Food is the most basic necessity for human existence yet 95% of our population cannot eat a balanced diet. Beyond the cost of food, the availability, variety and quality are all issues that we are tackling together. Our vision is for food security, cost stability, options variety and ethical production.
Food Security: Nigeria does not produce enough food to ensure that it can survive, war, famine or international sanction. We are at risk of external and internal actors who use food for control. The incidents of Farmers and Herders clashes are further compounded by the lack of alternative work for the herders and alternative meats for the farmers. We need to secure our food supply with cordinated investments and farming activities.
Cost Stability: The average Nigerian has been priced out of Christmas, Salah and other holidays by the wild swings of pricing for food. It is a humanitarian challenge to ensure that food price is stable in Nigeria. This requires sacrifice from committed producers who band together to ensure that the price swings are curtailed by maintaining a moderate increase during peak periods.
Options Variety: A lack of cordinated planning of Agricultural development and retail distribution in Nigeria has left us all eating Egusi, Onugbo and Ogbono soup all year round. The options for meat are limited to Cow, Goat and Chicken, so much of our food supply is limited by a supply chain that is grossly uneducated on the range of products they can vend. We need greater food options that explore alternatives meats, grains, vegetables etc, allowing people to truly enjoy food and explore unique recipes, and curtail a dependence on foreign foods for our children.
Ethical Production: There is a saying that "you are what you eat", therefore we must encourage organic and ethical production of food, to ensure that what is being fed to us is right with man and God. The environments in which we raise the animals, the compensation of the workers that plant the fields, the organic nature of the soils, animals and fertilizers should all be part of our comprehensive development of a food eco-system in Nigeria.
Not everyone can get the chance to live in a home in Ikoyi, or work in an office overlooking the ocean but the basics of a good work and home environment should be available to all Nigeria. The essentials of Power, Water, Security and Basic amenities should be as common here as it is in Germany.
Power: There is absolutely no reason for us to depend on the government for electricty, we already spend enough on generator fuel to power all homes in Nigeria. With the right cordination we can ensure 100%, 24 Hours, 7 Days a week power for all of us and at less cost than what we already spend today.
Water: Modern sanitation is harder for most Nigerians today than it was for our ancestors, we have blocked the streams and not provided an alternative. We need to institute programs that ensure, consistent and clean water supply to our people with immediate effect.
Security: Our homes and offices are safe havens which must be secured and the platforms for that security is easy with co-ordination.
Basic Amenities: Beyond these core needs, modern societies ensure the availability of laundry solutions, gas into homes, access to a clean and manicured environment, parks and outdoor spaces, all this should also be available to all Nigerians. This is good living, and our people can have a very good life.
It is imperative that we ensure a good life for all by providing access to health care throughout the life of every citizen, from birth to their exit from this earth. Our peoples lives are burdened by little health issues which go untreated overtime and which ultimately leads to their demise or a painful old age. It is also a key point that makes our work place uncompetitive and our homes agitated. Parents with unattended health conditions are burdens to their children, workers with hidden illnesses are a drag on business efficiency and overall, poor health makes for an unhappy and agitated existence for much of our population. The solutions are 4 fold, restoration of native and home remedies, provision of preventative medicine, advancements of medical facilities and development of medical research and production capacity.
Restoration of Native and Home Remedies: The idea that people must go to the hospital for every condition is flawed and expensive, our people must be educated on when it is safe to take care of themselves with home and traditional remedies which are cheaper and safer than modern medicine.
Provision of Preventative Medicine: From the quality of our vaccines to the availability of parks and fitness facilities, to medical advice and preventative investigations, there is alot we can put into place to ensure that our people live healthy lives everyday.
Advancements of Medical Facilities: The pharmacies, hospital and fitness centers we have a very sub-par to what is obtainable the world over and we must drastically change this. Especially in the area of Medical Facilities, we need advanced care to be available to the masses and not just a few and we need to advance our nation to a point where it is not at all necessary to travel abroad for care.
Development of Medical Research and Production Capacity: At the top of health care is the ability to identify new conditions and new treatments, we must stop copying the world and start creating a Nigeria that works for all of us. We must have the research capacity to develop drugs, treatments and machines, we must also have the ability to produce them and bring them into the local and global market. We must own our health care.
Education is simply knowledge, it is the tool with which the past generation ensures that the new generation does not make the same mistakes that they did, but in Nigeria, this is not the case. We are repeating the mistakes of our fathers, we are learning older ways of doing things and we are wasting 4 years to a degree but not the knowledge to be useful in society. We must revisit education and in the process ensure that our people have what they need to compete in the world. The institutions must teach skills and advance intellect in a way that is better than what our fathers had. Our education systems need a complete new model, and modern institutions and the financing mechanisms to allow access for all.
New Models: Our current education system is modelled after the British and American systems but without due respect to our culture and the current state of our society. We must evolve our education system to meet our own needs, and this needs a customized approach that respects where we are. For example in Engineering we need to focus on training foundation level thinkers, that understand the basic and raw laws of physics, chemistry, material sciences etc., and can put these into practical use in developing technologies suited for our needs. We should not continue to train technicians who can only USE but cannot CREATE technology. From Nursery school we must begin to raise THINKERS, this does not have to run counter to our tradition or respect for elders and teachers, we can build a model that maintains respect for authority but also respect for individual genius of each student.
Modern Institutions: We must build institutions that have the modern technologies to show our students where the world is. This idea of students being limited to book learning is flawed, our students in home economics should be baking in real ovens, in Mechanical engineering they need to have real cars to experiment and practice with, in law they should be able to attend real mock cases with real Judges. The real world, in its most raw and modern version must be introduced into our classrooms. Children should be able to learn about animals in the classroom and then have a physical excursion to see them in real life, much has to change and it has to change now.
Financing Mechanisms: When the ideal standard of education is available it may be costly for some and so 2 things must be done, 1st we must build with the economies of scale that will ensure that quality education is cost effective and available to all. We also develop financing products that will allows students from low income backgrounds, especially higher education students to access loans and finance a quality education to any level.
The average Nigeria has never been on a plane, travels across the states in cramped mini-vans and cannot afford to even imagine a cruise. This must change. Basic transportation for leisure, travel or the movement of goods and services must be made efficient, comfortable and affordable.
Efficient: To ship a phone across Nigeria, you will 1st take it to a transport company, 2nd they will then send it to their office in the city you desire, then 3rd whoever you sent it to would have to go and pick it up, this is the cheapest means, it is also very, very inefficient. The same with personal travel, most people in cities move around in Keke Napep, across the state they travel in mini-buses, each way wasting hard earned money for an inconvenient and very uncomfortable ride. This isn't economically ideal or efficient, a better mode of movement is needed, we must develop a more comprehensive approach to mass transportation and courier services.
Comfortable: Comfort in transport is both a factor or ride quality, safety and interior asthetics. The average inner city bus in cramped, aged and unsafe, beyond this it is manned by bad manners drivers and conductors that can make your day hell over ₦10. We need better holistic solutions that are cognisant of our people's humanity. The same applies to the shipment of goods, the handers, the vehicles and the systems are not always build to accommodate the peculiar needs of each item or customer, making the process uncomfortable for the people and often unsafe for valuables and fragile goods. We must redevelop these systems together.
Affordable: Nigeria is not designed for the average Nigerian, for most of us, transport costs will eat up at least 30% of our income and still not give true value for money, we must utilize economies of scale in a way that ensures than our people can have comfortable transportation at a fair rate. For example, for interstate travel Trains followed by Luxury Bus transport should be the norm and the cheapest form of travel for all, they must be timely, secure, predictable and reliable and still maintain extreme cost value over mini buses.
Our culture should be created, developed, curated and nurtured by us. This modern world in which we get out news from CNN, our wedding ideas from E!, our dress sense from Fashion TV and our understanding of love and happiness from Telemundo is very very flawed. We need plays, theatre performances, public dance in city and village squares, new approaches film, music, arts, crafts and all other elements of culture. We must own our identity, brand Nigeria, must be diverse but united. It must extract itself from American or European ideals, it must elevate our tribes and our feelings about how the world should be. Most especially developments are needed in the areas of Native/Local expression, Television/Film, Music, Art/Craft and Literature.
Native/Local Expression: This notion that everyone must be on TV to make a living on cultural and artistic expression has left us with a society that is dead on a local level, in the ancient tradition we had village dances, theatre, boxing and wrestling, festivals and the like. These must be restored as a bond for the reclaimation of our traditions and to ensure that our people being to love themselves again at home, this will also go a long way to diminish boredom and inactivity and can even create economic stimulation and employment.
Television/Film: For as long as others continue to tell us about the world and about ourselves we will remain backwards, since we allow them the leading position. One of the things I hated most as a child was watching animal channels where a White man from New Zealand would teach me about the Hyenas in my backyard. We must own our visual platforms, we should control the news, entertainment, films and others programming that our next generation is raised on. They must be groomed to appreciate the best of who they are, then they can see other people not as a cultural pinnacle but as the mere biodiversity God made them to be.
Art/Craft: This must be elevated, they must be taught in schools, appreciated in daily life and integrated into all aspects of society - OUR ARTS AND CRAFT. It is important to live in a society where you can see yourself depicted in road side murals, round about statues, classroom illustrations and home wall decorations. The self esteem of the Nigerian man and spiritual connectivity with his roots and ancestors is deeply important for a grounded life.
Literature: We must write about ourselves and the world in authentic, original fashion and at the highest level. It is very important to achieve fiction, non-fiction and educational texts that originate from the minds of the most advanced Nigerians. These will give us the height of cultural renaissance and beyond that aid our education of the next generation.
LESIURE AND TOURISM
Today we live very boring lives, today lets change that. Nigeria is characterised by hard work and very unwholesome fun. We must develop the natural environments around us, create artificial city scapes and explore the length and breadth of our culinary capacities in a vision to ensure a life where work is rewards with equally pleasing play. In the areas of Leisure, Tourism and Hospitality we need new and original restaurant ideas, dynamic entertainment centers, true resorts, affordable accomodations and all this must be done without a compromise on standards, safety and culture preservation. In this area which I will summarise as Hospitality, the key needs are in scale and accessibility, quality and originality and finally advanced variety.
Scale and Accessibility: In the areas of resorts for example we do not have true resorts because no one has built them at the scale they need to be while maintaining the other values of quality, originality and accessibility. We need scaled resorts which are not owned by governments, it is with economies of scale that we can make these luxurious environments and still make them accessible to the generality of the Nigerian public. NOTE: Any change which leaves the majority behind has failed, we must think and grow as a community.
Quality and Originality: We must develop all aspects of hospitality with quality in service, environment and amenities. Many hotels and restaurants in today Nigeria are doing well in this regard but a lack of national infrastructure has made the cost of business high and is degrading standards, we must develop the solutions to bypass this and maintain high quality. We must also encourage and develop more original concepts that are sustainable and can compete with the global market. Hospitality as it relates to tourism can only be sustained with predictable quality and original content.
Advanced Variety: We barely have any Zoos, Museums, Symposiums, Theatres and other diverse hospitality options, we must begin to create these both for their importance in sustaining our cultural expression, in educating our young but also in attracting tourism and therefore participating in economic development and job creation.