Many years ago as an undergraduate, precisely in my first year, a lecturer of Philosophy and Logic asked a question in a class of over 1000 students. He said “Who can be termed as intelligent and who in this class is intelligent?” Your guess I believe would be as good as mine; many students offered several definitions, some from dictionaries, some from wikipedia and some from experience. Some even cited as examples people like; Albert Enistein, Bill Gates, Chuba Okadigbo and many others who were in the limelight at that time way back in the year 2000. Some of my mates at that time also stepped out as intelligent guys and gave reasons (based on aptitude, achievements, awards etc.) why they should be seen as such. I must confess, it was a very interesting class until this shrewd lecturer asked another question; “What is the probability that a First Class graduate of Maths which is an excellent result I suppose will make same grade (First Class) in Chemistry, Law, Engineering, Medicine, Computer Science, English and Igbo?”
The class went quiet for a few minutes following that tough question. Some mates of mine tried to joke about the question asked but seeing the seriousness in the man’s look, the class was quiet again. Now smiling, #Dr. Nnadi Isidore then said “Maybe by now it is possible for me to assert and agree with many great philosophers of the world that the probability of having a First Class (1st) graduate of maths make the same grade in other courses is almost Zero (0) because no man wins them all except God himself. This is a general studies course Jambites (that is what we were popularly called when we get admitted newly in school), and everyone of you have been admitted into various courses in the university and by the time you are graduating, some of you will graduate as mates and some will not, some of you will make first class and some of you will leave here with 3rd class, some of you will be seen as being so great at the courses you studied but none of you will be seen to know it all and function well in every function and work that exists in the world. Work means ‘YOU ARE FUNCTIONING IN YOUR ASSIGNMENT’ and if we choose to work, stay hungry and stay foolish, life will be good because we will keep in mind that we need the services of several people even our mates to make our society which is Nigeria a better place. The day you think you can do it all because you think you are intelligent, you do not work anymore, You begin to Labour; Labour is an activity of pain and God’s plan for us is to work and not Labour”.
Listening to that man who I must say was one of my best lecturers in school days, I knew I had got the right motivation to enable me blend well in any society, work well with everyone I met to ensure I remained patriotic to my country by relating well with men and women from all works, tribes, religion and more. REMINISCING for some weeks, I have had course to wonder when we will have leaders who will make Nigeria progressive. What we have currently in Nigeria are different states or countries pretending to be one. Even at the level of individual states, what I can see we have is war or to be mild, strong disagreements between ethnic groups and tribes thus making some states ungovernable and I am wondering even to the point of writing when all this will pass, when brothers (people from same states) will stop fighting themselves, when parties will stop fighting themselves and think rather of the common good of our nation and people.
His Excellency, Governor Nasir El-Rufai was one man I admired so much following the great works he carried out in Abuja - FCT when he was minister. No other FCT Minister if many choose to agree impacted Abuja the way that man did. I had encountered him a couple of times, loved his points of views and I believe he achieved all those things because he chose to work and not labour. When you choose to work as my philosophy teacher says, you engage the services of progressives to achieve your objectives. I guess that his successful election as Governor of Kaduna state was premised on the achievements he made in FCT. The people of Kaduna state; Northern and Southern Kaduna, I am aware were happy with their choice of a Governor and expected that same Abuja result would be reflected in Kaduna to bring back the glories of the Kaduna state some of us knew in the 90’s. Many of us do not live in Kaduna but we hear tales of Kaduna. Structurally, it seems Kaduna may look good again but something has gone wrong with the unity that was better managed by past leaders in the state and this happens because I think El-Rufai Labours; he seems smart and wants to do a lot of things himself but if Kaduna must be great again, he must get the people of North and Southern Kaduna together to achieve his goal. One of Jesus favorite words I Love is “WHAT I SAY TO ONE, I SAY TO ALL’. Kaduna state is not the only state in Nigeria where unity has been misplaced and almost lost, It occurs in several states and even communities where people speak same tribes, share same religion, it occurs in several government parastatals, in church, in mosques, in schools, in political parties etc and we need to fix this.
Many Nigerians may not have been privileged to have the first motivation I got when I was admitted into the university but some who read may know now that we need to get back to WORK (ENGAGE THE SERVICES OF NIGERIANS IRRESPECTIVE OF TRIBE, RELIGION, ETHNIC GROUP, POLITICAL PARTY etc.) to achieve the goal of making Nigeria a better place. If we rule Nigeria the APC way because they have power now, it will only be labour, it results in little achievement only and only sets a pace for the next party that takes over to do same.
Now is day and we must Work now because night comes when no man can work. We still have time and opportunity to work on the Unity of our country. Lets us begin in our offices, the private sectors, the church, our homes, the schools, the states, the parties, wherever you function, for it is tiny drops that make oceans.
HAPPY WORKERS DAY AND HAPPY NEW MONTH FROM CHUKA CHIEZIE and the Jewel Publishers team.
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