After he overthrew Muhammadu Buhari, self styled military President, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida promised Nigerians that he would enthrone a new social order by doing away with the politics of the past, bring in new breed politicians and change the political landscape. He sought and got a professor of Political Science, Samuel Cookey to chair a Political Bureau, which was saddled with the responsibility of fashioning out, after wide consultations with Nigerians via memoranda and public presentations, a new political order. On Friday, February 28, 1986 therefore, Cookey wrote a letter requesting the sage, Pa Obafemi Jeremiah Awolowo, to avail the Nigerian state the benefit of his wisdom.
To that request, Awolowo replied:
“I received your letter of February 28, 1986, and sincerely thank you for doing me the honour of inviting me to contribute to the National Political Debate. “The purpose of the debate is to clarify our thoughts in our search for a new social order.
“It is therefore neat and proper that all those who have something to contribute should do so.
“I do fervently and will continue fervently to pray that I may be proved wrong. For something within me tells me, loud and clear, that we have embarked on a fruitless search. At the end of the day, when we imagine that the new order is here, we would be terribly disappointed.
“In other words, at the threshold of our New Social Order, we would see for ourselves that, as long as Nigerians remain what they are, nothing clean, principled, ethical, and idealistic can work with them.
“And Nigerians will remain what they are, unless the evils which now dominate their hearts, at all levels and in all sectors of our political, business and governmental activities are exorcised. “But I venture to assert that they will not be exorcised, and indeed they will be firmly entrenched, unless God Himself imbues a vast majority of us with a revolutionary change of attitude to life and politics or, unless the dialetic processes which have been at work for some twenty years now, perforce, make us perceive the abominable filth that abounds in our society, to the end that an inexorable abhorrence of it will be quickened in our hearts and impel us to make drastic changes for the better.
“There is, of course, an alternative option open to us. To succumb to permanent social instability and chaos.
Be by to “In the premises, I be there to decline your invitation.
“I am yours truly, Obafemi Awolowo”.
Written by; unknown.
Oputteh Festus; After reading this piece, I want to believe the message is clear enough to you and me. I therefore want to ask, why do we shift blames to everyone successive leader, instead of us seeing everyone of us as the problem of the country? Well, I see it the way chief Obafemi Awolowo saw it some twenty years even before he wrote this letter. That is why I think all you people have being writing about Buhari or any other leader on this platform are not the way forward to our liberation from these quagmires we found ourselves today. I decided to break my silence on this platform with this. All I have seen in this group is not what I expected at the beginning.
Thank you all, Good day everyone.