Have you ever been stuck in a relationship with a person you loved or at least believed in, and they just never passed up a chance to show that they did not give one crumb about your existence?
Birthdays – maybe a flash. Valentine’s Day – radio silence. Anniversaries – LOL.
If you can relate to this, then maybe you can get a tiny sense of the hell Nigerians have been through in the hands of the government, this blessed year.
To prove we aren’t just making things up, here are ten times the government showed how little they rated the citizens of this country in the year, 2019.
In May 2019, Adewura Bello tragically lost her life when, in the peak of the rainy season (which the government never fails to be unprepared for) — she fell down an uncovered manhole.
Manhole theft has been a danger to motorists and pedestrians alike for years and years. Perhaps as a late reaction to her passing, the government declared in September, that it would begin using manhole covers made from heavier materials. These covers would require machines for removal. Solid plan, no? Only, this same promise was made in January 2018 and yet, manholes remain literal deathtraps. Tragic.
Nigeria is currently in the throes of a kidnapping crisis and absolutely no one is safe. Where previously, kidnap victims were largely restricted to oil workers who could afford the ransom payment; the new crop of victims range anywhere from high-income earners to everyday people on the street. In the first quarter of 2019, at least 685 kidnappings occurred nationwide.
Gee, wonder if this increase has anything to do with Nigeria being the poverty capital of the world with a rapidly increasing unemployment rate. Hmm.
Abuja police raids.
In April 2019, men of the Nigerian Police Force and officials of the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (agencies of the government) thought it’d be a wise idea to arrest unsuspecting women simply existing in clubs, strolling by roadsides, some even just walking to their cars — and subject them to arrest and other inhumane treatment which sometimes involved rape.
The border closure.
Your favourite government in this same 2019, thought it’d be fantastic to close its land borders without fair warning to the people who eke out a living from trading along the routes. Much caring. Super nice.
Keke Napep ban in Abuja.
In November 2019, the Federal Capital Territory Administration began arresting Keke Napep riders who failed to comply with their ban on major roads. The ban would restrict 40,000 drivers to the villages and estates in Abuja taking a big bite out of their daily earnings.
Did the government think to plot out alternative sources of income for the drivers? Nope, super caring. Crazy nice.
Traffic is still off the hook.
Which means we still majorly depend on road for our transport which means alternative means of transport have yet to be developed which means the government doesn’t really care about us.
The hate speech bill.
We’re living in a country with a National Assembly that thinks a super vague Hate Speech bill in the midst of a security, health, economic, education and just about every sector of this country would be a good idea.
Even worse, this bill would have demanded the death penalty for citizens who went against it. That’s been scrapped now, but still!
The social media bill.
Clearly someone/everyone in government intends to continue doing a piss-poor job at their roles and will go through any means to prevent complaints. It is why the equally vague social media pill is currently leaping through readings at the Senate and may eventually pass. Which way Nigeria?
Increased VAT, ₦ 50 POS Charges, charges on withdrawals and deposits of ₦ 500,000, do we need to remind this government that the majority of its citizens are in fact, broke?
Moradeun lost her life in one of the most traumatising indicators of the government’s nonchalance. On December 3rd, Moradeun became a victim of the insecurity that is now rife in the country, when she was heartbreakingly stabbed on her return from work. Even worse, the broken healthcare system in this country, which ridiculously requires a police report in the event that a victim is maimed in a robbery attack, saw to it that she was not attended to, when urgent care may have been the difference between her life and death.