Davido’s new music for Nigeria’s excluded majority
THE excluded in Nigeria are expanding clusters of the ill, diseased, elderly, orphans, widows, unemployed, pensioners, the deprived, the oppressed, out-of-school children, and more of those left out of Nigeria’s gravy train. They are generally described on the streets as the “unconnected”. They are in the majority. The search for connections has led many of them to further ruins at the hands of faith-based entrepreneurs of all swings.
Musician David Adeleke, better known as Davido, chose a different path on his 29th birthday with the mobilising of N250 million, mainly from his friends, which he donated to orphanages across Nigeria. It was an inclusive and thoughtful birthday for one whose background should distance him from the under-privileged – he should not feel their pains.
If the resources are well used, they could give some children a chance of a momentary relief even if from a trickle. How can the drops of Davido kindness provoke (one of Sunday Oliseh’s favourite words) us into creating a living stream of ceaseless goodness and mercies expressed in different ways we help the excluded to be embraced in the main stream of society?
The new music of Davido in his birthday should not be seen from the amount raised or the cause he chose for the money. The message in his new music is about looking out for the excluded. We do not need money, all the time, to do this. Who needs money to ensure pensioners get their dues when due?
Davido has been misunderstood already. Some are making up new lists of orphanages for his attention. Others think he should have given out more money. He is rich enough to do that.
Nigeria’s inhuman society thrives on dehumanising others and pushing the blames. In worse cases we tar everyone with the blames. We seem to feel better in collective guilt and collective concentration in doing nothing about anything.
A winning politician makes a point of rubbing the exclusivity of victory on the other’s face. In private life the difference is not much. We are quickly growing into a society where success is defined by how far we are from the sufferings of others though 0ur interests could be the sources of the afflictions.
Those who succeed mount celebrations of their escape from poverty mostly at the expense of others. More people are excluded from benefiting from being Nigerians through daily policies that sustain exclusion by denying them basic rights to minimal things they need to live and lift their household from the strangulating consequences of poverty.
Lessons are plentiful from Davido. Are we willingly to learn them? We do not have to do anything in the magnitude of a Davido if we cannot afford it. We can do something about improving the lot of the hapless, helpless, who are in the last stream of their diminishing hopes.
We do not have to be musicians to help them. Millions of Nigerians can benefit from our little kindnesses wherever we are. They may not have viral acknowledgements as Davido’s, but they would make loads of differences to the lives of millions of people who kindnesses, irrespective of the size, would change their lives and perception of humanity.
The days ahead will be more trying. The Federal Government has served notice of its determination to double the price of fuels soon. We depend on fuels for our vehicles, factories, and electricity. Government is regurgitating the same self-serving reasons about the price of the products elsewhere. The proposed prices are not solutions. If the Naira continues to weaken, we would continue to pay more.
Government is no longer about solutions like having working refineries. The show times for alternative sources of energy are over.
More Nigerians would be poorer overnight if the prices of fuels are increased according to the proposals. The already excluded would be most hit. There would be less jobs, less social nets to fall into and the strive for survival would drain more of our humanity.
Davido’s example is timeous. We can multiple the Davido formula in giving others a chance in life. A good item in the Davido recipe is inclusiveness. We can together do more for more people. In education, entrepreneurship, skills acquisition, health, employment, security, protecting our environments, and in skills explorations, there are needs the Davido template can meet.
While governments dwell on market forces, inflation, and other economic befuddlements to justify their refusals to enlist the security and welfare of the people as the primary purpose of government – Section 14 (2) b of the 1999 Constitution – we, the people, can invest ourselves in pulling up the excluded from the morass of dehumanisation.
Happy birthday and thanks very much Davido for reminding us that there is more in us that we can use for others.
A SECONDAY school student was jailed for three-week for threatening a teacher’s life. In another secondary school, all in Ogun State, students thoroughly beat up policemen, including the Divisional Police Officer, who were called in to bring order to the school. These behaviours are not peculiar to Ogun State. Our society is under-going rapid degeneration. It appears to be no major concern whether for parents or governments.
THERE is effective, illegal community policing in Gwarinpa, an Abuja estate. From 10pm unfailingly, policemen at Galadima Gate reduce 6th Avenue to one lane. Every keke that passes for the two hours or so that the operation lasts must pay N100, no reasons, no excuses are accepted for not paying. Residents returning home in those hours pay either higher fares or risk not convincing keke riders to make the trip. Someone should consider the plight of those who cannot afford to keep funding these police operations that I learnt are normal in many parts of Nigeria.
LIVES were lost, some injured, property destroyed but the Federal Government and the Lagos State Government in tandem are working hard to sustain the claim that the massacre at the Lekki Toll Gate on 20 October 2020 did not happen. Why do our government officials find it so difficult to admit that they are human beings and that they make fatal mistakes?
.Isiguzo is a major commentator on minor issues