Monday, September 7, 2015

A CASE FOR BUILDING INSTITUTIONS IN NIGERIA

I am very glad to note this morning, that a ban has been placed on movements of articulated heavy duty vehicles on Lagos roads between the hours of 6am and 9pm at night. My joy is not without sadness though, considering that the order which isn't the first time such will be issued, is following an unfortunate incident. I wonder why we have to wait for tragedies to occur to enforce statutory laws in Nigeria, be it in transportation (as in this case), building (following recent cases of building collapses), aviation (with recent helicopter and plane crashes, with fingers now being pointed at use of Kerosene in lieu of JetA-1 for aviation fuel, which I now hear damages turbines of aircrafts), amongst others.

Because of the way this restriction has been procured, as a kneejerk reaction by a concerned governor following an unfortunate incident, it means that as like other times, with the passage of time even without a reversal things will return to status quo, and much of the same things will continue until another avoidable tragedy stares us in the face. This is why the case for the building of institutions must be made and not just of STRONG MEN, only showing up when the condition requires, sometimes with political intentions behind such actions, even when such wasn't the intention of the politician in power (for instance the governor in this case), who then stands to gain political capital following such tragedies. 

If we had institutions performing even at an average of fifty percent, the "fits and starts" situation witnessed in almost all sectors of the socio-econo-political life of Nigeria will not be there. We will not have to wait for a new government to come in to begin to fight corruption just because the former government's BODY LANGUAGE appeared to encourage corruption, when in fact it wasn't that anti-corruption bodies were

LOGO OF NIGERIA'S ECONOMIC AND FINANCIAL CRIMES COMMISSION, EFCC

proscribed while that government lasted. The right things will be done because regulating authorities, and prosecuting bodies will be alive to their responsibilities. When people talk about how flawed our constitution is, I am quick to remind them that the solution isn't in throwing away what we already have, because even the so called flawed constitution makes space for its own amendments, besides which of the laws therein have we even complied with to the latter? We should start by keeping the laws we all swore to abide by, and because no man made law can be perfect, we should feel free to insist on their amendments to bring them in line with  current realities and dictates of the times.

In forming governments, the idea is that individuals under the space to be governed give up their rights to act as they will in deference to what is desirable by the commonwealth, with some individuals (politicians in government) enabled by the people (via elections) to ensure that all walk within the tenets so laid down, and proffering punishments to such as fall short of these tenets in order to safeguard the society and ensure its survival, even beyond the framers of these laws. Hence, my second area of sadness over the restriction of movements slammed on articulated vehicles, in that nothing was mentioned in regards to punishment either of the erring driver, whose actions and/or inactions may have directly or indirectly contributed to the accident at Ojuelegba which led to the deaths of three people which I wrote about in http://madukovich.blogspot.com/2015/09/of-articulated-vehicles-and-nigerian.html?m=1, neither was anything said in the way of liability placed at the doorstep of the company or firm whose truck caused such needless deaths, and destruction of property, without forgetting the owner of the goods been conveyed in the container, if they aren't one and same.

I would love a situation where beyond all the grandstanding by the new President Muhammadu Buhari-led government to put ALL things right (which is gradually trickling downwards), efforts will be committed to a greater extent (than former President Goodluck Jonathan did with his unassuming presence) to the strengthening of institutions, so that beyond the administration of Buhari, any gains made today and celebrated tomorrow will not become eroded in the nearest future, for which the clamour for another Buhari will become once again pertinent. 

'kovich

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