Buhari. Photo: TWITTER/NIGERIAGOV
Sir: I refer to Edwin Madunagu’s opinion piece with the above title published in The Guardian of July 21, 2020. Every deep thinker would appreciate his writing style and dispatch on this platform because only the deep calls forth the deep. I aspire to be among some of the deep thinkers but many things distract me but I appreciate the piece and I hereby submit some questions to Madunagu.
Do Nigerians know what it means to be ‘‘leftist,’’ and ‘‘rightist’’ in politics? Or which political party is leftist? Is civil societies in Nigeria free from international interference, don’t some people see activism as a job, it appears that some activists shout louder for its sake to get the attention of members of the international community? Do governments believe that dialogue is thought which is not absolute and final and become open to exchange of ideas especially in a country where dissenting views are treated with hostility and some people have been helped to the other world? Isn’t it the duty of political parties by their actions to let Nigerians know which party is for the left and right? Even though citizens know what government should do for them, do governments of Nigeria peopled by many Johnny’s-come-lately in government care squat about citizens’ welfare, a leftist mantra?
an a leftist promote causes for taxation to redistribute wealth in Nigeria with no industry employing thousands save for the civil service, a leftist mantra? Do we believe in equality in Nigeria, a country where the girl-child is treated as a social leper, worse in northern Nigeria? Are there government ambulances around me to ferry me to hospital in case of emergency at no cost to me? Do people who are unemployed have allowance by government to cushion the effect of unemployment, a leftist mantra, so how can activism work sir in a country where half of the populations are hungry?
See how people jump from one party to another. I wonder what they will tell their children what the meaning of ideology is. Does it appear that ours is society full of people whose actions tilt to the right than to the left, all they care about is shortchanging people, nicking public assets and they call it survival of the fittest? Is it probable to conclude that there is no party in Nigeria with leftists views because all of the parties that I see only believe in looking out for their members and not the country?
Sir, can Nigeria get to the level where we can say hand-on-heart that there is a party of the left that means well for the teeming poor? Is it possible to start up public debates on every issue without police permit?
• Simon Abah wrote from Abuja.