VALENTINE: WHO WANT'S TO MARRY HIS EXCELLENCY'S DAUGHTER?
One of the physical conditions synonymous with human natureis poverty! It is a challenge that has defiled all known theories and laws. Theworld that is divided along national, racial, religious, sectional, denominational,cultural, ideological and political lines is brought together at every givenopportunity to brainstorm on the best approach to tackling this distastefulreality. The increasing demands for workable solution that will permanentlyarrest this generational challenge, was what prompted the former President ofWorld Bank Group, Mr. Robert Zoellic to make a statement every constructivecritic must reflect on! He said: “If poverty were so easy to overcome, someonewould have done it long ago”. This was the statement that came from the formerboss of an international organization dedicated to tackling global poverty.It was Isaac Newton in propounding the law of gravity thatsaid: “Whatever goes up must come down”, but, some persons now say,
whatevergoes up in Nigeria keeps going up and vice versa! Before now, our tertiaryinstitutions used to be meeting point for students from both the rich and poorfamily, thereby enhancing the chances of social mobility! But, today, the reverseis the case as children of the rich either attend foreign universities or anyof the private universities or tertiary institutions which the children of the poorcannot attend. Government funded tertiary institutions are now left for thechildren of the middle class and few children of the poor. This is one of thereasons our lawmakers are considering the idea of making laws to prevent thechildren of public office holders from schooling abroad. Some years ago, when the daughterof one of the former Nigerian leaders was about getting married to one of thesitting governors in the country, the youths of his community were protesting,saying why must it be only a particular group of Nigerians that will be marryingthe daughters
of the former Nigerian leader. But, their questions fell on deafears! The truth of the matter is that such attitude is fast becoming anentrenched culture in our social life. There was a time when the daughter ofone of the Nigerian business moguls wanted to tie the nuptial nut with one ofthe little known contractor in her father's company, her father allegedlyrejected the offer initially, but because of the genuine insistence of thelady, the marriage was consummated. Going by the current realities in thecountry, I doubt if the son of a governor will ever marry the daughter of afarmer or a trader! The marriage line in the country is now divided alongsocio-economic, religious and political lines. Whether these marriages havebeen successful or not is a different story. Even in advanced societies,children of the poor or the middle class still get married to the children ofthe higher class. This was exemplified on April 29, 2011, when Prince William,the
Duke of Cambridge got married to Catherine Elizabeth Middleton, daughter ofa former staff of the British Airways. According to reports, they both met atthe University of St. Andrew in 2001, before other things like rapport, self disclosure,mutual dependency, personality needs fulfillment and finally marriage consummationfollowed suits. (Apologies to Ira Reiss) The gap between the rich and thepoor is too wide in Nigeria. The middle class in the country is just a handfull. According report by Thisday Newspaper in 2011, middle class are thosewhose monthly salary is $500 or about N80, 000 and above. Also, at the 8thNational Conference on Investment, organized by the Nigerian InvestmentPromotion Council, the Minister of State for Federal Capital Territory (FCT), ChiefOlajumoke Akinjide said, about 46.9 percent of the residence in Abuja earnbelow N30,000 per month, while 19.77 percent of the population in Abuja earnbetween N30,000 and N50,000 per month. Only
5.44 percent earn between N50, 000and N100, 000 per month. Before any relationship begins,it must start with a rapport between the parties involved. Now, the children ofthe higher class lodge in hotels where a room cost about N100, 000 per night.When they attend clubs, it is either a high profile one or a club or a holidayoutside the country! There is really no platform form for the cross fertilizationof ideas among these classes of Nigerians. This was the situation one of thetop female government officials expressed in an interview she granted to onethe national dailies in 2007. She said, in those days when she was single, she actuallyneeded a man, but available ones where afraid to come around because of herhigh status both in education and income (sic). The harsh economic realities anduncertainties young men and women are facing in the country can sometimes beviewed as man-made. Imagine a situation where a young man would want to marry, insteadof
allowing him to cut his cloth according to his means, compulsory lists fromdifferent angles will be handed down to him, including the church