Why We Never Wanted ‘Change’ and What We Really Needed




Abdulwasi’i Ilyas

“It must be considered that there is nothing more difficult to carry out, nor more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to handle, than to initiate a new order of things.”

                                                                                                     Niccolo Machiavelli.

Change begins with me
Change begins with me campaign

Government and citizens have their respective roles to play and separate functions to fulfill in steering the nation’s ship towards the path of advancement. Everyone therefore, should stick to their end of the bargain. The ever evolving nature of our world demands constant reforms lest we be relegated to the rearmost of civilization.

We never hankered for change, our hearts only yearned for reforms not transformation. We were fine as we were, though with the need for some reinvention. A onetime total overhaul of our systems and habits were not all that was required to set us on the path to progress.

Change begins with me? Yes, but that is my preoccupation and mine alone. We had no need to elect public officials to come into office and harangue us with that. It is a possibility worked out by our  innate consciousness from the very beginning. That is why we keep learning and evolving far into adulthood.

To state the obvious, we naturally evolved from infants to teenagers and into adults. No requirements did we had of rattling public servants yelling at us from the podium to grow and change into what we have become. Mr. Lai sir! Please take note.

The old order has it’s good place in value. It offered us security and safety from the harsh realities of our world. New things are precarious;  fraught with failures and uncertainties. Possibilities the majority of mankind find abhorrent.

We want to retain the old ways and occasionally refine and tweak it to suit our ever evolving situations. Political reforms are responsibilities of the government while social reforms are enacted by other organs of the society; individuals and groups alike.

For the mantra of a political party to be “change” evinced the lack of a mantra, owing to its vagueness and inability to evoke any strong sensation or incite positive actions in even party members. The leeway therefore allowed various groups and people to introduce their respective interpretive juices to the change mantra. Given that the APC met success in changing the ruling party, what is next for them? and considering that “change” is all they knew. May be we can hope for synergy from the APC in changing the party’s electoral stroke of luck in subsequent polls.

This must not be viewed as an attempt by me to reel off  imprecations on the ruling party. As a matter of urgency, Let me put forward to the APC some sort of unsolicited but candid piece of counsel. That it is never too late for re-branding and rebirth. That is what organisations of all kinds do during turbulent times. Excepting if they are under any illusion that all is well and rosy with their machinery.

For polemics sake, we may proceed to accept the national orientation campaign, “change begins with me” as well-conceived and timely. The consciousness of that principle precipitated the success of the APC, engineered by voters at the polls.

Citizens overly satiated with the stagnancy and apathy that characterised and permeated our democratic expedition opted for these crop of voyagers; who would rather be seen assailing the same change agents with rhetoric, than sweating around the clock to better their lot, as against those beforehand perceived unfit to perpetuate their presence at power’s corridor.

As it is that our near depression state is not wholly emanating from poor policies of the present government. The past played its sore part. The share of blame heaped on this government stems from its inability to manage the vacuum orchestrated by change. People were out-rightly enraged by the lethargy of the Federal Government and they were rightly so.

Change, warts and all, creates a vacuity that if not quickly filled leads to revolt from those it was meant to serve. The government of today will be wiser to fill their time creating familiar scenes amidst new policies than to fulminate about where change begins from.  We love the familiar, we are creatures of habit and no government can take that away from us.

#BringBackOurCorruption is just near insanity but a reflection of the impact of that void change creates.

Social vices are characteristic traits of every community including the developed climes. If our governance system promotes corruption in high places, we expect a progressive government to build structures to forestall such festers and not take it as our collective faults that some people are corrupt. While the government reforms its systems, We as citizens will continue to evolve.

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