The little victories.
I always said our initial struggle was not an Harmattan a la the Arab Spring because it was not about regime change. Ours is a democratically elected government and the fact that our electoral process is shamelessly flawed in favour of the ruling party does not negate the fact that we have a semblance of democracy. Democracy is a journey and I believe we are on that path.
Our initial expectation was to arouse Nigerians to the realities of how they are governed. Over a long period in 2011 I kept exposing the 2011 budget through the hash tag #budgetscam which exposed the waste and mismanagement of our common treasury. That and a lot more expose on governance eventually birth a new spirit in some while renewing that of others.
In essence, the first step of the #OccupyNigeria movement achieved its aim as it was about a Nigerian Awakening. Nothing happens when a people are asleep to the way they are governed. On that note of a national awakening #OccupyNigeria has been an immense success.
We were the first to bring out select items in the budget and the money allocated to them. One of our discoveries being N200 million to water the gardens of the presidency even found itself in the lines of a recent song. Nigerians now know better and for us success wold be for people to continue this quest to know more about the way we are governed.
This awakening has brought about a glut of new releases of conscious music tracks that hitherto were left in the back burner. Nigerians are now conscious. No man achieves anything without consciousness. After consciousness other things follow. An unprecedented number of Nigerians read blogs for the first time, a lot more got involved with social media having seen that here is where the truth about governance gets told without adulteration.
For the one who prefers the obvious victory, a slash of N44 on every litre of petrol is a victory especially as we had a president who said the decision was final! That was almost a 60 per cent shift in a decision that was supposed to be final! N65 or nothing we said, but we did not get it. It means we have a responsibility now to watch how government goes about its SURE project.
The cut in the salaries of members of the Executive is for me a small victory but a victory nonetheless. It means we continue to fight until reason prevails in our budget process. The commitment by the government to merge ministries and parastatals will not be counted as a victory because we are used to them saying things they’d never do. We will ensure this gets done.
The movement exposed enemies of the Nigerian people. It afforded us the opportunity to see those who sold their destiny and birthright for stipends from the government. If for nothing else, this movement helped to show us who were for the Nigerian people and those who’d rather Nigerians continue to suffer amidst plenty.
The friendships and alignments birth by this movement will not die. We will nourish this for greater assignments ahead of us. This is a journey and it is a great start. We are proud to see that in the midst of many Judases there are still Nigerians who will defend the cause of the people of Nigeria. It becomes imperative for us to look beyond the past and appreciate these Nigerians for what they stood for these past few days.
We have our own heros in the brave men that were murdered by the Nigerian government. We will pursue justice on this front until justice is done and seen to be done.
I do not want to write a long epistle so I will bring this to a an abrupt conclusion:
I said this quest for a better Nigeria is a marathon not a sprint. You’d see why I am not deflated unlike some who believed we were about to right all the wrongs of the last scores of years in the harmattan of January 2012. Things do not often work like that. Always keep your belief in the future of our country. That desired future will come. Idiots and evil men will not reign forever.
We have learnt our lessons, it is time to write them on a tablet of remembrance so that we are reminded of who to trust and who not to when tomorrow comes.
Together we will chart the course of this movement. It is for every Nigerian and whatever success we seek to achieve tomorrow will be contributed by every Nigerian.
These are the little victories that ran through my head even as I typed these words. I know there are many more but then these have also become the past. There is a future to fight for, there is a tomorrow to come and when tomorrow comes we must be ready to have our country back!
Thank you and God Bless,
17th January, 2012