Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Statesman versus Politician

Sometimes, one might know what something is, even recognize it when he sees it, but not be able to define it. I had that problem problem a while ago when I tried to define a politician! After much thought, I concluded that a politician was someone who used the vehicle of politics to achieve personal political advancement, and ,or gain, at whatever cost! 

The operative term here is,  personal political advancement or gain, at whatever cost ! His intention from the beginning, is "I, me, and myself! It remains constant, and unwavering, no matter what compromises have to be made along the way!

So you could find a politician today being a member of the labour party, and the next he is with the conservatives, and the next, he is with the greens!

A statesman on the other hand, is someone who uses the vehicle of politics for the advancement of the nation, he does so no matter the personal cost to his person, or political fortune!

The difference between the two, is just the end, they use the same means of politics, and that is where there similarities end.

When a nation has a lot of politicians, like we currently suffer in Nigeria, the nation seems to be in a flux without real motion! It becomes like a group of children playing in the sandbox, at the end of the day, there would be no real progress, just a lot of hot air,noise,hair pulling, sweat, playacting,finger pointing, pantomime, dirty clothes, and a few bruises!

We are constantly bombarded by a series of comedic jockeying for power, not for the people, but for personal aggrandizement! 

To us outsiders in the process of politics looking in, we know that if half the effort we see on show, were devoted to truly repairing this great nation, we would truly become a world power! So we agonize at the false steps and missed opportunities. We ache when we see our political leaders daily extending the borders of stupidity, and redefining silliness! How we ache for statesmen!

No true statesman would stand aside, and watch people suffer when he/she can do something about it. The suffering around him would keep him awake at night, he would see it in every face, and read it in every pothole!

To an average politician in Nigeria, suffering, is like lullaby to him. He feeds off the suffering of others. He loves the sense of power. It is as if, the knowledge that the people would never be as comfortable as he is, gives him comfort. 

Or how do you explain a situation where less than seven hundred individuals out of one hundred and fifty million, consume twenty five percent of our national budget!

And they can go to bed at night, and refuse to pass laws that would curb corruption, and promote good governance!
The money is not spent on making better laws, no, it is spent on luxuries like the latest cars from Germany, and Japan. The same cars that their greed has prevented the country from manufacturing!

If one looks at Africa today, the landscape is surfeit with politicians! There is only one statesman, and he is in retirement, we need more people like Nelson Mandela!

A politician thinks of only himself, here and now, a statesman thinks of the nation, now, and how to give it a better future!

From the actors on our political stage today, the script seems to be pointing to bleak, and dire future!

And that is one we cannot afford!


No comments:

Post a Comment