Are you even aware of how bad the CHANGE is Dear Mr. President?
Remember that during your campaign you promised to deliver to us a better Nigeria, a Nigeria flowing with milk, honey, peace and prosperity? You promised us CHANGE Mr. President and so, gullible and eager Nigerians voted for you, chanting SAI BABA! SAI CHANGE! Thinking you stand for all the things we yearn for.
Dear Mr. President, I am sure you will feel you have accomplished some things in your fourteen months in office, which might probably be true. What with the selective fight against corruption, your transparency moves, the fight against boko haram even as the Chibok girls are yet to be returned home, and so on and so forth.
Now, here are the CHANGES I see every day on Nigerian streets and villages Dear Mr. President – I see HUNGER AND STARVATION. Mr. President, your children are dying of malnutrition. Maybe a visit to a couple of villages can give you a shove in the right direction and open your eyes to the fact that the rate of hunger in the land has become an emergency health issue. I am writing this as one who has seen these sufferings first hand, but there is really very little I can do compared to what you, Dear President can do. I was told by those that witnessed this level of malnutrition during the Nigerian Civil war that what is happening now is beginning to be like what was experienced during the war.
According to UNICEF, over 2.5 million Nigerian children are suffering from severe acute malnutrition. However, no amount of quoting figures can propel you to action faster than a firsthand experience.
The direct effect of malnutrition is disease. Maybe a tour of ‘chemist shops’, local health centers, maternity homes and hospitals can make you sit up faster Dear Mr. President? The number of children severely ill from malnutrition is simply overwhelming. They are malnourished and thus have little or no resistance against diseases. Malaria kills them faster because they cannot fight it with their low immunity and lack of money. From the clinic where I am, the picture is disheartening. Children of various ages come in looking pale, anemic and hungry. The parents delay coming to the clinic till the worst moment but would rather use local herbs or visit quacks, guess why? Even after treatment, recovery is delayed for too long and sometimes there is relapse because there is no proper nutrition to sustain them. Anemia, kwashiorkor and the likes are staring us in the face.
The cost of living has gone so high Dear Mr. President, that parents cannot feed their children properly. When you are able to buy the food, the cost of kerosene suggests to you that you might want to try eating the food raw. Basically, people in the rural areas rely on kerosene and firewood for cooking and for the fact that we are in the rainy season, kerosene becomes the ultimate for those that can afford a kerosene stove and a liter of kerosene sells for #250. Do the Mathematics.
The worst thing that can happen to a mother is to watch her child die when mere #2000 in her purse would have saved that child’s life. And in case you think these poor folks are lazy, I will inform you that just one of them works harder than your entire House of Assembly members put together in a given day. They till the lands with their hands, nurture it, all without Government subsidy. They undertake different forms of hard labour that push them to early graves just to eke out a living, yet it hardly provides three-square meals for their families. Some of them have brothers and aunties that used to assist from the cities, but they have been sacked due to the austerity measures in the land.
Dear Mr. President, if the Nigerian masses cannot feel any positive impact of your administration, if all they see and feel are anger, depression, hunger, starvation, diseases, death, crimes, unemployment, anarchy, chaos and terrorism, then permit me to say Mr. President that your administration is woefully failing Nigerians. If you tell us that more refineries are now functional, yet we cannot afford the petroleum products, you tell us that looted funds are being recovered, that so and so country gave you so and so billion dollars, yet Nigeria is more broke than ever before, that is bullshit if you ask me. If you say you are subsidizing agriculture, yet the local farmer cannot even buy fertilizer, that you are giving us laudable economic policies still we cannot afford to buy ordinary fish from the market, what do you call that Sir? CHANGE?