As a Nigerian, I am deeply scandalised and consternated by the horrifying photos and videos emanating from the embarrassing and outrageous scenes of the now controversial Immigration Recruitment Exercise across various centers in the country. For once, I see my Nigerian citizenship as a stigma, a worthless thing that offers neither protection nor solace in times of tribulation. Reports indicates that hundreds of thousands of job seekers submitted themselves for the agency’s recruitment test with over sixty thousand writing the test in the FCT alone.
The Interior Minister, Abba Moro, is quoted to had said that about 520, 000 people registered for the recruitment exams, and that only 4,556 will be recruited at the end of the exercise based on the available vacancies. In the end, about 13 unemployed Nigerians died owing to stampedes in the FCT, Rivers and Niger States. The NIS charged each applicant 1000 naira in defiance of the resolution of the National Assembly baring governmental agencies from levying job applicants, thereby making and pocketing a whooping 520 million naira from poor job seekers. What other name can we give to this if not a scam?
If we had a sane, patriotic and responsible leader that have respect for the citizenry as a president, by now, he would have taken the following decisions:
1. Fired both the Interior Minister and the Comptroller General of NIS;
2. Address a world press conference containing the following:
a) Expression of shock at the death of job seeking Nigerians;
b) Constitution a Panel of Enquiry into the whole recruitment debacle;
c) Expression of condolence on behalf of the government and people of Nigeria to families and associates of the dead.
d) Declaration of three days of national mourning with flags lowered at half mask.
3) Offer sufficient compensation to families of the dead and order the immediate refund of the levy charged for the application.
But these are all mere wishes of an angry citizen who has stubbornly refused to accept the status quo and the so-called “reality” of a failing state. Instead of the above actions being taken which would have gone a long way to placate the citizens and heal the national wounds, all we see and hear is the atavistic impunity, egregious arrogance, primitive imbecility and utter idiocy of an insane and stupid Minister who rather than admit his gross failure in leadership and soberly tender his resignation blamed the innocent and deceased applicants for their death.
Nigeria is at the cross road of moral crisis and ethical destitution, we have lost every modicum of brotherhood and humaneness. Our sense of humanity is irredeemably lost, nothing moves us to exude compassion for the vulnerable, ours is a beastly society populated by not only gullible slaves in love with their chains but incorrigible fools whose obsession for primordial sentiments, ethnic chauvinism and religious bigotry is legendary. We are ruled by incurable thieves, rapists, gangsters and deadly monsters who are physically and spiritually debased. Our leaders are shameless demonic beings without any paucity of shame.
The Immigration exercise has exposed the mendacity of the kleptomaniac ruling elites who keep feeding credulous citizens with the deceit that things are getting better. It puts to shame the lying propensity of the clueless Jonathan presidency that is enmeshed in a nauseating cacophony of a so- called “Transformation Agenda”. This is a government whose Prime Minister claimed has created over a million jobs. Where are the beneficiaries of the much talked about SURE-P jobs serially boasted about by this government?. With the the terrifying crowds of job seekers that we saw, one can say that the days of the Cows of Bashan who are mindlessly feeding fat on our collective patrimony are numbered. It is a time bomb waiting to explode. We cannot pretend that all is well. Among the dead are pregnant women, may their blood and those of their unborn babies be upon the heads of those whose leadership failure resulted in that catastrophe. Amen.
For us the living, we owe a duty not only to the dead but to posterity to collectively insist on justice in this matter, we must put in abeyance our selective amnesia and commence mass action whose aim should be to put a dead kernel to the coffins of impunity, corruption and state sponsored murders in this country. We must now take the battle to the door post of the oppressive ruling class. We must fight or die. Social media vituperations will not usher the change we desire, therefore, let’s neglect our gadgets and pick up placards until justice prevails.
I therefore appeal to the Wole Soyinkas, Femi Falanas, Olisa Agbakobas, Tunde Bakares, Odumakins, Shehu Sanis, Bamidele Aturus, Abiodun Aremus, Jaye Gaskias, Fejiro Olivers, Victoria Ohaeris of this country to take the lead. The Civil Society, labour and students movement should come together and declare at least a one day national protest across the thirty states and the FCT. Our charter of demands must include the above enumerated course of action which President Goodluck Jonathan would have taken were he a responsible leader. To our fallen compatriots, they must not die in vain!. The time to act is now.
Inibehe Effiong is a Human Rights Activist and can be reached via firstname.lastname@example.org
He is on Facebook/Twitter.