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My Dear Citizens,

I should have done this a long time ago but maybe I was scared or maybe I thought that in time you would find your own way to resolve my many problems, problems you caused for me. Maybe I had too much faith in you. By any standard, I have been patient and after all this time, it’s my turn to do the talking.

Why have you forsaken me? Why have you stopped praying for me? Why do you not cower in shame when people talk about my problems but join in and ridicule a problem that is your fault not mine. Whenever I am struck with your man-made disasters, you feel sad for only a moment and the National news carries the story for only a moment before all is forgotten and everyone gets back to what they were doing without giving me a second thought. You never do anything with me in mind and even when you have had the opportunity to help me, you have held back, not wanting to be rock the boat or ruffle any feathers. You have made a mockery of my good name, making  it synonymous with inferior and cheap. You use phrases like ‘Nigerian Time’ and ‘Nigerian Factor’ even when speaking to foreigners, as if you have no relationship with me. The labour of heroes past have been in vain because you have not upheld my honour or glory. You have cut corners for selfish gain and connived amongst yourselves to destroy me. You have made my name feared by many nations, investors have all but lost interest in me and my children in diaspora never want to return.

When did terrorism become common practise? When did kidnappings take over my streets? With each act of cruelty against one another, I sink further and deeper into an abyss of no return. Who will console the woman whose husband rose early for work and did not return because life was sucked out too soon? Who will bring back the daughters who were stolen from me? They cried all the way to the trucks of their captors but no one heard them. They bang on the doors of their prisons but no one comes to their rescue. Who will bring me justice? Who will fight for me? Who will say enough! My name is famous all over the world not because of the innovations and creativity of my children but by their atrocities.

Who will help me?

Signed
Your Nigeria

***

It’s easy to forget or ignore what’s happening around us. It’s easy to get lost in routines, schedules and appointments. It’s easier still to just hear the news and do nothing. Every time I have heard of a bomb blast or trouble in any city in Nigeria, it saddened me for a while but I am ashamed to say that I have always moved on, moved on with the rat race that is life. I’ve just seen the YouTube video of Shekau’s message to the world. Shit just got real!

I can only imagine the sorrow of those that lost loved ones in the Nyanya bombings. I can only imagine the fear in the hearts of the girls kidnapped at Chibok. Martin Luther King Junior said ‘If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward’. I dare add that if you can’t crawl then blog and if you can’t blog then pray, but whatever limitations you have you have to do something. It’s our Nigeria!

My thoughts and prayers are with the families of the kidnapped girls. May the Good Lord grant our soldiers and the supporting marines the wisdom to #BringBackOurGirls

xoxo

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3 thoughts on “Open Letter…

  1. Quite evocative Adenike. You find that until we claim ownership, the idea of value eludes us. I firmly believe it is not to late for Nigerians to wake up to the fact that this country is ours and salvaging it is our responsibility. We must thus put aside religious, ethnic and other divisive biases and work together as one.

    It’s in the little things we think, say and do; because everything we see today, the bombings, Shekau, Boko Haram, chibok kidnapping, etc all started with a thought… one bad thought.

    It’s time to do the flip… flip the thought and replace it with one that’s true, fair, mutually beneficial and evolving goodwill and better friendships.

    “Flip Replacement Therapy”.

    Long live Nigeria.

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