​Humanitarians or Investors? By Obatowon Victor Abayomi


2019 is around the corner. I believe by now, so many unusual things would be coming up in preparation for the general elections. This era usually marks the evolution of foundations here and there, individuals rendering one service or the other as their contribution to the society, several support schemes, several empowerment programs and projects, and so forth like that with massive publicity. That is Public Relations you said?

I am not saying all these are bad, but we all know what follows in the sequence – political poster.
I keep asking myself one question or two whenever I see such. Why are these people coming us with such good deeds overnight for the sake of seeking goodwill? Oh! So the memory of their humanitarianism would be fresh in the minds of people when they eventually bear the flag?

It then struck my mind that these individuals have so much discovered the ‘weakness’ of Nigerians on our love for deceit and of course, inability to resist any cheap bait.
I begin to  wonder, is this how patriotic these individuals are? Is this how much they love humanity? Is this how much they derive joy in touching lives? Is this how much they love to lift people up and make them smile? Is this how open and close they are to people? Is this how much they love to do these things, such that these people they claim to be doing them for dare not come close to their gate afterwards, neither can they stop by the road side and pick one of those in need for a lift in their car when the media are not there? Then what are we talking about?
It becomes crystal clear however, that those assistance and humanitarian activities here and there, are used by these individuals as investments and a means to an end and what is that end? To get into power!
Little wonder, what happens to all these humanitarian schemes, empowerment programs, foundations and charitable engagements when these individuals eventually contest and lose out in the polls? Or perhaps they succeed in getting the mantle,  what is the standing of these programs when their tenure of office expires? Are they sustainable?
The idea of the massive publicity of these activities is what do baffle me. Okay, for the masses to know that you are a good person, that you are an humanitarian to the core, that you have the interest of the masses at heart, or that you have good intentions? Oh! Far from that.
The truth is, no matter how ‘good’ your intentions are, the political system of the country will definitely get them polluted. Remember, government is not about an individual, but various institutions that comprise of various individuals with different and diverse mind set, some are good too, and some are extremely bad and I believe you know what a bad egg can do to others in the same basket.
I am not saying this is bad. It is good to be good. What is of concern is the intentions behind the good thing being done.
At least, there are genuinely kind Nigerians who are rendering these humanitarian services and touching lives on a daily basis whose names are not on the front pages of newspapers, and it is never in their dictionary to run into politics. I know of Mr. Jacob Moyo Ajekigbe, a former Managing Director of First Bank PLC, to mention just a few.
It is imperative to note that it is not only when you want to contest for positions in politics that you start touching lives. Such an act could be termed as insincerity of the highest order, in fact it is a great deception which depicts lack of integrity on the part of the person.
Being an humanitarian, touching lives, empowering and lifting people are a commission which the rewards come directly for God. They are far from being a political device to gain people’s goodwill. If you want to be known for something good, then be someone good. If you want goodwill, be a good person.
You don’t need to tell people you are good, neither do you need anybody or any institution to do that for you. If you do it, it is called publicity and if it is done on your behalf, it is called Advertising, of course, the person that does it for you would have been paid, either in cash or kind.
Rather, just be good, let your core values reflect in the way you live your everyday life and your interaction with people. People will notice it themselves.

Nigerians, don’t be deceived by any adhoc ‘humanitarian’ who may not greet you again if his or her presumed reward fails. Let us be guided by our instincts.
God bless Nigeria.

The author can reached through this mail.