This Is Your Lagos? Shame On You APC, PDP, Buhari, Fasola And Ambode!(PhotoNews)

Many roads in Lagos states ought to be shut down as disaster zones. There are accidents, deaths and several untold hardships on these roads daily. Those who are responsible for these roads ought to be arrested and prosecuted for crimes against humanity.

 

By Adeola Aderounmu

I took all the pictures you see in this essay between June 26 and July 10 2018.

Civilian rule returned to Nigeria in 1999. This means that Nigerian politicians in both the ruling APC and the opposition PDP have spent together 19 years in governance and still cannot put right what the military gangsters destroyed.

So the systemic failure in Nigeria today is due largely to the lack of performances since 1999. We can argue that the stretch is longer but that is another discussion for another day.

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Lagos is heavily littered. The government needs to step up waste management system. Somebody should care about health care in relation to waste management and disposal.

The state of the federal roads in Lagos state which is the economic capital of Nigeria is very appalling and disgraceful.

The state of the roads in Lagos state is heart breaking, depressing and sorrowful. (I will treat some parts of Ogun state in another essay).

I do not share the notion that a certain government is trying or that a certain governor is working. That’s all bullshit!

In the last 19 years at least, there are no more tenable excuses why the roads in Lagos should be so terrible.

Sincerely if l could make the decision, l will block all the roads you see in this essay. Human beings should not be allowed to travel on these roads. They are permanent death traps and l wish someone in the the world somewhere has the power to shut down all these dangerous roads in Lagos and elsewhere in Nigeria.

 

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Roads in Nigeria are usually of low quality. They get bad before rainy season and worse during the rain. There are rivers on many roads in Lagos. This is Badagry expressway near the okokomaiko axis

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Federal roads in Nigeria are amongst the worst roads in the world. Shame on Buhari and Fasola. Shame on previous PDP government

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Nigerian roads easily destroy cars and reduce their life span.

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Very bad roads in Lagos. Is this actually a road?

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Bad road. What a useless government!

 

Whoever is responsible for these roads since 1999 ought to be arrested and prosecuted without delay. Since 2015, Mr. Buhari and Mr. Fasola are solely responsible for the federal roads in Lagos and they should be tried for crimes against humanity for all the deaths that continue to occur on the federal roads.

Without delay, the Badagry Express Way should be shut down!!! That is not an expressway. It is not even a road!

Mr. Ambode is culpable too because he is the number one citizen of Lagos state for the past 3 years! What has he been doing? Don’t tell me he is trying! He is not the governor of Lagos Island, is he?

If there are reasons why Mr. Fasola and Mr. Buhari have not constructed and maintained the federal roads in Lagos, why is Mr. Ambode not talking about it to the media and to the world just like l am doing now.

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Badagry expressway has no defined lanes. You drive where you find a space and this means facing opposite traffic ofen times.

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Badagry expressway

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Badagry expressway. How express is this road?

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Trying to navigate a way.

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Smoky and gangerous plus l was faced by an oncoming traffic driving along Oshodi-Mile 2. Trailers and heavy traffic means driving on one way is a common trend.

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Lagos roads are commonly dirty

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Badagry expressway. Very very bad road!

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A trailer fell on the road due to the bad state of the road and big pot holes. Lagos roads are the most dangerous roads l have seen all my life!

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The trailer could have fallen on people or other cars. But this was a single incident causing obstruction to the already bad situation

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Drving in rivers or on roads? Can we ask Buhari or Fasola? Vehicles face one another and there could be up to 8 lanes in multiple directions!!!

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These roads are the consequences of every N1 or N5 stolen by government officials! May you never find peace if you support a government or the governments causing these type of hardship. May your generations suffer!

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This commercial bus is going no where. In the middle of the road, tyres are off. A potential cause of accident!

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A commercial bus broke down along Badagry expressway and the passengers wait for refund. Look at the road. LOOK AT THE FILTH! Is Nigeria really a country?

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Confusion and commotion

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Dirty Lagos. Don’t tell me Ambode is working or trying. One dirty street means nobody is working! Somebody should be facing prosecution for allowing the people dump waste on major roads.

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Bad road. Badagry express road.

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Can we call this a road? Who will answer , Buhari or Fasola?

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Is this a road Mr Buhari, Mr Fasola Mr Ambode?

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Crazy traffic in Lagos due to bad road

For one month at least, l’m going to pay for this essay on instagram and facebook. Then l will see what reactions we get. If possible, l will continue to sponsor the advertisement for this essay just as long as the problem remains and l will keep a tab on Lagos to see current situations.

How on earth can this be the situation and there are no outrages? What is wrong with Nigerians? What is wrong with Lagosians?

All the roads for transportation, state, local and federal must be in perfect shape and good maintenance. No road must be left untouched because the people of Nigeria deserve the best that life has to offer. You can’t do 50% of the roads. You can’t of 99% of the roads. The 1% left undone can cause death and other unwanted scenarios. You must be perfect. All roads must be fixed and that is the work/function of government.

The government is not doing the people any favour by doing what it is supposed to do.

 

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Mr. Buhari, Mr. Fasola and Mr. Ambode must put their heads together now and put politics and election aside for once. Lagos roads and all roads in Nigeria must be fixed. It is your job. It is your work. No one is begging you. You are servants to the people and serve you must or get the hell out of the offices you occupy.

What l saw of Lagos roads revealed to me that on the long run, Nigeria must do away with the useless and senseless unitary system of government as soon as possible.

 

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This part of festac town has been erased from the map of Nigeria. 4th avenue with faeces and sewage taking over the community for several years now.

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Forgotten part of Lagos in Festac. The smell on this road is more or less a biological weapon against the people.

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Festac Town. From glory to grass! Smelly stinking 4th avenue!

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Somewhere about Ajao estate in Lagos as we drove to the airport. Lagos is giving wealth to Nigeria and the suffering is massive in Lagos. I cannot comprehend the shame and scandal in Lagos

I do not expect Mr. Buhari to know the roads l travel in Lagos. Even a federal minister knows little about the roads in Nigeria. But a governor and a local government chairman will know better. Therefore it is best to review how power can be taken away from that useless office in Abuja and taken back to the grassroots where people can see and solve their problems regionally and locally. It is just pure common sense!

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Someplace in Lagos…bad roads everywhere. Did you say your governor is working? I say you have a governor for Lagos lsland, not a governor for Lagos! Certainly not a governor for Lagos mainland, not a governor for Iyana Iba, Okokomaiko towards Agbara Industrial Area. Dirty, messy Lagos!

 

I have been writing about the ills in Nigeria for almost 2 decades and l could go on here again in this essay but let’s save the tautology and hope that my message is clear: FIX ALL THE ROADS IN LAGOS AND END THIS SHAME!!

aderounmu@gmail.com

@aderinola

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There Are No Drivers In Lagos

…..one of the vehicles that was supposed to be behind my car did the diagonal turning and collided with an oncoming lorry. There was another accident- two commercial buses collided with each other and an okada passenger flew between the 2 vehicles just before they collided. This is Lagos..!

There Are No Drivers In Lagos

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By Adeola Aderounmu

On my recent trip to Nigeria, l could almost not believe what l saw on Lagos roads. I knew that driving in Lagos had always been a hassle and that some people have ignorantly or maybe stupidly concluded many years ago that if you can drive in Lagos, then you can drive anywhere in the world. That notion is not only misleading; it is also very dangerous.

If driving in Lagos on the other hand means that you can drive anywhere in Nigeria, then l can generalize that there are no drivers in Nigeria. I took time to observe driving in my area and on major roads in Lagos. Not one person driving on Lagos roads that l saw passed the simple driving tests that l conducted.

One of the most amazing, yet disturbing discoveries l made was this: not one driver in Lagos knew how to turn left at a junction. In normal driving, on a two-way road, you drive to the end of the road whilst keeping to your lane, then you make a curve (like going around the last quarter of a circle or ring) to turn left. I did not see one driver in Lagos do this turn correctly.

To make left turns, all the drivers in Lagos made diagonals. They don’t even make it from their half of the road. Long before the actual turning point, as they approach the junction, Lagos drivers make long diagonals that put them head to head with the oncoming vehicles.

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The first time l observed this anomaly, l actually thought it was just a silly driver who was impatient.

Later l found out that everybody drives that way. Commercial vehicle drivers and private car drivers, drove the same way. This is the standard for driving in Lagos.

One day, l had a passenger at the back seat in my car. He said he thought l was driving straight-on after he saw that l actually turned left at a junction. He was not used to drivers using the full length of the road to the turning point before making the turn. He said l would get tired of my sane driving, but l never did because l wasn’t trained to drive like an insane person.

Every time l am making my normal left turn, there are other vehicles, between 1 to 3 that make the turn before me while l am at my normal driving. They think they are good drivers or that they are smarter in getting ahead.

In this essay, l cannot include the menace of the motor-cycles as commercial transportation means in Lagos. Let us save the discussion about that pestilence that is unleashed on Lagos for another time.

As a result of foolishness, recklessness and not-knowing-how to drive of almost all Lagos drivers, I was a witness to at least 3 accidents whilst l drove in Lagos.

Another day whilst l was doing my normal omoluabi junction-turning, one of the vehicles that was supposed to be behind my car did the diagonal turning and collided with an oncoming lorry. How many accidents on Lagos road are due to wrong driving?

This dangerous diagonal turning was one of the most obvious indicators of wrong driving by Lagos drivers that l observed and it remains a major cause of head-to-head collision/accidents at road junctions.

There was another accident due mainly to bad driving that was so serious that two commercial buses collided with each other on 23 Road in Festac Town. It was like a movie when an okada passenger flew between the two vehicles before they collided and he somersaulted on the road. The motor cycle and the okada-driver slided long the road like the movie was not about to finish yet.

In fact, the other useless and reckless driving of Lagos drivers are too numerous to elaborate here. But generally, it is a crazy situation on Lagos roads with human and vehicular traffic forming a permanent compound mess.

More of my observations below.

Lagos drivers do not know how to drive on lanes (but they can claim that most roads are not marked with lines and they’ll be right at that). Still, what happens to straight line driving? What l saw was that most of the drivers in Lagos do not even know about driving on a lane.

Once the roads are not marked, they are driving from right to left to center, just anyhow they like. They fill available space on the road and collide too easily with one another.

Lagos drivers do not keep the distance. There should be at least 5 meters between 2 cars on the road. For some vehicles, the distance behind them should be 10 meters if they have risk of rolling backwards or if they vehicles used for deliveries, having haulage facility/equipment trailing behind them.

In one accident, I saw an okada driver fastened to the back of a jeep and he could not detangle his motor cycle. It was so confusing; l did not even understand it even as we drove past the conjoined vehicles.

Lagos drivers do not use or respect the indicator light that shows when you when you change lanes or make a turn. 99.9 % of Lagos drivers do not look out for indicator lights. When you indicate a turn with your light and hoping that someone is using their brain on Lagos road, you have just made yourself a target for an accident and probably an untimely death.

Rather than using your signs, you and your passengers have to bring your heads out of the car and try to have contacts with the reckless drivers on the road and beg them to let you change your lane or to turn right or left.

In general driving on Lagos road is still very much an insane experience. It may not be the biggest problem in Nigeria but it is surely a significant part of public health question and analyses. It is either the people bring madness to the roads or the roads make people mad. Whichever way you view it, it is bad and sad.

On Lagos roads, there are no rooms for respect and courtesy. Everybody looks angry! People are not driving or behaving normally behind the wheels. Everybody is in a hurry and everybody believes that they should not give room to another driver. It’s as if everybody is chasing the same thing or the same thing is chasing everybody.

In all these negative brouhahas, one begins to wonder about the roles of the Federal Road Safety Commission, FRSC. This agency must be really rotten and inefficient. They are not working. How can they explain the acquisition of drivers’ licenses by all the bad drivers in Lagos? Have all these crazy drivers passed through any driving school? Have they been tested theoretically and practically?

In Lagos the dangers and evil on the road are so numerous that coming back home to your house in the evening is considered an everyday miracle.

So what are the ways out of this hydra-headed problem that has grown so big that it is now the norm to be drive anyhow-you-like in Lagos. Where do we start from in this country where everything has fallen apart and into pieces?

One can also question the roles of the bribe-loving police force in all these extreme dramas, thrillers and horrors on Lagos/ Nigerian roads. They are constant on the roads, pointing their guns at ordinary citizens as if there is a war in Lagos. But their primary concern is their filthy pockets.

The police, the FRSC, the people and even the state government  and its other transport agencies are all contributing their own quotas to the madness and complexity on Lagos roads. Everybody is claiming right, everybody is neglecting their duties and obligations and everybody is doing the wrong thing.

When Nigerians return home from Europe and America with their drivers’ licenses that were earned like war trophies, they are insulted and humiliated to the extent that the authorities make many of them to acquire the Nigerian license that are obtainable without undergoing driving tests.

In their ignorance, the men of the FRSC and the police turn down hard-earned foreign driver’s license. I heard they don’t even recognize international driver’s license. Really? Of course, they will accept the bribe that follows the argument on this.

During my stay in Lagos, l spent a substantial time shouting at some motorists and educating them on a few things that l saw them do wrong. Yes, l did that sometimes when l was behind the wheels and sometimes when l took my usual long walks along the streets.

Constantly proving that l was right, l just refuse to leave my lane for the stupid oncoming okada motor-cyclists and other drivers who really do not have any business on the road. I was hardly in a hurry, so that turned out well.

The first lesson in a driving school says: plan for your journey. That particular lesson will cure about 50% of the insanity on Lagos road. Where are people rushing to? They will overtake you with the narrowest of margin beside you or in front of you! What are they chasing?

There are rush hours and heavy traffic in major cities across the world. But the cars keep rolling. In Nigeria, the traffic stands still not only because of bad roads, but also because of bad driving and total absence of knowledge about safe driving.

So if the people plan their journeys, if drunkards are removed from the roads, and if the roads become motorable say 100 years from now because Nigerian roads are still among the most dangerous road in the world today, maybe more than 90% all the accidents on Nigerian roads will become preventable. Lofty goal l guess.

The traditional custodian of Lagos and the governor of Lagos, where do you go from here? Lagos drivers don’t know how to drive. They just move the vehicles. They need help and deliverance. You need help too because right under your watch, Lagos has fallen apart.

 

aderounmu@gmail.com

 

all images taken by Adeola Aderounmu

108 Modern Public Hospitals Now

What about the infectious diseases unit? What about children’s wards across the country? What about the maternity wards? What about us?

108 Modern Public Hospitals Now

Adeola Aderounmu

Södersjukhus in Stockholm. Nigeria must upgrade to International standard  pix: Acrona

Södersjukhus in Stockholm. Nigeria must upgrade to International standard
pix: Acrona

The governor of Bayelsa State, Mr. Henry Seriake Dickson is one of those people disgracing Nigeria and giving the country a bad name. Recently he spoke out of sense as he tried to rationalise the demise of a criminal politician who died recently in Nigeria.

Mr. Dickson blamed the death of Diepreye Alamieyeseigha on the federal government of Nigeria. He has been part of the federal government and now a state governor, so by his own submission that makes him a murderer too.

News had it that Diepreye Alamieyeseigha may have remained abroad or even flown back abroad (depending on which account of his death is true). We are told that his final journey was influenced by the issuance of the threat of repatriation by the British. Diepreye escaped from the UK without facing justice for his crimes.

Why was Diepreye receiving treatment abroad? Why was his life expectancy dependent on the hospitals that are in foreign countries? While he was the governor of Bayelsa State, what effort did he make to build or upgrade the health institutions in Bayelsa so that if he and his family members living in Nigeria got sick, they could go to the hospital for treatment?

This is what politicians and policy makers in foreign countries do. They make sure that while managing their corruption at the barest minimum, that the institutions that will serve them and their people are in place. The hospitals are one of those institutions. Functional public schools, good roads and water are fewer examples of an endless list of the basic things of life that give humans the dignity they deserved.

Nigerian politicians have no respect for the citizens of the country. They don’t think the people deserve the things that make life worth living. They are so myopic and wicked that they do not know that they need to provide amenities that will serve them and the rest of the population when the need arises.

Recently l wrote an essay titled: Let’s Go Die, Abroad..!

It was a reaction to the growing number of shameless Nigerian politicians and the so called statesmen travelling abroad to end their lives in several hospitals across the world. Some of them are lucky, they return to Nigeria alive.

A former Nigerian president Umaru Yar Adua was bundled, packaged and repackaged in several countries around the world when he was sick. For 8 years he was the governor of Katsina State before he became the president of Nigeria and no hospital was built or upgraded to care for, or manage his specific chronic ailment. The rest is history.

If not stupidity, how else can one describe such a situation when people who loot public funds cannot even think of providing something that could prolong their lives in their nearest vicinities.

We are all humans and we will always be prone to diseases, ill-health and other forms of frailties especially as we age. It will not matter how much money we have legitimately or how much some people have looted. Is there a way to let Nigerian politicians know that looting is not an antidote to diseases?

I am sure many of us have written about the shame of Nigerian politicians dying in hospitals in foreign countries and returned as packages to Nigeria for burial.

Still, it is worth writing about again especially as it appears that the shameful act remains unabated. The death of the Ooni of Ife in the UK is regrettable.

We argue and we try to prove it that civilisation started on the African continent. We argue and we try to prove it that intelligence in the group Homo Sapiens is independent of race.

But the rulers of Nigeria are weakening our lines of arguments in many ways. For example when they steal and loot money meant for public uses and when they travel abroad instead of providing for their health needs in Nigeria. Why must Nigerian rulers travel abroad for treatment and admission at hospitals and clinics?

As a way of elaboration, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha  was one of the several corrupt Nigerian politicians who looted the treasuries in one of the states in the Niger Delta area. Since the Nigerian form of fighting corruption is dependent on who is in power in Abuja, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha was granted state pardon after he escaped from the UK dressed as a woman.

If not for the fact that fighting corruption in Nigeria is selective and heavily biased, the likes of Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, and in principle 99% of those in present day PDP and APC should have been arrested and their cases dealt with in Nigeria. Why must it take the British or the American government to arrest Nigerian political crooks? How much money is Nigerian forfeiting in the process?

Nigerians have come to terms that their politicians can or must be corrupt. The new wave is that many Nigerians are seeking indictments in order to be convinced that a politician is corrupt. When a man serves as a state governor for 8 years and still travel abroad for treatment or medical check up, what kind of indictment are you looking for?

When a national assembly loaded with corrupt people give passages to corrupt ministers-to-be, where do you go for the indictment?

When a man cannot be probed because he sponsored the presidential campaign with security votes among other looted funds, then we say he is not corrupt. Today it is the PDP that is under the spotlight, well no problem. Every dog will always have its own day.

But Nigeria is in a constant mess. The way we live separates us and we see the demarcation between them and us. Death either abroad or at home appears to be only leveler between the corrupt and the saints, the rich and the poor. Life will remain a passage, and only fools don’t see the vanity of primitive accumulation.

Let me repeat, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha  could have built a modern hospital in Nigeria where people like him and the citizens of Bayelsa can be diagnos and treated with dignity.

Nigerian doctors are ranked amongst the best in the world but they work in several countries around the world helping to maintain the health care system globally.

How many times are we going to write about the need to ensure that our doctors, scientists and other professionals are provided with conducive environment and structures to work with in Nigeria?

Death is one of the few certain things in life. So what is the use of looting, stealing and stupidly accumulating wealth and then refusing to build hospitals in Nigeria or refusing to equip the ones that have been built?

Now this is my challenge to the Buhari-APC mandate before the end of May 2019.

Look around the various states in Nigeria. Give yourselves the marching order to equip and upgrade the existing hospitals to the standards of the hospitals you usually visit abroad. If anyone suggest that this is not possible, that person is probably an enemy of progress.

In additon to the first mandate, a second one is that every state in Nigeria must have at least 3 big modern public hospitals.

Some states like Lagos may have may even need more than 5 big public hospitals because of the extreme high population of the state and also as a result of the frequency of accidents and number of sick people.

The Buhari-APC mandate may want to forbid any serving politician from seeking medical abroad say from 2017 when some serious work and upliftment should have been possible.

At the existing hospitals, an evaulation of the situation needs to be done. All the units including the Accidents and Emergency should be upgraded. If this happens before the next senator is invloved in an accident, then he/ she can be treated anywhere in Nigeria.

The recent sojourn of Akapbio in a foreign hospital is absolute stupidity coming from a man who boasted that he built a world class hospital in Akwa Ibom. I am yet to get a report on why he was not treated at the world class hospital in Akwa Ibom.

What about the surgery units? For how long will hard earned income and donations be packaged to India for correctional surgeries? How many Nigerians have died because of manageable diseases that they could have lived with until old age?

What about the infectious diseases unit? What about children’s wards across the country? What about maternity wards? What about us? Where should we go when we face life-threatening diseases? Is there anyone reading this who has not lost a mother, a father, a brother or a sister due to preventable health situations?

What about making sure that the upliftments are taken as priorities? What about developing a health care system that will not put the cost above the importance of life in Nigeria? Does living long have to depend on how much money one has and which hospitals one can attend?

When the lives of the people can be prolonged by how much money they have, then the essence of living in such a country is lost. It is a disaster by all standard!

Nigeria needs to improve the health care insurance process and health care delivery system.

This demand for 108 modern public hospitals is not an exaggeration and it may even not be enough to meet the needs of 170m people. But the 108 hospitals in questions are the publicly available hospitals to stop the sojourn of Nigerian politicians abroad. They will also meet the needs of the citizens at large. And don’t forget to bring back our doctors from abroad. Bring them home..!

In the meantime, don’t also forget that our return to regional government is a must because it is the only way to purge the major unrests across Nigeria including the Boko Haram war for which the APC-Buhari mandate has shown it may not win.

The 108 hospitals challenge is on. Now I start to count…

aderounmu@gmail.com

The Cost Of Freedom

Unless a country or a group of people are willingly to genuinely give their today in the name of true freedom, their children will never be free tomorrow.

The Cost Of Freedom

Which Way Nigeria?

Which Way Nigeria?

By Adeola Aderounmu

Nigeria’s 54th year as a so-called independent country was marked in several ways. One headline that caught my attention was the one that stated that poverty in Nigeria has been reduced by 50%.

The headline is first class fraud.

Statistics was one of my favourite subjects during my first and second degrees at the University of Lagos. It is one of those subjects that I really felt comfortable doing. At Idiaraba it was Medical Statistics and oh, how I enjoyed every bit of it and the lecturer was awesome.

Poverty may have been reduced by 50%, it depends on the sample size or the part of the population where you draw your samples from.

So I can conclude that if we take the population of the follow-follow people flocking Aso Rock since the inception of Jonathan’s administration, he has successfully tackled the poverty among 50% of the ass-lickers including the expanding society of Aso Rock Bull Dogs.

If I cast my dragnets at the places that I know like Oshodi, Ojuelegba or Okokomaiko, my data will produce a result that will make nonsense of the results produced by some drunkards in Aso Rock. More than 90% of the people will be below poverty level and living on less than N500 a day.

For more than ever before majority of Nigerians groan under an increasingly senseless and insensitive government. Increasing the death rate and lowering the life expectancy of a population does not mean that poverty has been reduced.

In several essays I have depicted the nature, spread and characteristics of poverty in Nigeria as one of the worst hidden tragedies in the world. I have also been very quick to dismiss the claims of the few people who escaped the threshold of poverty sometimes through luck or unmerited opportunities that their situations cannot be used as the yardstick.

The title of this essay came as a result of my feelings in recent months. I’ll approach it.

I do know, and convincingly too that there are a few people in Sweden who have cultivated the habits of reading my articles, not because they want to be “my readers” but because they “enjoy” this culture of gossiping about “what did he write this week”?

I am happy for them, that they found a weekly delight.

I’ll keep them in the dark by not defining their range but amongst them are people who need to understand though that I have the right to my views about Nigeria no matter what they think or feel.

I cannot help those who found out too late that they had been talking to someone who has been writing about Nigeria since 2001.

One of my pictures on Facebook must have tilted the table over. I had a T-shirt with the inscription Oduduwa republic on my mind. It is one of my ideas of freedom. The image must have gone viral among some folks. I am still happy for them and I hope they get a pat on the back when they make their reports.

I wonder how much shock my Swedish-Nigerian readers suffered in the last 4 weeks when I had written stories about love. I will choose love any day over a failed country under the bondage of crazy and deaf rulers.

The love stories came to me after a recent trip to Finland. I think my ancestors love nature and they prefer the solitude of a calm sea to bring me teachings and guidance.

Today I wanted to write a story about “The Dreamer Boy” but I thought some people will like to know if I am still in tune with Nigeria and how the drunkards have reduced poverty by 50%.

What is more interesting than this blatant lie is the growth and spread of individuals, groups and associations that are intensifying their doubts about their continuous recognitions as Nigerians.

They are weighing the options of bailing out of a jaga-jaga Nigeria. There are many t-shirts nowadays with a lot of messages and one boy even tore his green passport and posted it on YouTube.

I have a lot of reflections on this emerging trend especially among “Nigerians” who are far away from their regions in Nigeria, based mostly in Europe, Asia and America.

For the Nigeria we have today became a total mess as a result of our collective failures as citizens and participants or onlookers in the successive corrupt and useless governments in Nigeria over the years and even to this day in October 2014.

The Nigeria of today was not the dream of the men and women who fought collectively to wrestle the country from the colonialists.

The reason we write or recite or even highlights repeatedly our failures as a country is because some people need the education at some point on what has happened and what we expected. Where Nigeria is today on the scale of human development and quality of life is a complete disgrace to the intellectual abilities of the African race.

One failed government blames the other and the cycle of idiocy rotates as nobody tackles the menaces of corruption, federal character (yes, it is a menace), nepotism and tribalism.

It was the greed in Nigerians and the corruption in their veins that exposed the madness of the colonialists who married different nations into one entity. “Irreconcilable differences” is an expression made in Nigeria. The crazy rulers destroyed the institutions of governance and many crazy people in government stole for themselves, their friends and their unborn generations-even to this day.

Since the mid-1960s, no government has made efforts to return power and freedom to the regions just the way it was when education, health and technological developments were functional until greed and outright stupidity reared their ugly heads.

The process of divide and rule, looting and total disregard for the rules of law continued and reached a new dimension since the inception of pseudo-democracy in 1999.

For Nigeria I have oscillated between hope and hopelessness and my understanding of statistics says it is time to try something else.

I am all for the freedom and the emancipation of the people who are currently enslaved in Nigeria.

It is imperative to define the modalities and the cost of freedom so that the sycophants and the major players of today do not ruin the future of our children and grandchildren the same way they ruined our parents lives and displaced us to different places around the globe.

I wish that all the groups and associations around the world will emerge from their clandestine positions and start to talk openly. The Scottish people just had a vote. The outcome was not as important as the action they took but it will define the things to come in the future. Their children will grow up feeling more secured.

It is old fashioned to seek freedom in the dark rooms. It is very primitive to seek independence through confidential emails or social media closed groups.

If you want something, make it open, make it plain. Go for it and carry the people who need the change along.

Healthy debates, open groups, open discussions and other form of transparent dealings may help to check some of my personal fears regarding the stakeholders in all these clandestine groups scattered around the world.

What is the cost of freedom?

The cost of freedom lies in service to humanity. It is not looting the treasury and telling stupid lies about security and poverty.

The cost of freedom in public service lies in willingness to die at the altar of truth. It is not in building houses of gold on the polluted land across Nigeria.

The cost of freedom is the deprivation that comes with the belief that humanity comes before self.

The cost of freedom will be correlated to conventional free thinking and explorative mindedness.

It will not be locked to dying for the sake of acquiring virgins in an imaginary place. It will not have anything to do with deadly assembly at the feet of gangster mortals called prophets. The cost of freedom will rid a nation of the defenders of evil.

Unless a country or a group of people are willingly to genuinely give their today in the name of true freedom, their children will never be free tomorrow.

For the nations entangled in Nigeria these sacrifices are non-negotiable.  Along with the irrepressible truth, they will be the ultimate cost of freedom.

aderounmu@gmail.com

Very Bad Days Plague Nigeria..

By Adeola Aderounmu

A former Nigerian minister Olusegun Agagu died recently and was to be flown to Ondo State for burial. Unfortunately the Aircraft in which he was flown crashed not long after take off, there in Lagos.

More than 20 people were on the flight and some are feared dead already. May the souls of the departed rest in Peace. May those in hospital find quick healing.

There will be hundreds of theories surrounding this ill-fated flight. There will be both natural, spiritual and physical explanations.

No matter which theory is right, we all know that Nigerian roads are among the worst roads in the World and the state of Nigerian Aviation industry may also be suffering from the general decadence that is plaguing everything in Nigeria.

Some comments on the social media are indifferent to the death of Agagu and now to the death of his family members/friends of the family.

There are reasons for this line of reasoning. Nigerian politicians think about themselves and their families/friends only, so when they evil befalls them, people tend to be “happy” (unfortunately).

It is very easy to argue that the people involved in this accident and even the dead minister himself could have done something to improve the living conditions of Nigerians generally. The argument is right because one man can make a difference.

No man in Nigeria wants to make a difference, that is why even Jonathan will continue to buy presidential Aircrafts for himself instead of improving the Aviation industry. Still, no ruler in Nigerian politics has stuck his head up to say “I’ll die for the people to make sure their lives improve”.

It’s always selfishness and self-improvement. It is always me, me, me and my family.

Sadly too, Nigerian looters don’t realise that life is transient and that no one can live forever. They still loot as much as they can and are not deter by the natural law that Life terminates anyway by natural, physical or spiritual means depending on what they Believe.

May the souls of the dead find Peace. Even the students massacred in Yobe, one prays they find peace. For all the grieving families (we are all griefing one thing or the other anyway), may we find the strength to move one and may we learn to live one day at a time and to know that no matter what, nobody will leave this World alive!

In Nigeria, Christmas Time Can Be Hell..!

BY Adeola Aderounmu

I wrote Christmas in Hell after my visit to Nigeria in 2006. The story is available in my blog archive.

I guessed some things will never change.

In 2012 Nigeria, the month of december, fuel is scarce and there has been a fire pipeline explosion in Lagos.

These things have become “normal” for Nigerians.

The bottom line is that the Nigerian government as probably the most corrupt government in the world does not care a dime about the welfare and life situations of Nigeria.

Every government, Federal, state and local, is so corrupt that nobody cares if the right things are done or not.

That is why it is possible for stupid and useless things to repeat themselves with accuracy and perfection.

In december 2013 there is a possibility that fuel will be scare all over Nigeria and there will be a pipeline fire in Lagos.

What a country

Bangers, The Fire Brigade Approach And Another Call To Duty

Adeola Aderounmu

In the past and even this year, the Lagos State Government had tried without success to prohibit the use of firecrackers and other fireworks (popularly called knockouts and bangers in Nigeria).

The fire disaster that took place in Lagos this week is another wakeup call on many fronts.

The unfortunate incidents reminded me of one of my earliest articles published both on the Nigeria Village Square and in the Nigerian Guardian Newspaper. The article first published in 2007 is titled: What is Fire Brigade Approach?

In that article, I defined The Fire Brigade Approach as “Nigerians spending last minutes efforts in trying to solve a problem that has been there forever”. That definition borrowed from what I knew of the Fire Brigade while growing up in Nigeria still sadly fit the working approaches of several institutions and agencies in Nigeria today.

No one will likely succeed in stopping the use of fireworks during celebrations or festivities. Some traditions are too strong to kill.

It will require adequate regulations to monitor the safe sale and proper use of these fireworks.

It should not be possible for any businessman or woman to just be able to import or take possession of these dangerous things simply because they are business persons.

The federal and state governments in Nigeria should monitor and approve companies that are fit to undertake such businesses and these should not be based on sentiments or family connections.

Wholesale and retail outlets that distribute these products should have adequate safety procedures to deal with accidents. It is even better to have procedures that will prevent the accidents in the first place.

Considering the fire outbreak in Lagos, it is clear that there are no regulations or they are not followed. Often in Nigeria, the time is not taken to do things meticulously. In many cases no one is ensuring that the regulations are followed especially when bribes can be paid to make rules worthless and inconsequential.

I cannot still imagine that knock-outs as we call them are sold in such a congested area in Lagos. Obviously whether they have done that for several years is not the question, the point is that it has always been a disaster in the making. Then it happened!
With adequate and proper planning, such an accident (if it occurred) should have happened in an industrial area or a shopping area out of town. I mean a building that houses fireworks should either be isolated somewhere or has walls made of fire-resistant materials that will prevent the spread of accidental fire.

On other fronts some of the abnormal things about Nigeria were furthermore exposed by the ugly fire incident which has claimed one life and injured several others. The damage also included a number of houses.

Do we know if there are in-house emergency arrangements in the building where the fireworks are sold? I have not read about fire-extinguishers being used while awaiting the arrival of the fire brigade.

Generally this accident calls for a review of emergency handling situations in Nigeria.

Minor, major, man-made and natural disasters need to be reviewed in Nigeria.

People need to be taught how to deal with minor accidents so that they don’t escalate to major accidents. In certain accidents in Nigeria, stampede has led to more casualties than the original causes of the accidents.

People need to be taught how to prevent domestic and environmental accidents. When they happened they need to know how to deal with the situation immediately and what to do while seeking or waiting for help.

How many Nigerians have been educated that firecrackers are supposed to be mainly outdoor hobbies, something done at some reasonable distance from places of abode? I remembered how people threw bangers at each other in Nigeria and in fact that it was okay to aim them at another man’s flat or compound!

I knew people who held bangers in their hands till they explode and I’d seen at least two boys whose hands were blistered from such experiments.

Sadly too I recall many ugly incidents-including deaths-related to the use of fireworks in Nigeria.

Nigerians are also fond of looking and forming unnecessary crowd at the scene of accidents. Still what kind of crowd gathered in such a way that
it took the fire brigade about an hour to get through?

If the sirens were blowing out loud, does it means that Nigerians have become deaf that they couldn’t hear the siren or could it be that the sounds of sirens have become meaningless considering the misuse/abuse over the years? Where was the Nigerian Police during all these?

One man even took the helmet of a fireman. Was that a joke? The fire brigade and emergency workers can claim in this case that their work have been hindered or hampered by crowd gathering and doing nothing but taking pictures to be posted on social networks. Some heartless people actually visit scenes of accidents to steal or loot.

However, one man was reported to be scooping water with a bucket from a nearby source. Lagos (and Lagos Island in particular) is lineated, permeated and surrounded by water and the fire brigade always runs short of it. The disgust is the same when you see people who don’t have safe water to drink.

In any case, this man-made accident is another wakeup call.

The concerned Lagos State Government agencies or authorities should rise, step up and do that which is necessary to prevent another tragedy of this nature. It is not enough to earn or share money through official titles. It is not wise to wait for the next tragedy before something is done. The jobs must be done now and people need to be educated and informed.

The Lagos State Ministries in charge of Commerce & Trade, Environment, Information, Education, Town Planning and Industrialization should step forward and tell Lagosians the measures that have been or that are now in place to ensure the safety of lives and property. Emergency Management Agencies, the Police and the firemen/women should not be left out of the plans.