Hi all, I have remained very silent on this ‘My Oga at the Top’ issue for some time now and my silence has been very deliberate. Of course, I have since taken a side and haven’t changed my opinion on the matter.
However, I will not discuss my opinion here. Rather, what I have decided to do is to publish three conflicting (short) articles on this developing matter.
I received three articles and would urge you to spare two or three minutes to read them both and then decide which side of the fence you would rather sit on from this point onwards.
THE FIRST ARTICLE
I am writing this article based on personal opinion and productive arguments with a couple of people with various views. Note: This is completely arguable. I tried to weigh this issue as much as possible and also put a conscious effort not to be biased. The issue of Nigerians and their negative or rather ironical attitude to various matters of national concerns cannot be overemphasized.
Now, considering the NSCDC ‘my oga at the top’ saga that went surprisingly viral. Making a song, producing shirts, mugs and other products were just strategies of some “sharp” fellows to earn more money knowing the level of ignorance and the things that interest some Nigerians who are soaked and wallowing in shallow and myopic views of things.
These are people who cannot differentiate between issues of great concern and trivial matters. It was not a surprise to me as I am very much aware of how unpatriotic many but few Nigerians are. Dragging the name of a senior officer and servant of federal government in the mud when he didn’t steal, defraud, kill or do any such thing as to deserve that demeaning act from the press and some citizens.
That to me was a case of misplaced priorities considering all the fingers pointing at the man from a mere mistake of not been able to state correctly his ministry’s website. I am positive that many other directors and “ogas at the top” do not know their institution’s website.
I think it was very unprofessional of the channels TV presenters to deliberately disgrace or publicize the errors of the official in that manner. I mean I am aware of the art of “probing” in journalism but this was far from it as it was written all over the faces of the presenters who had smiles and concealed laughter all over their faces making me come to the conclusion that it was a clear case of making something out of nothing. It is a matter to weep for, as basic issues of disturbance to the nation have not been trashed out on national TV.
Still on this matter, people who actually bring shame and disgrace to the country are celebrated on national TV, radio et cetera forgetting easily the reproach and negative impression they give the outside world about us as a nation. For example, a convicted senior citizen of Nigeria, a then governor who brought shame to the country on an international context was recently granted “Presidential pardon” and is still allowed to contest to be a Senator of the Federal republic.
This should not be so, I mean a man who disguised as a woman to escape jail term in the UK and return to Nigeria. To even be allowed to contest for a key political position is a shame on this administration Tand a show that we have clowns at hem of affairs in this country.
Not until we tackle this issues that matter the most, Nigeria has a long way to go. Nigeria is a blessed country and the youth are the future and the agents of change so we shouldn’t be blinded and carried away by issues of less importance by some irresponsible unpatriotic fellows. I pray that in no time, we would have progressed beyond the stagnant points our leaders are rallying round. God bless you all, God bless Nigeria.
By Damilola Ajibola (@ItzDamieAjibz)
THE SECOND ARTICLE
I now realize the country is exactly as it is because of We, the People. No one else! Not because of President Goodluck Jonathan; not because of politicians but because of we the People. We have no standards, no ethics, no guiding principles, be it religious or otherwise to guide us as to what/why/where/and how we want to live, to bring up our children. We were all subjected to that pitiful scene of "Oga on top" and as a people we gave it its just deserve by going viral with it to expose the high and confident level idiocy has reached in our land. And then what?
Now we the People have resorted to sending Blackberry messages around asking for pity and forgiveness for the man, after all we claim, he has a family. What utter bloody rubbish. He is a DISGRACE and should NOT have risen to such a position. We MUST put an end to celebrating incompetence. This is why our nation is failing. How did he get to that level in the first place? By lobbying and as he obviously demonstrated by his incessant sycophantic referral to his Boss as "my Oga at the top".
He should be ridiculed because he ridiculed himself and the nation as a whole. We, Nigerians deserve better than this. Come on people!
Do you know the number of Nigerians who are better qualified than this public official who brought shame upon himself? And then we wonder why our kids can't speak English, why we cannot compete in this ever shrinking world.
Surely we MUST take a position on issues, we MUST demand that standards set MUST be met. We cannot continue to move the goal posts and expect no consequence for this.
Stop this senseless pity for failure. He should have known the web address at the very least for God's sake. Is that too much to ask of a State Commandant? Was it too high a standard to set? Come on people!
THE THIRD ARTICLE
First of all, we must understand that the media all over the world is saddled with the responsibility of being the watchdog of the society; more or less ensuring that square pegs do not end up in round holes. We must also understand that there have also been cases where this power has been thoroughly abused.
When the presenters at Channels asked the public official to tell them the website of the agency, it became instantly glaring that he didn’t know the website.
At this point, he had two options; he could either swallow his pride and say that he didn’t know it but that he could get it to them later or celebrate his ignorance laced with blinding colours of pride on national television.
Unfortunately, he chose the latter but what he never anticipated was the price he would pay for his ignorance, pride and egocentric tendencies. In a flash, he became the object of ridicule; not just in Nigeria but all over the world as even Nigerians in the Diaspora were interested in the drama.
No one expects any man to know it all and by admitting that he didn’t know it, the official would have saved himself a lot of embarrassment.
Education has always remained key in our personal and national development and have you taken time to imagine this same public official representing you and millions of other Nigerians at an event organised by the United Nations? You and I would not be in attendance at such an event and the impression many would have of Nigeria and those who live in it would be that created by the public official in question.
A bad thing does not have any other name. So, my dear brothers and sisters, let us learn to take a more discerning look at issues like this.
Now that you have read these three articles, I’ll leave you to decide where you want to stand.
By Samod Biobaku
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