Archive for May, 2008

are you in your city?

May 16, 2008

ARE YOU IN YOUR CITY?

 

We do know that somebody can be at a place and at the same time not be there. It’s either the person is absent minded or lost in deep thought. It’s interesting to note that when you’re absent minded or with somebody who is, your spirit or his is not there but the body is. At that stage, nothing important is achieved even in discussion because the mindset is at a different spot or location. Many of us are into jobs, business, fields, relationships, marriages, but are not really into them because our spirit are out of those places. Many people too are into many cities but are not really into them and so they are not making it. I want us to use this message to understand the word ‘city’ in terms of location and vocation or occupation.

 

The word ‘city’ from the Hebrew is ‘ayar’ meaning a place guarded by a watch or a fortified town. From the Greek it is ‘polis’ meaning a town protected with walls of greater or less size. Ordinarily, people see the city as a place that is well developed in terms of infrastructure and better opportunities than other towns. We know that cities have names. They are named after people, event or happenstance (1 KINGS 16:24). These names have a certain level of influence and effect on these cities. We do know also that many cities bear the names of gods and goddess. Most are dedicated to these gods and goddess, which in
turn maintain their influence on these cities (JEREMIAH 2: 28,JEREMIAH 11: 12-13). We do know also that cities have walls, bars and gates fortifying them (DEUTERONOMY 3:5, 2CHRONICLES 14: 6-7, 2CHRONICLES17: 2).

 

Every one of us has got a city. Many of us don’t know our city. The ones that do know may not be there right now. The Bible admonishes us in 1SAMUEL 8: 22,1 KINGS 22: 36 to make our way to our city. The Bible also shows us in DEUTERONOMY 6: 10 11, DEUTERONOMY 9: 1, DEUTERONOMY 6: 10-11,DEUTERONOMY 3: 18-20, that God expect us to go in and possess our cities. Many of us are in cities right now but are not making it
in spite of the opportunities. The Bible shows us in DEUTERONOMY 28: 3,16,that you are either blessed in the city or cursed in the city. Many have tried to make it but are in cursed cities (JOSHUA 6: 17,LEVITICUS 26: 25,31,33, JEREMIAH 13: 19, JEREMIAH 49: 13, JEREMIAH51: 43). Destruction comes when you are in the wrong city. (Jeremiah 48: 28, JEREMIAH 5: 4-6,2 KINGS 17: 23-26). The Bible declares that many are suffering and wearied because they don’t know the way to the city (ECCLESIANSTES 10: 15).

We do know that cities have walls, bars and gates. And you need to cross border gates to enter into cities. Are you sure you have entered your city? The Bible makes us to understand in PSALM 24: 7-10 that there are gates and everlasting doors that must be lifted before you can enter. Are you sure the gates and doors are not locked against you? You may be struggling inside a city and wouldn’t know you are locked out. The Israelites saw theirs and knew the walls and gate must give way before they gain access into the city (JOSHUA 6: 1-2,NUMBERS 13:27-28). Many are in well situated cities, position and offices,but are not making it(2 KINGS 2 :19-22).There is more to it than meets the eyes. The supernatural controls the natural. The supernatural is more real than the natural Many were born, or do live in cities with great demonic, occult, witchcraft and all sorts of negative influence. The spirits in charge of these cities influences these people. Some
turn to prostitution, incest, homosexual, lesbianism, alcoholism, smoking because of the influence of these spirits.

The Bible shows in DANIEL 10: 11-13,that the spirit pervading and prevailing where Daniel was, prevented or hindered Daniel from receiving answer to his prayers when he prayed. The Bible shows us in ACTS 17: 16,that a city can be given over wholly to demonic
influence. You cannot make it in any city if you are out of it spiritually. Many have ran away from their city to other cities. The devil’s plan is to make you run away from your city. Many have even sold their city and are now servants in their city (GENESIS 47:19-20, 25). The Bible shows in ACTS 14: 19-20 that you need to arise and come back to the city if you’ve been locked out or thrown out. If you’re already in any city you need to break the gate and doors spiritually so that you wouldn’t have to struggle with the natural to
make it. Don’t be deceived, spiritual influences are real because the supernatural is more real and controls the natural (1CORINTHIANS 2:15,2 CORINTHIANS 4: 18).

Many of us are doing the wrong courses in school, doing jobs or business but our spirits are not there. Many enter school to do some courses not because they love the courses or have a future with them but just to while away time or just have a degree. They subsequently enter the wrong jobs or business. That’s the more reason we have square pegs in round holes. But the Bible says excellence is obtained if you’re in your city (PROVERBS 18: 16). Many are struggling in life just because they are not in their vocation or location. Pressure can make people move into a city that is not theirs (1 SAMUEL 13: 6– 14). Many move into offices in the ministry that is not their calling because they desire to do what someone else is doing. Out of position is out of position. The grace to operate in that office will not be there when you are not in your field. Many are into wrong relationship or marriages today and are not enjoying them because they are not in their city. Pressure from parents or peer pressure, flashy cars, beauty, wealth, fame or names or affluence, moved them out of their city. You will find fulfillment when you’re in your city. If you are in a wrong city, every other thing got to be wrong. Don’t jump into what is unlike your city (1 SAMUEL 17: 38-40).

 

Beloved, I want you to know from all these that you can be at a place and equally be out of that place too. The supernatural is real and controls the natural. Stop struggling in the natural; enter the city spiritually by breaking the gates and doors that leads into it
spiritually. Don’t enter the wrong vocation, business, jobs, relationship
or marriages. You cannot make it in the wrong location. ARE YOU IN YOUR CITY? Stay blessed as you locate your city and remain there.    

 

ARINZE ALINNOR A.

P.O.BOX 17985,IKEJA, LAGOS.

08033001782, 01-8964893

http://www.arinze198.wordpress.com

 

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democracy without freedom?

May 16, 2008

DEMOCRACY WITHOUT FREEDOM?

 

 

Leadership without accountability can be called rulership, but democracy without freedom is certainly dictatorship. It is said that when the purpose of a thing is not known that abuse is inevitable. It looks like the purpose of power within a democratic setting over here is not known, and therefore abuse is unavoidable. Since 1999, many are of the opinion that democracy is being practiced in Nigeria. They may say so because they did not see people with military uniforms occupying public offices. But the ‘agbada politicians’ approach to issues in the polity shows that the ‘agbada’ is civilian like but the voice is military like.

 

 

Some times it looks like we are still using decrees left by the previous military administrations. During the military regimes, many human rights activists were left in detention and torture camps for expressing themselves. It was a crime of higher magnitude to express divergent opinions or even try criticizing the draconian policies adopted by erstwhile military dictators. Many social crusaders, activists and civil society groups were banned from holding seminars or demonstrate publicly. Many went into exile after several attempts to assassinate them failed. Many media houses were dealt with whenever they disseminated information that analyses or criticizes any policy handed down by the military government.

 

 

Are we really in a democratic setting? Has there been a change from the attitude of the military? I do not think so. During the military era, there was no access to information about most things because it was always considered a security secret. Trying to publish some information was considered a breach of security and subsequent clamp down on the media outfit or journalist. I thought all that had changed, but when the last administration clamped down on Mr. Gbenga Aruleba and others, I said that transition from the military era had not taken place. Many issues had shown in the recent past that the democracy the world was applauching Nigeria for had remained a dream or an illusion.

 

 

Corruption had been seen at different levels of governance. But the major impediment to arresting this ugly monster that is eating up the polity is inaccessibility of information concerning the running of state funds and resources. Corrupt public office holders had been pointing the way of detractors. But for the fact that we do not have access to all the information, we cannot really say whether all the allegations are not true or just the handiwork of detractors. Many public office holders became super rich suddenly. Their assets declarations are inaccessible which makes it very difficult for the average citizen to ascertain all their counter claims. Many are alleged to have awarded contracts to their own companies or transferred state funds to foreign accounts. But aside probe panels, the public cannot access most of these information, which makes the issues beclouded with controversies.

 

 

 

Can there be democracy without freedom? You may say no, but the answer in Nigeria is yes in reality. Nigerians had been without freedom of information since 1999, and you say we have democracy in place? The senate and the House of Reps are just representing themselves and the interest of their godfathers. If they are there representing the people, what had hindered them from passing the Freedom of Information Bill since inception? May be the bill needs ten years reading in order to be passed. Is it that they are afraid of being in public glare when the bill is passed? May be majority of the members of the upper and lower Houses do not know what the bill is all about. They have passed various bills that are not as important as the Freedom of Information Bill. Is it that they have not got their priorities right?

 

 

I believe that some people somewhere do not want that bill passed. The last administration and its bunch of legislators were too afraid to have the bill passed. May be for the fact that many Nigerians are hypertensive and may not recover from the shock if they get to know how much their legislators use to drink tea or sit to legislate. May be they don’t want the people to know how much goes into security votes alone for those at the top. We are told that events had overtaken the NDDC funds owed by the last administration. Where are the NDDC funds? We do not have access to the information but the states had been advised to go to court. Many are also wondering whether the bill pose a huge threat to misappropriation and alteration of figures that had been the order of the day. But the present day legislators should clear all these by passing the bill and stop keeping us wondering whether they were selected or elected. The time to pass that bill is now! We cannot be said to be practicing democracy without accountability and easy access to information. We cannot be said to have responsible leadership when there is no press freedom. The freedom of information bill and its passage is but a credibility test the present legislative arm and the executive must pass. There is no democracy without freedom of information. Nigerians are waiting oh!

 

 

 

 

ARINZE ALINNOR A.

 

P. O. BOX 17985, IKEJA – LAGOS.

08033001782, 01-8964893

arinze198@gmail.com

www.arinze198.wordpress.com

 

WHEN PARTY POLITICS IS DICTATORSHIP

May 5, 2008

 

WHEN PARTY POLITICS IS DICTATORSHIP

 

 

Many are of the opinion that dictatorship is experienced only under military regimes, where military dictators unleash draconian policies not minding the effect on the populace. Observers all over the world applauded Nigeria for moving from military to civilian rule in 1999. But some saw that transition as moving from military to civilian with military attitude. Many also believe that most of the wrongs or imposition of policies were as a result of the hangover from the many years of military presence in governance.

 

When political parties were being formed before the elections and transition in 1999, many thought it was the emergence of pure party politics. Many were expecting political parties where the views of the people would be respected after many years of imposition of views on the people by the military. But that was not to be. Many retired military officers pioneered the formation of the political parties. The presence of the retired officers sort of injected some blood of dictatorship into those parties. The views of the people were relegated to the background, and we saw the imposition of candidates on the people.

 

Electoral flaws had been blamed on the electoral body INEC charged with the responsibility to organize and conduct credible elections. Most people had not taken time to look at the dictatorship of the political parties and their contribution to the electoral failures. Party dictatorship cannot produce true democrats. Since party dictatorship cannot produce true democrats, credible elections might just remain a tall dream with the present party arrangements. Most party congresses and primaries had been characterized by assassinations, thuggery, brutal beatings, and bloodshed. How can these brutal organizations (political parties) produce democrats?

 

Dictatorship is about using power in an unreasonable way by telling people what to do and not listening to their views or wishes. The cases between Senator Ifeanyi Ararume and the PDP, and the one between Hon.Rotimi Amechi and the same PDP, are but a few examples of the dictatorship in the political parties. There are other cases in the other political parties about dictatorship and imposition of policies and candidates. None of the political parties are devoid of factions here and there. The root of these factions in most cases had been traced to dictatorship and undemocratic practices in those parties.

 

Former Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Godwin Kanu Agabi, also shared this view recently. Delivering a lecture at the third lecture series being organized by the Electoral Institute of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), titled “Election Tribunals and Future Elections in Nigeria”, the former Minister of Justice cast aspersions both on the Nigerian nation and her political class. He said that there is no single party in Nigeria that can claim that it is not a dictatorship. He said they cannot produce democrats because their methods are so rigid, so brutal, and there is so much bloodshed.

 

 

 

Political party dictatorship had made it possible for two people with divergent policies and views to vie for positions under the same party ticket. We have seen many internal wars and wrangling between the deputies and their bosses since 1999. Why would they fight each other if they had one vision from the onset? Either the deputy or the boss was imposed on the other by the political party and their godfathers. Many who were not even part of the party primaries had often picked the ticket to represent them ahead of those who started canvassing for the ticket from the onset. Many whose membership of their various parties were not up to six months turned flag bearers ahead of even foundation members; all because of this civilian dictatorship.

 

Can there be democracy without democrats? Your answer may be no, but over here the situation shows we are in a democratic dispensation without democrats. This civilian dictatorship has a deleterious effect on our “nascent” democracy. I describe it as nascent democracy because it is not democracy yet. Like Fela Anikulapo Kuti would say, it is just demonstration of our craziness. If you doubt this demonstration of our craziness, just visit any political party congress, or watch the television and see where “legislators” are legislating how to throw chairs and bunches having thrown caution to the winds. If it is not demonstration of our craziness why would people making laws be afraid of facing the law when it is alleged that they erred. We are yet to come to the level where peoples’ opinion would matter, be respected and their interest represented.

 

Is it true that we are a nation without virtues? It is time for political parties and the politicians to look beyond personal and party interest for emergence of true democrats. We are where we are because they have put party and personal interest above national interest. We are praying and hoping for the emergence of true democrats who would respect peoples’ opinions and allow the rule of law to prevail over their draconian policies. The political parties as they are right now cannot produce true democrats. They should shun this do or die syndrome they have adopted in their running of the affairs of the party and polity. When party politics is dictatorship, there are no democrats and there is no democracy but pure demonstration of our craziness. Nigeria needs true democrats and the time is now. Let the true democrats arise!

 

 

 

 

ARINZE ALINNOR A.

P. O. BOX 17985, IKEJA – LAGOS.

08033001782, 01-8964893

arinze198@gmail.com

www.arinze198.wordpress.com