Senator Shehu Sani and his politics of camels – By Ikenna Ugwu

Senator Shehu Sani
Senator Shehu Sani
The cat enjoys both cooked and uncooked fish. But there is wisdom in the man who makes his cat endure hunger for a while in other to make a whole and nutritious meal for the cat.
Senator Shehu Sani representing Kaduna Central Senatorial District last Thursday reportedly distributed twelve camels, eight cows and other food stuffs worth over N15 million. The senator who also is the president Civil Right Congress of Nigeria claimed his office was involved throughout the month of Ramadan in programme of feeding the poor in seven local governments in his zone.

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However, Senator Shehu ought to be ashamed of his misplaced, illogical philanthropic gestures to the people whose governor is working hard to redefine their lives through functional government policies and institutions. But he cannot be more ashamed than I am, finding that this charade actually came from a man of his repute; that this is what he thinks is expedient for his people at a time of dwindling economic fortunes of the nation. It is even more saddening to see how he took to his twitter handle and bragged about it: “some shared chickens, some shared rams, some shared goats, some shared pigs, some shared nothing, I choose to share camels!!!”
When I told my friend about the story and my dismay that Senator Sani could stoop so low, he simply made a direct poignant remark: “…all politicians are the same.” But I do not share this.
I am an advocate of real democracy; a government whose primary objectives are the welfare and security of the electorates. But not one who in their political and administrative shallowness and venality impoverish the people only to returns with his pitiable handouts to the same people who voted him and claim messiah. I am happy that the people of Kaduna Central enjoyed the Eid El Fitr with the freebies from their senator. But am dispirited at their common complacency and impressionable, or is it ignorant status. Still, my sadness grows with Senator Shehu’s witless generousity if not sycophancy. Will there be more camels and food stuffs before the next Ramadan? I doubt.
The saying “do not give me fish rather teach me how to fish” is a timeless dictum; and it is a maxim common to most of us. But it’s not so much of what you know. It is what you do with what you know. Senator Shehu told his people: “…for now, my very important focus is to see how I can use the opportunity of my senatorial seat to serve my people in conformity with the pledges and promises I made to them before 2015 election.” He should have known that this is not how best to serve the people, especially considering the economic situation of the country.
Kaduna state, like most states in Nigeria is a river of opportunities. I expected Senator Shehu not to shower his people with fishes so they don’t forget to learn how to fish themselves, and endlessly wait on him to drop fishes at their doorsteps every now and then; I expect him to make the river more conducive for the fishes to live and grow, and then empower the people with fishing net and irresistible baits. It is a simple economic principle.


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