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Shithole comment: Can we blame Trump?

Last week’s comment by unpredictable and irreverent American President, Donald Trump describing African countries and Haiti as shithole countries has generated and is still generating heated debates on social media and across the country.

Ripples generated by Trump’s remarks cut across other African countries and extend to the American societies. Many have picked quarrel with the American President on his uncomplimentary remarks which occurred when he was meeting some lawmakers in the Oval Office, as the office of the American President is called.

Quoting the Washington post, Trump reportedly said, “why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?”  He was said to have suggested that the United States should instead bring more people from countries like Norway, whose prime minister he met a day before. Giving more background information that led to the comment, the Washington Post reported that Trump’s remarks came after two Senators suggested ‘a potential bipartisan deal that would involve making cuts to the visa lottery programme and funding Trump’s long-sought border wall while restoring protections for people from countries that have been removed from the temporary protected status programme.’

What those who are agitated by Trump’s remarks did not know was that the American president was not making such disparaging remark that shows his disrespect for Africans, for the first time. He was said to have made more disrespectful and impertinent remarks in June 2017 when he read off a list of countries whose immigrants had received U.S. visas in 2017. He said of Haitians, “all have AIDS.”  In that meeting, he reportedly singled out Nigeria and remarked that once Nigerians had seen America, they would never, ‘go back to their huts’, in Africa.

Expectedly, African countries have upbraided the US president for his remarks. During the week, the Presidency invited the American ambassador to express its displeasure over the remarks. It was the same with other African countries who took umbrage at the statement. In America too, there were opposition to Trump’s statement especially from Democrats.

In Nigeria, some have said Trump was not too far wrong in his assessment of African countries while others have also expressed opposition to the statement. I will cite the remarks from two of my friends who expressed two different views on Trump’s statement on their face book pages. Emeka Oparah, Vice President, Corporate Communications with Telecommunications giant, Airtel who had an encounter with an American who had been impressed by Emeka’s  intellect after he delivered a lecture on Communications and Nation building and had also learnt of Emeka’s other side, as a tailor. In Response to Trump’s outburst, Emeka, in his remarks which he entitled, ‘My Nigeria is a haven in the making, trust me’, wrote, ‘I ‘m highly optimistic our best is ahead of us. Things cannot remain the way they are. They will not stay the same. I can see a bright future with the kind of patriotic, energetic, talented and visionary folks I see around. As for naysayers and those who buy the Trump analogy, I can only feel sorry for them, because only a bastard calls his fatherland a shithole”. My other friend, Linus Obogo has this to say on the same issue, “African leaders gave Donald Trump the impetus to rightly situate Africa as shithole. Mention one African leader without looted funds, ill-gotten assets outside the continent. Mention one African leader who has never and will never go on medical Tourism outside Africa, just mention one African who has not gone on holidays outside Africa. Mention one African leader (that) has travelled outside Africa and has not seen well paved roads good enough to replicate in his own country. It is endless. Our leaders made shitholes, slums and shanties of Africa and it is all clear for all, including Donald Trump to see. Are we pained because Trump was man enough to remind our leaders to use our wealth to develop our continent so that it can be livable? Truth is, Africa is a… shithole, no thanks to our kleptomaniac, roguish leaders.”

I have placed the comments by the two gentlemen together to buttress the argument from the two sides on President Trump’s comment. One disagrees with Trump while the other quite acknowledges what the American president said. But in the dissimilarities of the two statements lie the similarity. The response from Oparah could be seen from the patriotic prism. He fully acknowledged that Nigeria is not where it should be but it would get there, meaning that it is still an ongoing work. One can infer that he was opposed to such statement coming from Trump. On the other hand, Obogo is telling us that Trump is not off the mark and we deserve to be referred to as a shithole country because we have all the opportunities to make the country a better place, but our leaders have consistently failed us.  They travel outside the country, they see the way  those countries work, but they have not replicated such facilities in their country, rather they would prefer to corner the commonwealth for their kith and kin. They steal the money and take it to keep and develop the economies in those countries. The monies that could have been put to good use here.

Is Nigeria and some African countries not shithole countries? I agree with Trump in his description, though it hurts to be so described in that disparaging manner. But do we have anyone to blame?   Thousands of our youths endanger their lives travelling outside the country to Europe for greener pasture, going through very dangerous routes to achieve their objective. Many of them die along the   way. Some are sold into modern day slavery. If the conducive atmosphere to thrive had been provided, would these futures of our country embark on a journey in which the chances of survival are halved? If there had been jobs for this army of youths, would they travel through such dangerous routes?

The other day, herdsmen killed over 70 people in Benue, the killing is still ongoing in remote and far flung communities; does it bother our leaders? Not really, their sense of outrage has become blunt. They are inured to violence. Life is meaningless. If not a shithole country, where in the developed world would something like that happen? Even if it happened, the impressive response of the government would have assuaged the bereaved. In Nigeria life is cheap. On Tuesday, two foreigners were kidnapped- an American and a Canadian, their two police escorts were killed in the process. Is it not in a shithole country that security operatives are armed with nearly obsolete weapons? Most of our security operatives-police, army, etc, are still going about with AK47, a weapon manufactured in 1949, when those they are expected to confront have more sophisticated weapons. Is that not the characteristic of a shithole country? Even in Russia or more precisely the Soviet Union, AK47 was phased out in 1978, and that’s the country where the weapon was manufactured and first used.

The truth may be bitter, but Trump nails it so well. If we do not want to be so tagged, then we should start getting our acts together. 2019 is around the corner, we should resolve that leaders with blurred vision on account of old age or those without vision should not continue to rule.

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2 Comments

  1. Tim Nwani 19th January 2018 at 5:29 pm

    @ Emeka Oparah “As for naysayers and those who buy the Trump analogy, I can only feel sorry for them, because only a bastard calls his fatherland a shithole”. Be sorry for yourself Mr. Emeka. You really need to be pitied because your optimism is wish-washy. It is this bastard behaviour of characters like you that situates Nigeria, nay, Africa in shithole. It is only bastards that turn glaring TRUTH upside down in other to prove non existing point. The likes of Emeka are the reason why Nigeria is the gate way to hell fire. They see no evil, they hear no evil, even when it is deafening, they neither correct nor speak against evil (like the current spate of murder & bloodletting on going in Benue and other cities in Nigeria by the FULANI herdsmen). Such people are more dangerous than Satan. And they abound, doting the length and breadth of Nigeria.
    If Nigeria and other African Nations are not shitholes, who in his right senses steals money from his people and go deposit it in another man’s country? If your father is not an armed robber (a shithole father) and you a bastard (shithole son), then tell me what child will embrace his father who deliberately empties their fridge and take the goods to another man’s house and have his family starved. It is only a bastard child, afflicted with dementia and rank foolishness that will keep mum and applaud such profligacy without challenge. It is only African looters (robbers) called leaders that exercise themselves in such wantonness. Yet, some folks (shithole bastards) that have gone nuts in the name of “love” for the country are telling us trash. But I don’t blame him and his likes any way, because as the saying goes, “like father, like son”. We call it corruption which sometimes masks the vice – robbery and looting. Robbery is the blood life of the Nigeria Society especially in the government circles and political corridors. BASTARDS (looters and docile twin brother’s liars) men who are in denial of torments/hardships that the people daily are subjected/faced HAVE held us down for so long with their unpatriotic rhetorics of patriotism and all other manner of gimmicks especially “one Nigeria” cliche. Yet, they hopelessly cut through the jocular vein of the country draining the life blood of the citizens. And some foolish dummies and bastards – (the defenders of these vampire men and women called excellent shits and thieves) that their “MUMU NEVA DO” apologies Charly boy tells us that admitting the obvious (The Truth) makes one a bastard. This shithole bare faced denial, docility and naivety of Emeka is what makes Nigeria with her intellectual powers and high literacy level a pariah, recumbent, prostrate, fourth class and shithole nation amid great wealth and resources.
    No nation that trivialize truth thrives. Because it is only righteousness (Truth) that exalts a nation, but sin (Lies) is a reproach.
    @ Linus Obogo – “African leaders gave Donald Trump the impetus to rightly situate Africa as shithole. Mention one African leader without looted funds, ill-gotten assets outside the continent. Mention one African leader who has never and will never go on medical Tourism outside Africa, just mention one African who has not gone on holidays outside Africa. Mention one African leader (that) has travelled outside Africa and has not seen well paved roads good enough to replicate in his own country. It is endless. Our leaders made shitholes, slums and shanties of Africa and it is all clear for all, including Donald Trump to see. Are we pained because Trump was man enough to remind our leaders to use our wealth to develop our continent so that it can be livable? Truth is, Africa is a… shithole, no thanks to our kleptomaniac, roguish leaders.”
    Linus Obogo is an upright and sincere man. GOD bless you Linus. What is scare in our country today is not sunlight, it is not water, it is not electricity, it is not good roads, it is not schools, it is not even food nor shelter, it is not people. what is scare in OUR COUNTRY Nigeria is TRUTH. TRUTH & HONESTY like the quicksilver has eluded Nigeria & Nigerians. TRUTHFUL, HONEST & BOLD MEN & WOMEN are all dead leaving us wicked, insincere, dishonest people. Like FAYOSE & FFK you spoke truth today. Benjamin Disraeli said, “what ever hurts, instruct”. Truth hurts, truth is bitter. But the Truth is that there is POTENCY in bitterness – because it brings healing afterwards. Not like the hypocritical Emeka who lives like the ostrich head in the sand. How long shall we continue to be deceived? How long shall we regale in gullibility? When shall we rise up to our GOD given potentials and use it for the benefits and upliftment of the poor and not for prebendal purposes?
    How many of our African LOOTERS have their children studying in their country if we are not shitholes. These Liars are leading what they do not believe in. Why send your children to UK, USA, CANADA etc to study if you are PATRIOTIC and believe in your country and the System you run?
    If we are not shithole, why the deaths in the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean of our compatriots who are escaping the gulag for greener pastures? If all were fine, why the droves of our people AFRICANS embark on such a tortuous journey ACROSS the horrible desert and the deadly sea? It is only the heartless Bastard beasts (LEADERS) and their gullible sons that will see nothing wrong here. How come Americans are not crossing to come over to Africa? These guys are running away from the HELL not the one created by GOD but by African Heads of Govt. in their respective countries. It will be BAD for any African to go to hell – because Africa is HELL made by LOOTERS “leaders”. I know this HELL, I have seen this Hell and President Trump is very right because we sit, live and dwell in SHITHOLE with shameless MEN & WOMEN commissioned by Satan to torment their people as leaders. Men and women without HEARTS. AFRICAN Leaders have no hearts OF man but BEAST.
    Emeka, for SURE you have made some money because I learnt you work with IT company. If you are married and have children, I can bet with my life that you probably do not have your children born in Nigeria, but in UK, USA OR CANADA. The question again is, if we are not living in shithole, why take your wife like most robbers of our common wealth both in business & politics to US and UK to be born and not here in Nigeria? ANSWER: They are escaping Shithole syndrome for better life – CITIZENSHIP – period. There is NO PATRIOTIC NIGERIAN. All about patriotism are lies from Satans’ of hell and their cohorts.
    Until Nigerians of LOOTING cadres “POLITHIEVSIANS” allow THEIR wives give birth in Nigeria and don’t take them away at eight months abroad to give birth in foreign countries, until they take their children to schools here in Nigeria, until they access their medical health here in Nigeria, until they allow the stolen monies stay in our banks here and not ferried overseas, NIGERIA REMAINS THE HEAD QUARTERS WORLDWIDE OF SHITHOLE COUNTRIES. – QED.
    PRESIDENT (PROPHET) DONALD TRUMP GOD BLESS YOU ABUNDANTLY, YOUR FAMILY AND AMERICA. Thanks for looking us in the FACE to tell us who we are. DON’T mind the hypocrites THAT will sleep in your embassies to come over that are ranting. But come to think of it, what happens when an ant RANTS? – absolutely NOTHING!
    AFRICANS, WE ARE SHITHOLES, OUR POLITICIANS ARE VERY GOOD EXAMPLE SHOWCASING SHITHOLENESS. Their sit tightness and avowal to never leaving power, the robbery of our treasuries, the politically motivated bloodletting, then lack of institutions & social amenities, lack of rule of laws etc. All these parameters are shithole indices and it fits us very well. If you are annoyed, DO the right things.

  2. mazi offor joseph okereke 19th January 2018 at 6:04 pm

    and to add insult to an injury , our government led by buhari went about inviting the american ambassador for questioning on the shithole brouhaha. the invitation, was it to intimidate or embarrase president trump or entire american government. the truth here is that truth is bitter but it must be told . president trump has told African leaders the truth whether they like it or not. with the speed buhari responded to that shithole description, if he had responded like that in the myriads of fulani killings and other national disgrace since his leadership, Nigeria would have been eldorado. my advise is that our government should be careful not to receive the wrath of american government. our stand on Jerusalem as Israeli capital and other international postures are big challenges to trump government. buhari government should always try to imbibe the tenets of our constitution before involving Nigeria in any international politics more especially in the areas of secularities..

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