Let me state for the record, that ‘bigmanism’ is one of Nigeria’s biggest problems. Everyone wants her neighbor to know He has arrived. Everyone wants to buy the biggest house, the baddest cars, the choicest private jets. The poor are not left out. It’s not uncommon to disturb ones neighbors with loud music or I pass my neighbor generator. Even our prayer points in church seem to support this belief.
While there is nothing bad in flaunting your hard earned money (as long as it rightfully belongs to you), it becomes a pandemic when you try to flaunt your influence, wrongly, especially in a public function.
Case in point: the new interior minister, Abdulrahman Dambazau was caught on camera receiving a professional shoe shining service thanks to the State security service agent attached to him. Mind you, this happened at a public function, right in the midst of dignitaries who seemed not to mind.
Questions to ponder on: when did protection become shoe shining? If the minister could condescend to turn the SSS agent into his personal shoe shiner in public, what do you think happens in private? How are we sure the security agents attached to Mr Minister are actually just in charge of security and not special errands?
Obama carries his own umbrella in the rain. I seriously doubt if an average Nigerian councillor would do the same. We need to change our thinking in this nation and stop abusing power at every opportunity.
Another case in point: Dambazau was one of the few ministers who resumed late to their ministry after official appointment by the president.
The interesting thing is, Abba Moro, the predecessor to Mr minister, was embroiled in a messy N520 million National Immigration Recruitment scam that left over 20 applicants dead and over 100 injured.
Sunday Afolabi (now late) who was appointed Minister for internal affairs in 1999 by Olusegun stood trial in December 2003 along with his successor as Internal Affairs minister Mohammed Shata, former Labour Minister Hussain Akwanga and others on charges that they had sought bribes worth some $2m from the French firm, Sagem in connection with the $214m contract to produce identity cards.
Here’s hoping that Dambazau will ditch his ‘bigmanism’, make necessary adjustments, sit up and get the job done unlike his predecessors who made a mess of their office.