Archive for December, 2007

vote of no confidence on health?

December 22, 2007


It is said that Health is Wealth. It is no longer news that many Nigerian doctors and nurses are abroad where they have better welfare. I would rather say that much of our best brains in the health sector are outside the shores of this nation because we did not value or pay the needed attention to the health sector. If it is true that health is wealth, then it means that some of our wealth are outside. The main issue is that we are all focused on pursuing and getting wealth but give little or no attention to health. It must be noted that, “He who puts health behind pursuing wealth might get wealth and leave it behind for his enemies”.

One thing that is regrettable is that many people died under avoidable circumstances in this nation. The state of the health institutions across the country is also worrisome. It is only when a prominent citizen dies in any of our health centers that official attention is given. Coach Yemi Tella was admitted in LUTH before he died. It was the visit of the generous and focused governor of Lagos State that brought into public notice the number of life saving machines available. The governor thereafter donated one machine to the hospital, which was supposed to be taken care of by the Federal Government. We know it was not long they painted some buildings at LUTH in the name of giving it a facelift. Who was deceiving who with all these politics?

During the crisis that rocked the House of Reps, they lost a member before the National Hospital Abuja medical personnels could salvage the situation. How well equipped is the National Hospital? If the National Hospital is well equipped as being portrayed, why the foreign medical checkups by those in the corridors of power? The present president had to be flown abroad in the course of his campaigns before the elections for medical checkup. If the National Hospital is up-to-date with state of the art equipments and well-trained medical personnels, why did the Obasanjo administration and the PDP campaign chieftains opt for Germany for his medical checkup? Most of the past public officers standing for various trials had at one time of the other been flown abroad for treatment or medical checkup. Why fly them abroad if the ‘National Hospital’ can boast of what we are told it has in operation.

We claim we are the giant of Africa. But our public officers even go to South Africa and some African countries for medical treatment. A good number of our elder statesmen had all died abroad, the recent one being Chief Sunday Awoniyi. It all shows we don’t have good health institutions around town owing to lip service and politicizing of the funding of the health sector. As the ‘giant’ of Africa, other African nations are supposed to be looking up to us, but the contrary is true because our doctors and nurses are in those places in search of greener pastures. If we are the giant of Africa, may be a sleeping giant. How many functional General Hospitals or University Teaching Hospitals can we boast of? Only a few private hospitals can boast of having some medical personnel or equipments needed for certain operations. But how many people can afford their services?

I did a research and found out that we prefer spending money for burial ceremonies and parties than taking good care of sick people. Both individually and in corporate governance the case is the same. When a relation or staff is injured or sick, little or no attention is given to their ailment. But upon their demise, hundreds of thousand or millions of Naira is set aside to give them “Befitting Burial” Why prefer “Befitting Burial” to good health institutions and putting things right? Something is wrong with our orientation as a people. Why prefer “Befitting Burial” when those people still have one or two things to contribute if they are saved?

It is not only when a leader is not performing that a formal vote of no confidence is cast. When a sector of the polity is not performing the same can be done. This is the time for us to do it in the health sector. Even if the Senate committee on health or the health committee in the House of Reps is not saying anything it is the time for us as a people to say something. We can stop the waste of resources by the men and women in the corridors of power. Let us take a bill to the Upper and Lower Houses to stop medical checkups abroad. If a bill is passed to that effect, may be they will look into the state of our health institutions. They are not talking about it because they can always use the state funds to travel abroad for treatment when the people they say they represent cannot afford such luxury.

Vote of No Confidence on health? YES. And the time is now. It is good that the ‘Servant Leader’ said he will declare state of emergency on energy. But he should also consider declaring that state of emergency on health sector because if there were good hospitals and personnel good enough to be called ‘good’ he would not had been flown to Germany while he was rounding up his campaigns before the elections that brought him to power. The health sector needs urgent attention to save us the resources taken to other lands in the name of medical checkups abroad. God bless Nigeria!


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the spirit of the season

December 22, 2007


It is very true that when purpose is not known, abuse is inevitable. We are used to hearing about drug abuse, child abuse, abuse of power but certainly not abuse of seasons. It is known that there is time and season for everything under heaven. Many of us have witnessed marriage ceremonies at one time or the other. You may have witnessed one done the traditional way, at the registry or in the church. Too often, the pageantry of the marriage ceremony overshadows the magnitude of the commitment. The celebration that is attached to either the Ramadan celebration by the Islamic communities or the Easter and Christmas celebration by the Christians always overshadows the significance of these periods. You will surely discover that many are celebrating but don’t actually know why they are doing so. The question everyone celebrating must answer is, WHAT IS THE REASON FOR THE SEASON?

Before elections, we usually see all manner of campaigns. We also witness all manner of character assassination by the political power players. It is also not devoid of murders, riots, and political violence during rallies and assassination of political opponents. It is also a period when you see all manners of posters, billboards of aspirants and different commercials in the media. Every aspirant and their party base are selling their ideas and visions to the populace. We all see it as the spirit of the season because every other thing is affected by it. People have the perception also that money flows with the spirit of election. Everything is affected by this spirit. Too often the colours and pageantry of these campaigns overshadows the magnitude of the commitment for service delivery as expected from the aspirants. It can then be said that the spirit of the season often overrides the actual significance.

The Ramadan period is a significant period for those of the Islamic faith. Like any other Islamic period it is meant to remind its faithful of some things. It is seen as a solemn period. But if you take a closer look at the way and manner the celebration proceeding it is done, you will discover that the celebration outweighs or overshadows the significance of the Ramadan and any other Islamic season. It is evident that the people seem not to know the reason for the season.

All over the world, the celebration of Christmas takes different shapes and attitudes. It is not seen as an exclusive celebration for the Christian communities. Corporate, public and private buildings are adorned with Christmas lights, trees and Santa Claus images. Retail shops stock their shops in preparation for the expected rush of the season. Houses are painted, renovated and put in beautiful conditions. Children are full of expectations from their parents. Parents are under undue pressure. Companies give out hampers and cards to their customers. There are Father Christmas shows everywhere. The entertainment worlds are at their best with different carnivals and shows before and after Christmas.

There is a spirit behind this season that overshadows the real significance. Research has proven that most people spend more on the month of December than the whole eleven months put together. It is also proven that there are more accidents and violence during the yuletide. People take to different crimes in order to have what to impress with. Many are under pressure to complete their project before Christmas. Many people get killed during this period. Many are under pressure to travel home to see their relations. Many lose their minds and confidence if they have nothing to impress with.

It is a season of shows; people want to give the impression that they have arrived. It is a season for everybody: native doctors, armed robbers, occult men, pickpockets, fraudsters and all manners of evil and illicit business. Many spend all they got throughout the year in the month of December and start all over again to struggle in January. Many see it as a period to show their communities their wealth, cars, houses and take chieftaincy titles. Many are also poisoned or inflicted with diseases and sicknesses during this period. It is now a season for all forms of atrocities by men of the underworld.

But the question is, ARE THESE THE REASON FOR THE SEASON? Certainly No. The reason for the season has been relegated to the background. The wrong things are being celebrated because the wrong spirit is in operation. That spirit is called X-MAS. The spirit of X-MAS is very different from the spirit of Christmas. The spirit of X-MAS gives birth to undue pressure, violence, wasteful and extravagant expenditure and all manner of evil. It is devoid of the spirit of Christ. X-MAS is not celebrated in the right spirit and atmosphere. X-MAS is not Christmas. It is a spirit from the pit of hell coming to remove Christ as the focus of the celebration. Jesus Christ is the reason for the season. Don’t celebrate wrongly; you must know why you are celebration and what you are celebrating too.

It is evaluation time. Sit down and check whether you have been part of the bandwagon that are trying tirelessly to remove the ‘Christ’ in the Christmas and replacing Santa Claus in the place of Christ without knowing it. Check and know the spirit that is in operation in your life and family this season; whether it is the spirit of X-MAS or the spirit of Christ.

Don’t let celebration overshadow the significance or reason for the season. Stay blessed as you check yourself out.

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December 4, 2007


We all come from different backgrounds and raised with different orientations. Inspite of our cultural differences, it is obvious that whenever someone says or does something offensive it is considered an insult. When we were much younger, we dared not say some things to our elderly ones without receiving rebukes or beatings. Even when the elderly ones did the wrong stuff, we dared not say a word to even correct them. I have been part of different meetings and gathering of different minds. Most of the comments from the younger generation are considered as insult by the older generation. A young man was recently shouted down in a meeting by the older generation when he pointed out the bad seeds of the old generation, and said that they failed the new generation by setting bad precedence. It was considered an insult by the elders around. And I had to ask, WHAT IS AN INSULT?

I agree that some words are offensive but not all offensive words are insults. I consider it an insult when they are degrading words devoid of facts and meant to malign people. Most facts are offensive and must be said by someone old or young and should not be considered as insult. Many people are not bold or man enough to face or hear about the consequences of their actions especially political office holders. They believe that anyone that is bold enough to confront them about their wrong doings is a detractor set to malign their person. It is now somehow difficult to pick out detractors and people who are stating obvious facts in the polity.

I do not know what you do consider as being an insult. But there are certain things I do consider as insults. I know that all the many millions of Nigerians may not be educated but they are not fools. Many public office holders have taken Nigerians as fools and that informs the way they go about serving themselves and not the people. Many of them got to the office as average Nigerians and leave as super rich people. How much were their salaries? The next moment, you see the same people airing their opinions on corruption as good servants of the polity. A clear case of blackboard calling charcoal black. Their salaries and all the estacodes put together would not have gotten them anywhere near where their ill-gotten wealth did. They still go about speaking against corruption while they were part of the rot in the system. Their ability to still come out to address people on corruption is an insult to us as a people.

You can deceive some people sometimes, but cannot deceive all the people all the time. Politicians are not aware that most times all their antics are well noted in and out of office. Many of them employ the services of smart aides to launder their dainted image. Some journalists are also bought over to do the cleaning job through their media. I consider it an insult when a political aide wakes up one morning and begins to push down an obviously falsified issue down our throat. The political aides confuse themselves thinking Nigerians are fooled in the process. The political aides that spoke highly of their masters should be called to answer some questions now that most of their masters have gone into political oblivion. The last administration was full of saints. But the recent Siemens scam of millions of Euros is a pointer they were no saints. The revocation of plots of land in Abuja was another eye opener to the numerous flaws of the last administration which never saw anything wrong about itself.

The last general elections were described by both local and foreign observers as charade. But INEC and PDP said they were free and fair. What an insult to this great nation full of great minds! The Election Petitions Tribunals had shown the saints and sinners in some of their decisions. The judiciary is helping take care of some of the insults we have received as a nation from this cabal at the helm of many institutions. Most of them who claim to have the people’s mandate have been booted out. Who do embattled politicians run to? Do they run to the electorate or to their godfathers? They run to the ‘Fathers’ and godfathers who installed them through the back door against the will of the electorate. If free and fair elections are what Prof. Iwu and his cohorts called the last elections, they should be given permanent beds in a private ward in the psychiatric hospital.

We have received enough insults from these people who claim they are in the corridors of power to serve while they are there to be served. The recent budget presentation should offer us the opportunity to see how much it takes to run the government. Should the budget of the Senate with few men be more or equal to that of the House of Reps with more men? Are they being realistic? Do they consider the average Nigerian? Enough of these insults. What is insult? These are insults!

P. O. BOX 17985, IKEJA – LAGOS.
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