why? Because they are only money throwers, with no expertise for what they are throwing money at. These foreigners come in to find out that it is usually not about money at all. It is about the people, their mind set, and their fear of being left behind. Nigerians like to toe the line. There is this invisible line that everyone must toe. No one is allowed to cross it, unless everyone crosses it at once.
This explains why we have no middle class in Nigeria. We have the rich and the poor. Of course, among the rich, there are different levels of wealth, as well as different levels of poverty among the poor.
Take another example, Electricity: This is the case of the government sabotaging itself. For how can the government throw so much money into power in Nigeria, and met with consistent failure? This is because the same government under cuts itself by allowing the money barons, the rich within and without the government, to import other power sources like generators, inverters to undermine the government’s efforts, and to engage in sabotaging power lines to frustrate the whole nation. No nation can survive without electricity; and no nation can survive on generators ….
(This discussion continues. I decided never to post more than 500 words at any given time. I know that people are busy and have no time for long posts. I do not like long posts myself.)