October 9th, 2017 will not be forgotten in a hurry as witnessed in another anniversary of the World Post Day in NIPOST Osogbo District Office.
One of the key events of the anniversary was a paper presented by Mrs Idowu, B.O. ,senior Postal Controller in the District entitled ”Transforming the Post in an Enabling Economy to Align with Global System”.
Brief history of the universal postal union (UPU)was recalled as it came into being on 9th October,1874 as a unique agency for co-ordinating the postal policies among member nations. She referred to the economy of the world being in coma and Nigeria also not left out. She quickly pointed out that Nigeria had course to thank God because ”we are out of economic recession”.
However, she posited that the Federal government needs to focus on the potentiality of NIPOST to make her function very well in line with global posts.
According to her, NIPOST has been functioning well in her traditional roles of postal delivery, counter services, private mail bag delivery and the like. Also, new products such as logistics, IPS, sales of online NECO,WAEC registration cards and Electronic Money Transfer(I.F.S.) were introduced and effective but need improvement to generate more revenue.
Furthermore, that ,” to post post into prosperity, transformation must take place’ ‘She defined transformation as complete change in someone or something; which means that transformation ” we are clamouring for, could come through us (as NIPOST staff), the government ,in terms of policy implementation and financial commitment and also our customers patronages who are our partners in sustainable development of our services”. Therefore, according to the paper presenter, to transform the post in an enabling economy, the following panacea must be explored and effectively put in place:
– More investment in infrastructures and stronger government commitment to the postal sector, in order to enter the digital age more easily
– Efforts should be intensified to making NIPOST join the league of organizations issuing vehicle license, driving license and international passport as it is done in advanced countries.
– NIPOST should monitor both legal and illegal courier services.
-There should not be any digital gap between urban and rural areas, which means internet facilities must be installed in all offices .
– All staff should be marketers and marketing focused.
-Positive change ,must start with staff; change your orientation and think positively.
-Every product should be adequately valued eg. EMS, Logistics, Postcash etc; tell people about NIPOST products and be customers friendly.
– Do NIPOST business as your personal business. Let your slogan be ”if NIPOST succeeds it means Iam a success”.
Mrs Idowu rounded off the presentation by concluding that to transform the post in an enabling economy to align with global system is possible if there is improvement in infrastructures, innovation and better addressing system.
Finally, she said’ NPOST is firmly focused on the future and taking steps to
modernize ,grow her capacity and range of services but also not forget to motivate NIPOST staff in terms of better remuneration.
Every nation of the world has its culture or tradition of naming her new born baby. Among the white race, their style of naming is quite different from that of the Africans .A white man can name his child, Stone, Wood, Green, White, Wall and what have you. With the Africans, especially Nigeria and Yoruba race in particular; names given to children at birth are very significant and depend on the circumstances at birth.
In Yoruba grammar, a name can be spelt as the bearer of such name wants it. For example, the name-Abimbola can also be spelt Abinbola,Olayiwola can be spelt Layiwola without altering their meanings. This applies to a host of other Yoruba names. The examples of Yoruba names given above and their orthography(spelling) have meanings in relation to the circumstances of birth or lineages such people originated from. Their spellings notwithstanding, have not altered the meanings attached to them and they are not ambiguous or misleading.
To go to the pre-occupation of this piece, something ugly, demeaning and frustrating has crept into the way Yoruba people spell their names nowadays. They have changed the original and generally acceptable way of spelling Yoruba names which will portray them as Yoruba people. We don’t know what is the matter with these set of people, who still believe that until they interpolate English alphabets into their Yoruba names, they are not yet civilized. The question is –Is this civilization or self imposed colonization?
The alarming rate at which these Yoruba people change their names at will especially on facebook, twitter, etc is too worrisome. Please go through the following to see how insulting and misleading the spellings are: OLUWAFEMI- changed to-HOLLUWAPHEMY,OPEYEMI to-HORPEYYEMMY, ABOSEDE to-HABOZEDEY,OLADAYO to HAWLERDAYOH, the list is in exhaustive.
The above Yoruba names put in English spellings are not only wrong, but misleading not only to the young Yoruba folks but to foreigners interested in the language. It is too misleading to Yoruba folks who are just getting to understanding the Yoruba language and how names are correctly spelt.
Where are we heading to in Nigeria about our culture? What is wrong with these set of Yoruba people who had thrown away our culture and language for the foreign one? An Englishman or woman would rather acquire a Yoruba name instead of bastardizing it. A glaring reference is the late Yoruba culture Icon, SUZAN WENGER. Because of the affinity and respect she had for Yoruba culture, allowed herself to be called ‘’Adunni Orisa’’.
Yoruba language is gradually going into extinction viz-a-viz her culture and these set of people are not helping matters. They are enemies of culture and Yoruba race in particular.
China, is one of the fastest growing countries in the world in terms of technology.Yet, they use their indigenous languages as language of instruction in their schools. The same can be mentioned of Japan, one of the highly industrialized countries in the world. What is wrong with Nigerians? We don’t value what we have but prefers looking outside. It is high time the language experts and the education ministry did something about this ugly trend .We should value our language and culture and not trying to be other people. We should desist from being English more than the English people. Those involved in mutilating our language should have a re-think.
The day was bright and promising. I have just returned from work as a guardian to teenagers in a boarding house where one of them was sick and decided to take him to a nearby ‘Clinic’ in the highbrow estate in Ikoyi,Lagos. One spectacular thing about this ‘infamous clinic’ is that it has no signpost(and not planning to have one)because of the reason best known to the owner despite others in the neighbourhood having signposts in their various hospitals/clinics.
Most of the time,this lone ranger ‘doctor’ was not always in his clinic but allows patients to be admitted on menial ailments just to make his money. What they do is to place the patient on drips for the doctor to attend(if fortunate) to him two or three days later!
On that fateful dayas usual,he was not in the office. Idid all the registration/documentations for the boy and was diagnosed of typhoid(by the nurses) and put on admission. I was visiting the boy on regular basis at the hospital and the boy’s complaints each time was not able to see the doctor. Surprisingly, he was discharged the third day and was left to leave the hospital alone to go home and come back for his injections! I met the boy in the hostel when I returned from work and wondered why he left the hospital. He narrated his travail and vowed not to go back to the ‘clinic’ despite having injections to take. I calmed him and let him realised the implications of not completing the dose of prescribed injections.. He obliged but did not fail to recollect all the trauma he went through:bad ventilation,mosquitoes, bad food and a host of others.Mind you, he had not yet seen the doctor but only nurses.
The following day,in company of my superior officer,went to the clinic for a comprehensive report on the boy’s ailment and whether it was true he had been discharged ‘but the doctor was not available. We left the clinic but my boss left a message for the doctor to send his bills to the office for payment if it was true the boy had been discharged.
I repeated the visit the third day with the boy and yet the doctor was in the office but was quickly called on phone by his receptionist and surprisingly, in a jiffy made his way to his clinic and ushered us into his office. He gave a stern instruction to his receptionist not to allow anyone in and put the door under lock with key and put the key in his pocket!! I was flabbergasted.It was like a criminal in the dock giving evidence before the jury! To safe time, I opened the discussion by thanking him for his ‘efforts’ treating my boy and the information that he had been discharged. That we came together for him to receive the remaining injections.I did not forget to remind him that he should forward his bills to my office as earlier said.
To anybody who has witnessed a snake spit his venom before, such would be better imagined how strangely this ‘doctor’ began to vomit fire! To my consternation,he laced me with virulent and vituperative words for almost an hour! We became(me and the patient) a prey to this vampire ‘doc’ who did not stop with his display of shame and callousness but descended on my boss(in absence) as well.He posted horrible words at my boss-to use his words”I want you to to tell those useless people who sent you here so that they can come here to meet me…I will show them the stuff Iam made of….” When I could no longer stomach his unwarranted insults,threats,vituperation and scurrilous remarks on my personality and that of my boss,called him to order(forgetting that I was in a ‘dungeon’) afterall,we were his customers and customers ,no matter what happens ,as business etiquette is concerned are always right and we have not committed any crime to warrant such negative response. I cut in boldly and said”Mr man, I am not here to fight but to thank you and to see to the fomal discharge of the boy admitted in your hospital”. He became furious the more. He became ferocious.He rose from his seat and pounced on me like the infamous and inglorious Orji-the notorious cannibal of Lagos in the early 90’s. This self acclaimed Doc(as I later learnt that he is not a qualified doctor but married a nurse) stood;held me by the tie and pronounced that he would kill me.! Hear him”-You called me Mr man,who is your Mr man? I can kill you now and nothing would happen”. This was unbelievable in a civilized society with a supposedly ‘literate’ being who we all believe are engaged in humanitarian service. No wonder his office has no signpost!
I was terrified at this juncture. What filled my heart went beyond his wild moment.I was seeing poisoned injections,acidic knives or even forceful application of killer drugs on us. I kept calm and did not struggle or respond to all his threats and violent words,afterall,he who fights and runs away lives to fight another day. He had made up his mind to eliminate us and cover his tracks-he confirmed this in his statement of wrath,maybe he’s a professional at this.
Ask me what my boy ,the patient was doing? He was shivering,mouth agape and flabbergasted. He couldn’t believe what he was seeing. It was like a theatre of the absurd left for the two of us to watch alone.
My boy was looking at the two of us like a dodo but suddenly with tears in his eyes, he summoned courage and muttered some sympathetic words-”Please Sir, leave him for my sake” These few words worked like magic and the butcher withdrew his ‘knife’ and the day was saved from the vampire under the cassock of a medical doctor.He brought out his office key from his pocket and opened his office door for us ,having held us hostage for almost one hour! As we escaped from the ‘ doctor’s’ gulag, WE BURST INTO A VICTORY SONG AND PRAISES TO GOD that saved us from untimely grave.
Please take a cue from the above scenario; take somebody along whenever you want to visit a clinic or any stranger and let somebody be on the standby for you,awaiting your coming out . If you are arrested ,somebody will go back home to report.
By Idowu Akintunde.
Valentine Day is a unique day that is celebrated on February 14th. People in the United States, Canada, Australia and most European countries celebrate Val’s Day.
In Nigeria and other African countries, Valentine day has also been embraced and celebrated with pomp and pageantry.
Many people send greeting cards called Valentine’s to sweethearts,friends and family members. Some people send flowers or Candy to their wives,husbands,friends or sweethearts. Many Valentine candy boxes are heart shaped and adorned with red ribbon.
I recall with nostalgic how Valentine Day was celebrated during my secondary school days in the early60s-70s. Some days before February 14th,wrapped papers with the inscriptions of names of all students and staff would be passed round the school for all to pick a name. The name of the one you picked became your Valentine. On the Val Day itself,everybody would sit in a circumference on the school’s pitch or playground as the chief organizer opened the show ,mentioned his own name and requested to know his Valentine. His Valentine would emerge and they would exchange gifts or handshake. And this would go round until everybody was able to know and met with his or her Valentine. It was all fun lazed with light refreshment and we all looked forward to the D.DAY.
No one knows for sure how Valentine’s Day started. The idea of sending greetings on Valentine’s Day goes back more than a hundred years ago. Some people think this idea may have come from from events in the life of saint Valentine, a Christian Saint.
One story says that Valentine was a friend of many children. The Romans put him in prison because he believed in Jesus Christ and would not pray to Roman gods. The children missed Valentine and tossed loving notes to him through the windows of his jail cell.This story may explain why people send messages on Valentine Day.
Valentine cards were first sold in the early 18000’s. Many of them were blank inside, leaving a space for the sender to write a message.
Kate Greenaway, a British artist, became famous for her Valentine’s in the late 1800’s. Many of her cards had pictures of happy children and lovely gardens.Valentine’s include both humorous and romantic cards. Special ones are printed for sweethearts and for husbands,wives and relatives.
In Nigeria today,Val Day had been adopted and taken seriously. Lovers meet on February 14th every year to” show their love” for one another. Cinema houses, Malls are visited. They hold hands ,go for shopping and end up in one another arms. Some may be lucky to meet new friends on Val’s day. Many of the Val’s cards they give read”BE MY VALENTINE”
As you mark this year Valentine Day on February 14 ,remember to show love to your friends and neighbours. Beware of lust and don’t borrow unnecessarily to celebrate Valentine day-It is just a day.Husbands,wives,you are to show love and care always to your spouse and not just on February 14 alone. May the brotherly and sisterly love continue. Remember and love your country Nigeria too by doing the right thing to change it for better.
Happy Valentine Day.
and mass communications such as drums,town criers etc were employed as instruments of mass enlightenment and mobilization among various people of what we now know as Nigeria.
The role of the media cannot be over-emphasized not only in Nigeria but in the world. The media, always referred to as the forth estate of the realm is needed in the polity to preach change and educate people on how to go about national development. They are the conscience of the nation.
AREAS OF CONCERN:
1. USE OF MEDIA STRATEGIES-Nigeria as the father of the African countries needs the media to propagate national developments especially development at the rural levels. The media can help in nation building by effectively making use of national communication policies that spell out functions,politics, uses, ownership, control or regulation of the mass media,so that it will be employed sorely for national development. The media need to make use of communication or media strategies as information campaigns to change people’s beliefs, attitudes and behaviours for development purposes.
2 .SHUN POLITICAL PROPAGANDISTS
According to Jika ;1984” there are bourgeois or reactionary journalists who studiously continue to defend and propagate reactionary views , ideas,values and positions and who are used as fronts for ideological propagation of bourgeois values. Such journalists are megaphones and propagandists of the status quo. They are apologists of bourgeois domination. Apart from raising non-issues to fundamentals,primordial sentiments are elevated over and above issues of class” The aim being to confuse,obfuscates and becloud issues.
Nigeria media should shun those politicians and money bags who want to pocket them on the altar of Nigeria’s development.Politicizing developmental reportage is counter productive. In journalism, we were taught that the name of the business is ”publish and be dammed.” This is in order to put any government on its toes. Thanks to the freedom of information law? Accurate and adequate research , digging deep into the fabrics of governance will prevent overzealous and corrupt politicians and civil servants from dipping his/ her hands into the mud.
3. YOUTHS AS AGENTS OF CHANGE
Our media should focus more on the youths in this dispensation of change and righting the wrongs of the past. They are to hammer more on the youths and adults to developing positive attitudes toward work. It is an understatement that many of our youths no longer want to use their God-given talents but want cheap money or ‘national cake’. Yet they want to own fantastic buildings all over the country and overseas ,hence all sorts of cases such as ”baby factories, drug trafficking and kidnapping. The media are to bring this awareness to people that,everybody is inclusive when it comes to nation building and not the government alone.In fact,youths have vital roles to play in nation building as catalyst in the positive change ideology of the present government.Notwithstanding,we still have vibrant youths that are very intelligent,knowledgeable and are ready to do legitimate work. Some are innovators who need only to be assisted.
Human Development Report(1990) defined human development as ”a process of enlarging people’s choices” that are created by expanding human capabilities”The media are trying in this area with various articles,interviews,discussions on radio and television stations. More efforts should be geared towards making the government do what the poor people want that can better their lives.’ Apart from higher income ,poor people put a high value on adequate nutrition,access to safe drinking water, better medical facilities, better schooling for their children,affordable transport, adequate shelter,secure livelihood ,productive and satisfying job” The government should not serve itself but the people that put them in government,if truly,democracy is ”government of the people,by the people and for the people”. Not only the salaries and allowances of the elected senators and representatives are to be constantly adjusted or reviewed but also that of the civil servants;the peasants farmers making palm oil in our villages should also be encouraged by providing good roads, seedlings and other vital materials for them.
There are radical journalists who identified themselves with the ideas, values and aspirations of the marginalized classes and who despite intimidations by powers that be on their practices, continue to express and champion pro-revolutionary ideas, values and positions. But these brilliant,conscientious and bold journalists should not forget to always let those youths(and adults) involve in damaging people’s properties and calling them government properties know that directly or indirectly, they will have a bite of the hardship they are trying to create for people.They are impoverishing the poor more.The media should let them know that violence and destruction are not the solution to bring their desired change in their environments and the country as a whole. The media, along with other institutions such as political structures,cultural institutions,churches and mosques are super structures of any socioeconomic system and are to be utilized to bringing the desired positive change in our society.
Journalists are poorly remunerated. As a result of lack of resources or mismanagement and little or no professional motivation, not much of investigative journalism is seen these days.This aspect of journalism profession has always been the most hazardous to pursue,even in this critical time of economic doldrums. Efforts should be made to look into the salaries of journalists,provide insurance cover,pension and gratuities for them (especially the private media practitioners). These incentives will encourage those on active service and the budding ones preach the ideas of national developments with boldness, making their consciences and ethics of the profession their guiding lamp-post in deviant of personal interest.
By Akintunde Idowu
12:44 PM (0 minutes ago)
Find below men and women who in the past used words to despise God and the repercussions:
1.JOHN LENNON(Singer) many years ago,during an interview with an American Magazine,said”Christianity will end ,it will disappear. I do not have to argue about that. Iam certain. Jesus was OK,but his subjects were too simple,today we are more famous than Him”(1966).Lennon,after saying that the”Beatles” were more famous than Jesus Christ,was shot six times.
2.CHRISTINE HEWITT-(Jamaican Journalist and Entertainer) said,”The Bible,word of God was the worst book ever written”.In June 2006, she was found burnt beyond recognition in her motor car.
3. In Campinas, Brazil,a group of friends, drunk,went to pick a friend ………The mother accompanied her to the car and was so worried about the drunkenness of her friends and said to the daughter,holding her hand who was already seated in the car:”My daughter,Go with God and may He protect you”. She responded, ”only if He (GOD) travels in the Trunk, cause inside here…..it’s already full”.Hours later, news came in that they were involved in a fatal accident and everyone in the car died and the car could not be recognized.However, surprisingly,the Trunk was intact. Inside the trunk of the car was a crate of eggs,none was broken!
4. TANCREDO NEVES(Ex-President of Brazil),during the presidential campaign,said,”if he got 500,000 votes from his party,not even God would remove him from Presidency”. Truly, he got the votes,but he fell sick a day before being sworn in as President,he later died.
5.CAZUZA(Bi-sexual Composer,Singer and Poet)- During a show in Canecio(RIO deJANEIRO),while smoking his cigarette,puffed out some smoke into the air and said:”God, that’s for you’. He died at the age of 32 of Lung Cancer in a horrible manner.
6.MARILYN MONROE(Actress)- Billy Graham visited Marilyn Monroe during one of her presentations of a show. He said”the spirit of God had sent him to preach to her. After hearing what the preacher had to say,she said:’I don’t need your Jesus”. A week later, she was found dead in her apartment.
7. BON SCOTT(Singer) The ex-vocalist of the AD/DC.sang in one of his:songs:”I’m going down all the way,down the highway to hell”. On the 19th of February 1980, Bon Scott was found dead;he had been choked by his own vomit.
8. The man who built the TITANIC(a ship) after the construction of the Titanic ship,a reporter asked him how safe the Titanic would be? In an ironic and emphatic tone he said:”Not even God can sink it”. The truth is that the TITANIC set on sail but sank that same day.
Make a reflection on the above and bridle your tongue.
Farming is an age old profession. The genesis of farming could be traced to the garden of Eden(in the Bible)where God put the first people on earth-Adam and Eve.It has been practised by past generations and will continue to be by generations yet unborn. It is the most rewarding but highly neglected occupation in Nigeria.
At independence,farming was a hereditary career handed over to the son by the father.. A child followed his father to the farm and watched him did the job and learnt the rudiments of farming in the process. That was only for subsistence in nature and farming was done with crude implements -hoes and cutlasses.
INTRODUCTION TO SCIENTIFIC FARMING
Today,civilization or education has brought a lot of changes to agriculture. Science and technology have introduced mechanized farming and instead of hoes and cutlasses,mechanized devices such as tractors,mowers,and other machines are employed to weed,cultivate and harvest farm produce. However,majority of our farmers in Nigeria still depends on the obsolete implements which are are wearisome and frustrating. Full mechanized farming is mostly practised by the elite farmers who have access to the corridor of powers and use their political leanings to monopolise the machines.
LACK OF CONTINUITY OF GOVERNMENT POLICIES
In all Geo-political zones in Nigeria,there are suitable form of one agricultural products or the other. Now that oil has failed us,each of the state of the federation is involving and diverting attention to agriculture.Perhaps, one of the major constrains of Nigeria’s development apart from corruption in the polity can be attributed to lack of continuity of development policies on the part of the government and its indigenous development agencies..As such, numerous development programmes have suffered still-birth owing to abandonment by successive administrations.Some of the development programmes that are now relics of history include:OFN,GREEN REVOLUTION,DFRRI,FSP,FEAP,PAP etc.
In 1970s, General Gowon’s National Accelerated Food Production Programme and General Obasanjo OFN both concentrated on extending cultivable areas through large scale mechanized farms which were run inefficiently. The productivity problems of Nigeria’s peasants who accounted for over 90% of total agricultural output were ignored. The Shagari administration continued this agriculture programme but with a different tag-Green Revolution tailored towards agricultural development. What happened to it after Shagari’s era? Total neglect for quick to get oil glut.
As mentioned above, in Nigeria,successive governments have been known to have advocated a mass return to the land on the part of the youths of this country. They have posited that the destiny of this country is with the youths going back to the farms,hence the slogan”Back to land”. A critical examination of this reveals that the whole exercise is nothing short of delusion because it was not properly handled. No amount of television agriculture propaganda or campaign to score cheap political points will make the youths go back to the land unless the governments take pragmatic approach to bring a change to the use of obsolete agricultural implements used on farms. Farming should be made as attractive as pushing a pen. Most of the agriculture graduates are complaining of lack of patronage or discouragement in taking farming as their professions. Only few ones are lucky to be trained by governmente lucky to be trained by governments. Loans are difficult to come by and they still use crude implements and made to employ labourers on the farms with huge wages paid to them leaving them with little or no profits.
BENEFITS TO EXPECT FROM FARMING
There are numerous advantages in farming. Farmers get a lot of food from the farms freely which in turn will save a lot of money that could have been spent to buy them in the markets. Such money saved,may be used for other domestic purposes. As a professional or government, there is the opportunity to be involved in large scale farming. Produce from cash crops or arable farming can be utilized in the country and also export to foreign countries.This will earn us foreign exchange and positively affects our GDP There will be food in abundance at affordable prices both for the rich and the poor.
—Efforts should be made by governments to provide enough tractors for rentage at rock bottom fees and provide adequate seedlings for the established and would-be farmers.
— Loans should be made available to young and willing graduate farmers who want to be involved in farming
—Farmers should not be heavily taxed as it has been the practice in the past to encourage them on the farms.
—Governments at the Federal and local levels must create a monitoring team who will see to the genuine distribution of farming implements,seedlings and even loans to the ready farmers and youths.
—-There should be price incentives and guaranteed profitable producer backed up by well run countrywide buying organisations for farmers who choose to engage with them.
—-Wide Silos and other storage facilities should be developed.
—-There should be a reduction in waste and inefficiency by governments handling the distribution of local and imported fertilizer to private organisations.
—-Some of the governments reserved lands could be leased out to farmers and young graduates .These lands are usually used for low cost housing estates which mostly are not affordable by the middle-level workers meant for because of the high prize tag on them
—-Also , the rubber plantation in the East,groundnut pyramid in the North and Cocoa plantation in the South-West should be REVIVED.to boost our local consumption and foreign reserves.
The government should stop playing politics with farming. Farmers in Nigeria are still poor and regarded as voiceless in the scheme of things,be it business, politics and what have you. This is not so in advanced countries such as Ceylon,USA,India, China etc.These countries are prosperous because they take farming and farmers seriously.
The country, Nigeria is suffering in the midst of plenty because of past governments lip service or lackadaisical attitude towards it because of cheap oil glut that has now back pedaled and snowballed us to square one.Nigeria should be able to achieve self sufficiency in such produce as: :yam,maize,cassava,beans,rice etc and even export surpluses within a reasonable period of time if some of these suggestions are taken seriously for implementation.
MENACE OF GAMBLING
Gambling has reached an alarming rate all over the world.It has caused a lot of woes to individuals,homes, and a large percentage of the youths.In Massachusetts,about 47% of the 7th graders and 3/4 of high school Seniors,have played the lottery.A Louisiana State University shows that Louisiana youngsters in juvenile detentions are roughly four times as likely to have a serious gambling problem as their peers.2/2 of the hardcore gamblers in detentions admitted stealing specifically to finance gambling.”Even where rules forbid gambling in schools, studies indicate as many as 8% of Teens are already hooked on gambling”. Betting also threatens the integrity of the Collegiate athletics. A national study by the University of Michigan found 45% of male College football and basketball players admit to gambling on sports, despite rules explicitly prohibiting such acts”.
In Nigeria,there is no reliable or accurate data to the percentage of gamblers but what can be established is that as late as 1960s, pools staking and Casino game otherwise known as “kalokalo”( derived from the way the casino machine swallows the inserted coin have been with us. The pools staking though fading away, yet pockets of adherents still patronise the hide and seek game of chance!
However, the one in vogue now is the ”Baba Ijebu”(name derived probably from the patron’s home town), the mind -set is given as games of probability which most of the time may end in pains, sorrow and blood! Researches indicate that from every part of Nigeria,Lagos, Abuja, Enugu,Ijebu, Abeokuta and Kano to mention few, rate of gambling has doubled in recent times. There is also the betting on sports which is not only among the working class or sports fans but also among the artisans and elites.Some people posited that unemployment or economic doldrums or frustration made and still making a lot pf people to go into gambling in order to make quick money. But the question is ,are they really making the money? The answer is rhetorical. Right from the time of pools staking in the 1960s,and till now,pools staking and betting have been thriving,not because there were no legitimate jobs then to do, but the mind-set to getting rich quickly.If we can rightly surmise, the percentage of those who have made huge money from these games of chance ,it will be as low as 2%. Laziness and wrong association have been adduced as part of the reasons for gambling. Teenagers enticed to gambling may start picking pockets at bus stops or Malls to get money in order to satisfy the lust for money to gamble and when not satisfied lured into armed robbery or other vices.
GAMBLING AMONG YOUTHS IN BOARDING SCHOOLS/HOSTELS
The alarming rate at which gambling has penetrated the youths extends also to our schools especially students in the boarding houses/hostels -whether in the universities or colleges. Sometimes,some adults that have been exposed to gambling in the cities introduce ”the business” to the young and innocent ones and they start the ”gaming” thing as a play or trivial thing until they gravitate to a big- time gambling using big money , material things and the like in order to prove to their colleagues or mates that they are ”big” or ”civilized”. At times during gambling,the other party may be cheated ; argument may lead to confrontation and blood spilling.They do all these even when they are supposed to be reading their books or resting most especially in the night time.
If by the definition earlier quoted above ,that gambling is a scheme to escape labour,the victims are drones not ready to do hard and legitimate work before making money..They are” the covetous,foolish and over-ambitious ones. What do they spend the money gained on? Majorly, they spend the ”gains” from gambling or betting on frivolous escapades. They spend the ”gains” on parties, booze,prostitutes,illicit drugs and what have you. Some adults get back home to beat and nag their wives having lost all their stakes. They refuse to shoulder their domestic responsibilities. Some even go as far as selling their ‘prized’ properties to gamble whenever they are broke or out of cash,yet they refuse to quit this monstrous game . Those in schools on the other hand, are jittery and not doing serious study.They skip lectures to gamble, make some money(if ‘lucky’) and end up in narcotic jungles. By this acts, some have gone insane and dropped out of schools.Many of them have been stabbed by co-gamblers and have lost their precious lives in the process.
Thomas Jefferson said”Gambling corrupts our dispositions,and teaches us the habit of hostility against mankind”. The great statesman,Benjamin Franklin said in’ Poor Richard’s Almanac’ concerning gambling-”Keep flax from fire, youth from gambling”. All these postulations from these great men and widely traveled and experienced public figures should not be waved off as inconsequential. They are much concerned about the extent of damage gambling had done, is doing and would still be doing if not curtailed
1. Engage in Dignified Jobs-Youths can look for other menial jobs that will provide them with regular income on daily basis without the permutation formula of the pools staking and ”Baba Ijebu’s” creation. Youths should take their future seriously and disregard gambling as an alternative to escape labour. Gambling should not be regarded as a legitimate profession. Many people that took to gambling in the past ended up in zero .They must believe that there is dignity in labour but not the cheap and undignified venture like gambling.
Parents should truly know their children’s intimate or casual friends,research into their backgrounds and be cautious of the money that flow into the hands of their teenagers. Teenagers should be taught money management and living within their means,no matter how meager it may be-contentment with Godliness is great gain.
The government should not be complacent only on the gains from gambling operators that come in from taxation. She should understand that the future of her youths is sine-qua-none to present and future developments. Of what use is a youth who supposed to be an inventor but abandons his highly prized ambition for gambling and eventually ends up in gaol or become a nuisance and liability to the society? If possible,strict control, and close monitoring should be put in place to discourage children from going the way of gambling. Radio,TV jingles should make this a priority to discourage our youths from involving themselves in this wild games.The ministry of information,both at federal and state levels will help in this area. The National Orientation Agency should also be involved in the awareness campaigns.The newspapers and magazines available should not relent in their efforts to discouraging gambling in their write-ups.
A WORD FOR THE WISE
Investigations revealed that casino machines are built to favour the operators.That about 80-90% of the winning numbers go to the patron and the chance to win is very slim.Yet,the attraction to make money is very high.No wonder we find even some public figures involving in gambling! Of recent a video clip on the internet revealed one Nigeria popular musician in a gambling mood. What an irony of life and bad example to the youths! Gambling encourages laziness and violates God’s commandments. The foundation and attraction to it is excessive love of money.
By conclusion, George Washington frequently quoted the French proverb”Gambling is the child of (greed),the brother of iniquity and the father of mischief”. Youths and adults should shun gambling and use their God given talents to better their lot.
By: IDOWU JULIUS