Monthly Archives: October 2009

The Slave Ships

Mr. Rainhargt Fleischer, an expatriate German technician of Julius Berger Plc, in the course of supervising the maintenance of a part of the Nigerian Senate building, kicked a Nigerian in the crotch so hard that the guy slipped into coma; and so freaking what???

We’ve all been and we still are kicked daily in the groin and that explains why we have been so unproductive.

The Berlin 1884-1885 Scramble for Africa will definitely not be the last time Africa will be up for sales in absentia; Slavery will never be confined the annals of history. The same way old fashion trends get recycled, the same way the Master-Slave relationship reincarnates with different names. Racism is alive, and to think otherwise is to believe the KKK is now admitting Blacks!

When Ahmadinejad allegedly denied the Holocaust ever took place, the whole world felt he was insensitive to the annihilation of 6 million Jews, but I would like to find out if any figure has been given till date on the number of African children killed in the name of vaccination! Pfizer’s Trovan experiment in Northern Nigeria would make Hitler’s SS Doctors green with envy because it will never be recorded as a war crime, nor as genocide, but what is it, really?

I am one of those with the conviction that the Union Jack would not have been lowered had the Oil discovery in Oloibiri been much earlier than 1958. Alas! Several other flags, each with trademark Skull and Crossbones have taken random turns to signal the handing over of the rudder to Pirates of various races and cultures.

With the bulk of Nigerian engineering graduates ending up as bankers and the ones in cognate fields working in multinational companies not having actual exposure to jealously guarded ‘trade secrets’ of such companies, is it not obvious we are programmed to self-destruct?

I weep each day I see the Julius Berger Blue Maria (for want of better connotation for that truck with makeshift cabin) conveying construction workers to site. I see these hapless people even exhibiting territorial behavior, their gular folds rising when fellow-slaves-who-do-not-belong-to-our-camp try to hop in for a free-ride.

It beats me for a Company committed to “the observance of all Health, Safety and Environment requirements in accordance with international practice”! This is why I personally do not believe the so called Neo-Nazi; there is nothing new about it at all, as a matter of fact, most of these taskmasters will out-perform Hitler, Period!

“We feel that serious consideration should be given to workers’ welfare. To convey workers in the kind of containers that we have seen Julius Berger do over the years is deplorable and condemnable. In this 21st century, we feel that workers should be better treated.

This issue of using containers has been discussed over time. It is disappointing that up till now, the practice has not stopped. The Senate Committee on Labour will take serious action on this matter when we reconvene.” – Senator Wilson Ake

That was August 2, 2008.

Who remembers the 2006 indictment and shutdown of Julius Berger Pharmacies in connection with the sale of fake drugs which were imported from Sinochem Ningbo, a Chinese company blacklisted by NAFDAC, and the discriminatory and unethical practice of dispensing fake/substandard drugs to Nigerians and reserving quality ones for expatriates? I have always believed this Nation suffers from mass amnesia!

This is a Company, allegedly said to be indigenous since the purchase of 51% of its stake leaving only 49% stake with Bilfinger Berger Germany, with a Nigerian Chairman, that still segregates Nigerian staff! WE HAVE A PROBLEM!!!

Why would a drug banned in the United States become the right drug to treat children with meningitis? And how on earth were these drugs tested without verification? With all the ‘indigenization’ of pharmaceutical companies in Nigeria, how come no company has set up a basic active raw material manufacturing plant in Nigeria, not even for Paracetamol or Aspirin? Does it come as a surprise anymore, then, that any online search you do on the origin of HIV/AIDS now points to ‘Sub-Saharan Africa’?

Let me move on. I remember a seminar a presented as an undergraduate on Oil-Shale as an alternative energy source. When it was time for questions, I recall a lecturer asking me why we should bother about an ‘Alternative Energy Source’ when we still have the Oil. If only they knew how close we are to exhausting our reserves!

What are we going to do when that day dawns? Who are those that will spearhead the drive to enhance our own technology? Those engineers that have been condemned to the claustrophobia-inducing four walls of the banking sector? The ones in the Oil companies who know next to diddly when it comes to the actual operations?

I find what we call ‘indigenous companies’ extremely laughable. One crony of the same set of soldiers that took Nigeria down this lane with the 1966 (add another 6 to get the mark of the beast that they are) ‘counter-coup’ gets the Oil Block which he knows nothing about, he brings in another stooge who pretends to know anything about it, the stooge brings in a ‘foreign partner’ who pretends to know nothing till he’s done milking everybody dry! Phew!

Do you see what I see? The Western Pirates have been identified, so we looked out to welcome the Asian sailors. What we fail to do is look closely at all the flags….because if we did; the only thing we were meant to see in the first place is Skulls and Crossbones! Ubangiji Kiyaye!!!