Posts Tagged ‘Hosni Mubarak’

I am so excited, haven’t been this excited in a long time! Today, the 9th of April is a day that will go down as one of the most significant days in the history of Nigeria. Today, in my opinion laid yet another block in the foundation that is a New Nigeria. Why? Are you even asking?

When Egypt happened earlier in the year, I was excited at the strength of the people, the collective will of the people that transcended religious lines (producing one of the best pictures I have ever seen in my entire life, christians protecting muslims and vice versa), transcended socio-economic statuses, age, creed, you name it. The people had one demand, that Hosni Mubarak and his government leave power. It took a while, but he left, and every day, the symbols of his government are being removed too.

Someone said shortly after that Nigeria was/is not ready for a revolution, that we are not ready to die for the country. I remember replying that we don’t need to die for our country to be what it should be, that if change was a product of bloodshed, we’d shed enough already to make us a ‘world power‘! He said that we were ‘twitter/facebook activists’, who wouldn’t make any difference; I said that the fact that we existed as activists at all was a sign that we had had it, and promised, even in absentia, to prove him wrong.

Organizations like ReclaimNajia, EiE Nigeria, Vote or Quench, Rally For Nigeria, What About Us, Light Up Nigeria were the response by young people to issues that our elders have hitherto been unable to answer. Issues like electricity, security, health, education, employment, crime, you name it. From the 16th of March 2010 when young people under the auspices of the Enough is Enough coalition protested to the National Assembly, I knew it, I knew our time had come. For the first time in the history of the country, youths asked questions of their leaders. What About Us? What are your plans for our country?

Young people (18 – 35) in Nigeria make up 70% of the 150 million that is our population; that has been the driving force behind the campaigns to Register, Select, Vote,and Protect the vote. If only half of this demographic voted, rigging would be difficult. And thanks to mobile technology and apps like ReVoDa that birthed citizen journalists round the country, I knew something would give.

Then on the day of the National Assembly elections, there was the ‘logistics’ excuse and the elections were postponed. Originally, it was to be National Assembly : 2nd April,  Presidential : 9th April, and Governorship/State Assembly : 16th April. Attahiru Jega, Chairman of the Independent National Electoral commission (INEC) moved the National Assembly elections to the 4th of April, but moved everything forward by a week the night before the 4th. The new dates became National Assembly : Sat, 9th April(today), Presidential : Sat, 16th April, and Governorship/State Assembly : Tues, 26th April.

Apart from the postponement discouraging people, last night we heard of an explosion in the INEC office in Suleja, Niger State. Amongst the dead from that blast were 6 corps members. Unconfirmed reports from yesterday had it that a young man in Kaduna who was ‘planting’ a bomb made a mistake and set off the bomb, on himself. Talk about karma being swift. Like I said on twitter last night, may God comfort all the families who have lost mothers, fathers, sons and daughters in any of these horrible blasts, and may the souls of the departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

Despite all these, the turn out for today was at least 150% above what it was in 2007, when less than one-third of the voting population voted; some people were not even aware of the aspirants that would be representing their constituencies! Despite bomb scares, tales of violence, the scorching sun, snail-like activity at the polling centres, people went out, got accredited, and when the time came, they voted. Not only did they vote, but they waited for the votes to be counted, and then they tweeted the results. Nigerians challenged people who came to snatch ballot boxes – there are several reports of people overpowering and disarming thugs who came to cause confusion at the polling centres – they provided snacks and drinks for their brothers and sisters who had to wait in long queues for their turn to ‘press their hand’.

Today, according to Nigerian hip-hop sensation Naeto C, “things are not the same….levels don change now….” The revolution that has begun today will remain with us for years to come. And even though I am worried that from the results coming back we are voting largely along ethnic lines with the Coalition for Progressive Change (CPC) winning most of the seats in the North,  Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) seizing the West and All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) trying to remain relevant in the East, I think that we are on the road to getting it this time, and that’s all that matters for now.

I’ll wrap for now with a tweet from @segundemuren, that “we exercised our right to vote because we want to develop. My prayer is democracy should lead to development”.

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Monday – first day of the week, and my first day at Uni for the year. I walked into the class, was astounded by the sea of unfamiliar heads, welcome to Production Labs, one of my modules for this semester. Somewhere between finding an idea to work on (which I still haven’t found), getting to know my group (Team Yellow), sorting out the people we’re supervising and the ones supervising us, I was lost.

Add that to the fact that I had a throbbing headache from not sleeping well at all the night before and Monday was literally ruined. I was happy to go home and collapse into bed at the end of the day.

P: S – Started a ‘Jesus is my boyfriend this week’ project with one of my  favorite friends,  Tomi.

Tuesday – Made it to a tutorial on poster design yesterday (I’m writing that here because I don’t remember what filled my morning). I didn’t sleep well, but it wasn’t as bad as yesterday.

Spent some quality time worshipping God today, and I remember asking specifically for good news, anything to make me smile ( do you get to that point sometimes) and then I got ready for uni.

Had a great time at my class! To start with it was Jase, Kaz, Leonie, Mark, and Simi (she’s new) and it felt like our space again. Of course Dave Harte (our tutor) was there, with Stuart Parker, the tutor for this module. Welcome to Social Media as Practice; I was happy that apart from what’s already outlined for the course, we did an audit of the social media skills we posses, and areas we’ll be needing  help from our tutor. We have to stage an event et al too but I’m loving the course already!

Got home to wonderful news from Nigeria that wrapped up an already beautiful day! My Boyfriend really pulled all the stops to make me happy today, and I’m truly grateful. Thank you Jesus…..

Wednesday – I didn’t sleep before 3am (get used to it). Then again the Dbanj/Snoop video debuted on Twitter and because I couldn’t sleep, I watched it, and I was disappointed. Before you bite me, I (like everyone else) is excited that Mo’Hits have again raised the bar, broken new frontiers, etc but to me, the video was just there. Nothing special.

I also watched the ‘Alabukun’ and ‘Change your parade’ videos (for the first time) by Pepsi boy, Lynxx – see for yourself (my first video on the blog, yay!!!). I’ve got nothing to say about both of them but, beauty_____ brains (fill in the blanks).


Erm what else did I do today? Yes, I exchanged some stuff I got for my brother (for the third time), and then went to volunteer my time (AND ENERGY) with a charity called Read International. There’s nothing like the fulfillment from knowing you’ve done stuff that in the long run will have a positive impact on people less fortunate than you are. Plus it’s great experience that’ll profit TBAM.

Today was left overs night; dinner consisted of left over potatoes, rice (jollof and white), plantains (diced and fried), prawns, veggies, and sausages all heated n one big pot! God is great sha, I’m sure only He would be able to help that digest!

Thursday – slept well. Very very well in fact. Even though two phone calls by @aninoritse and @toluogunlesi woke me up at different times of the night, I willed myself back to sleep (after tweeting a bit), and I slept well! Woke up at 10am (bite me) feeling very refreshed, spent an extra hour grooming myself, and then settled in to finish reading a somewhat scary but extremely interesting book.

Good news! My programme ideas (yes I had two) for the school radio station were accepted so I’ll be on air soon! There’s nothing like being on radio, once you’ve been there it never stops calling your name! Woo!

At Digging Deep today, we learnt about the blood of Jesus, and the different virtues we can draw from it. On why we ask for the forgiveness of any sin (of omission or commission) whenever we pray, the Pastor’s wife gave this analogy: if you have a child with diarrhea, every time the child poops on himself, you wash him (without fail), and comfort them for the pain they’re going through. While your desire (and what you’d be working towards) would be to take care of the root of that problem, you’d be happy to keep cleaning up that child for as long as it takes. Same thing for us; as we keep striving for perfection, Jesus works with us, cleansing us every time we slip up, and He’s happy to do that. Of course that doesn’t mean we should ‘abide in sin that grace may abound’. Be guided.

Thursday night was also heartbreaking as President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt did ‘the more you look, the less you see’ for his people (and indeed the world) when he said he wouldn’t be stepping down like we all expected. What is it with African leaders and clinging to power? SMH!

 

What stops us from living in peace with each other? The violence in Jos (etcetera) must stop! We can do it!

christians protecting muslims during the protests in Egypt

Friday – took a long walk today (in the name of finding an outfit for choir); the weather was great, my ears were plugged with music, and ‘like play like play’ I found myself walking (instead of taking the bus/train) for close to four hours! Of course my ankles et al hurt later but that’s a different story.

In other news, Hosni Mubarak stepped down today! Yay! After 30 years of dictatorship, he handed over to the military headed by Defence Minister Mohammed Hussein Tantawi. It’s a little bewildering though, that Mubarak would install a vice-president but hand over to the military. We can only rejoice with the Egyptians though, and pray that this is the beginning of the freedom they have clamored for decades now, and not the proverbial ‘jumping from the frying pan into the fire’.

The prayer service today was great too, we specifically asked 2011 to yield to us every good thing God has ordained for us for this year. Can I hear an Amen?

Saturday – started by experiencing God’s healing, had a wonderful (however short) time brainstorming with the Gorgeous Social Media Army, and then misplaced my phone in a store! Two things: I found out on time, and then had the presence of mind to retrace my steps, and God being merciful, someone had found it, picked it and given to the manager of the store so I got it back! Yay!!!

Chanced upon an idea for a series of interviews I want to do on this blog, it’s too early to spill but stick around!

Sunday – end of what has become a beautiful week. Service was ‘on point’, and after the sermon the Pastor reiterated the need for us to talk to someone if we need help, encouragement, prayer, or anything. It’s true, I really believe that amongst other things, the house of God should be a place where we should be free to ‘lean on the shoulders’ of our brethren when we need to.

And that’s it, a summation of what my week has been! I’m looking forward to a wonderful new week, full of good news, and the fulfillment of all my desires. You should too!