By Steven Atogi 

January 26, 2017.

There are lots of people in North who have come to terms with the reality of this Buhari's administration. Majority fall within the Talakawa class. The Talakawa does not have the luxury of owning a browsing phone, Facebook or Twitter account, and data to exploit these social media as easier means of expression. However, the Northern middle class can afford it and duly exploit it in expressing themselves. The few within the middle class who are vociferous of the true nature of things and their plight are shouted down or hushed to silence. They are cyberbullied to silence by two set of persons on social media. 

First, their fellow Muslims or Northerners who use religion to blackmail and silent them. Those who speak up are labelled anti-Islam, anti-North, brother-hater, etc. Simply because they own up to the truth, voiced out their plight and that of those who social media is a luxury they can't afford. The second set is made up of persons from the South. They rage and haunt anyone from the North who expresses dissatisfaction with Buhari's style of governance like a spectre.

They usually begin their reply to the comment of the one from North by stating "I didn't know there are still reasonable persons in the North..." and sometimes ends the comment with "...but you guys caused it so enjoy the hardship." Or something similar. They use derogatory terms to address the one from North, terms like  "Foolani, cow brain, illiterate etc." And the reply emerge in tenfold as those of the first set rise to butcher their acclaimed "brother" the more and the ignoramus from the South simultaneously. These ones use terms like "Nyanmiri, kafir, ogogoro drinkard(drunkard), baby factory product etc." They make statements like "go and drink your oil," "you haters of PMB go and hang yourself," etc. 

Unfortunately, it does not occur to these ordinary folks at each others neck, that while they declare cyber-warfare on each other, the elites whose behalf they fight, unite and share State wealth. Yes, the elites: politicians, traditional rulers, religious leaders, businessmen, professors, generals etc. protect their class interest. The working class, the children of the workers and the unemployed are their bait. They have successfully indoctrinated the ordinary citizens to see their kind as the enemy. They use religion, ethnicity, region and other invisible divisive lines as measures of control and manipulation of the ordinary Nigerians. 

You! Yes, you the average citizen. While you are at loggerhead with your own kind, the elites unite and share amongst themselves what is rightly yours. They build mansions in Dubai, London, Paris, and other capitals of the world. They buy private jets, and own companies overseas. Their families are based abroad. While your own kids are denied quality education, the elites' kids go to the best schools in the  world. You queue under scorching sun to vote, sometimes you are maim in the process of protecting your vote, the unlucky ones are killed. 

You are denied adequate and affordable healthcare system. You ply the worst roads on earth, more like death traps. You suffocate in odoriferous public buses as you commute to work, while the teenage child of your preferred messiah elite own expensive cars, that if sold can generate enough capital to patch the bad roads you ply. You have never experienced 24hours uninterrupted power supply for a month in your entire adult life. But, you miss the point. You salivate at the elites' opulence. You admire the elites' greed. You are enslaved in the mind that you crave to be like them, greedy, callous, powerful and oppressive. You miss the point, you worship your oppressor. You swallow all the rationalisations of the elite  Professors' quasi-philosophies used in subduing your mind.

You are the victim of bad leadership in the history of Nigeria. You are oppressed and deprived economically, educationally and politically. You are turned against your fellow countrymen. You are psychological manipulated by the elites' gimmicks to think that you and your kind are the problem–you are gaslighted easily by the leaders who roam with impunity and reject accountability. You can not organise a purposeful and peaceful protest without being killed, molested, arrested and tortured. The state security apparatus is at their disposal and it dances to their whims and caprices. But you are told the security Forces are for your own protection.

These things happen to you in different ways, at different times. But, have you asked yourself the critical question? Who is really the enemy? The enemy of the state? Do you know the power you have? The power of the people is greater than the people in power, do you know? When you go to market, is the price of common goods reduced because of your religion, ethnicity or party affiliation? Think, think, dear Nigerian. Antagonising each other to silence is at your own peril. Surely, two persons may disagree but that is the beauty of democracy, let powerful logic lead the way. Be conscious, irrespective of whatever divisive tendencies the elites apply in attempt to manipulate you. You are not the problem, the leaders are. Do not be silent whether you are from the Northern or Southern part of Nigeria, resist fighting your kind and redirect your energy to the real enemy. Just as the renown scholar and activist, Ken Saro-Wiwa, once said "silence is treason."

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