This is one single story common to all Nigerians. Okay. Maybe not all. Say 90%. Every tribe is so against the other. First it was a North/South, South/North divide. Now it has crept into states. Not exactly. It has always been there just not as pronounced as now.
These elections have just brought to fore the many issues affecting us in Nigeria and chief among them is what tribe you are from. It used to be as regards marriages before but now it has swept through almost all aspects of our lives.
Take Delta state. The Ijaw youths go to see their leaders. One of them publicly says they would vote the current Governor because it is “their turn” and they must use their FULL eight years in power. Not because of what he did in his first term or what plans he has if elected again. Just because he is one of them.
Or Oyo state where it is a battle of the Ibadans against the Oke Oguns. Ogun state? The Yewas believe it is their turn after all the Ijebus, Egbas and another tribe (I can’t recall the name) have all ruled the state. So now it is their turn. Or some years back when the Ijeshas were angry one of them wasn’t the Governor. I don’t know what obtains in the North as regards their states but it seems it is only Lagos down South without the issue of it is a tribe within the state that should rule.
Every tribe believes it is their turn to rule not caring whether the person from their tribe is actually competent and capable. Whether when he or she gets there, things would change for the better in that state.
This mentality is part of what has led us to this state in this country and it doesn’t seem like it is going to stop anytime soon. And nobody seems to be bothered. We see cases like Oyo and Ogun where two of the candidates are from the same tribe. It has gone as far as elders endorsing one and asking the other to step down. You should see newspapers. Accusations and counters. It is now a battle of who can whip up tribal sentiments the most. At least win over their “tribe”; their people.
I wonder how long we are going to allow this he is my tribe, she is my person make us choose the wrong people to lead us. It is killing us and we keep turning a blind eye to it. How long are we going to do this? Even if not for ourselves, let’s do it right for the next generation. We complain that our parents generation has messed us up. Yet when we have the chance to make it right, we do the same thing they did…..
The day we start to vote for people not because of where they are from but based on what they can offer, that is when we would move forward in this country. Till then, we get just the leaders we deserve… and we are so not going to move forward.