10 reasons why we should be like the Nigerian politician in the New Year

By: Andrew Perebi Eneyi

Nigerian politicians are one of the most derided sets of people since the return of democracy in 1999 because of their “special traits” of corruption, selfishness, incompetence and cluelessness just to mention a few.

But while we agree that most of them can be terrible, we must not fail to highlight some of the qualities they have that if imbibed can give us an uncommon edge in life.

1. Ambition:

The average Nigerian politician is extra ambitious. Even the one in the rural area has this trait. He might not know what the white man calls it but he has this desire to be a councilor, chairman, Special Adviser, Governor and even president someday.

This extra ambition to succeed is sadly what many non-politicians do not have. They just want to become a regular human being or just a civil servant, who is an expert in file carrying, get his meager salary, retire and return to the village. The average politician wants to get better and higher on a daily basis.

2. Have A Road Map:

The average Nigerian politician understands that after the ambition they need the how-to – become. They have a road map.

This might be getting a higher degree, setting up a support group, a charitable non-governmental organisation (NGO) or even visiting the village regularly.

They begin to get in touch with the grassroots, get familiar with their ward leaders, attend age-grade meetings, church services, August meetings, charity works all geared towards their ambition.

They don’t just sit on social media platforms criticising. Most non-politicians fail woefully in this area. They want the good life but are not willing to put in the work. They blame the politicians for their numerous problems and non achievement whereas the problem is to a great extent as a result of their inaction.

3. Understand The Place Of Loyalty:

The average Nigerian politician does not joke with this word. They believe strongly in it and is one of the ingredients that helps them achieve their ambition.

The Nigerian politician understands that the system is not as fair as they would want it and they know the place and power of their ward/unit leader to state leader in deciding the political fate of an individual.

These political leaders can stay in the comfort of their bedrooms to nominate those who will get the party tickets in the next elections and heaven will not fall. So they learn to be at their best behaviour at all times and show the brand of loyalty that their leader demands howbeit fake.

They say “YES SIR” even when it is not convenient. They will seek permission from their political leader to practically do everything. They will no go where their leader wouldn’t go and will never fail to attend every function of their leader just to show their loyalty.

In fact let me tell you, the Nigerian politician understands what it means to “stoop to conquer.” But what do we have among you non-politicians; lack of any semblance of loyalty. You’re very indifferent towards your leaders at work or anywhere.

You don’t care who they are and what they do. My brother, you will need special grace to rise to the top, because the man you don’t care if he exists, will not be likely interested in your lifting except there is a divine push.

So we have to learn from the politicians, identify the powers that are in every area of your life and be loyal. Nobody will want to hand over to a person perceived to be disloyal.

4. Serve First, Before You Will Be Served:

I tell you, the average Nigerian politician understands the place of service. Before they rise they serve their way to the top. Some even do school runs for their political leader’s children.

They wash his cars and run some kind of errands that some of you can’t do. So most times you hear that the political leader gave the ticket to his boy who is an O’level holder that can barely string a sentence as against a PhD holder.

There are a lot of “houseboys” in the corridors of power today. Houseboys are calling the shots while exposed and educated Nigerians are begging to apply for jobs.

Note that the average Nigerian politician is very insecure so he doesn’t want a man who knows too much to get the ticket so he gives it to somebody he feels he can control. But you and I know that he rarely gets to control the person forever.

So for every Nigerian who wants to rise, should not play with the place of service. Serve God, serve man. Put your pride down and serve people with all you have. One truth about service is that whoever you are serving becomes indebted to you.

They will want to compensate you and that is where your rising comes from. So learn this from the Nigerian Politician.

5. Dress As You Would Want To Be Addressed:

The average Nigerian politician understands his job description and he dresses appropriately. Have you seen a serious politician dressing shabbily? No, they never! They believe more in the saying that you’re addressed by how you are dressed.

So they get the best of fabrics and sew the latest designs of suits, traditional attires and even casuals. They dress very well. Even the ones in the rural areas know this rule and they don’t make the mistake.

So what do we the non-politicians do? We don’t pay attention to our dressing. We think men/women who dress too much or are fashion-conscious are woman wrapper, womanizers, or unserious.

We dress inappropriately even to church and expect to be taken seriously. Nobody takes a person who can’t dress himself up seriously.

Do you even know that you can be considered for that top management position in your workplace just because of the way you dress?

Are you also aware that the way you dress for that interview could be what could speak for you? So let us learn this from the politicians to dress well and appropriately.

6. Hardwork Pays:

The average Nigerian politician understands the place of hard work in winning elections. They don’t just have an ambition and go sit down in their houses. They get to work, putting all the machineries in place.

Having sleepless nights holding consultative meetings. Strategy sessions with key actors who can swing the polls in their favour. Town hall meetings with the different groups.

Campaigns at the different wards in the local government areas. They don’t sleep until they get victory.

But what do we non-politicians do? We lazy about, blaming the government for our numerous woes. We want the government to practically make us hardworking.

If we want to succeed we need to burn the midnight or even daytime candle if there is anything like that. You can’t outsource hard work in your journey to greatness.

7. Know The Place Of Generosity:

Have you seen a Nigerian politician who is stingy? Yes, but they don’t win elections in Nigeria that often. The average Nigerian politician understands the place of generosity.

In our local parlance, we say “They can show love.” Imagine an engine that is constantly greased, it grinds easily. So also, the politician knows to “oil his would-be voters,” for only then will they do things in turn for him.

Religious organisations don’t joke with them when it is time for their programs, the academic community does not forget to invite them to convocations because of their handsome donations.

Women groups, town unions, and youth groups just to mention a few always put them as their number one guest for obvious reasons. They give to different causes so they have a good standing with the people.

Even the Bible says a man’s gift makes way for him. So if we want to win the elections at the different levels of our lives we must learn the generosity hack. Give gifts to your bosses, his wife, mentors, colleagues, associates no matter how small and see the rewards that will come your way.

9. Be Determined, Never Give Up:

The average Nigerian politician is never defeated, though he may lose elections at different times. What he does is that he restrategises.

This could mean a change of political party, going for a different position or even taking an appointment that will keep him still relevant to contest when the time comes.

A typical example is former president Muhammadu Buhari who contested for the office of the president for several years without success, but in 2015 won an incumbent president to become Nigeria’s president.

Another is the Governor Alex Otti of Abia state. This man was practically in all the political parties at different times just so he could achieve his aim of being the Governor of Abia state all to no avail, until he joined the Labour Party to become the Governor.

What is common about these politicians is that they never gave up. The word “NO” is never in their dictionary. But what do we have among the sons of men, we give up too soon.

For example, once we write JAMB and fail we say we don’t want to go to university anymore. We write a job application test and fail, we say Nigeria is hard and we retire back to our village. We get rejection emails from that scholarship application abroad, we give up.

For the average politician failure is part of the process and not a hindrance. So we need to learn from them.

9. Appreciate The ‘God Factor’:

As corrupt and terrible as the Nigerian politicians may be, they believe that there is a force that puts a man on the throne.

That is why before elections they “Nicodemusly” visit a mosque, churches, shrines and the rest for special fortification.

You will be shocked that the Nigerian politician has in his tab the phone numbers of men of God/ Baba across the country who are powerful and they don’t mind chattering a private jet for that 1 am appointment with that powerful man.

Who still remembers the “Yes Daddy” audio that went viral during the presidential campaigns? Politicians don’t count the cost but the electoral victory is what drives their actions.

Isn’t it surprising that a politician who rarely attends mosque or church services visits churches/mosques a lot during the election period?

They do that because they understand that they need prayers for victory in the elections.

What do we have among the non-politicians, they claim to be woke who believe and rely solely on their first-class or second-class upper certificate to clinch that job, scholarship, or contract which most often they don’t get.

They struggle in life with the best qualifications while the third class or the not-so-intelligent and competent guys who understand this hack get the best of jobs.

10. Be Strategic And Optimistic:

This they don’t play with. They are very optimistic and strategic even when the odds are against them. They form new alliances, build broken fences, etc before the elections and even If it means attending the birthday of their political leader’s one-year-old son, they don’t mind. Doesn’t it surprise you that every politician believes he will win the elections? That’s the spirit.

All that is done to ensure their goal is achieved. But what do the non-politicians do, they don’t understand the importance of strategy and optimism in their dealings in life.

They move with zero strategy and optimism in their pursuit of life goals, so it is not surprising when they encounter brick wall.

Fellow citizens, if we want the year to be productive and impactful, we can learn from these not-too-loved class of Nigerians, to put our lives in a better stead.

Welcome to the not-so-new year.

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