By Akin Ojumu

Masochism is a psychosexual disorder in which erotic release is achieved through having pain inflicted on oneself.

If you ask me, Nigerians are sadomasochists who derive some form of sexual gratification from inflicting excruciating pain upon themselves. Encoded in the DNA of Nigerians is the propensity for self-inflicted humiliation. The genetic constitution of the Nigerian character is weirdly wired for self-debasement.

What sort of human beings are these people, really? How else can anyone explain the Nigerians’ habit of perpetually blowing up every prospect they have to chart a new course for posterity. Something must be profoundly wrong with Nigerians. Their inborn error to mess a good chance all up is nothing but pure madness. Nigerians’ penchant for self-destruction bespeaks of a loose screw flying around somewhere deep in their psyche. 

Every four years since 1999, Nigerians get the chance to steer the wobbling ship of their nation’s destiny in the right direction. From election to election, Nigerians are given the opportunity to choose leaders who will direct their affairs. Presented with such a unique gift to determine their fate and decide on their future, what do they do? They blow it each time.

As a Nigerian, it’s quite painful for me to watch my people squander their chance to turn the dire situation of the country around. It saddens me greatly to see Nigerians fail the test of desire to make a better life for themselves and their children. Every time they are given control of the steering wheel of their fortunes, Nigerians always steer in the wrong direction. Again and again, these obstinate people always choose to drive the vehicle off the cliff. 

Another presidential election is just around the corner, a little over a week away. I can’t remember any other election where Nigerians have been presented with such distinct alternatives from which to choose. The contrast is stark, and differences are unequivocal. There can be no confusion on the choices before Nigerians.

In this election, Nigerians have a once in a lifetime opportunity to end the reign of the ruling oppressors who have terrorized the people since its founding. Nigerians can use the 2023 presidential election to rectify the generational injustice that has plagued the country since its beginning. It’s an election where Nigerians can decide to, once for all, close the chapter in the nation’s history where a segment of the population are continually told they are second class citizens who will never rise to produce the nation’s president.

Before Nigerians are two clear and distinct options. The people can choose to upset the applecart of the powerful tormentors who have done incredible damage to the land by electing as president a leader of a different breed imbued with the potential to transform the country and take Nigeria in a completely new direction away from the path of destruction and ruination the country is currently on.

On the other hand, Nigerians can decide they’ve not suffered enough. Like the sadomasochists that they are, they can tell themselves they relish the orgasms of constant pain and delight in the paroxysms of agony of their miserable existence. It’s up to Nigerians, whether they’d go with a candidate who embodies everything that’s wrong with Nigeria.

As a friend rightly reminded me yesterday, it’s a democracy. In a democracy, you can’t always trust people to make informed choices in their best interest. On the contrary, you can count on crazy people to do crazy things and stupid people to make stupid choices. 

These, then, are the questions all Nigerians must answer.

Haven’t you suffered enough? Are you going to, once again, squander this opportunity? Will you allow tribalism and ethnic prejudices to cloud your better judgement? Will you sell your future for a congo of garri? Are you going to continue in sin so that the grace of God may abound? Will you continue to eat your cake and expect to have it too? 

The choice is yours to make, Nigerians. Just know that you deserve the government you elect.


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