President Jonathan recently commissioned a 5m metric tonne cement plant for Dangote Cement on the personal invitation of Aliko Dangote. This was the secondthis year having commissioned one in February. The event was graced by ministers, legislators, governors and anyone that is important in government. In Nigeria such events are considered sacrosanct but not in saner societies.
The Financial Times in a recent article characterized GEJ’s incessant attendance in an era where national security and several other pertinent issues affect as a waste of time. The article opines and I quote “Jonathan has much to keep him busy, not least the Islamist insurgency in northern Nigeria and cleaning up the oil and power sectors. And he already opened another Dangote cement factory in February. Yet here Jonathan was again, taking the best part of a day to come and praise Africa’s richest man, whom he awarded Nigeria’s second highest honour, Grand Commander of the Niger”. More or less saying the visit was one in futility. Sadly, they probably do not realize in this scheme of things this was a major outing for the President and one which will rank tops when he comes to beating his chest in three years time. The FT also fail to realize that the president’s attendance at a grand opening of a plant that employs thousands of Nigerians is considered lofty especially when you consider that his other half, the first lady flew in a presidential jet with a high level delegation to Warri for the opening of a hair dressing salon.
In Nigeria, too whom much is given much is ruined.