A society that hands gold medals and huge chunk of the highly coveted national cake to obvious law breakers for whatsoever reason, then say to the hard working and law abiding who has decided not to steal, throw bombs or kill, to remain law abiding, is obviously just spelling it out that crime pays, regardless of how much government budget or claim to spend on security.
I’m candidly quite fascinated with the way controversial but highly brilliant Mallam Nasir El-Rufai puts it when he said “the strategy of handing out wads of cash to people that have not earned the money through meaningful work; with a pre-existing sense of entitlement, may ostensibly amount to rewarding insurgency. Which is referred to as “moral hazard” in economic terms.
The federal government according to The Financial Times has spent $1 billion on the amnesty program of the Niger delta ex-militants since inception. It has also offered to hold talks with the notorious northern Boko-Haram sect which would probably result into the FG cutting them a deal and eventually a share of the juicy national cake. Yeah it’s no longer news, yet it itches the ear that the federal Government spends an average of N1 billion Naira of our seemingly scarce resources daily on security, and I’m thinking… the security of what? Lives and properties?! I could hear a baritone voice reply, whose life exactly? Certainly not mine or the lives of the sixteen worshipers who were killed in church in Okene few days back
In nations we tirelessly try to emulate, there are systems put in place to ensure that the citizenry are well catered for and also given a sense of belonging. It’s the kind of program that uses public funds to provide a degree of economic security for the public. This program caters for various classes of people; the aged, disabled, survivors and the unemployed. Facts have it that Nigeria is a nation with 33.4% of its population between 10- 24, and 47% are between 20–40 years of age.
The population of youths in Nigeria is 43% according to Population Reference Bureau. If you check closely that’s almost three times what world giants like China can boast of (15.4%). It is heartbreaking to know that over 68million of them are unemployed. Any government having that much raw man power is considered lucky and should be maximizing it to the fullest by creating employment (directly and indirectly) and boosting away her GDP.
However, due to bad leadership and excessive looting of public funds or misappropriation as they often refer to it, the achievement of this feat has become as impossible as a voyage to the Bermuda triangle.
The government should emulate other nations and setup a scheme that would see to the welfare of the Nigerian youth, which would also be in charge of paying them a certain amount of money at an agreed interval. It is a common practice in countries like Australia which pays youth allowance within the range of A$91.60 to A$167.35 per week. In Finland a basic amount of 25 Euros is paid daily, in Greece 454 Euros per month, France 1111 Euros monthly. The standard payment in Ireland is €188 per week. In New Zealand, $167.83 is paid to single person between 20–24 years without children, $288.47 for single parents and $335.66 for married couples. This is to mention but a few amidst countries like the United States of America and England
Over the last 10years, the crime and vices that have held the country to ransom, creating fear, terror and pandemonium can be attributed firstly to the fact that Nigerians are broke and idle, a terrible combination that is void of hope. Secondly, the fact that there is no value whatsoever placed on the Nigerian life by government.
Talk of our roads, plying them make you wonder if our roads are a means of population control. The standard of living is so abysmally bad that I question the huge disbursement of public funds on guns, vests, and ammunition to secure lives that would be eventually lost to one ghastly motor accident due to bad roads or avertible plane crash as a result of negligence in high places.
Judging from the N920 billion of the 2012 budget and the N66 billion recurrent expenditure from the amnesty programme to be spent on ex-militants, it becomes obvious that government is now interested in the security of its citizens. What they fail to realize is that peace is not won only with guns and handcuffs and giving money. Just give the youth a means of livelihood by creating jobs and terrorism would be out of it.
As it seems, it won’t be long before other youths tow the line of violence. Believe me, Nigerians are not so dumb to figure that out, and the least the country needs now is the emergence of another version of the Boko whatever.
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
@Jideleigh on Twitter.
Powered by Facebook Comments