Ayobami Iyiola: Hell is a place called home (30 Days, 30 Voices)

Ayo_dafe iyiola

“The Nigerian state doesn’t need a soothsayer to tell us that we are in Hell.”

I must confess that as the son of an Apostle I don’t read the bible like I should but one thing I learnt over the years by virtue of my ‘growing-up’ in a very religious family is the FULL DETAILS of HELL

Hell, like a popular joke, which divides Hell into British Hell, American Hell, German Hell and Nigerian Hell describes Nigerian Hell as a cell where there’s no regular power (to electrocute) and the contractor given the contract to supply the nails and rods and other equipment of torture did
’t supply the equipments though he was fully paid for them. This makes the Nigerian Hell a paradise in Hell

So also, Hell according to a Biblical school is divided into various parts. If you are one that ‘binds’, ‘spit’ and ‘stamp’ your foot on Devil  every time with your prayers (especially in the middle of the night), your place is in the hottest and most terrible part of Hell fire (that’s if by one reason or the other you don’t go to Heaven). The other parts of Hell have a more liberal treatment since the people there didn’t give Devil so much wahala.

Oh this isn’t a religious piece (if it is my writer-Apostle Dad will be in a better position to do justice to it) but it’s about the Hell called Nigeria. The Hell Nigeria is divided into stages or levels.

Yes we all should know something about the widening gap between the rich and the poor which according to the common saying ‘the rich (are) getting richer and the poor getting poorer’. Who are the rich who ‘bind’ ‘spit’ and ‘stamp’ there foot on the Devil? (permit my usage of the word ‘Devil’ instead of the ‘masses’) are they not the corrupt insensitive politicians cum business men who live on bribes and seek power to control and monopolize the economy and their godfathers, cabals and barons with ill gotten wealth all at the expense of the masses? They are the one who splash muddy water with the fat tyres of their big tinted SUVs; they are the people that control everything from the stipends we call salary (they get big salaries and still loot more) to the number of times we eat in a day. You ask how they control how many times we eat? They do when they don’t pay our pensioners after working tirelessly for the country in their younger days  and when they lay off civil servants in thousands (the ministry of Internal Affairs laid off thousands of workers last year without paying them a single kobo up till now) are they not controlling how many meals we eat in a day? Are they not stamping there foot on us? When they don’t offer the millions of jobless undergraduates a source of livelihood are they not ‘spitting’ on us? When we don’t have constant electricity and other basic amenities like health care and good water are they not ‘binding’ us in servitude and oppression in our own country?

The Nigerian state doesn’t need a soothsayer to tell us that we are in Hell. Yes it’s Hell. The leaders over the years have failed us, they have crushed our expectations, and they all were after looting of the State’s resources for their families and cronies. We don’t need a ‘maga’ who has learnt to be smart via experience to tell us it’s a SCAM our leaders are pulling on us. Let’s take power generation for example, over 500billion was spent between 1999 and 2007 and the current federal government has spent a lot on failed promises too. So also the unfathomable reason why we still on ‘subsidy’ and importation of fuel to a country producing crude oil when the building of refineries shouldn’t be the big problem we have at the moment.

We don’t need a SS 1 student of Economics to tell us that for the economy to grow there should be constant electricity, a great infrastructure drive and Security/peaceful co-existence to attract foreign investment and to enable our indigenous companies to grow and even export to neighbouring countries. When we create a conducive business environment, Nigeria will be a top destination for foreign investment because the ‘oyinbos’ know that all they have to do is sell a product to five million Nigerians daily making 5naira profit per head thereby providing employment for over 60% of the youths which would take this youths off the street of crime (even the Boko haram menace) and Nigeria will be more like heaven for the citizens and a gold-mine for businesses. Only when Nigeria is Heaven can we have a reduction in the ‘devils’ of jobless youths that take to crime and who are making the country into a security topic for the world to debate upon. But all this won’t happen without the right environment which we Nigerians are entitled to in our Constitution (chapter 2).

Another stage of Hell in us is the urge for revolution, the masses that dislike our leaders (some will prefer to use ‘hate’). But why won’t they? When they are stamped upon and spat on by the government who is doing nothing to alleviate the sufferings of the masses. This brings out the beast in us, the urge to either want to suffer-smile or the urge to join them and join their ways (like the corrupt contractor in the Nigerian hell), we want to join their ranks and take a slice of the national cake, we want to lord and we end up forgetting where we coming from. Are we different from our leaders? Take heed everyone, the REAL HELL awaits

Now I have not said anything new and this won’t be the last on this issue but I believe the change Nigeria needs start with YOU .In the ‘remixed’ version of the words of Mother Theresa- if each and every one of us sweeps the front of our door step the whole country will be clean. We should also keep in mind the words of Winston Churchill- ‘if you going through hell, keep going’ and the song by Ron kenoly ‘…if u are going through hell don’t stop. Just go-ahead….’ That’s the hope we have to take us through this hell because this hell is a place called home (for now).

Oh Nigeria Hell, our Paradise.


Ayo Dafe is an Attorney, who loves mini vacations and tries to take one every weekend. He also plays golf and is a Football Manager aficionado.

30 Days 30 Voices series is an opportunity for young Nigerians from across the world to share their stories and experiences – creating a meeting point where our common humanity is explored.

Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija

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