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Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Nigeria's President Goes To Saudi Arabia To Pray For The Country


President Mohammadu Buhari of Nigeria, in the midst of a myriad of crises bedevilling the country, has seen it fit to jet out to Medina, Saudi Arabia, for the lesser hajj or umrah, where he will pray for the country. He had, less than 10 weeks into his presidency last year, recommended the introduction of two new books into the curriculum of all Federal Government Colleges across the country, an action he said was necessitated by the declining moral and religious values in the country.

Nigeria is battling dire crises on several fronts: there is the Boko Haram insurgency, an economy in tatters, a nosediving currency, an unacceptably high unemployment rate, restive youths in the Niger Delta where the oil, which accounts for at least 80 per cent of Nigeria's income, is located, and which has lost over 70 per cent of its value since it peaked at over $130 per barrel in 2012. But Mr President, who in less than nine months of being in office has spent almost as much time in Nigeria as he has junketing, sees prayers to the muslim god as the solution to his country's problem.

He of course took a retinue of party loyalists on the journey to the home of (sunni) islam including the governor of Borno state, where Boko Haram terrorists continue to kill and maim innocent citizens. I would offer advice, but let me not waste space, because even if president Buhari were to personally read this, it would not stop him from praying for the nation, and believing in the efficacy of his prayers to actually solve the country's seemingly intractable problems. But I would say this: great countries are not prayed into being; they are a product of plentiful blood, sweat and back breaking hard work, and the willingness to put these in, I must add. No country has ever, and will ever, pray its way to greatness.