I am very sad over the state of my beloved nation Nigeria, especially when l look at the present degeneration and decay. An 80 years old Nigerian woman just won an American citizenship, and all her children and grand children organised a big party with a musical band on ground to celebrate the new American citizen. What a celebration indeed! I also listened to the experience of a young graduate lady who did her National Youth Service in one of government agencies. According to her, the bedrock of corruption is the civil service where you see five drivers attached to a vehicle, three staff doing one staff job; and where many offices has become a video room. She explained that some staffs have in their possession different receipts with different company names, hence they bid for contracts and later re-award them out. In a nation where civil servants are richer than business men and women, and where local politicians are richer than professors, and judges richer than a local government, corruption has become our currency. I wept over my nation when l saw the level of our degeneration, bleeding and inhuman treatment towards one another.
What exactly is amiss with Nigeria and Nigerians? The answer is that, the Nigerian church, the pillar and foundation of truth, the voice of the voiceless, beacon of hope and unity is degenerating and becoming worldly. The words of prophet Ezekiel provides a reflection for the church leaders in relation to our situation in Nigeria, ‘Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks? (Ezk 34:2). The major pillar of our foundation as nation – Education, religion and ethnicity and representative government that set us on the path of prosperity in the beginning have deteriorated and corrupted in alarming dimensions.
In the beginning, Nigeria public school raised and created a committed political class and elites that worked and walked for our independence. In the beginning, nobody heard about private schools, the few ones in existence then were regarded as fake schools. Today, the fake schools of yester-years are now the real schools while the public schools have collapsed, hence our present educational system has created a new political class that have come to steal and destroy (Jn 10:10). Most of the original universities have become ghost of themselves. In the beginning of our prosperity in Nigeria, l remember when my father was building his first house in Osu in the 70s, Ewekoro cement was the original cement, all others were fake, but today, the fake, including Dangote cement have become the original, and the original is now the fake. Our political class and elites have successfully created new generation that are ignorant enough to celebrate corruption, and religion without repentance.
Our political class and elites did not only stop in bastardisation of our educational system at their own corrupt advantage, they have invaded our religious communities. They have compromised what is supposed to be a sacred commitment to the slot for highest bidders. Churches and mosques are now embarking on projects that even ordinary members cannot finance or afford to send their wards. Religion that is supposed to be a means of peaceful coexistence as a nation with 50% Christian and 50% Muslim have become a source of war, disunity and political instrument.
The beauty of our ethnic diversity in the beginning of our prosperity as a nation have become a divisive instrument in the hand of our political class and elites among the masses. The newly created generation especially, our youth have been blinded to celebrate corrupt people just because they belong to the same ethnic group. In essence, ethnicity has become an instrument of corruption and hatred. In the beginning, our foundation was based on integrity, Christianity and politics was with a strong vision, good objective and goal oriented. Agriculture was our main source of prosperity, community welfare and well being. However, our political elites turned the discovery of oil to idolatry and source of greed in conjunction with international communities.
The church is now self centred and business oriented, ‘our democracies have broken the contract between the generations by heaping IOUs on our children and grandchildren … The rule of law has metamorphosed into the rule of lawyer,’ and judges. Law makers are now law breakers, judiciary have become ‘judisharing,’ Our self-made recession ‘is a powerful and polemical indictment of an era of corruption, negligence and complacency. Do we really have political party in Nigeria? APC is not a party. It is a movement of change, amalgamation of different ideologies (ACN, CPC among others). It is an inclusive action and it will take them a new selfless orientation to have a successful governance.
The current crisis and recession should not be seen as the end of a process, but as the impetus to a journey of change and repentance, where personal sacrifice and selfless ways of working are an imperative. According to Jeremiah 1:5 ‘Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou came forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.’ God ordained Nigeria and Nigerians for greatness unto the nations. It is therefore time to use our general anxiety to provide the energy for innovation, and force through better connections internally and externally. And above all it is a time for the church and our leaders to step forward and imbue their people with the courage to engage positively with the change. To navigate successfully over our complex times, every Nigerian benefit from a conscious awareness of their own motivations, thoughts and actions – ‘After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up: That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the Lord, who does all these things’ (Acts 15:16-17).
The Lord will surely build again Nigeria which is fallen down. God will set Nigeria up again in Jesus name.
 Achebe, Chinua, There was a Country: A Personal History of Biafra (London: Penguin Group, 2012), pp. 74-78
 Ferguson, Niall, The Great Degeneration: How Institutions Decay and Economies Die (London: Penguin Books, 2012), p. ip