A PROBLEM CALLED NIGERIA…

How did we get here?

Majority of problems we face today as a nation are a combined result of the different situations at different time points of our evolution as a country. However, one common consistent factor is the idea of Colonialism and Imperialism.

Colonialism is assuming control over a nation or a group. Imperialism is the political and economic control. So, Colonialism is a practice and Imperialism is the idea that drives the practice. . . . Shekina!

Going by our political history, I believe Nigeria was on a path of gradual development in the 60’s and 70’s however; the seeds of ethnicity and difference were equally being planted. The mostly corrupt political class (leaders) who were like our second colonial masters, rather than promote shared culture (nationalism) were nonchalantly busy promoting their colonial powers through institutions and cultural activities. What they failed to realize was the ripple effect their colonial styled dominance had on the people. The people were being recolonized culturally and this phenomenon is known as CULTURAL HEGEMONY.

In Marxist philosophy, cultural hegemony is the domination of a culturally diverse society by the ruling class who manipulate the culture of that society—the beliefs, explanations, perceptions, values, and mores—so that their imposed, ruling-class worldview becomes the accepted cultural norm.

Now the problem with this is that, if the colonial dominance is perceived as ideal and oppressive at the same time, the people naturally will begin to connive in their own oppression BY acting in means they assume to be of their best interest just to partake in the activities that are part of the dominant culture. As we know today, most known means of trying to fight such oppression is either harmful or illegal.

Nigerians and Nigeria leaders failed to grasp the real problem in its entirety and resorted to providing cosmetic solutions that are at best, temporary. As SITUATIONS worsen, these illegal partakers of the dominant culture grew in responsibilities and influence, just like the original colonialists. Consequently, THAT WHICH WAS SEEN AS A MEANS TO AN END HAS EVENTUALLY BECOME A MEANS WITH NO END. Two principal reasons for this; the insatiable nature of human wants and the continue regression of standard of living in the society.

Let us list some of the current flourishing illegalities and criminal activities in our present society: Corruption, Cultism, Robbery, Kidnapping, Exam Malpractice, Yahoo-Yahoo, Nepotism, Prostitution. .   .  the partakers, while attempting to solve their problem have ended up becoming a problem itself.

A better Nigeria?

As a writer, I try to be as objective as possible. As a thinker, I want to constantly process thoughts that would solve real problems. In the case of Nigeria, it is a collective effort that will be thoroughly backed by functional systems. Anything shy from this is scalar to our development i.e. magnitude without direction.

I react to stories these days by saying ‘We are all mad in Nigeria’. I mean, we are so lost in our problems that everything is considered entertainment. The world is evolving each second and we are yet to solve our “factory” problems otherwise known as follow-come.

Curing the entire nation is going to take a process, not necessary painstaking but deliberate and sequential. Only a DREAMER can lead us down the glory path, unfortunately, the only way a dreamer can become president of Nigeria or attain a pole political position is in his/her dreams.

We need to do better with our thoughts as individuals and as humans, it is a reflection of our choices. While people celebrated President Buhari during the last presidential election, I was clear about my choice and it rests on the system that saw President Buhari and Former President Jonathan as the ONLY people who could lead this country forward. Our problem was never Former President Jonathan neither is it President Buhari, yes they can be considered a problem too but the real problem is right there in the systems (situations). Until we begin to address systems and tackle situations, the result will be the same if not worse off.

I recently scanned through a documentary about SILICON VALLEY and I kept saying to myself, there is power in thinking. Reading some success stories of the big brands that started from Silicon Valley and how they have reshaped the way we see and live in our world.

Isn’t it funny how we have enough competent and qualified professionals in Nigeria yet we have remained a 3rd world country? It is important we start identifying real problems instead of promoting hypocrisy and individualizing problems. Our society and institutions are being built on illegal platforms, when a problem grows beyond its population, then a massive fall is eminent.

Strangely, I am not big on reading books but it is important we train our thoughts. I would recommend to my friends a book titled HOW WE THINK by JOHN DEWE, A professor and one of the fathers of functional psychology. It was published in 1910. . . creepy yeah? I have the soft copy and I am willing to share.

We neither read nor think in Nigeria and oyibo man will say, critical thinking is the skill required to transmission the solving of commission problems in transmission, transmission.  .  . Please, I’m sorry.

 

 

“Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think” -Albert Einstein

“We don’t narrate things as they are because we see things as we are”.

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THE PROBLEM ABOUT A SOLUTION….

We know the issue of problems as it relates to situations cannot be over emphasized, and as a sequel to my previous transmission, transmission of . . .Pls, I’m sorry…. on problem, this is a guide to problem solving.

I’d like to think that the essence of education is to equip us with competent skill, values and right capacity to solve problems. The regular school system in Nigeria barely teaches one to identify problems, which also is a problem. Gene Agre wrote many years ago in his article on problem and problem solving that “Some thinkers have even gone far to suggest that it is impossible to learn anything in or outside of school except as the outcome of solving problems”.

Problem solving is a process (not a singular action or event) of evaluating the details of the problem, which clearly refers to situations/conditions to yield solutions. Problem solving is a measure of an individual’s critical thinking skills. This is what I believe we lack as a collective group in Nigeria.

This year alone, lots of trendy headlines have been raised from issues bordering around corruption, prostitution, fraud, incompetence, thuggery, cultism and more. The reality is, Nigeria is like a thriving hub for every societal ill, and I sometimes begin to wonder if we have ‘trouble’ embedded in every section of our constitution. Armed robbery came and never left, Fraud visited and built a house, Terrorism transited then ended up owning an entire State. I mean, there is something fundamentally wrong with Nigeria and Nigerians.

While the political class over the years keep churning different initiatives to tackle one problem or the other, funds are being directly invested, unfortunately, the funds help to further fuel the cycle of profligacy in the society. This is why our problems are never ending!

Let’s use corruption for instance, Nigerians almost unanimously, agreed corruption was the bane of our failed developmental state. We ousted a regime in the last election in the name of change only to find ourselves in a position that is evidently twice as worse despite the anti corruption crusade. This is a practical example of how you can solve a problem but not solve the real problem. Critical thinking, an essential skill required for problem solving is like rocket science in Nigeria apparently. In the face of a problem, people tend to show much more emotion towards the surface problem, which on its own is only an outcome of the real problem.

Is corruption a problem? . . . . clearly, YES!!!

Is corruption ‘the problem’? . . . NO! . . Corruption is only a distractive outcome of the real problem. #CriticalThinking101

 

How do you solve a problem like corruption?

Identifying the real problem and proffering ‘systematic’ solutions. The worse thing we do around here is individualize a full-blown problem and solving it by trying to cure the individual. The arrest of a corrupt official would not stop corruption in this life or in the after life. Corruption in Nigeria is a problem that involves dynamic situations and this requires distinctive systems to fight. Corruption cannot be completely wiped out but just like in other advanced societies, it can be reduced to it’s barest minimum by X-raying the underlying situations and stabilizing the conditions. If you cannot identify the primary condition that makes the situation a problem, finding a solution becomes a failed-on-arrival enterprise.

I am not a huge fan of the leadership qualities of former President Goodluck Jonathan but I could perceive he knew something close to a progressive national blueprint; sadly he underestimated the power he wielded. He once said, STEALING IS NOT CORRUPTION and Nigerians in our usual scripted modus of unskilled thinking, ran with the out of context usage and labelled him the enemy. What he ultimately meant was the need for us to identify the real problem. Corruption may involve stealing but stealing on it’s own is not corruption. A guest comes to your house, takes your phone without your knowledge, would you rather say he is corrupt? We certainly experience corruption in Nigeria but most of the cases involving money were plain stealing. This is more common sense than critical thinking.

A PROBLEM ABOUT PROBLEM!

The Nigeria social sphere is presently being plagued with much dramatics and every gist these days seem to have a ‘lava’ effect. As much as I would fancy writing about the last episode of the stolen maze/maze runner or jump out of this moving vehicle like Dino but I’d rather sit and watch the royal wedding thinking how fraudulently unfair of me not to mention Ceecee’s name…like a big brother, I want to recommend the formation effective at the transmission, commission transmission, I mean, recommended transmission. . Sorry, I’m sorry please! I just don’t want to come across as a lazy Nigerian youth.

Having had interesting rows with a particular friend for as long as I can remember, I have decided to bare thoughts on the problem of a problem. Reason because, I realized we seem to be having problems with recognising the problem, which I think is a problem.

There is no problem solving without clear-cut problem identification, behind every problem is a root cause, which itself happens to be the primary problem.

(Oxford Def.) A problem is an unwanted situation or condition. A situation basically is the way in which something is placed in relation to its surroundings.

Agreeably, there is a reason behind every problem, and this reason is a problem on it’s own…correct? Going by above definition, if a problem is found in situations, situations can be said to be the reason for the problem and If the reason for the problem is a problem on it’s own, then ‘situation’ is the real problem.

Safe to say the problem is in the situation and not in a problem itself. Therefore, I believe “a problem is an OUTCOME of the real problem”. The real problem is characterised by situations and conditions presented in an unwanted way known as ‘a problem’.

 

Summary; A problem is a distraction, the real problem is in it’s situation. A problem comes in at least a pair (the distractive problem and a series of the real problem), there is nothing like a single problem. We tend to isolate a problem and proffer solutions that won’t even scratch the surface of the real or core of the situation and condition. This is why people end up multiplying problems rather than solve.

GROW IN PEACE!

Hey friends, here I am again!. . . and to sprinkle a little honesty here, I have a blue cup in front of me . . . the content I SHALL NOT REVEAL I’m sorry. Anyways, did you read my last post? A POEM I wrote under 20mins . . . hehe talk about fresh oil of inspiration.

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It is my birth month next, I’m still trying not to freak out cos’ I mean, last week still feels like April or ‘MAY-be March (pun intended), so how is it past mid July already? Not like the year has been that eventful, Ok…. apart from the fact that President Buhari from every indication is trying to secure a British passport and rule Nigeria from the diaspora. Read More

UNCLAD BEAUTY

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Trapped within the four walls
of this notepad,
I wouldn’t leave If I could
yes, it’s so bad..
that I count reflections
like pages of a book
trying to phantom thoughts
but in actual words
I see her image and I scream
fashion ROCKS!..Valleys and plains
How clearly, can we hardly explain

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ONE GOOD READ . . .

2016 has been as remarkable as it comes; Donald Trump is president elect of the United States. . . Our Naira is skydiving without a parachute; Leicester won the premier league and yet I still couldn’t hit a 12-blog post for the year.  I think it has something to do with the ongoing recession, though I really don’t know how that affects my writing or creativity but for the sake of an excuse, there’s one!

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MUCH ADO ABOUT TIME!

Happy new month, happy new year, happy new week, happy . . . . . which ever comes first!

‘Time’ and myself don’t go too well like smiles and lime, Vic O’ and rhymes, Sunshine and nights. So i guess talking about time would be highly unworthy of me and inappropriate like selling a winter jacket in Abuja under the hot sun.   Nevertheless, I still took some time out to write the few things I have learnt about time to share with you, that’s if you have time!

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WEDDING GOWN (TO BUY OR RENT?)..

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You know how they say when you wear a cloth inside out or have itchy palms means money is coming your way? Well, I burnt my lunch TWICE today while editing this post and I’m sure there must be a sort of divine implication associated to this, otherwise i’ll just be stuffing my stomach with some burnt offerings for nothing. Anyways, this paragraph is completely unrelated to this post lol

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