SHOULD ‘MY OGA AT THE TOP’ [SHEM OBAFAIYE] BE PUNISHED?
NO, NOT AT ALL—RIDICULE IS ENOUGH PUNISHMENT!
‘The youths of nation are the trustees of posterity—BENJAMIN D’ISRAELI’
The tumultuous applause generated by the seemingly stupid answers given to sensible questions of Tony and Sarah by an alumnus of UNILAG, LASU and UI has been brought to my attention. And the question is should the protagonist of the new movie: “Oga at the top” be fired? I say NO!
I weep for the future of this nation, if all our youths do is to engage themselves in so called hilarious image-damaging jokes. They spend hours on social networking sites with the sole goal of lampooning a Civil Defence Officer who made grammatical blunders while addressing officials of a National Television station. Production of T-Shirts, pictures, songs and movies to accentuate the faults of Mr Shem Obafaiye has been termed as creativity by many. Is that creativity or joblessness? If I may ask, of what value is the production of these items to the progress of our nation?
It is high time Nigerian youths understood the importance of networking sites in nation building. I wonder why it is only issues of this manner that do gain international recognition and overwhelming popularity. Where was the teeming populace of Nigerian youths when four students were killed by army officers in Nassarawa State University? Where was the same set of people when Jonathan granted Alameseiya a state pardon? They all kept silent since those issues were not capable of precipitating melodramatic giggles. I believe youths should learn how to constructively criticize the decisions of the government. We are in the democratic era and besides you gave Jonathan the mandate when you exercised your franchise by voting for him. Every Nigerian youth has the right to question the government.
It is highly imperative to note that sacking the commandant will not solve this problem. Mr Shem’s case is just one out of thousands of government officials who do not exude intellectual prowess in their respective domains. From the fore, it is obvious to see the depth to which corruption has eaten deep into the fabric of the nation. Corruption on the centre stage has created an avenue for illiterates and sycophants to get jobs on a platter of gold and occupy public offices ahead of literates. Without an iota of doubt, I can boldly say that the best brains of this country are on the streets combing the highways of labour market in search of jobs. Before the NSCDC decides to fire or suspend Mr Shem Obafaiye, they should give answers to the following questions: How many of our Governors can recite the second stanza of the National Anthem? How many Local Government Chairmen can engage in an intellectual discourse for 30minutes without letting loose of a significant load of cataclysmic missiles? How many members of the House of Representatives can recite the National Pledge?
Inasmuch as we all know that Mr Shem disgraced himself in front of an international audience, he should however be spared this moment of disgrace that has made him more famous than Dame Patience. NSCDC should rather get him resource materials that will help develop his interpersonal communication skills.
A clarion call to all and sundry, let the university go through you, amassing of certificates does not make you a literate but rather what part of you has been certified to dine with literates. “My Ogas at the top should not fire Mr Shem” I rest my case!
YES OF COURSE, ALL ACTIONS HAVE CONSEQUENCES
“Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity—MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.”
Good day my ‘ogas’ at the top of this courtroom, I stand before you today to try to correct a vice in our already endangered society. I am here to reiterate that everyman is responsible, even an irresponsible man is responsible for his irresponsibility.
Sequel to the recent happenings concerning Shem Obafaiye’s utter disgrace of the National security and civil defence commission, many have called for his head on a silver plate while some others have subtly requested that he should be given a pat on the back for having shown the lapse in the system. I however go for the former, Shem should be punished.
Shem Obafaiye claims to an alumnus of the University of Lagos, Lagos state University and excruciating above all, an alumnus of the prestigious University of IBADAN! If Shem has anything connecting him as an alumnus to these great University, then he should be punished for being so ignorant of certain salient things. How on earth will a graduate of these Universities state “ww.nscdc” as a website, if he has not been using fraudulent means to find his way around the ladder of credibility, probably by settling the “oga” at the top.
Actions have consequences; we choose our consequences as much as we choose our actions, so why shy from the fruits of the sown seed. Obafaiye’s issue has further raised Nigeria’s place on the scale of international ridicule as even the best of media outfits in the world have even began to question if all Nigeria’s public office holders are of such ignorant calibre.
Many are appealing to pity [emotions] saying the ridicule is enough punishment for Obafaiye, but as we all know, that emotions do not thrive within the confines of the law, if we follow up with emotions, then we will just like “Jonathan gullible” grant undeserved pardon to C[T]hief Alams due to cries from his family. Let us put our emotions apart and hand appropriate punishment to the son with a fleece.
My Lords, I should be quick to remind you that we have in this profession, what we call legal precedence, if Obafaiye is pardoned, then many other public office holders will take this as precedence for whatever error committed in the future, hence Obafaiye should be punished, not just for these errors, but also to serve as a warning for other ignorant officers. This will in turn reduce our place on the international ridicule scale. I REST.
CONCLUSION: This column is about you, it presents the two sides of a case courtesy of two writers from different schools of thought. “Audi alteram partem” means hear the other side before passing your judgement. Take the gavel, make your decision and slam because you are the judge in this courtroom. SHOULD ‘MY OGA AT THE TOP’ [SHEM OBAFAIYE] BE PUNISHED?
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