Sir: The last time I checked, countless Nigerians claimed to be patriotic citizens. But when closely examined, you would observe that they actually meant something to the contrary. Sure, anyone can put up a claim as it pleases him or her, but representing the true meaning of the claim is a totally different ballgame.
The truth is, life is controlled or governed by a four-letter word known as ‘Love’. This is why the Holy writ stipulates that it (love) is the rudiment of every commandment provided by the Creator; because if you really love someone or vice-versa, any rule binding the relationship can easily be adhered to with ease. If you love someone with your whole heart, you can sacrifice anything whatsoever towards ensuring that he/she does not lack happiness regardless of the circumstance.
At the moment in Nigeria, particularly in the socio-political domain, several citizens tend to showcase a façade that they truly care about the country but, unknowingly to their followers or the onlookers, they are only interested in personal aggrandizement.
A true lover of any country should be concerned about the upliftment of the country, and not the other way round. In politics, the reverse is often the case; people claim to love the country but mean otherwise. If you are a leader of a country and its development matters much to your person, you would willingly wish to carry out projects as well as initiate policies that would see to the betterment of the state, and so does a good follower.
A good and genuine follower or stakeholder, as might be the case, is always interested in a way forward at all cost; he is tirelessly involved in issues of general interest rather than the personal; he is invariably ready to sacrifice something toward ensuring that the concerned society becomes a better place to live in; he is prepared at all times to compromise some attitudes for the sole interest of the society; above all, he always thinks of other members of the society in all his actions as well as concerned about what their reactions would be as regards any criticism he intends to come up with.
Nigeria is not interested in those who claim to love her; but those who genuinely strive relentlessly to ensure that her wellbeing is not tampered. Nigeria is only pleased with Nigerians who experience sleepless nights while thinking of how to help the government usher in sound governance, interested in seeing people who wish to ‘die’ for her good.
To this end, it’s needless to reiterate that anyone who keenly loves his/her country must be involved in activities that would assist the government to succeed. Indulging yourself in actions or causes that are aimed at generating societal upheaval is obviously how not to love a country.
Comrade Fred Nwaozor.