When the respected American Ambassador John Campbell, postulated that Nigeria would fail, implode, scatter, break (take your pick) within fifteen years from the year 2005, many people maligned him!
They said the evil drum he was beating would never sound over Nigeria!
He made his prediction when things were relatively peaceful!
For many faith-based Nigerians, it was a negative confession!
And they were correct in their assertions!
It was negative, but was it something without a remote chance of coming to pass?
Refusing to accept a thing does not deny the inevitability, if the conditions necessary for it coming to pass, are fulfilled!
You can confess that you would not get wet, but if you jump into a swimming pool, there is no way God in heaven will keep you dry!
We listened to the man prophesy the doomsday scenario, and the wiser ones only sighed in despair!
As we look at our nation today, we see the necessary conditions coming together, fearfully crystallizing!
Something similar to the Boko Haram crisis; believe it, or not, was predicted long ago, by an eminent panel led by the former Commonwealth Secretary General, Dr. Shiridath Ramphal!
His panel was commissioned by general Obasanjo’s administration less than fifteen years ago, and they pointed out the potential flashpoints in our nation!
Those who are aware of that report will testify to the veracity of what I am saying!
One of the necessary conditions required for the fulfillment of this prophecy, is poverty!
And I know there is no poverty in Nigeria anymore!
Or is there?
The existence of crippling, inhumane, iniquitous, poverty is a trigger for social uprising anywhere in the world!
How have we performed in poverty alleviation?
We have given out a few tricycles (keke NAPEP) and we believe all is well!
Our quest to achieve the Millenium Development Goals, MDGs, have been more of developing millionaires from the over inflated,and shoddily executed contracts, given out to political cronies!
We have not even pricked poverty with a pin!
Many people wake up in our land today, and do not know where they will get a meal from!
Even those with jobs, are just a sack away, from dropping into poverty!
There are no social security nets for the poor!
Instead, politicians who have served for four years, are receiving life-time pensions fit for despots!
Poor people are dangerous because they are dissatisfied!
They are easily provoked!
They are cheap to hire to cause trouble!
They have nothing to loose!
They believe it is better to die, than to continue in the hopelessness that is their present lot!
Nigeria is very rich in poor people!
If care is not taken, we may find that we are the richest nation on earth when it comes to poor people!
This is because we have managed to sustain, and increase, the poor in our midst, as our country has increased her revenue intake from oil!
The number of poor people in our land, has increased illogically!
The nation’s wealth has not translated into individual wealth for all, just a few are rich!
Many of the ethnic-religious clashes that seem to spring up out of the slightest provocation; which sensible people with a future, and a hope would overlook: are usually sustained by poor people who use the opportunity to revenge against the rich, and loot!
The Niger Delta problem was poverty-driven!
The crises in Jos, has elements of frustration over economic emasculation, fight over land, and poverty carefully woven into the fabric!
How many bank managers have you seen in Jos burning cars, or how many doctors are going around bombing houses in Maiduguri?
What would probably point to how precarious, and dire, our situation is, is that we are a mono product economy!
It is a blessing in other places, but for us, it is a curse!
It is the single factor that is preparing the ground for our disintegration as a nation!
We do not refine it, but export crude!
That would not have been too bad, if we were not buying back refined products at a higher rate!
So the cards are not in our favour!
All because we have abdicated our refineries, like every other sector of our economy, to strong cabals, and cartels!
We are careering along now, like a car with failed brakes down a steep slope! Many are giddy from the trip, unaware of the crash to come!
Oil price is good! We have been narcotized by it!
But history has taught us that everything is cyclical!
When there is a boom, it is always followed by a bust!
What the world tries to do; is to ensure that the boom is longer than the bust, and save for the bust, to ameliorate it's effects!
Did I just say, save?
We do not have savings! Even my five year old daughter has a piggy bank!
When there was a boom, we did not save! We spent more, and our leaders stole the rest!
Nigeria is in debt, and it is spending more on recurrent expenditure, and little on infrastructure!
When we spend on infrastructure, we always seem to acquire technologies that are thirty years obsolete!
The Chinese are building the old wide gauge rail for us, but the same Chinese possess bullet train technology!
Between now and the year 2020, are nine uncertain years!
Anything can happen in nine years!
The world’s economy could go into a recession!
There is a strong possibility!
With fears over America’s debt, and European nations failing to meet their obligations: there is no certainty that the price of oil will continue like the juggernaut that it has been!
What seems more likely: is that the price of oil will come down: quickly, and without notice!
In addition, alternative sources of energy that could supplant oil, are been developed aggressively!
Many, who are smarter than me, would probably have jumped forward in time, and seen how this would imperil our government’s ability to meet her financial obligations!
The clincher for me, the next factor that points to a not so rosy future, is the new minimum wage!
The government had agreed to pay, out of political expediency, without considering how money would be sourced for it!
If we estimate that government pays “X” amount on salaries and wages now, and the new minimum wage is times three of the former one: it means that by next year, government shall be paying “X times 3” on emoluments, and wages!
If we kick in the various promotions, and salary increases, due to the demand by labour, that the increase be prorata across the board; you will see that it is not going to be easy for governments at all levels!
We then need to ask a stupid question, will governments triple their ability to generate income by next year, or the year after?
What we are staring at, is a Greek style scenario!
Governments at all levels, unable to meet their financial obligations!
There will be more strikes; longer and painful ones!
There will be more unrest, because more people will be without hope!
Imagine what will happen in states that are currently not viable?
With zero internally generated revenue they only depend on monthly allocations from the federation account to survive now!
The crises will be cataclysmic!
All I have declared; is a logical portrayal of where we are heading, if we do not change now!
But it is still possible to make the ambassador a liar!
If governments begins to focus on other non-oil sources of income, if we begin to develop people, and not buildings!
If we make the rule of law supreme, so that people have confidence in the courts, and do not take the law into their own hands!
If we strengthen our tax system!
However, if we refuse to do this, we may find that we would all be rushing to the John Campbell Prophetic Church of God, the new church the ambassador would be forced to start by us!
This is because he would have passed the biblical test for true prophecy, one that comes to pass!
MAY GOD BLESS NIGERIA, OUR NIGERIA FOREVER!