No one denies the fact that symbolism is a greater part of the human culture expressions. A symbol is a reality that points to another reality. The former being merely a pseudo depiction of the beingness of the later which is more a quintessential. In other words, a symbol is less the center of attraction than the object or reality which it represents.
If you ask me what symbol should represent a nation, I would say the president.
Since his controversial inception into office in 2007, president Umaru Musa Yarâ€™ adua, a supposedly symbol of Nigeria as a country, had been sickly. Obviously in Nigeria, mental and physical health of public officials are not prerequisites for their electabilities. Otherwise, Yarâ€™adua would not have been the president. But my point in this write-up is not to question his presidency but to make a critical analysis of the symbolism of his illness to Nigeria as a Nation.
Few days ago, I was reading a news on Yarâ€™aduaâ€™s medical problems and how it had crippled Nigeria progressively. Instantly, my mind roamed aimlessly on this issue until it stumbled across a seemingly funny coincidence between the Yarâ€™aduaâ€™s illness and Nigeriaâ€™s illness.
Consequently, it seems undeniable that the much talked about medical condition of the president is a clear pictogram or rather a symbol of the Nigeriaâ€˜s national illness. The country is simply sick. And it appears that our frantic efforts to revitalize her proves sterile as had been shown by Yarâ€™Aduaâ€™s stubborn illness.
I would not like to sound like the apologetics of the religious zealots, but I would at least presume that God is telling Nigeria something at this time in her history. And that is: â€˜look Nigerians, your presidentâ€™s illness is a symbolism of your national illness. Do something now and quickly or she would die(disintegrate).
The president, from the analysis of medical experts, suffers from a heart condition. The heart as we all know is the center of life for the human species. Thus heart conditions are not issues to be taken with infantile disposition. Symbolically, Nigeria as a nation has a heart problem: irreconcilable tribal heterogeneity–the heart condition that wants her bedridden among the failed-states of the world. It is this illness that brought about the first civil war. From her creation, this problem had existed within its cardiac center and had stubbornly refused to heal despite all socio-political medications.
Nigeriaâ€™s apparent heart illness, as symbolized by her president, is woefully felt by the Nigerian masses. The educational system is a sham, the police force is quite incompetent, there is widespread corruption, healthcare services is non-existent, urban planning is disgraceful, power supply is non-reliable, electoral process is dubious and thuggish, unmitigated fraudulent activities in high places, bad roads resulting in millions of deaths, poor human right records, high rise in armed robbery and kidnapping (which has triggered a rising quarantine of foreign companies and investors from Nigeria)
In all these, the Nigerian masses are perplexed. They are caught in the middle of nowhere. Two entities with their individual lives are terminally sick–Nigeria and Umaru Musa Yarâ€™Adua. While so many people, especially of PDP extract, are praying for Yarâ€™Adua to heal from his ailment, majority of Nigerians are praying for Nigeria to heal from her ailment. It all depends on which of the two seriously sick entities one dims of prime interest to pray for and why.