Nigeria as a state has been a most irresponsible father. It has wasted the family’s fortunes on riotous living, whoring and drinks, partying and generally without a thought for the future…
I have in recent times grown a tad tired of reactions. I used to write in reaction to the trauma of my daily existence as a Nigerian. It was that I would write copiously about one trauma after the other, and I was like this for some years. Constantly in pains, and constantly pouring my tears onto my scripts.
This was to be a blurb. It indeed started life as one; but it could not be kept as one. You cannot be happy, if you are indeed a father, and a Nigerian. You cannot possibly be a happy man, if you are a Nigerian, and your sorrow must be deep and implacable, if you are indeed a father in the true sense of the word, and in any capacity. I ask that you open your minds, and I demand that you open up the “eyes of your mind”.
Psalm 127:4 is scriptural reference for the religious ones amongst you, but if you are as me, journey into the sayings of our ancestors to find the place of children in the hierarchy of priorities, for the African father: bi ina ba ku, a fi eru bo oju; bi ogede ba ku, a fi omo e ro’po! Omo ni ododo eye! Omo eni lo’la! The children are the future, and the reasons for our every exertions. Happy Father’s Day?
The Nigerian father, if he is still capable of the capacity for reflection, is not a happy man. If he lives in any of the cities and towns, he is not a happy camper at all. His economic outlook is depressed unless he is a member of the ruining crass. If he is a salary earner, he lives a precarious existence, and would probably be hypertensive or on his way to being. If he lives in the madhouse called Lagos, travels the legal average of 6-10 hours a day in traffic, he’s a living corpse.
The Nigerian father is paying more in annual school fees, on one child, than his parents ever paid on his own education in this same Nigeria, in his entire career as a student. He’s watching his best laid plans for his children’s education, being ruined by the economic genius of a man who has proven himself incapable of multiplying a herd of contraceptives popping cows and impotent bulls. Now he’s wondering if he’ll be able to afford Obasanjo’s university, or if it is Atiku’s own, that’ll accommodate his seeds. Happy Father’s Day?
What if bandits are to go visiting the school? He has to contemplate the fears of having his children kidnapped whilst away in school. He has to consider the evil flippancy with which the same government and state, that have failed spectacularly in their primary duties, have also sought to criminalize the payment of ransoms, by the discombobulated parents of the kidnapped children. Has anyone offered any succor to the parents whose children have been killed? Those whose children are still in captivity? Happy Father’s Day?
Professor Enitan Bababunmi it was, who used the Latin phrase to my hearing for the first time as part of a conversation with myself and a few other functionaries of the Students Union; “I am in a position, IN LOCO PARENTIS to you”. I could figure out the meaning in context, but it was not enough for me, and I took time to research the meaning and its etymology. There indeed are situations, where persons that are not biologically related to another, might be deemed to hold the responsibility of the father, or that of the person in authority. How has the country Nigeria, and its evil rulers, fared as fathers, in their positions in loco parentis, to the Nigerian peoples?
Nigeria as a state has been a most irresponsible father. It has wasted the family’s fortunes on riotous living, whoring and drinks, partying and generally without a thought for the future. The Nigerian state has now commenced with selling off the family heirlooms and choice properties, where the tenants are not moving out fast enough, it is deliberately setting the house on fire to get them to move out, and it is happy to lose the value of the house, and to be paid immediately for the carcass and the land.
Our president is the worst example of a father. Miscreants of all sorts enter his home unchallenged, and when he’s not shocked, he is deeply touched. He pays no attention, and he desires the lost and inglorious past for his favorite children, and the other children be damned, instead of the bright future that beckons. Our president would prefer to see us on camels and donkeys, but he’s obsessed with building iron horses to carry the oils of Niger, even whilst his own children are roaming the streets without classrooms to accommodate them, or teachers to teach. But then, “Baba ijo mo iye omo to bi”. The father of the multitude is well able to identify his own children, and even where he might have failed the Nigerian child, St’ Bubu has taken good care of his own.
I will not speak to the evil governors and the even more cretinous legislators at different levels. May God’s judgment be upon them and their seeds, even as they would dare to respond to greetings on this day that has been tagged Fathers Day. Let me let them know now; e ni je’re awon omo te n’fi owo aiye to! As God is in heaven, you shall weep over the seeds that you have watered with the tears and blood of innocent Nigerians. Write it down!
What is happy about this day, for the Nigerian father? I am a grateful father, and that is it; there’s nothing to celebrate about fatherhood in a country bereft of fathers.