By Richard Odusanya
Recently, the United Kingdom suspended the issuance of visitor’s visa to Nigerians, in addition to other (African) countries on the red list, as a result of their ‘concerns’ over the Omicron COVID-19 variant.
In reaction to this insult, the spokesman for the Federal Government of Nigeria, Lai Mohammed, said, “I can say, without mincing words, that the decision by the British government to put Nigeria on the red list, just because of less than two dozen cases of Omicron which, by the way, did not originate in Nigeria, is unjust, unfair, punitive, indefensible and discriminatory. The decision is also not driven by science.”
Undoubtedly, most Nigerians share his sentiment: it is discriminatory. I mean, how do you explain a situation where more than fifteen European countries have the omicron, yet not one of them is in the UK’s travel Ban/Red list? Not one! Yet the UK travel ban has only African countries in it?
I am completely in agreement with the fact that this is not science at all. Again, the omicron didn’t originate from Africa.
However, this is punishment for failure to put our house in order; healthcare in comatose, lack of infrastructure and poor leadership. This is what you get when you’re lacking in visionary leaders and vibrant citizenry. Sad realities of our country Nigeria.
When our leaders run to the UK for malaria check up and medical tourism with photo ups as part of the latest additions. Why would African nations not be classified as high risk nations?
Regardless of the ranting about racism and all what not, I am personally, not surprised. When we don’t value ourselves, foreigners certainly won’t value us.
This is part of the reasons why Nigerians home and abroad think that Nigeria remains a disappointment to the black race, as blessed as we are humanly and minerally.
This development should trigger Africans to “wake up” and put their house in order. Africans have been shown time and time again that the western countries are not friends of Africa. They steal from us, then they loan us the money from their stolen wealth at extremely high interest rates.
The so-called third world countries are in a deep mess and need to get cracking and put on their thinking caps. We will remain expendable guinea pigs as long as we do not develop ourselves economically and infrastructurally. Hence, the need to de-colonize ourselves mental slavery.
We must be intentional in our task of repositioning the African nations as part of the world’s leading nations by renewing minds to end the violence, elitism, corruption, and poverty that plague the continent
Economic development and empowerment, infrastructural, transportation development is a must. Good roads, efficient transportation systems, uninterrupted power supply, affordable food, good and affordable/free healthcare, affordable housing, up-to date social amenities, sports development, low unemployment rate afford the general populace improved standard of living.
If people live comfortably, not on survival mode, like most of Africa, they can they will become more productive in every facet of human endeavor which will translate to great economy and then, military power.
Furthermore, we can clearly see how Infrastructure development is, predictably, the one-cap-fits-all for a country’s myriad of developmental challenges.
This is the time for African leaders to look in the mirror and change their fraudulent and destructive ways for a great Africa, because that is her destiny, Greatness. Africa is the greatest and the richest continent on earth resourcewise, the time has come to make the potential a reality. The time is now to build the Africa we want, the new Africa, the giant that we really are. Mother Africa!
Richard Odusanya is a Social Reform Crusader and the convener of AFRICA COVENANT RESCUE INITIATIVE ACRI
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