Sunday, March 30, 2014

Nigeria: Hey, at least Goodluck is trying!

Article HERE

President Goodluck Jonathan has promised to create infrastructure and improve the lives of people in the Northeast area of Nigeria. Nigeria is famous for its extremely poor human rights ratings and extremely low amount of infrastructure in the country, and with an influx of recent terrorist attacks Jonathan is trying to do all he can to improve his nation in some way.
Nigeria of late is not a very good place to be. The newspapers are completely full of stories of terrorist attack after terrorist attack (check out their newspaper called The Punch) because of religious extremist activities and conflicts between ethnic groups in the country similar to those of Rwanda. The groups fighting against each other are the Yoruba and Igbo tribes, who practice Christianity, and the Hausa-Fulani Muslims. It is a very bloody three-way conflict.  Numerous massacres have taken place over the past few years from all sides of the conflict, and extremists have taken up terrorist methods of proving their points. Many extremists sabotage oil pipelines and blow up oil drilling and processing plants. In the north, there has even been evidence of chemical weapons being used.
In addition to the violence which happens almost constantly in all parts of Nigeria, their infrastructure development is seriously lacking. Jonathan wants to build a new dam in the northeast in order to bring in more wealth via agriculture for the country, but his supporters worry that the dam is not a smart project to undertake when the country is in such turmoil. Jonathan's supporters feel like national security is more important than new infrastructure. However, Jonathan believes that new infrastructure will help the country become more secure.
My opinion on the possible building of a dam in Nigeria is a good one, because I am glad to see that the president, who is notorious for being a corrupt and unfair leader, is trying to invest in projects that will improve his country instead of ignoring them, like he has with healthcare, education, and infrastructure in the past. Jonathan usually only focuses efforts on improving Nigeria's oil economy, so it is really good that he wants to begin to start some agricultural programs. A dam is not the absolute best way to improve the infrastructure of a nation, when that nation does not have many of the infrastructure that any modern nation would have, but at least it is a start. Maybe with a new dam, the nation will be more motivated to improve its infrastructure in other ways. Also, if the agricultural economy of Nigeria grows, it is possible that the economy could support new healthcare and education programs, which are direly needed there. Hopefully the project pans out, and with a larger and more successful economy, Goodluck Jonathan can begin to focus more on human rights and putting an end to the violence in his country.

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