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Change begins with all of us – by Joe Igbokwe

The impression I get when I speak to friends or read their write-ups is that Buhari is abdicating his responsibility to bring the desired change he promised

The ‘CHANGE BEGINS WITH ME’ campaigns kickstarted by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari is being misunderstood as if the President is shifting the Change he promised to the doorsteps of Nigerians.

The impression I get when I speak to friends or read their write-ups is that President Buhari is abdicating in his responsibility to bring the desired change his promised the people of Nigeria. 

They say that the ‘CHANGE BEGINS WITH ME’ campaign is an attempt to divert the attention of Nigerians from the real issues. 

They claim that the President is blaming them for the economic crisis they never created in the first place. 

They are of the opinion that President Buhari should bring the change he promised.

Those who know better tell us that change will not come if we continue to wait for other people. 

The tell us that change will elude us if we continue to procrastinate and continue to shift it to some other time. 

They tell us that we are the ones we have been waiting for. They tell us that we are change we desire, the change we seek and the change we want. 

Now why am I saying this? What point am I trying to make? What do I want to achieve? 

As a father, as an activist, as a leader ,and  as an elder I have seen it all in Nigeria. 

I have seen why things seem to remain the same even when we try to move forward. 

I have seen why Nigeria is not working. 

I have seen why we seem to remain the same when other countries are moving forward. 

I have concluded that even you brought all the money in the world to Nigeria we may not make it because we need attitudinal change. 

We need to change our character. 

We need to change our mindset. 

We need to love this country and work for it to bring the desired change we all need.

I have been diligently following the recovery of public funds from certain individuals like Service Chiefs, politicians, business men, contractors, civil servants etc.

I have been asking why we steal what we do not need, while we steal and steal and will not say enough is enough, and why we steal for ourselves, for our children, for grandchildren, for our great grandchildren and even generations yet unborn. 

I am told that “our foreign exchange reserves plummeted from $62bn in 2008 to $30bn by 2015, at a time when oil prices were at a historic high, reaching a level of $114 per barrel in 2014.

By comparison, Indonesia, another oil producing economy with a high population, increased its reserves from $60 billion in 2008 to $120 billion in 2015″ about the same time. 

Now who is to blame? 

You blame the government, the rats in NNPC, the rats in the MDAs, the rats in the Budget office, their cronies and associates, their hangers on etc. 

They are all Nigerians.

A Professor from the University of Lagos once took a weighing machine to the markets in Lagos to verify the claims of Nigerian Manufactures concerning the weight of their products. 

None of the products passed the simple test. The products weighed below what was written on the labels. 

Now who is to blame?

Fathers and Mothers who pay for their children to go to special centers to write their examinations are not government officials. 

Special Centers are where students go to be helped to pass their exams. 

The criminal organizers of the scam buy the question papers from WAEC Officials and get experts to provide answers which they now handover to these students at special centers. 

What about some Medical Doctors who run baby factories where underaged girls are lured with say N50,000 to get pregnant and when the babies are delivered these Doctors and their collaborators sell the babies to would be buyers ranging from N500,000 to N1,000,000? 

Are they not ordinary Nigerians citizens? 

What about the Lawyers and Judges Including the well-respected SANs who run from one court to another to defend those who looted the nation to bones?

What about the ordinary Nigerians who connive with government officials to defraud government and sabotage the system?  

What about our contractors who collect money for projects and use it to buy more cars and marry more wives? 

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