By Ayo Akinfe
(1) Like the rest of you I read about the US travel ban yesterday and to be honest, one cannot blame Washington. Their travel ban is there to control the influx of terrorists and as Nigeria is number three on the Global Terrorist Index, it is inevitable we would end up on any international list
(2) Boko Haram is regarded as the most potent terrorist network worldwide, while the Fulani herdsmen are number three. No nation with this amount of insecurity has a right to demand that she be treated like a normal civilised and cultured country. If Nigeria wants to get the travel ban lifted, she simply has to combat terrorism
(3) Our security agencies are just a mirror image of the wider malaise afflicting Nigeria. We have security chiefs in place who simply do not know how to address the problem. When I read about World War Two, the Six Day War, the Falklands War, the First and Second Gulf wars, etc and I see the innovative thinking of some of the generals, I wonder if our military strategists bother reading about the history of warfare at all. Field Marshals Erwin Rommel, Giorgi Zhukov or Eric Van Muenster would crush Boko Haram within a fortnight
(4) Boko Haram has not re-invented the wheel as all they are doing is what many previous terrorist sects have done elsewhere. In other parts of the world, military strategists have come up with innovative ways to overcome such problems, so why can’t we? Has anyone for instance not thought of poisoning the wells in the areas where Boko Haram operate to deny them drinking water?
(5) If you look across the board at Nigerian aviation, agriculture, housing, rail, manufacturing, education, healthcare, sports management, etc you will find a similar pattern to what prevails in security. People placed in positions of responsibility who are simply overwhelmed with the magnitude of the problems they face. They simply lack the imagination, initiative and audacity to come up with innovative solutions to their problems
(6) Nowhere is this problem more pronounced than in the political arena. If you are looking for the 100 most brainless Nigerians, I guarantee you that the best place to search is the APC and the PDP. Party members are appointed into position not because they have anything in their heads but because they are loyal sycophants and are good yes men and women. We then expect such people to perform when given serious responsibility???
(7) Can someone please explain to me how a middle aged man who has been groomed to say “yes sir” all his life is expected to perform just because he has been elected governor? We are unfairly and unrealistically asking him to alter his DNA late on in life. Such miracles belong to the fantasy world and our continued reliance on such utopias is responsible for our current plight
(8) Malaysia once had this problem so they introduced a national leadership training programme. Every year, about a dozen Malaysian youths in every sector, be it aviation, nursing, education, policing, food crop production, textiles, medicine, steel manufacturing, defence, sports management, cash crop production, automobile assembly, power generation, etc are sent to industrialised nations like the US, Germany, Britain, France, Japan, etc, to learn hue things are done. They not only bring back this expertise but regularly go back for “refresher visits” so they are always up to speed
(9) Nigeria needs to adopt this Malaysian model of investing in our future or we will just sink into the abyss. Every year, our brightest 500 youth corpers need to be groomed for leadership in every area of national development. Dr Chris Ngige, who is supposed to be in charge of national productivity, should put in place a structure that identifies where the strengths of these youths are and train them accordingly
(10) When I look at the quality of the average APC and PDP party members, I actually fear that Nigeria’s worse is yet to come. Only yesterday, we had the majority leader in the Federal House of Representatives show off his four wives on the floor of the National Assembly, bragging about how he has 27 children and is still counting. Now, from all I can see, this is the kind of leadership we are currently grooming in Nigeria. Do we reality expect such intellectual midgets to turn the country round?