Trust and confidence always seem difficult to come by. Once you have been disappointed by someone or a system you trusted so well, you hardly can have confidence in them anymore. It is said, “Once bitten, twice shy.” Once one has an unpleasant experience, he is careful not to have something similar. No one wants to repeat a mistake. In this part of the world, you are termed “mumu” when you have an unpleasant experience repeatedly.
This means, you are a fool. Everyone therefore wants to be an exception to this name. We have constantly been subjected to this kind of fate from our governments. Governments at various levels have so much betrayed our trust in them. They have always acted like the biblical Pharisees. They say one thing and their actions are completely at variance with what they say. They have so much betrayed the trust and confidence of the people. The resultant effect is that everyone is his or her own government. Everyone is law onto himself or herself. Also, everyone is his or her own judge and executioner. In the event of dispute, everyone decides in his or her own favour.
This is an aberration and would surely lead to a state of anarchy. Scholars who have come to be known as social contract theorists, like, Thomas Hobbes, John Locke and Jean Jacques Rousseau address this. What seemingly reconciled the views of these scholars was their common claim and belief that the state is a result of a willing agreement entered into by people who before the agreement lived in a state of nature characterized by unmitigated insecurity, absence of morality, government and orderliness. People who lived in this state were brutish, violent, very close to nature and did whatever pleased them and not concerned about the effects it had on others.
Recognizing that it is dangerous to let individuals continue to live this kind of life, forming a civil government became imminent. In this civil state, laws are enacted to regulate the activities of men and women, but these laws are subject to amendments from time to time. No one seems to be above the law. Not even those in authority. Everyone is subject to the law. Obedience to the law especially by those in authority inspires trust, confidence and hope in the followers. When trust is betrayed, followers will lose confidence in the authority, hence, disobedience to the law, disorder in the community and the freedom of individuals is trampled upon. Prior to COVID-19 pandemic, governments at various levels in Nigeria have always betrayed the trust and confidence of the people.
Government officials could cover the truth. Many government officials are involved in corruption, and they are not prosecuted. Many are insensitive to the plight of the people. Several of the National Assembly members hardly account for the constituency projects they are supposed to execute. When they do, such are shabbily done. The COVID-19 has brought to the fore the state of our hospitals. Education sector is not any better. The structures of many institutions are at best goat pens.
There are few functional infrastructures in a country that is rich and endowed with mineral resources and viable land. The COVID-19 pandemic should provide an ample opportunity for government officials to be at the top of their game by providing the required infrastructures through tax payers’ money. We watch unfolding drama daily as the battle to overcome the scourge continues. I have several worries and concerns over how the COVID-19 is being managed in Nigeria. For instance, it is public knowledge that many well meaning Nigerians and institutions have made financial donations to the governments. Do we need to be patient and hope that proper account will be rendered after the COVID-19 pandemic?
Why are medical personnel of private hospitals not being carried along in the treatment of victims of COVID-19 patients even when some have volunteered their services? The Catholic Bishops of Nigeria have volunteered the use of over 400 Catholic hospitals in the country yet none has been utilized. Rather, government prefers to build isolation centers which will be destroyed after the pandemic. Is this political or an avenue to misappropriate or embezzle tax payers’ money?
Why did the federal government have to reach out to Madagascar for herbal drugs when we have locally produced drugs by our own traditional doctors? Is it the case of us not trusting our own? How sincere is the idea of feeding primary school students while the schools are closed down? These and many other similar questions have cast doubts on the minds of many individuals on the authenticity of COVID-19 and the sincerity of those handling it in Nigeria. Government needs to come out clean