This write-up is not about the usual New Year Resolution where we have people dumping some hitherto good but now bad habits and resolving to take on some endeavours that will catapult them to some expected positive heights before the New Year, 2016 fades out. It is a somewhat throwback at the past year using some incidents as signposts; and then attempting to posit some developments that could right the past wrongs all for a new glory for us all and Nigeria.
Close of 2015
No doubt, 2015 was such an eventful year dogged by ups and downs as well as twists and turns that it took God’s wisdom in a few compatriots to give the ship of state some steady sail right into the new year. In this regard, a name that easily comes to mind is immediate past President Goodluck Jonathan. But for his sole decision to concede defeat to All Progressives Congress, APC then presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari against the grain of what many others in his shoes would have done, stood him out as truly God-sent to keep the country and our prized democracy intact.
That plausible example from the executive arm of government perhaps, meant nothing to some other branches of government, then and now. One quick example here is the Nigeria Police.
Ahoada Police collection point
Last December 25, members of Rivers state Police Task Force along the Port Harcourt-Bayelsa highway; precisely at Ahoada check point spent the whole day harassing motorists asking for tinted glass permits even for factory-fitted ones.
Well, don’t get it twisted, I am for the law at all times. But when a band of police officers choose to quote from newspaper reports to back up their actions which many motorists saw as not formal enough, then there is a huge moral problem.
For instance, I witnessed a police inspector at that check point quoting a 2013 press report from the Senate supporting the ban on the use of tinted glasses in vehicles. He ended up coercing the motorist concerned to part with some princely sum before he was allowed to proceed on his journey which he told me had Warri in Delta state as his destination.
For all I care, if the ban on the use of tinted glasses in vehicles is still in force, the Police authorities must get its enforcement right by arming its officers and men tasked with checking vehicles with the Certified True Copies of the relevant law/directive instead of going about it all with photocopies of some newspaper reports tear-sheets to fleece unsuspecting or easily intimidated motorists.
Nuisance of Oshiomhole boys
On December 28, barely three days to the end of 2015, a traveler who had to journey to Abuja from Sapele through Benin saw hell in the hands of a band of touts who claimed they worked with Edo state’s Ministry of Transport.
The traveler had hardly maneuvered his way into the popular Murtala Mohammed way aka 3rd East Circular road from the Sapele – Benin highway when he said he noticed he was being followed by a non-descript commercial bus.
Hear him: “Immediately we got to Sakponba road junction and we were trying to cross the road, they started banging on our car from all sides. From the way they jumped out of their bus, you will suspect they were robbers. In fact, that is what they truly are.
“I opened the automatic lock on their orders and three of them jumped into my car barking different orders. One was asking why I was driving the way I was driving; another was asking me to just make a u-turn that we were going to their office; and the third was working his handset pretending to be calling their superior officer saying they had apprehended another vehicle.”
The vehicle owner said he obeyed them; made a u-turn and asked them for direction. Along the way, he was asked to “settle before we get to the office.” He parted with N10, 000 before he was allowed to continue his journey. “They escorted me to the point they besieged my car and asked me to go. I still ask myself what office I committed.”
To me, the traveler didn’t need to look too far for an answer. Simply put, he had come face to face with the symbolic microcosm of the nuisance that has pervaded and overwhelmed my beloved Edo state. Especially, at year end, you could not have expected any better conduct.
Presidential Media Chart
No doubt, the mixed reactions that trailed the maiden Presidential Media Chart of this Muhammadu Buhari administration was not unexpected. With the power shift of last May 29, the sharp differences in opinions over the effort by the President to let the people in on where we are coming from and where we are headed was not news.
But what was news was the bluntness of the President’s reactions to the myriad of questions he fielded. May be the soldier in him or the unique Fulani character of his did not allow Buhari to employ some diplomatese in answering most of the questions, many argued even as the event was on.
As for me, I queue behind those who thumbed up Buhari for a far above average delivery. Enough of the dispensation of leaders speaking tongue-in-the-cheek to the people on issues that are common knowledge in the streets; enough of the era of some chit-chat by people in government that tend to raise the people’s hope only to get them dashed before long; enough of insincerity of diverse proportions from our leaders.
It is better we have a leader who would pointedly tell the people where he is headed and is seen to be doing so than one whose obvious circumlocution under similar circumstances leads us to nowhere eventually.
Staying around the anointing
It is for the foregoing and related developments alongside the myriad of problems, economic, social, political, security, et al, the country was faced with in 2015 alongside the not-too-good predictions that have been made about the country and by extension, every man and woman here, that taking our individual and collective worries to God Almighty from this first month of the year could just be the recipe needed for a country and its people in 2016. After all, the various Cross-over church services held last December 31 through the early hours of January 1, this year underscored the very essence of this plausible act.
Along that line, I recommend the upcoming Men Around The Anointing, MATA programme being organised by Gospel Pillars Church, Ikeja, Lagos to every concerned Nigerian who seeks to overcome every vicissitude and albatross that would stand in his way this year. Bottom line is, we must all agree that we need the individual and collective anointing to break every yoke that would stand between us our 2016 Godly glory. Simply put, this year, beginning with MATA, staying around the anointing all through is highly recommended for all that truly seek God’s intervention in their circumstances this year. He is able and willing to deliver our expectations and even more only if we turn our faces to him today. With Him in us, the nuisance of Oshiomhole boys in Benin, the indiscretion by fraudulent policemen at Ahoada and related troubles will be gone.
Happy New Year and good luck!!!