Nigeria decides: Change or Progress

About a month ago, I learnt Nigerians are expected to use either ‘change or progress’ cautiously in  conversations depending on the event present otherwise one might get in trouble for supporting the ‘wrong’ person.

‘Change’ included in politics conversations usually means one is a supporter of ex military head of state Muhammadu Buhari while ‘progress’ in the same context means support for incumbent President Jonathan Goodluck.

Very kind of President Obama for his youtube moral support messageI do hope my people would take time out to listen to the message and reflect on it.

Below is a clip of our President Jonathan that I love to watch. This was his first time meeting President Obama and long before the Chibok girls were kidnapped.

I just so much love hearing GEJ talking especially when there is no script.  The juicy bits start from 5:30. Enjoy.

Categories: Humour, Nigeria

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33 replies

  1. President Jonathan’s pitch was poor. He repeated a lot of what President Obama said, thereby wasting time.

    Nigeria is not the lynch pin regarding security in West Africa, not to mention Africa in general. This whole Boko Haram thing, has exposed security for Nigerians in Nigeria is not a priority. Countries that Nigerians previously used to ‘dis (respect)’ are now helping Nigeria in putting a stop to the activities of Boko Haram. Nigerians liked to ‘dis’ Tchad, Niger and Cameroon, now these same so-called ‘small countries’ are saving Nigerians from certain death.

    Africa’s share of the World Trade has declined.
    (Move the slide-bar, and you will see what I mean. It may have revived a lttle since 2004, but nevertheless, the trend is poor (ie Africa is under-performing).

    Why must all Nigerian leaders keep on going on about Nigeria being the greatest number of blacks in the world (especially where the standard of living is one of the worst in the world, that does a disservice to all black people. It incorrectly portrays Nigeria as the best that blacks can do, which is definitely not the case). No one outside of Africa, views race as a key ingredient to use for investment or any other criteria for positive human development (are we not all born equal?). It is only in recent decades that the negative view of blacks is slowly starting to improve. I’ve never heard President Xi of China, say ‘China has the greatest concentration of Chinese in the World’, or President Modi of India say ‘India has the greatest concentration of Indians in the World’, so why must Nigerian presidents bring such outdated and irrelevant views to the world stage?

    What African leaders must realise they can no longer remain infantalised. You can’t say you’re the second biggest economy in Africa being a key player in terms of economy and military strength and in the same breath, ask President Obama to ‘fix Africa and fix Nigeria’. In case people hadn’t realised there are many other problems occuring in the world, and if Africa’s leaders think they can keep repeating the same mistakes of previous generations and expect the World to put ‘Africa’s house in order’, they are sadly mistaken. Outsiders (may help), but the serious ground work has to be done by the people and their leaders. Foreigners will not lead you to a better tomorrow.

    Nigeria should stop relying on improved prices for commodities, and really take education and the knowledge economy seriouosly, like South Korea and India. Then a more sustainable high income can be obtained, rather than the yo-yo price for crude oil. When that complacency has been cast off, then things will start to improved in an improved manner.

    Jonathan talked sweetly about institution building, everyone knows full well what that is. Yet, we have seen institutions in Nigeria that are not respectable or credible, otherwise why are elections always surrounded by malpractices and controversy?

    President Jonathan maybe a Nigerian PhD holder, but Obama towered above him, in his conduct, knowledge, speech and relevance to the topic. Next time Nigeria, please choose wisely.

    As for President Jonathan’s hat, all I will say is that it is better than that of the president of South Sudan (Salva Kir), with his Texan style hat. President Jonathan is adequately dressed, at least he wasn’t wearing a suit.

    @ YasNiger, I just laughed when you expressed your disapproval with his hat. The Hausa one is very smart granted, but the Ijaw one is also respectable (though possibly not indigenous).

    Thank you FK.

    Liked by 1 person

    • jco, thanks for the link.

      To high extent Africa’s share of global exports / manufacturing is still very low and even for everyday goods within Africa, we now rely on Asia for supplies. Take textile for example, northern Nigeria textile firms have (most if not all) closed down, one because of lack of stable electricity and generator too expensive to make any business sense, nowadays because Chinese factories could produce cheaper similar products and readily available so Nigerians would prefer to travel to China for products solely produced for Nigeria/African markets.

      On GEJ speech, I actually thought the reason GEJ was going on about the embarrassing ramblings was that a list of few facts must have been written somewhere for him and for some reason, he was repeating it to confirm to himself because he is living up to his name – Clueless… yes, you are right we can not remain infantilised for ever.

      We have no where to hide given the globalised world, we must choose wisely this time around…


      • President Obama has faced challenges which he has managed to deal with , for instance Obamacare, which has been strongly resisted, he was attacked for his mishandling of the economy (which is now doing better), he was responsible for the death of Osama Bin Laden, he single-handedly saved Liberia from ebola.
        President Jonathan by contrast caved in with regard to removing the fuel subsidy. He is unwilling/unable to deal with Boko Haram, oil bunkering (smuggling), corruption, the list goes on …. The major issues which deserve attention he skirts round them, he has tinkered with reforming the power sector whilst not really addressing the issue. He talked a lot about making small grants available to graduates. This is welcome by the recipients, but this is a ‘drop in the ocean’ of unemployment and under-employment. The major employment generators and benefits that can be made to the economy can be found in infrastructure projects, this is what the US , Japan and Brazil have have adopted, and many other countries. He should have more understanding than to allow the Chinese to ship in their workers in when Nigerians can do many of those jobs, but he is weak. If Chinese supervision/expertise is required ok, but many of the jobs should go to the locals that should have been a condition.
        Any nation that rests on its laurels like Nigeria and depends heavily on the imporation for the majority of goods it needs will never rise, it will only sink. So the temporary profile President Jonathan is talking of will fade away because of failure by him and his predecessors to address critical issues.

        The example you provided about the collapse of the clothing industry, is a case in point this smacks of gross mismanagement and corruption. The failure of the industry due to lack of power by a major energy producer would raise serious questions elsewhere. Hopefully, when a future administration decides to correct this, they will put structures in place that will at least curb the widespread abuse that led to the demise of the industry.

        Presidents can’t keep failing so woefully and keep asking/begging the world to ‘fix Africa, fix Nigeria’. I’ve never heard of President Zuma asking America to ‘fix South Africa’. It just doesn’t work like that. President Al-Sisi of Egypt has a myriad of problems, he doesn’t take to the airwaves and beg ‘America to fix Egypt’. Whoever advised President Jonathan did a terrible job, no doubt Nigerians will keep quiet at this major gaff.

        They have a saying “you can’t dress mutton as lamb”, meaning you can’t pretend to be a big player (in Africa) when acting and behaving like a spineless nobody.

        Liked by 1 person

        • See the reluctance to remove oil subsidy is an interesting one – the one that is guaranteed to keep ordinary Nigerians down and boast corruption forever. Many Nigerians don’t see this, we are not supposed to know enough to connect the dots. However, the reality is staring in our faces daily. The number of filling stations from small town to big cities has increased significantly, and the tankers on the road delivering illegally is there by roadsides for all to see.

          Now, citizens cry not to remove the subsidy but the reason GEJ did not remove it was not because of the cries, the real reason is because he was spineless and afraid that he would cut off the pot belly godfathers/mothers profiting from illegal oil deals.

          Without removing the subsidy, we have a long way to go. Why not remove it and put the money back into education/social amenities that will benefit the public – ordinary Nigerians would not see this as a better alternative until it is done. This is the job of a leader, he has all the resources to acquire knowledge.

          See, I don’t blame the advisers, not in the least. See a leader must be fit for purpose in the first place, the advisers job was to keep him/her in line with policies.

          The other day I was listening to Singapore first Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew addressing the public: While GEJ in 2013 wanted the world to ‘fix’ Nigeria for us, Lee Kuan Yew thirty years ago said “the world owed us nothing that if we didn’t… make self relevant to the world…” Basically taking responsibility rather than spoilt brat begging tactics…


          • FK your wisdom is legendary it has reached the shores of the UK.

            You are 100% correct about the very nature of the president. He must have the knowledge and courage to do what is right, and you’re right again he has all the tools to acquire that know how. I still maintain he was a fool to make that remark about ‘America fixing Africa and Nigeria’.

            I thought I was the only one seeing that the removal of the oil subsidy is a good thing, everyone else I saw was entirely against it.

            Don’t start me off about the death of the late Lee Kuan Yew (of Singapore). He may not have been democratic but look at what that man did for his nation. It is nothing short of a miracle. Singapore is what Lagos could have been like (it has the same climate). You can drink water in Singapore, no chance of being struck with illness, there is no malaria, there are no beggars, you can walk safely on the streets (I’ve been there). Nigeria by contrast is the entire opposite, we just don’t get what is required to move forwards. Nigeria is always making excuses, slavery, colonialism, ‘designed to fail…’ all sorts of rubbish rather than addressing matters head on.

            Lee Kuan Yew, said it “the World owes us nothing…”, this is the sentiment that is required to get one to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps. See Singaporeans do believe in God, but they haven’t gone overboard about it (contrast that to Nigerians). Imagine if Africans were like Singaporeans, what Africa and indeed Nigeria would be like… sigh. Even if Nigeria could only achieve 30% of what Singapore has that would be a huge step (though still falling short of it’s true potential).

            This begs the question,if someone like Lee Kuan Yew were running for the presidency would Nigerians even vote for him?

            Liked by 1 person

            • Not sure if you’ve read Paulo Coelho, the Brazilian author. I am currently reading his Alchemist, one of his quotes that I love was something that says when you look from afar, one tend to see clearly and perhaps wiser – something like that.

              Many Nigerians do not see the mess these guys make abroad, they are as wasteful as they are at home if not more and in order to keep the trend, you need a completely Clueless like GEJ who just nod along and only read his notes two minutes before important meetings.

              To answer your question, Nigeria will not willingly vote for our Lee Kuan Yew because that would mean closing lots of loop holes including high profile churches in the south at least however, we can still have him, but I really don’t know how.

              Completely agree with you of GEJ being a fool reciting his Nigeria the great nonsense. You can bet he has not read neither of Obama autobiographies before meeting him whereas one can be assured Obama has combed all information not only about GEJ but about Nigeria before meeting the guy.

              See what Jonathan did three years ago, got Nigerians to make lots of noise about keeping the fuel subsidy so they thought he listened to them…


              • Sista FK, I read the Alchemist something like 14 years ago, and didn’t quite understand it not to mention that I’ve forgotten lots of it. I should make time to revisit it. Many people have heaped praise upon it.

                If educational background is anything to go by the preparation involved in getting a BA from America, seems light years ahead of what is required to hold a PhD in Nigeria, as we can see by the performance of GEJ to President Obama.

                Your honest answer to my question left me somewhat dispondent about the future of Nigeria. As even if offered the chance to take the path to a better and secure future, despite it being difficult will lead to a better outcome, people will opt for the easier path where the outcome is many times worse. So people have allowed short-term ease to trump long term discomfort (that ultimately leads to a brighter future). Then where is the hope? This means Nigeria is a nation of 180 million who refuse to see the truth and take action, that means the only way is downhill.

                Thank you FK.

                Liked by 1 person

                • Where is the hope is really the question.
                  My people will always choose the easy way out hence the church influence in the south. When I see a govt who makes it part of the law to set the number of religious centres per square mile and the number of night vigils to a civilised & manageable one then I’ll breathe, change is here, hope is close by.

                  When I see state/fed funding going into private universities diverted to state/fed schools, then we all know hope is close by.

                  For now, w’ll wait and see.


  2. That ‘campaignish rant’ wasn’t directed at Obama alone, I guess. He was talking to all those many Nigerian critics that were hoping & praying that he fumbles & stumbles all over his words. Most of that sort don’t listen to his addresses and talk shows back home, you know. He knows they were watching. But it was a really good day for him.

    He didn’t appear so Clueless beside Obama after all.

    But must he wear that silly hat indoors too?
    Ijaw people need to revisit their traditional attire O!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha ha, Yas Common, the hat isn’t too bad o. I must confess that it was the gold chain on the outfit that used to bother me, but now I realise that was really because it wasn’t the custom in Yoruba. Now the real bother is the wearer of the outfit…LOL

      Ok, are we watching the same clip or am I just a cynic of GEJ: Here is the bits that I found embarrassing… 6:00 “for you to fix the world you must fix Africa, for you to fix Africa you must fix Nigeria…” Really? coming from the President? If we are asking the world to “fix” us, where do we stand? Wasting resources on religious pilgrimage/treating serious issues with “kids gloves”

      Liked by 1 person

      • Either way you choose to see it, it is a very fair remark. “For you to fix the world you must fix Africa, for you to fix Africa you must fix Nigeria.” (1) If he was directing in at the US, the self proclaimed police of the world & terrorist hunters of the entire universe, then it is couldn’t be better directed.
        (2) Listening to it again, GEJ might actually be just blowing his trumpet by pointing out ‘rather vaguely’ (very presidential of him) that he is helping to fix the world by fixing Africa, and by fixing Nigeria. The very best leaders talk like that, you know….LOL. They say ‘YOU for I’…. Use ‘WE or US for I’ …… always a collective first person. It makes it a lot easy to wriggle out of controversial statements, after making them.

        The gold chain is cool, the PJ like jacket is not so bad either, BUT those hats are really silly. There is nothing traditional about them abeg. Texan cowboys should sue him for copying them. Where is Bush when you need him?////

        Liked by 1 person

        • PJ jacket? I thought the hat is traditional to region? I have seeing guys wearing similar outfit.

          Seriously G Bush? He has done his bits already, the rest for other to deal with. Well, the old man is a painter now, reflecting on his eight years of leading America and the world.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Pajamas top; PJ…..LOL
            Yes, the hat has been turned into an Ijaw traditional attire over the past decades but its origin is most certainly Western American. I mean the traditional Yoruba & Hausa caps/hats are quite original in their design as indigenous to them, aren’t they?

            The Bush thing is an old joke, I read about. It has to do with how ‘Cow girls’ couldn’t just ease themselves anywhere in the open wild & had difficulties getting some privacy in the Texan desert…. Hence, ‘Where is a Bush when you need one?’ So when the terrorist hit the US embassy in Benghazi (Libya) & Obama didn’t act swiftly (according to his critics) the Republican Tea party goons kept saying; ‘Where is a Bush when you need one?’ …in this case ‘Where is the macho W Bush swift response instead of the Sissy Obama’s hide behind diplomacy approach’….. I used it because W Bush is Texan & it would have been funny if he met with GEJ & they both wore their Traditional hats..

            Heard about the painting George W Bush…. A Shrink must have recommended it as part of a treatment.

            Liked by 1 person

            • Ha, got ya! Learning daily.

              The paintings weren’t bad given how tough the previous years in office had been:
              I have a new respect for him (not that he needed one from anyone) but he was making the best of his time out of the WH.

              I wonder if any of our past leaders who are in many ways clearly worse than GW Bush would have any grace left in them to take the back bench so the citizens can breathe.

              Liked by 1 person

              • Of the perceived terrible past leaders…. Abacha is in Hell (God willing), IBB is waiting to join him (he is quite ill) and the yet to be established repentant GMB is having another go at the National Cake HQ……. LOL (I couldn’t resist that)

                But Shagari & Gowon stand out in that regard. Shagari farms strictly & Gowon is into charity & religious activities.

                Baba Iyabo is looking to keep influencing the next president…. Mumu

                Liked by 1 person

                • Glad both GEJ and GMB signed some ‘peace’ paperwork. I really hope that the guys used for the campaigns could sit down now to reflect on the past… you know I don’t believe the punishment of a terrible leader should be in heaven when the terrible deeds were done on earth.

                  Abacha’s family were still there enjoying every bits of their fathers loots, rumour had it that the son wanted to be governor? See heaven would not do this for us – no consequences, no reason to behave differently.

                  On IBB – Even everyday people have some form of sickness or the other, if one is lucky, you get the best treatment money could buy just as IBB is doing in the States, for most Nigerians, they will be dead meat by now. So being ill isn’t the punishment from God for what he did while in the office, that is just being unfortunate just like any other people in the world.

                  His punishment would have been to make him account for the loots and the murders of the innocent i.e Dele Giwa.

                  As for GMB – He didn’t have the rosy human rights record, who among our past leaders has? At least he wasn’t running about disguising as a gently soul when in fact he is green snake under green grass – This goes for GEJ

                  Baba Iyabo will continue to make himself relevant and probably run back to PDP in a few months because Nigerians only worship money. What the man did to the poultry business in the country was sad – just because of his teeny weeny small farms that can’t feed a state let alone the country imposed tariffs that is impossible for anyone to beat, the result? More corruption for the custom officers as Nigerians cross the borders to buy the same poultry Nigeria would not let in legally.

                  What a country!

                  Liked by 1 person

                  • Indeed Abacha’s Son ran for a Governorship ticket in the primaries in Kano but stepped down before the poll proper… He is an APC man. Abacha & GMB were buddies remember? PTF days.

                    You’re right about GMB not being a hypocrite. I wonder if that is worthy of praise, but time will tell. I just worry that in our (All of Us) desperation to get rid of the incompetence of GEJ & the blatant corruption of PDP, at any cost, we just might be jumping from the pan into the fire. I hope my gut feeling is wrong. But an ‘anything but this’ option never ends well.

                    IBB…. Have you ever watched someone die slowly over a long period? The torture
                    of the experience to the mind is gruesome. That can be twice as difficult for the conscience that is not at ease, believe me. Abacha got off easy.

                    Liked by 1 person

                    • Ha, death is a cheap option – I never liked that Abacha left that way. That’s why nothing has changed, hence his own offsprings feel no shame – death is too lenient for a wicked person.

                      They, all of our corrupt leaders regardless of tribe/religion are in each others circle of friends – one just stick with whomever agrees to cover the back for a while – See Femi Fani Kayode playing tick tack toe…

                      Not at all, GMB deserves no praise, Nigeria is still managed by the few so citizens take what it’s given, and among those two, we have to choose, I’d rather choose someone who can stand by what he does, at least we’ll know where to focus energy.

                      IBB life is perhaps still hanging on because of world class medical he’s receiving – if it was for ordinary citizen, he’d be long gone. if he’s terminally ill – nothing much can be done, that just proves he’s human.

                      His health condition has, in my opinion nothing to do with what he did as the head of state – two different case.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Thanks to both of you. It is always interesting to read your take on things.
                      To get your views on the past leaders.

                      I thought Shagari was blind, so I am suprised to hear that he is farming. Maybe he is a supervisor…

                      Liked by 2 people

                    • Thank you jco – it is inspiring to have you here…


                    • Thanks jco
                      Shagari still owns the farm nah….& it is a very active farm. LOL

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Suppose farming is therapeutic for the old guy, a much needed escape from Nig rat race of politics.

                      Liked by 1 person

  3. FK,leave our president alone o.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jona tried o. Did not know that he could speak English for that long without mixing it with pidgin or ijaw.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Naijamum common! The man has a PhD o. His spoken English to be honest doesn’t bother me, but him going on and on ‘educating’ Obama about Nigeria economy / asking the world to ‘fix’ Naija for us? That is embarrassing.

      Liked by 1 person

      • The so-called PhD IS seriously in doubt with the recent turn of events. But seriously why are you surprised at that, a typical Nigerian is subservient especially their leaders. Remember Abiola ran abroad for help during the June 12 saga, Buhari too recently went to the Uk when elections were postponed. They do not know the implication of the independence we got in 1960.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Agree on the PhD, the paper certificate is easy but to defend it is another wahala LOL. Oh well, Madam P has a honorary doctorate from South Korea – I keep asking myself, for what? LOL We are just something else.

          You are again right about the running abroad for advice on every imaginable challenges – shameful. I know re Buhari as if Nigeria isn’t big enough to find a restful space – impossible to keep up with my people’s news.
          Trust is completely lost, unless we found ways to restore this, we are in this mess for a little while to come…

          Liked by 1 person

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