Login Register
Lost Password?Don't Have An Account?


You Are Welcome

We welcome you here as you join the ongoing Discussions.

Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Black Panther: A Good Film With Many Lessons For Nigeria – Atiku Abubakar
03-06-2018, 03:11 PM,
Black Panther: A Good Film With Many Lessons For Nigeria – Atiku Abubakar
Over the weekend, I joined my children to watch the
much talked about ‘Black Panther’. It was a good film,
and I was happy they took me to see it. However, I came
out of the movie theatre a little upset.
When the first scenes came up, and I saw “Sambisa
Forest” I was unhappy that the only reference the film
makers could have for Nigeria was a negative one, but I
was later encouraged by the thought of Africans solving
African problems. That is a good thing, the kinds of
things we used to do. For young people who may not
remember, Nigerian civil servants and indeed most able
citizens used to contribute money every month to
support the struggle against Apartheid in South Africa.
Nigeria was the single stabilizing force across West
Africa. Helping to restore peace in Liberia and Sierra
Leone are examples of the gigantic status we once had.
Seeing another African country come play ‘Big Brother’
to Nigeria made me very sad. We must return to a place
of respect. We may argue that the film is a work of
fiction, but there are many truths in the story – one of
them being that young girls are being abducted by
terrorists across the northeast of Nigeria, and they need
to be rescued. Only recently, a band of terrorists stormed
another girls’ school in Dapchi, Yobe State. After days of
confusing information, it is now confirmed that 110 girls
are missing. Nigeria has once again been thrown into
sorrow with many of us wishing that there was indeed a
‘Black Panther’ to help rescue the girls.
Here are my takeaways on Black Panther:
Institutions are important
Wakanda was portrayed as a technological giant, which is
ruled by great kings, supported by a council, and
traditions are held in high esteem. But it was easy to see
that most of the decisions are those of the king, which
presents serious institutional problems. Institutional
order in the dispensation of justice could have helped
handle the betrayal of Wakanda by the king’s brother,
which would have prevented the hatred of Wakanda
which filled the heart of the nephew who was left behind.
The succession system is also another example of
institutional weakness in Wakanda. The young man from
America came in and within days, destroyed the long
standing institutions, even when he seemed to be trying
to help Black people all over the world.
In one moment of folly, he decided to destroy the garden
that guarantees powers to every other king of the future.
Should there not have been a process whereby a council
needs to approve the King’s orders before they are
carried out? Institutions are better guarantors of good
governance than kings or strong men/women.
Checks and balances are important in leadership. This is
why democracy is important. As a Nigerian who has lived
through many dictatorships, I would have liked
Wakandans to adopt a new model, which gives them a
say in who leads them, as well as includes checks and
balances. This would at least insure the country against
the rise of tyrants and demagogues.
Killmonger’s liberation philosophy was terrible
The most successful tyrants always have simple
philosophies, which on the surface appear good. We only
see the deviousness of the plan after a second look.
Many people would be drawn to the message of black
liberation that the young American returnee preached,
but closer scrutiny reveals that it wasn’t liberation he
was preaching, but reverse oppression. When the
oppressed becomes the oppressor, has justice really
been done or are we just exchanging one evil for
Nigeria’s hope is Nigerians
One of Wakanda’s most valuable resources was
mentioned in the film, but not shown – many
Wakandans abroad providing intelligence to their country
back home. There’s enough Nigerian talent abroad to
turn our country into a technology and industry giant.
The question then is how we can make the environment
conducive for them to return and contribute to its
growth and development.
During my time in government, mining the ‘natural
resource’ of Nigerians in the Diaspora was an important
part of our strategy, bringing back Nigerians who had
established themselves abroad to come home to work.
Sadly, many of those people who came back have
packed up and returned abroad. We are losing
professionals in all sectors in their droves every month,
at the fastest rate not seen since the 1980s.
We cannot build the Nigeria of our dreams without
keeping our best people in the country and empowering
them to work and build businesses. We cannot keep our
people healthy when the best of our medical
professionals are being forced to pack up and leave.
We always need strategic alliances
One of my favourite characters in the film was Mbaku,
the big chief from the mountain tribe. He sounded and
acted very Nigerian, which made me like him a lot. His
alliance with T’Challa was very innocuous – having failed
to defeat the new king in the challenge for the throne,
the king encouraged him to give up, that he will be
useful to the king in the future. That little moment is the
reason Wakanda was saved later in the film.
As a Nigerian, I always wonder how much stronger our
regional leadership would be if we built better alliances.
Nigerian soldiers spent most of the 90s and 2000s
helping stabilize West Africa. Wouldn’t it be in our
interest to strengthen our influence on the basis of those
Women in Africa get things done
One important thing I noticed in Wakanda was the strong
role of women in all aspects – defense, technology,
leadership, spiritual leadership, among others.
When there was trouble, the women of Wakanda didn’t
just stand by, they found a way. I remember in the
mid-90s, when many of Nigeria’s leading democracy
activists were running away in crates and bush border
crossings, (I also miraculously escaped), the women
were there to save us. Women were either helping the
movement go underground, or taking up the fight.
It would be a disservice to Nigerian women, if we speak
about June 12, without mentioning the role of Kudirat
Abiola. I was honoured to present a posthumous award
to MKO Abiola’s family during the recently held Silverbird
Man of the Year Awards, and I wish more awards will go
to the women who often led or supported the pro-
democracy movement.
I finished the Black Panther movie wondering how much
better our country would be if we let more women into
leadership. We are losing up to 40% of our productivity
because we still haven’t fully integrated our women into
economic and socio-political leadership.
But I was also left thinking, what if the king’s first child
was a girl; would Wakandans support her to be Black
By: Atiku Abubakar.

Forum Jump:

Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)