• Fri. May 24th, 2024


May 11, 2024


By: Augustine Omilo

The word, ‘suicide’ means the act of taking one’s life intentionally. This is according to all the known English language dictionaries. Most other languages in Nigeria also align with this definition. It is against the law. Heavy consequences await anyone or group of people found in the act in Nigeria. Those who take their lives by committing suicide do so in many ways. These include hanging themselves on a tree with strong ropes and remain dangling until he or she ceases to breath.

There are other forms of suicide. They include the ones where people carry dangerous substances that explode and cause them to die instantly as soon as they accomplish their hidden mission to kill other persons and destroy targeted properties belonging to individuals, groups or governments. This is the type often carried out by terrorists like Bokoharam in Nigeria or Al-Qaida in the Middle East countries. The actors are called suicide bombers. Some persons have equally been known to have killed themselves by personal gunshots or machete injuries after committing one crime or the other, especially after killing other people.

For the avoidance of doubts and for the clarity of the points being made here, not all deaths by hanging constitute suicide. For example, Jesus Christ died for man’s redemption through hanging on a tree. He never wanted it that way and therefore did not die by suicide. Offences such as armed robbery, kidnapping and homicide also attract death by hanging penalty in Nigeria. These are not suicide cases.

However, there is a second but equally important definition of suicide by the English language dictionaries such as the Cambridge English dictionary, Marriam-Webster dictionary, yourdictionary.com, Collins English dictionary amongst others. According to them, the word also means “any act of taking actions that are destructive to one’s interests, career or position in the society”. This assertion captures the current position of Nigeria as a nation heading towards a corporate suicide mission, given the many terrible things brought about by bad governance.

Some time ago, the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto diocese, Mathew Kukah spoke out as usual against the ills in the present-day Nigeria which stand to cause a repeat of the civil war that took place from 1967 to 1970 if not properly and urgently addressed by the then president of Nigeria, General Muhammadu Buhari and his APC government. In a swift reaction, some people of Sokoto descent gave an ultimatum for Kukah to leave the State as a result of what they termed an attack on the religion of Islam and Moslems generally. This is suicidal!

Though, the presidency reacted by saying that the catholic priest has the backing of the Nigerian laws, Buhari ought to have gone beyond this level to invoke appropriate sanctions against those rascals in Sokoto. This would have deterred other groups from acting in similar ways when confronted with the same but harmless issues in their regions or states.


The country appears to be on stand-still economically due to the various reforms introduced by the president, Bola Ahmed Tinubu on assumption of office on the 29th of May 2023. The removal petroleum subsidy and the unified currency exchange regime saw inflation in Nigeria rising to as high as 33% in March, 2024 as against 15% in March last year.

In 2021, the pigeons released during the year’s Armed Forces Remembrance Day by Buhari and some governors on the 15th of January failed to fly as usual. Some adherents of African superstitious religion believed that it was a bad omen. Whether this was true or not is immaterial. The truth remained that the birds failed to fly for some reasons that may not be unconnected with hunger, lack of care, sickness or ‘protests’. None of these suggests good governance.

Apart from inflation, Nigeria currently faces the serious challenges in the direction of disintegration, war, hunger, deprivation and decreasing life expectancy.

It is therefore only reasonable for the president to quickly begin to address every form of imbalance in his government in order to avoid handing over a tattered government to the next leader in next election year. It will be suicidal to do so.

Meanwhile, it is worthy to note that some measures being taken by the president in tackling the myriad of problems facing the nation are beginning to yield positive results, no matter how little they may appear. With Dangote refinery spearheading the reduction in the prices of petroleum products and the fact that prices of some other commodities like rice are coming down gradually, citizens can only but hope that the government will do more to stabilise the economy. This is the only way the present successes in governance can be sustained to usher the nation into a state of Eldorado.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *