Dear Brothers and Sisters of Borno,
I consider myself one of you, and God knows I am in spirit, struggle, pain and hopeful perseverance. Our governor has decided to make 5,000 of us street and government building cleaners. This was contained in an urgent promo published across all dailies this Friday by Borno State Environmental Protection Agency Coordinator, Nasiru Surundi. They say we are to be cleaning shops, markets, streets and government offices as “street vanguards” for N10, 000 monthly.
I know 100s of thousands of us unsecure youth are in desperate need of money, but I write this letter to ask you if what you want and think you deserve from your administration is to be hired by the government as cleaners? If government offices are dirty why do they not get on their fours and clean it themselves as public servants handsomely compensated for next to nothing?, is a question we ask.
Dear great youth. If we do not stand for ourselves, no one will. I commend you as I always have for being the patriotic ones who believed and who paid the ultimate price, fought and died to save your communities when the army ran; saving the capital Maidiguri as a home for you and displaced millions. Had it not been for you, Boko Haram would long have captured the entire State long time ago. As reward for this alone, if money was all that mattered, you deserve the yearly N50 million budgeted without condition! Not to be disrespected and told to be street cleaners. We know how these very officials have plundered 100xs as much for doing nothing other than putting us in harm’s way, aiding and abetting Boko Haram while failing to feed, arm and support us who fought them.
Dear comrades. I urge you to stand for your rights along with your dignity. The two go hand in hand. Our patience cannot be bought with a mere 5,000 of us being humiliated with N10,000 each when we know what we deserve and what has been stolen from us, can it?
If N300, 000 is invested in small enterprises it yields 4 permanent jobs on average worldwide! That’s about how much our government intends to use to buy two of us’ loyalty over a year span in stipends. If our government had a true conscience, will they not use this same money to invest with us rather in aiding us procure what it takes to set up small businesses whereby the same funds for just one year will get 10,000 of us permanently employed and small business entrepreneurs? Of course, with some of us deciding to run street and building cleaning enterprises that may hire Nasirus to do the cleaning, at our own volition? But this government has lost its ability to think.
This government that begs for an amnesty for Boko Haram so their sins can be covered; a recurrent pattern in Borno where and why Mohammad Yusuf was allegedly killed to cover their sins, is at it again. I am not even sure in their proposition for an amnesty for Boko Haram they have written that Boko Haram killers should be made street cleaners after pardon. I bet you in that proposal they gave Buhari, they opted for the surrendering terrorists to be shipped abroad to aviation schools, whereas they are so insolent to declare they want their brave sons who did what the army would not, to be street cleaners….ad this while mercenaries are still being paid to fight the fight we fight, for $400 (N100, 000)/ day. And then they ask why there is terror in Borno. No it is not because of poverty; terror has absolutely nothing to do with poverty! The terror is the child of the corrupt cluelessness, insults and injustice.
Proverbs 22; HCSB: 22 “Don’t rob a poor man because he is poor, and don’t crush the oppressed at the gate, 23 for the Lord will take up their case and will plunder those who plunder them.”
Narrated Ibn ‘Abbas (R.A): “The Prophet (pbuh) sent Mu’adh to Yemen and said, “Be afraid, from the curse of the oppressed as there is no screen between his invocation and Allah.” Volume 3, Book 43, Number 628: Sahih Bukhari.
This is my word to you.
We will shame our adversaries. I believe I can count on you.