The Resource Curse: An examination of the Nigerian decay, the tentacles of corruption and the rise of extremism (Part 1)
I have always been an advocate of simplicity when trying to explain and decipher “complex issues “. I say this because I really don’t think problems are complex, I think they are made complex by those who created the problem when they try to explain their inability to fix the problem. The English dictionary has a phrase for this type of behavior it’s called “utter incompetence”. I know the problems plaguing Nigeria today are easily identifiable and fixable, but the corrupt politicians, selfish Nigerians and money hungy government contractors will want you to believe otherwise. They will tell you it’s such an impossible task, and that no one has answers to fix this nation that is in a state of continuous rot. At the root of the problem is oil revenue, how we mismanage it, and have done for decades and how that problem has multiple prongs spread around all facets of our society.
The resource curse is a phenomenon plaguing Nigeria and a majority of African countries, but I’ll focus on my beloved Nigeria today. Simply put it occurs when a country with a shaky and corrupt government gets a financial windfall because of on their natural resources, but because of a culture of corruption the wealth is stolen, and squandered by corrupt people in positions of power. These countries are likely to experience, war , farmine and civil wars compared to other countries with no such resources and no access to such explosion of national revenue.
It’s been over 60 days since the bring our girls back hashtags flooded the internet and sent hope rising amongst many Nigerians that perhaps these innocent girls will be rescued and reunited with their families. We were wrong, we are more confused about the whereabouts of these innocent girls than we have ever been. We have no regular updates from the nigerian government, business as usual has resumed, the nigerian president is still preoccupied with politics. I weep for these girls, I pray for them daily. In the fast and furious news cycle we live in, events have overtaken the urgency of finding these girls. ISIS is wrecking havoc in Iraq and that looks like where the world focus is now.
The Nigerian president his cabinet and all those in positions of power have failed these girls dearly . They all took an oath to protect the citizens of this country and they have failed in that basic tenet. I blame them, but not as much as I blame the citizens of Nigeria. The outrage is non existent as they continue to reward this useless government. There is no nationalistic pride or commaradre about building a functioning and equitable nation. They are all selfish and preoccupied with what they can get for themselves. This dog eat dog mentality is what is plaguing our growth. Income inequality is widening by the day,and the people say nothing . Nigerians listen and listen well, the is fire coming.. We have already seen the anarchy in the north and it will only spread. If you think you are inoculated from the wrath that is about to befall our country you are stupidly mistaken.
I see it moving close than ever. If we as a people don’t examine ourselves, look inward and start to practice honesty, shun corruption and start to build a country for our future children.