“Our economy doesn’t work as well or grow as fast when a few prosper at the expense of a growing middle class and ladders for folks who want to get into the middle class.“–Obama
As a responsibility to the nation, can we invest in small businesses or at least grow the existing ones we own or support with the view that a well structured and growing business is a huge contribution to the society? Anytime a business fails, peoples’ opportunities tend to shrink. Lets not deliberately kill our or other peoples’ businesses. It is unethical to do so and that is not what is called competition. People prosper the more when the community is prospering generally. Consumption for goods and services tend to rise supporting all in the community while creating opportunity for all. The idea that ones success is help by the exclusion of others suggests a limit to industry or country growth. Indeed, this is a scarcity mentality, which is myopic in its view. Wealthy people generally live in wealthy countries. Have you not wondered how the huge level of selfishness captured in the corruption of African countries has only produced few billionaires? National wealth, without a doubt, supports individual wealth better.
Beyond this, we must stand up to fight against identified monopolies. The presence of monopolies in countries are injurious to the middle class and SMEs. It frustrates those trying to climb the ladder by creating artificial barriers to entry. The presence of active competition helps to stimulate innovation and value to customers. The combination of innovation and value orientation improves the competitiveness of the population, which is a good thing. This is why developed economies have antitrust legislations, which protect smaller companies and give them a fighting chance within reason. Remember that smaller companies cumulatively employ more people than huge companies, which leverage economies of scale, bargaining power and invest in automation that requires less people.
Doing well in whatever we undertake to do as well as allowing others do their best is great service to us all as a nation and as a people.
“We can argue about how to best achieve these goals. But we can’t be complacent about the goals themselves. For if we don’t create opportunity for all people, the disaffection and division that has stalled our progress will only sharpen in years to come.”–Obama
Lets look for the things we agree on, and they are many. Even if we disagree about how best to achieve the goals, we should never disagree about the goals themselves, as they remain our rallying point to judge performance. Generally most people want approximately the same thing. We all want a better life, development within our borders, Nigeria for all Nigerians without any form of discrimination or exclusion. We need an improvement in the ease of doing business here in Nigeria. Sometimes we think that only foreign investors are affected, but local ones even more, as they have no alternative. People should be allowed to be what they want to be and pursue their own destinies. It is frustrating sometimes how we discriminate against our citizens not on the ground of ability, but tribe, religion, age, gender etc. Not every body wants to be CEO but yet will perform at their role against any prescribed standard, so why exclude ages over 29 years from beginning a career in some banks? I have always wondered. You will note that developed countries have somewhat moved from this bad idea.
Too much of everything, including arguments is bad. Regulation is good but when the parameters of regulation are not clear and regulators like NAFDAC take forever to certify goods, I wonder who benefits? We should serve the nation and her citizens, we should help them achieve the standards quickly not frustrate them. Personal gains may gratify in the short run, but it is what has destroyed the hope of many. Lets reach compromises and focus on a way out at a time. Arguing does not allow us attempt things. It keeps us stuck in one place, holding our ground but going nowhere. For example, is it not time to try a regional structure within true federalism? This balkanization called state have served us poorly. Let us try something else, it is our country and we can change our mind about how it should be run.
“If every economic issue is framed as a struggle between a hardworking white middle class and an undeserving minority, then workers of all shades are going to be left fighting for scraps while the wealthy withdraw further into their private enclaves. If we’re unwilling to invest in the children of immigrants, just because they don’t look like us, we will diminish the prospects of our own children — because those brown kids will represent a larger and larger share of America’s workforce”–Obama
Really, we need not focus on our tribe and tongue when it comes to economic issues. Money does not have a language; we all suffer from the impact of the lack of it. Sometimes it does not occur to us that the unwillingness to invest in northern education by taking the standard up or in southern infrastructure for whatever political or tribal reason only serves to weaken our federation and makes things worse for our children—may God help their soul. Why are we not for example developing our solid mineral resources? Why are northerners not being employed in the south or southerners in the north? Why are Itsekiris, Ijaws and Urhobos tentative on real peace? Yet we marry each other. This deception should really stop. We do not need Anioma state for the Ibos in Delta state to have a sense of belonging otherwise we will soon find out that the Kwale man is different from the Agbor man or Ogwashi-uku is really different from Onitsha-ugbo.
Truly our demography is changing. The earlier we de-emphasis tribe and tongue and focus on the real issues the better. If we do not build structures that restrain our society to justice and fairness throughout Nigeria we will be surprised as to what fairness will represent in the future. Lets build the country for us all and throw up any tendency that sponsors sectionalism in any way. Though tribe and tongue may defer, we must focus on our brotherhood. Working for the superiority of a tribe may make your tribe appear successful, but it weakens our collective ability to work together as a nation. Together is better.