The end of talk and the birth of action (Part A)

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Talk is cheap, they say. Meaning it's easy to talk about something but hard to actually do it. If talk alone can transform a nation, Nigeria will probably be a heaven by now. Many have talked, many still talk and many more will talk but without acting, Nigeria will remain unchanged.

Words alone have not made America the world's only Superpower neither has talk built Europe nor made China an emerging economic powerhouse nor Singapore an Asian tiger. In all cases, actions did.

A thought is of no use unless an action is enforced. Knowledge is not enough, it must be applied in action and similarly talk can not move a mountain. Yes! It can never. Until thought, knowledge and speech are aligned with congruent action, nothing will be achieved.

It's time for greatness, not for greed. It's a time for idealism, not ideology. It is a time not just for compassionate words, but compassionate action. - Marian Wright Edelman

I have also talked, talked to people, talked on Facebook and everywhere because it's cheap and everyone can do that but I know that nothing good comes cheap. Of what good is my talk if it does not result in an action. Dumb I should have been. Of what benefit is my critical opinion if I fail to put an action in place.

The solution to Nigeria 's problems is the distance between my talk and my action, your talk and your action; and our talks and our actions. Our actions must interpret our talks.

Elbert Hubbard, the famed American 19th century writer claimed that “to avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.” But events have proven that we cannot avoid criticism by being inactive nor can we evade danger by being sedentary. Posterity will not only hold us responsible for what we do but also for what we do not do and that is why we can blame the past generations for their failures of both commission and omission. All that is necessary for evil to succeed is that good men do nothing. - Edmund Burke.

As a people who are tired of the present state of our nation, as a people who want a different nation from what we live in, as a people who want a better country that we can proudly call ours and as a people who want to leap forward like other great nations, we have a wholesome obligation to change this nation to what we desire.

Change from our indifference and be active in the nation's building. Change our actions from taking to giving to the nation. Thanks to JFK, 'we should ask not what our country can do for us; ask what we can do for the nation.' Change from saying to doing for the nation. Change from milking to feeding the nation. Change from leaving to living in the nation, change from pulling down to pushing forward, change from despising to admiring the nation and change from loving the nation with our words but our deeds.

No government alone can ever move a nation to greatness. Not even the best regimes with the noblest administrations. The roles of individuals like you and I are indispensable. In the developed world, the government and the people collaborate to complement their functions in social welfare and projects. The government cannot do it alone neither do the people.

The calamitous state of the nation is a golden opportunity for everyone of us to rise and activate the God given potential in us to intervene. If the leadership has failed us! Must we fail with them or fail ourselves? The political class may have let us down but we cannot afford to do same to ourselves. We all have a role to play and a bit to contribute. All our little efforts will sum up to make the difference we have hoped for.

I've lived for almost 20 years in a system where everyone gives back: from students who volunteer hour to the people in the working class who donate their time: from the middle class who spare their time and resources and to the rich who give through their foundations.

We all have the inherent capability to do something to improve this great nation. It is a gift given by the Creator. It is already there, we just need to activate it. If we so choose, we can make a nation of our dreams.

To build Nigeria , we do not need another MKO Abiola. Neither do we need another Awolowo, Azikwe nor Balewa. They have all done their bits. Fawehinmi will never be here again to help us fight but Nigeria needs you and I. We are the ones who will build the nation to greatness. By Rufus Oterniya

Watch out for part B

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