(1) Today is March 4. It was on this day in 1976 that the Northern Ireland Constitutional Convention was formally dissolved resulting in direct rule of the province from London by the British parliament
(2) Now, when you look at the Northern Ireland troubles between 1969 and 1998 in which about 3,500 people died, it was a much more grave situation than Nigeria’s current Fulani herdsmen saga but alas, the British managed to turn it into a money spinner. Seizing the commercial opportunities in adversity, the Northern Ireland troubles spurred a booming security industry
(3) Worldwide, the global CCTV industry is worth about $20bn. Of this, the UK has a market share of about $6bn. All the high tech British surveillance equipment was tried and tested in Northern Ireland, using the province as an ideal battle ground to prove the value and efficacy of their technology
(4) According to the British Security Industry Association, the total number of CCTV cameras in the UK stands at somewhere between 4m and 6m. That is around 7.5 cameras for every 100 people in the country, representing the third highest total on earth behind the US and China
(5) Were it not for the Northern Ireland troubles, British CCTV and surveillance equipment manufacturers like Voltek Home, Redvision, Vicon Industries, Gallagher Security, etc would not have been able to perfect their products. Installation and maintenance companies like Videocom too would never have become so good either without the experience of Northern Ireland
(6) I have always maintained that very little happens in life without precedence. There is nothing unique about Nigeria’s troubles today. Dozens, if not hundreds of other nations have gone through such tribulations in their time and come out of them stronger. Our problem is our fundamental intellectual laziness. We are expecting the skies to open and a messiah fall out with a magic wand which he will wave to make all our problems go away
(7) Even the blind can see that President Muhammadu Buhari had neither the inclination or the capacity to address the Fulani herdsmen crisis. It is thus totally suicidal for us to sit on our laurels and keep chanting his name. It is time to get off our backsides and come up with innovative solutions. Buhari is not the one facing annihilation from the herdsmen, you are, so stop hiding behind his back!
(8) Has anyone conducted a survey of how much it would cost to lease 5,000 square kilometres of land in say Niger State to open a mega cattle ranch? How much would the state government want and how much can be generated annually from hiring out allotments to pastoralists?
(9) I am perplexed that nobody in Nigeria today has taken it upon themselves to open an animal feed compounding plant to show pastoralists that their livestock will be better looked after in feedlots. We invest all this money on owambes, title acquisitions, private jets, designer clothing, etc but alas find it hard to raise capital for investment to better our lives
(10) If you look at the way Europe developed, it was cooperative societies and workers guilds that spearheaded the continent’s development. Ordinary working people contributed small sums which were then invested in manufacturing, distribution and retail. When Nigerians imbibe this spirit, the country will get off her knees