History as we understand it is the story of past events in relation to human activities. This encompasses all aspects of human lives which include traditions, cultures, and religious beliefs. The history of Nigeria as a country unfortunately is hidden from most Nigerians, especially the younger generation, and this is attributable to amongst many other reasons, the removal of History as a subject for about 13 years from the curriculum until when it became a matter that generated controversy.
About 13 years after expunging History as a subject of study from the nation’s basic education curriculum, the Federal Government restored it in 2018, following observation that the removal had undermined the peace and cohesion as well as triggered mutual distrust among the many ethnic nationalities in the country thereby hindering national development. Its removal in the first place was questionable for it was like a deliberate attempt to hide some important truths from Nigerians, especially the younger generation. It is important to note that the most important aspect of the country’s history is its diversity.
To what extent this issue of diversity has affected the country, positively or negatively, had hitherto been a matter of speculation, but the development that is unfolding right now in the country, especially in the political sphere has made the answer cease from being far-fetched.
The different cultural and religious beliefs among the various tribes that make up Nigeria, especially the three major ethnic groups, namely, the Hausas, Yorubas, and the Igbos, as they relate to our present political realities have made it crystal clear that a country without a national ideology can only be together but cannot achieve progress and stability. This deficiency has affected the three major institutions of government, which are the executive, the legislature, and the judiciary.
Because of the backwardness of one ethnic group or the other in comparison with one or all of the others, especially in the area of education, has without gainsaying the fact, given birth to mediocrity and a total disregard for important leadership values such as character, capacity, and competence. The best indicator to buttress this assertion is in the question of why the northern part of Nigeria has produced both the military heads of state and the civilian presidents more than all the other ethnic groups and still remains under-developed in terms of infrastructure as well as vulnerable regarding insecurity, going by the frequency in the cases of terrorism and banditry.
This situation needs to be addressed for it is not permissible for one ethnic group to be a clog in the wheels of the development of others. Allowing this to continue, is to expect the country to be busy and not productive and to have its efforts towards progress and stability, end in a fiasco. This calls urgently for the convening of a national conference where the fraudulent 1999 constitution needs to be replaced and a discussion among the various groups that make up Nigeria on whether they are ready to continue as one indivisible entity or break up, be brought to the fore.
Furthermore, a wise American judge said in his wisdom that, “a good judge makes bad laws to be good, while a bad judge makes good laws to be bad.” It is instructive and from the admonition of Sir, Francis Bacon that, “Judges ought to remember, that their office is jus dicere, and not jus dare; to interpret law, and not to make law, or give law.” Going by the known fact which over a period of time has become an incontrovertible truth, the saying that a leopard cannot change its spots, Nigerians were not expecting anything more or less than the outcomes from the Supreme Court of Nigeria, which is the last arbiter to hear the appeal of the presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, the former vice-president of Nigeria and the presidential candidate of the Labour party, Mr. Peter Gregory Obi, in respect of their challenge of the earlier presidential election petition court’s affirmation of Bola Ahmed Tinubu as the winner of the February 25th, 2023, Presidential elections in Nigeria.
All the Justices with the lead judge, Honourable Justice John Okoro Inyang, only did what they were paid to do by affirming the judgment of the earlier court. The most interesting part of it was their refusal to admit the fresh documents of the Chicago State University deportation that support the submission of a forged Chicago State University diploma to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) by Mr. Bola Ahmed Tinubu. With that, realism prevailed over legalism, for it was not a case of admitting the documents and dismissing them for lack of merit or authenticity. They have only succeeded in moving the case of forgery against Bola Ahmed Tinubu from the court of law to the People’s Court of Nigeria (PCN).
“Let it never be forgotten by you that the reputation established by a boy at school and college, whether it be of merit or demerit, will follow him through life.” – Martha Washington
No matter how long or short it takes in life or in death, as long as Nigeria remains and because history does not die, Chief Bola Ahmed Tinubu will be remembered as the first Nigerian president who hijacked power from Nigerians in the most atrocious way, a man who is an ex-convict in regard to narcotics in the United States of America and who submitted a forged University certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to emerge the president and commander-in-chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. His action was not only an injury to the psyche of the younger generation of this country, it is a story that will be read by the generation yet unborn of Nigerians. It is important to state here also that both the Legislature and the Judicial arms of government in Nigeria have been reduced to shadows of themselves and can no longer command any respect from Nigerians.
Nigeria cannot be said to be in Democracy, for what we have right now is nothing other than a state capture where a civilian president uses the cohesive instrument of state which includes, the police, the DSS, and the armed forces of the country to remain in power against the will of the people. The Supreme Court of Nigeria, let it be known to those who care to hear, is not the Supreme God. Today, Thursday, October 26, 2023, will go down in the history of Nigeria as a day where darkness covers the land and gross darkness the people.
However, regardless of where we find ourselves today as Nigerians, we are enjoined to always make ideals clear to us and beware of them, even if there is no direct path to their realization. For where there are no ideals, there will be no hope whatsoever, then everything will be hopelessness, darkness, a blind alley. We are on a course and failure to continue in the pursuit of our goal of a new Nigeria is capable of bringing us under a curse and may God forbid.
On a final note, we should not forget who we are for not being mindful of our identity may make us vulnerable to those whose specialty is forgery. “So, we are all idealists. We are all visionaries. Let it not be said of this Atlantic generation that we left ideals and visions to the past, nor purpose and determination to our adversaries. We have come too far, we have sacrificed too much, to disdain the future now. And we shall ever remember what Goethe told us — that the “highest wisdom, the best that mankind ever knew” was the realization that “he only earns his freedom and existence who daily conquers them anew.” John F. Kennedy.
As we weep with our two eyes open for our beloved country, Nigeria, let us also see with them, a glorious and prosperous future. God bless Nigeria!
Samuel Tunji Adeyanju