I borrowed this title from the British thriller writer, Jeffery Archer, but I am in no mood to discuss that disgraced man’s book.
Nigeria is in dire straits, and I cannot in good conscience be tackling the trashy fiction written by a white man in the prosaic bid to bounce back from bankruptcy.
Nigeria is in deep trouble as any bloke with a semblance of grey matter inside his skull can see and feel and wonder.
Unfortunately, many of our dear countrymen and women are living in denial by writing new fat chapters into the book of sycophancy.
No country as divided as Nigeria is today can claim to be championing the ideals of Western Democracy as per even exporting it to Niger Republic.
It is little wonder then that the coup-makers of Niger are now mocking Nigeria that the military coup in their country was more democratic than the mojo of Nigeria’s civil elections.
There is no escaping the fact that there is frightening tension in the country, and Nigeria sorely needs healing.
Many pundits have stated that Nigerians have never ever been this divided, even during the time of the civil war.
The fact that the election is still being contested in the court shows that bonding needs to be comprehensively pursued by President Bola Tinubu if he is ever to make a success of his lifetime ambition.
It is incumbent on Tinubu to seize the moment and every opportunity to harp on the need for national unity instead of the polarisation that the hate speech of politicking portended.
Tinubu should make bold to stress that all the talk of “It’s my turn! Emilokan! Yoruba lokan!” during the elections had been done away with for good.
Sadly, there are places in social media and sundry clans where the man is being praised for dealing with the Southeast by giving the zone only five ministerial posts.
This is primitive prebendalism that marks any so-called leader as being lower than zero, as can be attested to by Professor Richard Joseph in his many years of study of Nigeria’s political history.
It does not bode well that what appears to be celebrated in Nigeria is the old cowboy film mantra of “Shoot first, think later!”
The fuel subsidy regime shot was fired without much thought, and the so-called floating of the Naira against the US Dollar and sundry foreign currencies followed suit with looming disaster posted up large all over the country.
Instead of addressing serious matters, propaganda is being cooked up such as the purported funny matter of 62 per cent of surveyed Nigerians giving positive approval of the Tinubu presidency.
The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) retained power through Tinubu after the expiration of the tenure of President Muhammadu Buhari.
It is well-nigh impossible for Tinubu to cut himself off from the failures of the past regime such as the humongous debt burden put at 77 trillion US Dollars, gross nepotism, nationwide disunity, ethnic polarisations, flagrant kidnappings, etc.
Winning back the trust of Nigerians is what Tinubu should work at first by finding a way to distance himself from the strictures of Buhari.
But then, there are some very strange emanations emerging such as Buhari’s EFCC Chairman Bawa being put under arrest while the former Governors he was prosecuting being rewarded with ministerial posts!
There is the nagging fear that we may lose the nation if something concrete is not done now to stop the barefaced appeasement of the god of corruption.
It churns the mind when many Nigerians are seen all over the place lamenting that things have gone so bad all of a sudden that they are already missing Buhari!
Buhari cannot be any serious leader’s benchmark when it is known, for example, that Lee Kuan Yew of Singapore boldly made the mark of taking his then fledging nation from the Third World to First World status.
Dr Mahathir of Malaysia repeated the feat, so it is possible for Nigeria to defeat all debacles and shoot well ahead with a thinking leader in the saddle.
The problems of the country ought to be seen as challenges that can be mastered by a committed leader.
It needs to be stressed that it is not necessarily the holding of power by one’s kin that makes a particular zone to prosper.
It is the creative productive spirit to forge ahead and the willingness of the people to bond together based on shared values that can strengthen the commonwealth.
Tinubu can only succeed if he sees the entire Nigeria as his vast canvas because the railway track that travels all the way from Sokoto up North and down to the South through Eha-Amufu, Iddo and Port Harcourt must have over the years established so much binding mores amongst the diverse Nigerians.
Tinubu, as against his predecessor, should not repeat the fatal mistake of isolating some areas as independent dots!
The migration of Nigerians to all nooks and crannies of the nation has built together uncountable Nigerians who call anywhere they reside in the country home.
No leader in the world is ever short in the supply of toadies, hangers-on, grovelers, ass-lickers, flatterers, court jesters, cringers, and ill-assorted yes-men and women.
Once these time-servers ruin a leader, they move on to the next leader – whether manufactured via Western Democracy or decreed through the barrel of an AK-47.
Nigeria is hanging in suspended animation. Need we tell the president?