After the week of quasi-hiatus following their inauguration, delegates to the 2014 National Conference will be readying ‘to die on top the matter’ later today in Abuja. Needless to say, speculations abound.

I happened upon the following conversation in a Nigerian chat room:

(names and bits of the conversation(majorly semantics) have been altered for privacy sake and for better reading)

Ogo: Abeg any info on the confab?

Stone: Is it how our resources are being wasted?

Ogo: Hmmm

Stone: lol

Oma: Those guys are gonna sit and talk nuffin new and may even fight, and at the end, walk away wiv #12million each. What can be crazier dan dat and of more interest?

Ogo: Hmmm

Stone: Ogo, nothing new will spring forth

Ogo: K

Stone: All of them na the same crew

Lota: I believe something will spring forth. The national conference is a great idea

Oma: How do you mean?

Ugo: I agree. At least it will take some steam off the nation

JD: I think the confab is ok oh. 12 million…like that’s anything compared to the daily loot. Let’s hope for the best, I agree with Lota and Ugo. I mean, 12 million over 3 months?  Do you know how much your senators cart home for a day’s sitting?!! Check am nah

Ugo: Anything that can take off steam from the nation is welcomed cos we are at the brink of cracking up or military intervention

JD: I wonder what people thought…that they’d bring people to discuss National issues for 3months and give them 10,000 naira each? Even if na boarding school dem go…mschewww

Oma: My major bone of contention is what are they discussing? We’ve discussed enough, what we need is implementation abeg

JD: If I were those delegates, I’d donate the money back to the National purse. 4 million monthly is not so much…we too dey complain.

Nd: //thumbs-up smiley// @JD

Stone: Here, action speaks louder than words. Is it not for the benefit of Nigerians? Charity work will make more sense there, selfless service to the nation.

JD: Hian!

Stone: Please JD research on those delegates; they’re the formal people eating our money

JD: What for?

Stone: Dr Sam Egwu, formal governor of Ebonyi state

JD: And I thought you were a man of faith. Where is thy faith now?

Stone: I am a faith of man. *Man of faith. My church sef na Living Faith Chapel aka Winners

Ugo: Bia Man of Faith, will you bring people together without providing accommodation?

JD: Omo ehn! I tire oh! Charity ko, selfless service ni. Shei u no be Naijarian again? Na wa oh

Stone: all those things have been taken care of. Why the extra cost?

Ugo: The planning is actually great. Which extra cost?

Stone: Yeah the planning is great but

Ugo: But what na?

Stone: Nnaa ehn…abeg make those guys go flex their money. 12 million is too small for me sef; if to say I go there, na 35 million DOLLARS I for collect J

JD: see ya life! On top say u no sabi the difference between ‘former’ and ‘formal’, who wan pay you 35 million kobo sef?!!

Stone: Enyi a, commot there. this jedijedi wey dey worry you go soon purge you

And it degenerated into good-natured ribbing in the sporadically incomprehensive manner associated with chatrooms.

My take on the matter is this:

I think Ogo started out well by asking about the conference. Unfortunately, nobody answered her question, not even JD, Ugo or Lota who were clearly proponents of the idea. One wouldn’t need to ponder for too long to realize why – WE DO NOT KNOW. It’s easy to sit and say “urgh! It’s a waste already” or “Oh well, I think it will turn out great”, but not so easy to do the needful –  make enquiries, read newspaper articles and watch the news in order to stay updated with proceedings.

If the members of this chatroom, for example, did perhaps JD would have been pleased to realize that his idea of donating the allowance back to the National purse is shared by few men like Tunde Bakare who have announced their intentions to do just that. Perhaps Stone would have realized that those allowances actually cover the costs of accommodation for those delegates many of whom will be coming from outside the FCT with aides. Perhaps the trend following Ogo’s initial question would have been something along the lines of points to be debated at the conference such as federalism, security, education, etc. There might be some bad eggs in the form of previous ‘leaders’ who wreaked havoc on the system during their tenures, but there are also a few good men who have done well with their little ‘flock’ in different parts of the country; and the only reward for good work, we all know, is more work. So why not?


One thing is clear, Nigeria patriotism is still very much alive. However, we must refrain from letting the occasional pinch of an old burn-scar hinder us from ever cooking another meal. I personally had some initial scruples with the amount of money being doled out as allowance to the delegates rounding off to NGN 100,000 daily, I maybe even still do. But if that is the price that has to be paid for us to make some headway – no matter how minimal – as a nation, then it would be the smallest price so far and by all means, should be paid.

We cried a similar ‘FOUL’ when President Jonathan proposed the total removal of subsidy and I warned against it (see what I wrote). We all can see where the compromise that was eventually reached due to our collective stubbornness has left us.

Only a mad man acts in the same manner, every time and expects a different result.

What is your take?

14 thoughts on “ON TOP D MATTER: 2014 NATIONAL CONFAB

  1. My most favorite opinion from this chatroom? ‘Oma: My major bone of contention is what are they discussing? We’ve discussed enough, what we need is implementation abeg’.
    Yes, Nigerians like to talk. The citizens, the government, we’re all full of talk. Exactly when will we match our talk with accompanying action?

  2. This confab I hope is not turned into a confra meeting. Its not the first of its kind but I sure hope this is nothing like the previous and better still not like the committee syndrome drowning funds without benefits. I love my country, but ike agwulam with all these theatrics from leaders and the led all season. Let’s be objective, these so called delegates are old hags that got us into this mess in the first place. What happened to young, abled visionaries (like Chisom Ojukwu) in our country? What’s the 12million really for? Must they stay @ transcorp hilton? Must they eat and drink @ transcorp or protea? The delegates are even fighting for more money for their aides, useless people. If they like they should carry their community as aides. We haven’t started discussing the real issues of the confab sef. Are all these not the madness and greed that flaws everything in the country? We have a bunch of unpatriotic scoundrels as delegates, I pray we achieve what was set out.

    On the issues of confab: for 3 months these men shall discuss our future. I wonder if its the same ‘our’ the national assemblies have been doing that they will continue. The Northern delegates no go gree for anything the Southern delegates go talk (royal rumble) even if its for the benefit of the whole. Matters on true federalism, security and removing more from exclusive list ish, (they need to add that party frame work in Nigeria should be handle by the younger generation though they might be worse sef). All these and more for 12million. I wonder where this money is coming from. Was it budgetted for sef? Yes lest I forget they should pay umemployed Nigerians (Nigerian Association of the Unemployed NAU).

    I don forget na short reply I suppose give, let me hold my peace and watch and see how this one will go before I speak more.

    Pax tecum

    • Nnaa, no need to hold any peace biko…rip the air to pieces (but pls spare us.lol) I definitely see and know where you’re coming from. We can only hope for the best as it is underway already.
      Abi oh?!! Ask dem why I wasn’t invited! I don dey here since dey carry placard still no show. Pls organize some homeboys make una come join me…I have a couple extra.lol

  3. I doubt if d confab would not lead to more problems. Politics is likely gonna play a big game there. Besides, with the upcoming election, many of these delegates especially from different ethnic groups may want 2 object or accept ideas that would only favour them. Well, it’s also good for variant methods to be applied in solving problems. Another question now is: after the confab, what next??? If it fails, what else??. Let me keep my fingers crossed. But, 12million times 192 is really much ohhh

    • Yes bro, it’s a lot of money. But much less than 20billion dollars non?lol. I’m not saying we should ‘adapt’ to theft oh…just let’a give it a chance especially since it’s beyond stopping based on our arguments

  4. I pray say anytin good go commot for that Confab o…..like am not tryna be pessimistic and all but what r they going to implement when the female delegates are busy disputing the use of male pronouns! Like seriously?! Is that what they r going to be paid over 100k a day to do?! Ndigbo threathening to go to court over the ongoing process! Lol! God help us and our beloved country o….Amen.

  5. I lost faith in the national conference when the list of delegates were published. What I expected from the presidency was to go to the grassroots and pick the youths. though green and foolish our ideas may seem, but it will be the basis for the change we need. we have youth reps who are 40 years old. what does Ike Nwachukwu or Sam Egwu have to offer. 90% of the folks there hustled their way in all for the benefit. you need to see those folks arguing foolishly on TV.

    • My dear Chizzy, I watched a bit of a session yesterday. And I went into my room and prayed for the country. I have not seen a list of the delegates yet (pls share a link if you have one) but I knoe that there are some men there who have a meaningful thing.or two to contribute there. I have not lost hope and I pray you not to either because the scariest part is this: this is clearly our last chance at a dialogue for way forward.

  6. I sure hope this takes the nation ahead positively, considering the amount that’s been pushed in! Few delegates are there for the good of us, the leaders of today (not tomorrow, pardon me), while some (with instance of the aged man seriously sleeping while national issues were being ironned out) are there just to ‘answer present’. I think, the prayer of every well-meaning Nigerian should be that the contributions of those ‘few’ delegates will be considered and implemented. @ Martin: I’m beginning to enjoy here. Thumbs up Nnaa!!!

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