Today, reports emerged that members of the House of Representatives received brand new Toyota Camry 2020 as their official cars. According to The Punch, several of those exotic cars were parked outside the National Assembly Complex, on Thursday, March 26, 2020.
Probably, this move wouldn’t have attracted the type of criticism it has so far garnered.
After all, the ‘Honourable’ members of the House of Representatives deserve decent official cars, don’t they?
However, the timing is so wrong, as many Nigerians have rightly pointed out.
At least, I am not the only one who feels nauseated by this senseless act perpetrated by the same people meant to see to the affairs of Nigerians.
It is no longer news that Nigeria and indeed, the whole world is battling the deadly coronavirus pandemic.
Amidst this intense fight for survival, the honourable members of the House of Representatives are receiving their rewards for…
…finding the cure to coronavirus? I think not.
Is it wickedness? Negligence to the looming danger of Covid-19? Insensitivity? Or could this be sheer stupidity on their part?
No. Let me rephrase that.
It is wickedness, negligence, insensitivity and gross stupidity on the part of the House of Reps Members.
It is no surprise that Nigerians have taken to social media to slam them for this move.
But is that enough?
Negligence and recklessness are, as a matter of fact, cultural for our lawmakers. We can wail and cry out as much as we want, they’ll still end up repeating the same reprehensible acts.
The chances of us seeing improvements any time soon are so bleak.
How they should have spent the money instead
The Lawmakers had on the 5th of February in a closed-door meeting decided to purchase 400 units of Toyota Camry 2020, According to Punch Newspaper. However, they kept sealed lips on the cost of each car.
Before the end of February, the deadly virus had already spread across Asia and Europe with thousands of death already recorded. Not to mention the few cases already recorded in some parts of Africa.
If our honourable representatives, so they call themselves, had any shred of human sympathy left in them, they would have put the payment for those cars on hold, bearing in mind the looming danger.
Instead, they would have ordered for more ventilators seeing how the more developed countries are struggling to contain the virus.
Nigeria has one of the poorest health care sectors across the globe. That explains why most politicians are always quick to run abroad to treat the smallest of illnesses.
In a sad turn of event, Nigeria recorded her first case of Covid-19 on the 9th of March, 2020.
Let’s assume the payment had already been made before March, 9th. They could have at least postponed the delivery of the cars if they truly consider the feelings of Nigerians.
Clearly, they don’t
A brand new Toyota Camry 2020 starts at about 12 million naira, according to USnews. And that is just the procurement cost. According to The Punch, our reps purchased 400 of those cars.
Incidentally, a ventilator costs roughly the same amount.
What makes this even more reprehensible is the fact that Nigeria as a whole has less than 500 ventilators, according to reports.
Therefore, they could have suspended those exotic cars and purchased more ventilators. Common sense is enough to know that.
Just this week, a man identified as Emmanuel Benson was reportedly sent home from Lagos State University Teaching Hospital because of lack of bed space.
I will leave you to do the maths. How many beds will ₦10 million buy? How many moderate isolation centres will ₦10 million build?
I mean, how foolish and wicked can the leaders of a country be before they are removed from office? But who will remove the other, considering they are all to blame for this careless and reckless move?
Let’s deviate from the legislative arm of the government to the executive. How many times has President Muhammadu Buhari addressed Nigerians at this moment of crisis?
While other country leaders are at the forefront in the fight against the virus, ours has decided to communicate with us via tweets and messages.
He has chosen not to address us physically or even via a live video chat. As Oby Ezekwesili rightly pointed out, it is a show of utter disregard for the people who voted you in.
Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are that of the author alone. Therefore, NaijaHomeBased cannot be held accountable for any grievances.