John F. Kennedy’s “Ich bin ein berliner”

I am proud to come to this city as the guest of your distinguished Mayor, who has symbolized throughout the world the fighting spirit of West Berlin. And I am proud to visit the Federal Republic with your distinguished Chancellor who for so many years has committed Germany to democracy and freedom and progress, and to come here in the company of my fellow American, General Clay, who has been in this city during its great moments of crisis and will come again if ever needed.

Two thousand years ago the proudest boast was “civis Romanus sum.” Today, in the world of freedom, the proudest boast is “Ich bin ein Berliner.”

I appreciate my interpreter translating my German!

There are many people in the world who really don’t understand, or say they don’t, what is the great issue between the free world and the Communist world. Let them come to Berlin. There are some who say that communism is the wave of the future. Let them come to Berlin. And there are some who say in Europe and elsewhere we can work with the Communists. Let them come to Berlin. And there are even a few who say that it is true that communism is an evil system, but it permits us to make economic progress. Lass’ sie nach Berlin kommen. Let them come to Berlin. Continue reading “John F. Kennedy’s “Ich bin ein berliner””

The Epetedo Declaration – Chief MKO Abiola

The Epetedo Declaration

People of Nigeria, exactly one year ago, you turned out in your millions to vote for me, Chief MKO Abiola, as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. But politicians in uniform, who call themselves soldiers but are more devious than any civilian would want to be, deprived you of your God-given right to be ruled by the president you had yourselves elected.
These soldiers introduced into our body politic, a concept hitherto unknown to our political lexicography, something strangely called the “annulment” of an election perceived by all to have been the fairest, cleanest and most peaceful ever held in our nation.
Since that abominable act of naked political armed robbery occurred, I have been constantly urged by people of goodwill both in Nigeria and abroad to put the matter back into the people’s hands and get them to actualize the mandate they gave me at the polls.
But mindful of the need to ensure that peace continues to reign in our fragile federation, I have continued to pursue sweet reason and negotiation. My hope has been to arouse whatever remnants of patriotism are left in the hearts of those thieves of your mandate, and to persuade them that they should not allow their personal desire to rule to usher our beloved country into an era of political instability and economic ruin. Continue reading “The Epetedo Declaration – Chief MKO Abiola”

I have a dream… that our tomorrow will come!

I have a dream… that our tomorrow will come
It has become a common joke by Nigeria’s teeming comedians, repeated at every “crack ya rib” event to the animated delight of their audience. Everyone, parents and children alike, laugh at it but foolishly fail to see the wisdom in it and take caution. This joke is a reflection of a great disservice and cankerworm that has infested the rich, blood veins of a very important relationship. However, the ignoring of this jocular but serious warning should not come as a surprise to us because the late Chinua Achebe said it all in his book Things Fall Apart that ”He whom the gods will kill they first make mad.” What is this belaboured truth that hurts so much yet is most ignored? That has been rife in the mouths of I-go-die, Basketmouth and their cronies? It is this; “Years ago our parents told us that we are the leaders of tomorrow, but years later we are still being waiting to lead. It is either tomorrow has not come or our parents lied.” Our parents have refused to lead well and have also refused to pass the baton. Continue reading “I have a dream… that our tomorrow will come!”

Who is Japheth Omojuwa

I read the king who danced naked more than two decades ago and it never ceased to baffle me why people will be so afraid never to tell a king his fault to the extent he will be naked and his advisors will say he is wearing the best apparel. This story was brought to the fore of my mind two days ago when I watched Rome (the series film) and subjects were clapping for Mark Anthony who was pathetically practicing a duel with his Aide camp, Veronius. Nobody could whisper to his ears that he was a mockery of himself and far gone in spirit to replicate the feat of the able general that nations dreaded and Romans loved. It was at that moment I pitied royalty. It was definitely hard to separate praise-singers from truth-tellers.

Just yesterday the twitter world was agog by a seemingly offensive statement that one of their own made on television; Japheth Omojuwa. He was quoted by Channels Television on their Rubbin’ minds to have said that “our noise on social media is achieving more than Gani (Fawehinmi) did” Immediately he got out of set the mudslingers were at work and for the first time since following him on twitter I saw a flustered JJ trying to explain that he did not and could not say such a thing against the venerated activist Gani Fawehinmi. Friends and enemies came to his aid and @omojuwa even got his much needed I love you no matter what everybody says you said. But did he really say what they say he said? Continue reading “Who is Japheth Omojuwa”

Walter Rodney’s How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

There may be more questions raised than answers proffered in Walter Rodney’s classic but we seek to summarize the book whilst importing a critical look to complement the book.

CHAPTER ONE

Some Questions on Development

1.1 What is Development?

Development defined as a process of change is, according to Walter Rodney, many-sided involving individualism, social stratification/castes, and the society at large. This development is represented in the context of increased skill, greater freedom, creativity, self-discipline, responsibility and material well-being. However, during the course of this discourse Walter Rodney’s greater attention was directed at material well-being, freedom and skill.
Individual development, though sometimes moral, is tied to the overall development of the state. At the level of social groups, development implied an increasing capacity to regulate both internal and external relationships while for the society at large, development has exhibited strength to single-handedly improve their ability to live better lives through harnessing the earth’s resources available to them. Africa, construed to be the home of man, is not excluded in this regard.
The advent of tools greatly impacted economic development positively no matter how crude they were. However, human industry was beset by varying degrees of setback as they sought to achieve economic development. Using early China as an example, circumstances propelled their discovery of man-made fire and planting seeds. The resultant economic prosperity was evenly distributed equally amongst families. By the time of the T’ang dynasty of the 7th century AD, this quantitative growth progressed into qualitative changes that became evident in the structured political clime of the Chinese society and in specialization and division of labour which resulted in more production. Continue reading “Walter Rodney’s How Europe Underdeveloped Africa”