Election palaver — Opinion — The Guardian Nigeria News – Guardian Nigeria

Ekiti election. Photo/facebook/JKayodeFayemi/
Sir: I didn’t know that those like me who are clamouring for a paradigm shift in our political leaders don’t mean well for the country. How would I have known that those of us who are telling young people to be part of the change that we want are wasting our time? 
I am laughed at for rooting for a younger person who can change the face of Nigeria forever. I am scorned for believing in a candidate that wants to fight corruption by not being corrupt himself. I have tagged a social media voter when I try to sell my candidate. Even when I tell them I have my PVC and will be there to vote they don’t take me seriously.
They keep saying my candidate does not have a “political structure.” When I tell them the structure is the people they laugh all the more. They want me to continue the business as usual that has kept Nigeria from reaching its full potential.
They taunt me day and night. Their voice for me to join them in thwarting what seems a promise for a new Nigeria has become strident. Their harassment and bullying have got into me. 
Then they tried to lure me and induce me with dollars. I refused them. They tested my resolve by increasing the money. They kept on at it, more dollars after dollars. 
Then I buckled at the knees. The temptation was too much for me to bear. I could not beat them, so I joined them! Who was I to have even refused them? What did I have before? Now I can boast in dollars. Who wouldn’t succumb? A better tomorrow for Nigerians can wait. It’s my turn. Yes, it’s my turn to chop. 
Money is everything. The one I can see is better than the one that I can’t ever see. Why pitch tents with someone who is not ready to share even one naira? A very stingy man. I don’t want to be associated with that kind of person. It’s the only grammar that he can speak. Can grammar put food on my table? That campaign is a one-man thing anyway. Whatever momentum it has will soon fizzle out. 
The future of Nigerian children does not matter to me so long as another politician can buy me off. What’s my own if Nigerian children don’t have decent places to attend schools? As long as I can get my piece of the pie, I can send my children to the best schools in Nigeria and abroad.
Does it matter to me if the number of poor people has increased in Nigeria? It’s even written that the poor you will always have in your midst. But I have walled my home with a high fence to separate me from them. Some may say I have betrayed the cause. But my bank account remains loyal to me. Stomach infrastructure is the real deal. Corruption is only in the eyes of the beholder. That’s just the way it is. 
Then I buried my head in the sand — and wept!
• Dr Cosmas Odoemena is a medical practitioner in Lagos. 

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