NIGERIA: The Paradox of Sanity in Insanity

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Bala Ibrahim, Nigeria, Paradox, Sanity, Insanity
Bala Ibrahim

NIGERIA: The Paradox of Sanity in Insanity

Two different video clips of different people are currently circulating in the social media. I have seen these videos a long time ago, but they didn’t make as much sense to me then, as they do now. It’s a case of the insane telling the sane to have a rethink.

On face value and physical appearance, particularly looking at their tattered dresses, unkempt make-up, the two men look insane. But on the strength and validity of their statements and submissions, they can pass for perfect political pundits, with excellent expertise in political analysis and sound public opinion.

The two are talking about the plight of Nigeria and Nigerians, with special bias to the unfortunate situation of the country today. The insane is claiming superiority in thinking, reasoning and even spirituality over the sane. Yes they are saying, those adjudged mentally challenged or under psychiatric care, may not necessarily be irrational in thinking, or illogical in wisdom. They have their own sphere of perception, with good sense of reasoning and qualitative knowledge, based on environmental experience.

In one of the clips, the man is questioning the religious creed of some Nigerians, particularly as it affects the doctrine of divine intervention, where in seeking God’s help, some people become sentimentally senseless, by making vague and meaningless request to the deity. He said the very people that are presently complaining about hardship, are the same people that called on God to bring about change from the situation yesterday.

He said these very people are at fault, because when they were asking God for a change, they were simply unspecific. Instead of asking for a positive and constructive change that would be beneficial and purposefully useful to their livelihood, many were only asking God to bring about change. Some even saying, change even if by FORCE.

Now the change has come, but it came with a catalogue of calamity for some. The cry everywhere now is, we are in a dilemma, sandwiched between perplexing poverty and problematic political situations. Insecurity, banditry, kidnappings and too many woes and miseries beyond mention. In Nigeria today, the insane is teaching the sane, the sanity in insanity.

In another clip, the man said there is merit in madness, wherein he narrated his experience in the Second Republic, when, having seen the quality of food being served to the mentally ill at the Dawanau Psychaitric hospital in Kano, where the inmates were fed on delicious macaroni and chicken, he put himself forward for enlistment into the fold of those with poor mental health.

According to him, the mobile police on guard was quick to scold and admonish him, for relegating and assigning himself to the inferior position of a mad man. He simply laughed at the police, because to him, the opulence of that good food, with the attendant security of its regular supply, by far outweighed the luxury of good mental health, in the misery of austerity.

Whoever dismisses what they are saying, is only doing so at his or her own peril, because despite their untidy dispositions, their statements are apparently sound and logically full of reasoning, with conclusions that seem acceptable to the plausible. Yes, they seem to be saying that, in Nigeria, there is sanity in insanity.

Certainly the conditions of these people may be viewed with contempt because of their caricature and contradictory features, especially by those who attach undue importance to the illusive substance of good appearance, but they stand as messengers with a moral message to the government: show compassion or benevolence to the people.

Sanity is not necessarily the absolute franchise of those who look mentally robust. Some may look mentally healthy, but appear intellectually lazy or even crazy.

The time has arrived for the Government to move closer to the philosophy, or take serious the moral responsibility of going to the lowest ebb of the society, where it would feel the proper pulse of the public, in complete contrast to the regular songs of praise from bootlickers, who are simply sycophants, blowing the trumpet of the government in order to gain advantage.

The clips of these people, although paradoxically looking nasty, appeared to sound responsibly reasonable to me.

 

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