Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has reacted to the ongoing fuel scarcity in the country saying the government is only “buying time” and “passing blame.”
He said this in a statement released on December 30, 2017, and which was made available to reporters in Lagos.
He entitled the statement: Blame Passing, Social Media Automated Mumus- The New Year Gift to a Nation.
Soyinka cited a Daily Times “news clipping from June, 1977”, where a then President “General Buhari”, who was then Minister of Petroleum and Natural Resources, was quoted to have said, “Fuel crisis may be over next year.”
Speaking about this, he said: “It captures the unenviable enigma that is the Nigerian nation.”
He added that: “When many of us are blissfully departed, an updated rendition of this same clipping- with a change of cast here and there- will undoubtedly be reproduced in the media, with the same alibis, the same in-built panacea of blame passing.”
Soyinka then narrated his ordeal at various filling stations saying: “I recently ran the gauntlet of petroleum queues through three conveniently situated cities – Lagos, Abeokuta and Ibadan – deliberately, this Friday. Even with ‘unorthodox’ aids of passage, this was no task for the faint-hearted.
He frankly added: “I suspect that this government has permitted itself to be fooled by the peace of those empty streets, but also by the orderly, patient, long-suffering queues that are admittedly prevalent in the city centres.”
He however declared that “the current affliction must be remedied, and fast”, in order to solve “a shortage that virtually paralysed the nation.”
Article by Muhammed Adenowo