Again, why has the Niger Delta crisis raged on for so long a time? And why would militants view the amnesty offered to them by government with skepticism? The state of squalor the people of the Niger Delta have been consigned to due to years upon years of neglect has created a society that breeds militants and all kinds of criminals. No sane person would doubt the criminality of the militants but what about the neglect of their communities?
In order to buttress my point, I would want to use the example of my state governor, Gabriel Suswam of Benue state. For the past two to three months, health workers have been on strike and one can imagine the number of lives lost during the strike. More so that Benue state ranks top on the list of states severely ravaged by HIV/AIDS, it would not be difficult to calculate the number of the victims that might have lost their lives during the strike. If not for the benevolence of international donors like ICAP, the populace of the state would have been wiped out by the epidemic.
Even when perishable crops and plants like tomatoes, pepper, oranges, mangoes and cashew are produced, the perishable amount is always more than the marketed ones because of lack of storage facilities.
Governor Suswam’s insincerity could be seen in the huge amount of money he has begun to expend on his second term bid. The state is plastered with digital billboards advertising his achievements, and national dailies are awash with advertisements of same achievements. But what about the grounded medical services and epileptic educational services, especially, primary education in the state? If the funds being used to execute his second term project were injected into the health sector, his dying subjects would be saved. Besides, his predominantly ignorant subjects would be better educated if educational services were in order and they would better understand his achievements and he would not need to expend huge amounts of tax payers money to pay for adverts that many don’t read and understand.
Please, Editor, let them know that they will not continue to pull wool over peoples’ eyes forever. Even if they do that till eternity, the Almighty God who has chosen them to lead His people shall enquire of them what they did with the mandates at the gates of Heaven when the Lord finally comes in glory.
Daniel Shwa writes from Makurdi, Benue State