By Adeola Aderounmu
If you are in doubts about the stupidity of civil or government service in Nigeria, you should follow the recent development that led to the sack of a civil servant called Yushau A Shuaib. Let me explain.
I have never met Shuaib before and I am not looking to our meeting. But I remembered that he wrote a rejoinder to my story about how 80 000 Nigerians could perish overnight due to a certain dam that was neglected or abandoned somewhere in Nigeria.
In that article, I’d asked several questions on the preparedness of NEMA should the accident occur. In his rejoinder, Shuaib defended NEMA and did his job as the press officer of the agency.
I did not overflog the issue but today we all knew how Nigerians perished in that flood and other floods around Nigeria. The bottom line is that government or government agencies are ill-equipped for management of disaster. Worse still is that the government of Nigeria due to neglect and low-mental abilities are the architects of these tragedies. A dam or functional drainages could have availed much is many of the Nigeria flood disasters.
Anyway moving on, 2013.
As I later found out Shuaib writes every now and then also on the Nigerian Village Square. In one of his recent stories he criticized the Nigerian Finance Minister, Okonjo-Iweala. It’s hard for me to actually believe that one government officer can criticize another albeit a senior and a minister whom he described as Nigeria’s most poweful woman-invariably. I didn’t know that there exist one who was more powerful than Patience Jonathan.
What Shuaib wrote about Okonjo-Iweala in that story (Still on Okonjo-Iweala and Controversial Appointments) are the things we already know about Nigeria: appointments are based on ethnic groups, favoritism, nepotism, man-know-man, tribalism and all sorts of useless codes that are peculiar to Nigeria.
Okonjo-Iweala is not the first Nigerian Minister or influential person to appoint or recommend her tribes men and women into top positions. This has been the stupid norm in Nigeria. Shuaib’s men from his part of the (useless) country have done the same and are probably still doing that at this moment.
Even the president pulled his men from his tribes and region into positions of privilege across Nigeria. Some of Jonathan’s tribesmen that I know were pulled from their oversea postings to come back to Nigeria to serve with him.
If I describe Nigeria’s politicians or top public servants with derogatory words like stupid, useless, corrupt and senseless, you know some of the reasons.
Shuaib’s sin did not make him a saint among the ranks. Though some people will give him a pat on the back for daring to criticize the government he serves. That’s a rare Nigerian attitude. I’m still in shock he actually took Okonjo-Iweala to the dryers.
Shuaib was damn right in his article. He could probably have added that what Ngozi Okonjo Iweala did is the same that everybody is doing in Nigeria so that the attack is not targeted at only Ngozi.
I’m wondering if Ngozi will try to sack me or if she has ever wondered who this online warrior is. I have criticized her many times because I know she is a big crook. If she can tell me where she and Obasanjo kept Abacha’s loot, I may start to believe her. She’s a bloody liar.
Even Ezekwisili has taken her time to comment on my story about how she plundered the ministry of Education. Nigerian ministers, commissioners, president and top public servants are all crooks. Otherwise they would have stopped looting and start ensuring that social justice and equality are promoted.
Today in Nigeria under the watch of people like Ngozi-Okonjo Iweala, ASUU is on strike and education is brought to a halt. Their children and families are abroad so what do they care? Health care is grounded as these fools in power continue to mismanged Nigeria’s money. Ask me, who is managing Nigeria’s wealth as the looting and non-accountability continues? Who is the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning as more and more Nigeria drops below the poverty line?
It won’t make sense for any Nigerian top politician or Minister to try and convince me that he or she is not a crook or a thief. I mean only those who are targeted are exposed. As long they remain relevant to their niche or accomplices, the cover up is huge.
So Ngozi may also come out to deny the story that she sacked Shuaib. I made the title of this story up of course! I am a blogger! I mean, when Shuaib had not written about Ngozi, his job was intact. When he wrote about Ngozi, his life turned upside down and then he was sacked. Then someone will tell me that Shuaib was sacked by the government and not Ngozi as if government is a person per se. If Ngozi did not react to the story by calling Shuaib on the phone, then I can say Shuaib was duly sacked because he is no longer relevant in service.
These are the types of things that make Nigeria a real jungle. You criticize a Minister, the minister does not like the criticisms (which is different from the Minister issuing a statement to defend herself) and you get sacked! One would have expected an educated Minister to show that what Shuaib wrote were malicious and not to confirm our fears that this is what happens in Nigeria and that change and hope are not in sight.
Dictators are everywhere in Nigeria and NOI is one of them.
Shuaib should never think that I have written in his defense. I am sorry that he lost his job but I know with his connections, he may be back in government big time someday or he may try his hands in the private sector. He will succeed because he has the connection and the pedigree. Even the opposition government can offer him a big deal because he is leaving service loaded with government secret. He will be useful in election smearing campaigns.
And tomorrow someone may write that Shuaib was sponsored! In Nigeria impossible is nothing!