The contradictions of Abuja II


Its interesting driving around Abuja….our beloved capital city. You see refuse disposal trucks with smartly dressed young men emptying the bins….impressive.

Then you drive around in Fashola’s Lagos…and you see the street sweepers…making sure no piece of rubbish is left on any road. Nothing…as this lady on the middle of Third Mainland Bridge…yes really!

What you will not see are these scenes in Onitsha, Aba, Kano, etc….the other face of our country. In states without the attention Abuja gets and without inspirational leaders as Fashola.

Photo credit WIEF

But maybe …just maybe….as Lagos was turned around…maybe one day Aba will …and Onitsha will see the opportunities at their doorsteps and become the model clean cities they can so easily become.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed people can change the world; indeed it is the only thing that ever has…Margaret Mead

Chikwe Ihekweazu is an epidemiologist and consultant public health physician. He is the Editor of Nigeria Health Watch, and the Managing Partner of EpiAfric (, which provides expertise in public health research and advisory services, health communication and professional development. He previously held leadership roles at the South African National Institute for Communicable Diseases and the UK's Health Protection Agency. Chikwe has undertaken several short term consultancies for the World Health Organisation, mainly in response to major outbreaks. He is a TED Fellow and co-curator of TEDxEuston.

Discussion3 Comments

  1. Maybe this is for starters. Maybe with time it will spread to other states. Maybe when indigenes of states start putting forward credible candidates and also voting for them, maybe then we’ll see changes in all states. It’s only a matter of time now, soon others states will clamour for what Fashola has done and is doing for Lagos.

    It’s my prayer that the next crop of governors will have 2-5 Fashola inspired men or women. Slowly, very slowly but surely we’ll get there.

  2. I am glad to see the cleaning going on in Lagos, Abuja, Owerri, Bauchi, Gombe and other state capitals. It is to their tribute that they have rightly followed Cross River State glowing and internationally recognised example which started with the Government of Mr Donald Duke in 1999. Calabar remains the CLEANEST and GREENEST city in Nigeria !!!!!!!!!!!.

    Dr Joseph Ana.

  3. It does appear that no mention is being made of Enugu state Governor S Chime who has turned Enugu around from devastation to some enviable city

    However I am afraid that unless the people the electorates stood their grounds, the same man who ruined that state for 8 years is still prowling about looking to come back or bring in a stooge.

    You must all join me to reach out to the people and encourage them to stand against rogue leaders as Ebeanor

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