06 April 2006

The 'BRT' Mystery Solved - An Update

I am reading comments on my earlier post, and I come across the acronym 'MDG'. Whats this? I wonder. Off I go to google. I find out that MDG actually stands for Millenium Development Goals and that there are 8 of them. They came about as a result of a declaration (The United Nations Millenium Declaration) adopted by the member nations of the UN on the 8th of September 2000.

Truly we need to get our act together as a nation with respect to providing the very basics as defined by the 8 MDG's. Its great that we try to provide functional and hopefully affordable mass transportation in Nigeria (you can be sure Lagos is setting a standard for the rest of the nation), but whats the point if only a small percentage of the country will be able to take advantage of it?

I blogged earlier about
my guard and his hijinks with the daughter of the guard two houses away. I spoke with my neigbour about it who confirmed to me that they are actually having sex. I was shocked. I moved into my flat 4 years ago, and that girl wasn't more than 8 years old. 'Is she using protection?' I wonder. From the little I have been able to pick up from Mohammeds life before he joined our employ, he was a truck driver in the North. He could have picked up any number of STD's from their, HIV perhaps. She doesn't go to school, she lives with her father, mother, 3 brothers and 2 sister in the uncompleted building on the plot her father was hired to guard, and helps her mother out petty trading. Of all her siblings only one goes to school (the second son). The oldest and first son has followed in the steps of his father and is employed elsewhere in the estate. He also drives an Okada part time and uses drugs. My neigbour has had to on occassion seperate a fight between him and his mother while he was on serious trip. Since I moved to the estate, the mother must have been pregnant at least 5 times, she only has two children to show for these pregnancies. It occured to me that she probably gives birth in the uncompleted building perhaps aided by the wives of the other guards. My neigbours wife had tried to discuss birth control with her and her response was 'Na all the pickin wey dey person body na im e suppose born'. Lastyear she asked my neigbour about the family planning clinic which I am suspecting she actually visited. Her stomach has been flat for a year now.

I live in Magodo GRA Lagos, not 'Kutuwenji' (a remote fictional location) on the border of Nigeria and Chad, and these people I have described are but 200 metres from my house. 2015 is not so far away, and at the rate we are going, for us as a nation to meet the MDG's we will be requiring a miracle.

1 comment:

Epictetus said...

The choices before us are as stark as the plagues we endure: as a country; as national components of this country; and indeed as individuals.

How much of the national malaise is an accumulation of the respective choices we make as individuals? Sometime in 1999, I read Amartya Sen on "Democracy as a Universal Value". I was struck by his take on the "tension" between "democracy" (in its "instrumental valuation") and economic "development": apparently, few here recognise for a fact that "the practice of democracy gives citizens an opportunity to learn from one another, and helps society to form its values and priorities"!

Skewed values, errant priorities, and poor implementation sequences, how much of all these describes the atrophying of our political space? I sympathise with your barely concealed dread of the choices your servants make. But because I can empathise with them, I understand too the extent to which "you" (as a representative of what the old left affectionately called the "petty bourgeiosie") are complicit in the playing out of this tragedy.

John Donne's verses speak volumes to us all. Don't they?!