Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

If you live in Nigeria, especially in the Northern regions, then you know without a doubt it’s been a forgettable year so far. I am however not going into all the morbid details, I’m saving that for a more serious piece. However, even in the midst of all the chaos, crises and vast display of sheer ineptitude (especially from Government quarters), Nigerians have been learning new things, no thanks to the Boko Haram insurgency and the reactions that have trailed it.
I have decided to hereby write what I have learned so far and share the many nuggets of wisdom that have thus been bestowed on us.

1. Important Geographical Information

First thing that shouts right out (and you cannot deny this) is that they’ve expanded our knowledge of Geography. Yep! What? No? well, tell me before now, how many people knew places like Chibok (Borno State) and Nyanya (Abuja) before now? Did you also know before the insurgents’ attacks that Nigeria is bordered in the northern and north eastern regions by Niger, Chad Republic and Cameroun? It’s okay, you’re welcome. I wasn’t gonna take credit for that anyways, but if you insist, you can send an MTN recharge card *straight face*

2. It’s okay to fight an ideal you’re benefitting immensely from

Well, at this point, it is no longer a secret that these guys are a bunch of well-sponsored retarded thugs with no aim but terror. The sad truth is, these retards seem to be smarter than the retards charged with protecting us. But I can see why it’s been hard for the government to understand these terrorists when the terrorists themselves seem to be ironically against western education. You want to know what I think? Well, you’re reading my piece so I’ll assume you do. Well, I think it’d take a whole lot of western education to be able to make guns, armoured tanks and modern warfare equipment that they use. And how about the internet? They even upload videos (some of them up to thirty minutes) on Youtube, (I have inside info that they’re working on a Twitter account and a facebook like page to boot). So, next time you wanna stage a protest against an ideal, policy or what have you, it’s okay to use some of the people you want to fight against to help you arrange the protests and make it a success.

3. Hash tagging

Before now, I’ve had Twitter and Instagram newbies on several occasions ask me “Black, what’s the meaning of hash tagging, why do people use hash tags?”. Yes, I know what you’re thinking. And no, I’m not interested in it! Anyways, enter Boko Haram, throw in a couple of abductions hither and tither and voila! The hash tag that moved the world. #BringBackOurGirls. So now you know what hash tags are for and why they were invented. And then, Nigerians in their usual style turned the whole thing into a carnival. People taking smiling pictures with their pets and all, carrying placards brandishing the hash tag. All manners of selfies and group selfies. Some even going as far as arranging whole photo shoots/ photo sessions to #BringBackOurGirls. There is absolutely no limit to the level of ignorance we have to display to feel relevant!

4. Blood Sharing is common phenomena in Northern Nigeria

I have never donated blood in my life. There, I said it. Mostly because, if I were dying and I was offered some of my own pre-stored blood to reinvigorate me and keep me alive, I’d probably die quicker from taking it. But that’s not the point I’m trying to make here. Well, after the bombings and abductions in Borno, our esteemed first lady *ahem!*, was seen on television shedding tears (understandably reasoning with the plight of the abducted girls) but wait, towards the end, we understand that some people have been sharing blood in Borno without our knowledge albeit the government knew about it. *sigh* Lord, why oh why all these conspiracies from our leaders ehn??? *wipes tears off keyboard* Chei!! There is God oo.

5. America knows much more than you think

image

Well, you thought you’d seen it all from the action movies of old back to the Jack Bauers of today but nah…. There’s more. During the  last presidential media chat, the president, unequivocally explained how if 20 billion Naira was missing, America will know. Yep! You guessed it. They have diabolical means to these things. So next time you have the curtains down, door locked, and you enter  your password and do your retina scan to access your porn stash so you can pleasure yourself… Always remember, (Say it with me) “America Will Know”

6. When people steal public funds, it is Not corruption

Interesting Fact: Did you know that sloths have been known to die from eating their own hands after mistaking them for tree branches? Huh? “No way!” You say? You think that’s the height of stupidity? Wait till you learn something new today. Our president is a sage. Did you know that when people steal or embezzle or misapppropriate public funds that it is not called corruption? No? You didn’t? Well, thank heavens! Our president is God sent. He has made us understand that “ordinary people stealing money, Nigerians will say it is corruption. All these things you people are saying, it is just people stealing”. Oh tell me you felt that! That tingle and sound you hear when your IQ soars two levels above the sloths’

7. There is God oo

And we saved the best for last. We also know now that there is a God. And he knows as well about all the blood sharing in Borno (and other places that we are yet to find out as of press time). If you were an atheist, or scientologist before now. Please know now from all we have said that, THERE IS GOD OOO. Who do you think created the universe? You believe the big bang theory? You think the first lady was a product of evolution? That she and the rest of you were evolved from apes and chimps? Ha!!! THERE IS GOD OOO.

Well, there concludes it. Though honourable mention should also go to the fact that some words have now become more common in our vocabulary as wel. Words like; insurgents, hash tags and abductions. If you didnt know the meanings of these words or never came across them before the crises? Well, you’re welcome.
See you guys next week.

Authored by ‘Lola El-Imam (@Lolaelblack)
Lola is the editor here at La Critique and can be reached at lolaelblack@gmail.com
Follow @LaCritique_ng on Twitter and like http://facebook.com/TheCritiques on facebook

It has been over a year since I wrote anything worth reading (let alone publishing) last. In that time, a lot of people have asked me different questions all soliciting a reason as to why La Critique’s been off for so long. Well, life happened. That’s as simple as I can put it. I’ve been through a bad break up, lost motivation, lost a lot of money at one point, lost old friends, made new ones, got several new jobs, made some cool money, changed lives (how you interpret that is entirely up to you), met the most wonderful person I have in my life right now, lost my mom and… back to life!

But life as we see it, while personal, isn’t private. Life involves what we make of ourselves through the people we meet every day, the way we interact with our environment and vice versa. How our decisions affect, in a chain reaction of events, millions of other people who in turn have to make decisions and so on and so forth. If this be the case, and I believe it actually is, why do we then turn a blind eye to the suffering of our neighbour? Why then does the predicament of the next person feel inconsequential to your wellbeing? How can you truly boast of your capabilities materially and otherwise if none of it has been used to the benefit of your immediate environment? The same environment that’s responsible for the air you breathe, the earth you tread, the people you earn a just living from etc.

Think about it.

You have been a Nigerian all your life. Chances are you’ll die a Nigerian. Has Nigeria been kind to you? If not, have you been kind to Nigeria to expect a reciprocation of such affection? Do you think being born within the geographical boundaries of a political set up makes you a citizen? It is not the land but the people. It is the people who make the geographic boundaries. They are the ones responsible for how its resources are utilized. If you believe you cannot make an impact here, chances are you can’t make an impact anywhere. Having a political post, material wealth or any other semblance of grandeur doesn’t make you great. If you weren’t great before attaining that office, wealth, et al you won’t be great from it. Many a people attribute greatness to the things of the realm of the tangible. How far away from the truth they are.

You, who are reading this, are great. Yes! If only you would believe it. If only you would act upon it. If you think you cannot make a change, then other people will make the change for you. Has your life been worthwhile? Are you happy? What do you categorise as ‘worthwhile’ and how do you experience ‘happy’? Can one truly be happy in an environment where hundreds of innocent lives are taken every day? Can one truly wake up with a clear conscience and opening up the paper read about hundreds of teenage girls kidnapped and still remain of a clear conscience? Perhaps, I live in an alternate universe where the human mind works on another level, where it is written “Love thy neighbour as thyself”, where people ought to know that “as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he”.

I therefore apologise, I am a Nigerian, and I am an alien in my country.

“It is easy to dismiss people as terrorists, corrupt, and all that. But the fundamental question is, what kind of environment produces these kind of people and who is responsible for that environment?”. If you do not know the answer with absolute conviction by now, I suggest you stop reading. If you think the few hundreds of people in office are responsible for you who put them there, then you have not been paying attention. For It is also written that “he that has been sent cannot be greater than he that sent him”. So how then can a feeble leadership be greater than the “ordinary people” it has been called to serve?
Again, I apologise, I am alien to these concepts but a Nigerian, yet I remain.

To quote the great political thinker, Edmund Burke; “The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing”. So dear Nigerian, if you’re asking me what to do, if you’re asking me what needs to be done, if you’d like to know where to begin, all I can say is (paraphrasing Michael Jackson’s “Man in The Mirror) start with the great man you see every morning in the mirror, ask him to change his ways and “no message could’ve been any clearer, if you wanna make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and then make the change”.

May the good Lord be with us all. Amen

Please say a little prayer for the many lives that have been lost to these needless killings and man’s inhumanity to man before you leave this page. That is all the reward I ask for sharing my thoughts with you.

Live long and prosper!

Authored by ‘Lola El-Imam
‘Lola is the editor here at La Critique and can be reached at lolaelblack@gmail.com. follow ‘Lola on Twitter @Lolaelblack and follow @LaCritique_ng.
Like us on Facebook too http://Facebook.com/TheCritiques

So I had pondered and pondered on what to write, countless sleepless nights, and then it hit me, Eureka! I had an ‘Aha’ moment (not the music group oh) like some of you even know ‘Aha’ the music group *rme* oya run to Google *tongue out* . Lol. Ok people don’t get mad please continue reading, I beg you *straight face*. This article isn’t even about Aha anyways so moving on…

Since I had so many sleepless nights, I decided to put that into good use and write about all those thoughts that haunt me. So here goes; please feel free to ponder on these thoughts as well as add yours, and if this article leads you to have sleepless nights like me then I’ve fulfilled my purpose :‎​Ð
The questions will start with ‘what if’?

What if I had gotten pregnant fourteen years ago? Would my son(yes I’d have had a son) be as hot as me? Would he have called me aunty cos he’‎​Ð just be too overwhelmed by my sexiness to call me mummy?

What if I were a guy? Would ladies have loved me like Chris Brown? Would the gals want my ‘D’? Would I have been able to set unlimited ‘P’s on twitter? Would Chika have married me? Would I have been taller?

What if Abiola had become the President of Nigeria in 1993? Would Nigeria have been better? Would he have been the messiah?

What if Abacha didn’t die? Would he still have been in power?

What if GEJ had shoes while growing up? Would Nigeria be in this mess it’s in right now with his clueless leadership?

What if I hadn’t met Babalola on that cold windy night at the AA meeting? Would he have given me the chance to write on La Critique? *Grateful tears* 😛

What if Vanessa Kanu actually became sane? Would she become the next president of Nigeria?

What if Obama IS the anti christ? Won’t we all wish we hadn’t laughed at Femi Fani Kayode’s article (if you haven’t read it I’m so sorry I can’t help you, or maybe Babalola will post a link?) Wouldn’t we just push GEJ aside and make F.F.K president?

What if Adele decided to drink hypo after her boyfriend broke her heart ? Would we have been blessed with her awesome songs?

What if someone actually took Babalola’s article about how to become Nigeria’s president, follows all the steps and actually becomes president?

What if the numbers Americans will get (as regards Obama’s health care plan) is what will actually be the ticket to heaven? *dodges shoe, slap, cane, kicks and runs to timbuktu* 😛

What if the world DOES end on the 21st of December according to the movie ‘2012’, wouldn’t people like Kendra feel bad about not listening and feel sorry for writing that article, calling us who believe this dumb? -_-

What if the arks are actually being made in China?

What if Noah hadn’t allowed the mosquitoes and those wicked black ants into the ark?

What if Vanessa hadn’t introduced me to Lana Del Rey’s music?

What if Lana Del Rey actually agrees to elope with me? (That’s if she actually gets to ever read any of my fan mails and tweets 😦 )

What if Twitter didn’t exist?

What if we didn’t have the bathroom to think all those awesome life changing thoughts?

What if Maxwell decides I’m the love of his life, his soul mate (yes Maxwell the artiste)

What if I wasn’t wearing my matching bra and panties right now? Would I have this much inspiration?

What if Chuck decides to become a Priest?

What if M.J didn’t die? Would I have saved\stolen\ sold stuff enough to go and see him at the O2 arena?

What if Tonto Dikeh actually releases an album and it goes platinum and she breaks into the American market and wait for it…

…Wait for it…

Wins
A
Grammy! *Faints at such thoughts*

What if Madonna’s kiss has lost its potency for ending careers? Because if it hasn’t, please tell me why Nicki Minaj is still relevant???

What if I eventually agree to … (Arggggh! Lost that train of thought)

What if those guys on Glee didn’t agree to sing some of our favourite songs while ruining it in the process or making it so overly dramatic! Don’t get me wrong I think those guys can sing (with exception of Finn) I love Kurt but they should say no to singing some songs.

What if Fela didn’t die?

What if Biafra DID come into existence?

What if Chika finds out that …(Aaarrrrgh! Another lost thought, Damn!)

What if I wasn’t so HAWT? *shudders at the thought*

What if the Holocaust hadn’t happened? Or Hitler wasn’t born?

What if we all died and went to Heaven and Morgan Freeman IS actually God??? *dodges another round of bullets, planks, shina rambo CD’s* 😛

What if there was no internet?

What if the missing chunk on the apple icon is eventually found and glued back on?

Ok I feel I’m losing it so I’ll just stop here…
Ok, just one last question…

What if the world DOES go under and it was just left for Babalola and Vanessa to replenish tha earth???

*runs to shokolokobangoshe*
Wait, that’s an actual place right?

Peace out y’all!

PS: Do add your ‘what if’s’ or questions that keep you up at night in the comments section

Authored By Helen,

Helen is one of the authors here at La Critique and can be reached at ai51182@yahoo.co.uk
Follow her on Twitter @HaYchRoxx

Follow @LaCritique_ng on Twitter and like us on facebook http://facebook.com/TheCritiques

I was scrolling down my TL and I saw a coursemate’s tweet that took my mind on a short journey, he tweeted the lyrics of 2 Chainz’s Birthday Song, and I laughed at the probability of him being a chief Judge in a few years. The thought led me further, I thought about how several things would be in the next couple of years. Politicians would be more concerned about the content of their Swiss bank accounts than the content of the lie-infested manifesto that gave them the ticket to corrupt wealth. Oil bunkers and notorious fraudsters would easily slip out of prison sentences by handing over Bugatti keys (to be honest, I won’t hesitate to accept that as a judge, just take your mind back to the days of Moses and imagine the car as the blood of the lamb.. all sins are forgiven right? *big smile*). With the disgusting filthiness of minds these days, it wouldn’t be a surprise if male gynecologists will attend to ‘Kim Kardashian-looking’ females before all others. Starting to seem fun yeah? It’ll be actually. Picture Sauce Kid’s son, the politician, under Sinzu Political Party whose motto is ‘Sinzu is Sinzu’.. makes no sense yeah? That’s the point, nothing will.
Oh and our beloved church congregations, everyone seated with their iPads in their hands leaving their dusty Bibles at home, with the Tweetdeck or Temple Run app running while the Bible app is a version that needs an upgrade. Then a ‘spirit-filled’ member tweets “the flippin’ Holy Spirit is up in here y’all! *Rozay grunt*” and 18 other members will retweet, including some of the deacons seated close to the pastor. The preacher on the altar might not mind, he too might not be interested in what he has to say, he just wants to get to the tithing part. The most “blessed” sisters would usher in their clingy dresses silently praying that the husband search behind the desperate smile on their faces will not be in vain as it’s their twelfth church in six months.
What would be really interesting is the education system and the way things would be done, toddlers would be too busy with cartoons and games that ought to be rated 16 to have time to learn the names of the various states or the multiplication table like we did, on the good side, they won’t cry when they are dropped off anymore because they’ll love it! Imagine toddlers looking forward to school, awesome! Secondary schools will replace their bands with twerk teams and their extracurricular clubs will have cool names like ‘hawks’ and such… oh ‘hawks’ is a lame name? No? I thought as much *adjusts shades*. Math formulas would be taught by rappers because that’s the only way the students will listen. Lecturers on the other hand will have their work cut out for them, they’d come on the first day of the semester and write down their account numbers and say stuff like “if you don’t learn enough online, notify me with an alert and if I like what I see I might help you out”.
Our wonderful entertainment industry, (trust me it is wonderful indeed, filled with wonders!) *switches to serious tone* Our music will evolve *holds laughter*, it will develop from the uncategorisable (yes it’s a word I made up) combination of sounds to something too amazing to describe (not sure that means something good), it would be empty yet filled, filled with nothing! I used to have a music playlist titled ‘Noise’, it was a mixture of the songs with the loudest jumbled words and sounds, repeated lines and the most pathetic ‘punchlines’. Why did I create it? Well I too need to get psyched once in a well and aside the high possibility of ear damage, it doesn’t really have other effects.. better than burning green leaves right? *adjusts halo*. By then there would be a musician with the name.. say… Kush Descendant and he’ll just go into the studio, brag about blowing ‘trees’ and blowing money, pledge allegiance to the game and to a couple of fallen angels and throw in a bunch of other delinquent stuff (as his intoxicated mind chooses) and later on decide to drop an album with all the tracks being practically just one song trying unsuccessfully to have any form of meaning. Nollywood on the other hand would be making movies with more “parts” than the number of episodes in a foreign series.
There’s more goodnews! We’ll have more shows, yes more tv shows, infact too many for people to keep up with. There would be Nigeria’s very own Thirteen and Pregnant, we might have our own 90210 for the insecure wives of billionaires, the Real Housewives of Lekki, I’m a Househusband and I’m Proud! (unemployment might be that bad), a Boko Haram documentary titled Blown Away, a show about confused kids like Willow Smith who think they are bisexual or a show like Jerry Springer for teens who think they’re going through mid-life crisis of some sort, who knows, every young child then might be in therapy.
There will be numerous shows of course but I want you to be surprised *excited grin* *tongue out*.
For our young females who misinterpret the saying “less is more”, strutting around with shredded pieces as clothing would be in vogue. There would be no limits, no boundaries, after all they are indeed young, wild and free.. speaking of young, wild and free, Wiz – inspired young men would proudly honour their mentor by covering their with skins with tattoos and letting their jeans hang so low, wearing none wouldn’t make any difference. Also bear in mind the many lost ones who would drop out to pursue their dreams when the only place they’ll be living those dreams is in their dreams. Adults might not be able to control teens so most would have between 0 – 2 kids to limit the chances of them passing on from hypertension. Children would be raising babies of their own and it just might blend in alongside ridiculous and countless piercings, body modification and all the other norms the next generation would nurture.
I know I’ll be a cool parent anyway so I’ll enjoy this generation and the next. These things may not even be so bad, like they say, who makes the rules? *shrugs*.

Authored by Kanyinsola,

Kanyinsola’s one of our authors here on La Critique and runs her own blog at http://www.whisperingnotes.wordpress.com
Follow her on Twitter @MsTeeDairo

Follow @LaCritique_ng on Twitter and like us on facebook: http://facebook.com/TheCritiques

DISCLAIMER (or perhaps CLAIMER):
The information contained in this article may be used as a substitute for professional advice (Yes!!)
The accuracy and completeness of the information provided in the article and the advice within is guaranteed or warranted to produce only one particular result (become Naija president) but the advice and strategies may not be suitable for every individual (especially if you had shoes when you were younger)
The author disclaims any liability for loss, injury, or damage, resulting directly or indirectly from the use or application of any of the contents of the article including any loss or injury resulting directly or indirectly from the negligence of the author (e dey happen).
Any application of the material set forth in this article is at the reader’s discretion and is his or her sole responsibility.
Now to the matter at hand; I missed the presidential debate between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama not because I was not interested but because despite my interest and keen desire to observe an intellectual debate between two men of notable repute go at it wit for wit, I missed it nonetheless due to reasons beyond my control.
So as a Nigerian, I’m wondering what our own presidential race would look like in 2015 and then I dug up a few things here and there in my bid to know what it actually takes to be the next Nigerian president and Voila!! Here, I present you with sure-fire tips that if followed to the letter will ensure you the seat in Aso rock
Now forget all that crap that self-help books tell you about having desire, passion, leadership qualities and all that bull. All that stuff might work in their world but not in Nigeria. So here’s our own sure-fire guide to getting the presidential ticket come 2015. Goodluck! ( pun definitely not intended)
1. Join the PDP (Power Democratic Party) : I actually had to search Google to be sure that the first P actually stood for “People”. There is nothing “people” about this party. They are all about power and seeing as it is conveniently what you also seek, Of course you should join the winning team to have any chance what so-ever of attaining the seat at Aso Rock Villa.

2. Be absolutely clueless: And I say this as the most important quality. Your cluelessness should be to the point of mind-boggling extremes. If whenever national issues arise, you actually have an idea what to do, then you have no business being our president. Whenever there’s a pending national issue or disaster, you can go on a diplomatic visit to The Republic of Siberia or represent the first lady at a United Nations Women’s conference (somewhere not-Nigeria). Hey, history shows it works!

3. You must have had no shoes as a child growing up in your remote community (or suffered a fate of similar proportions; like an earthquake wiped your entire community and you were the sole survivor or you were tied to a chair and forced to watch Tonto Dikeh sing for 24hours straight) whatever your childhood trauma, be sure to set it as the main focus of your campaign and anyone with half a conscience should vote for you. I mean watching Tonto Dikeh sing??? Who survives that?! Okay, moving on…

4. Patience: If you believe in the phrase “Patience is a virtue”, you’re either not Nigerian or you’re the current first lady of Nigeria *clears throat*. Alongside a little bit of goodluck to go with your campaign, you’ll also need patience (pun definitely not intended) to deal with the rigours of election campaign and media/paparazzi wahala.

5. Be bereft of tact: Always know exactly what to say when the need arises. Like when you’re questioned on terrorism in the country, you could answer thus “terrorism is a global phenomenon, maybe it is Nigeria’s turn” or issues like global warming you could just be witty “you know global warming is like getting fat. You know it’s bad, but what can you do about it?” now that’s what I call Savoir faire!

6. Never participate in debates with fellow candidates instead set up one with a celebrity that’s dumb enough to accept that role (suggestions: Tonto Dikeh, Vic O, D’Banj , Davido et cetera) and call him/her the youth ambassador. Arrange for him/her to ask you dumb questions and raise serious matters that affect the masses like how much money we need to change the design of Nigeria’s official vehicle number plates or how many more nit-wits should be awarded national honours (GCFR, GCON, MON, MUMU et cetera)

7. Don’t study anything that has to do with political science, liberal arts or governance-related in school: You see It doesn’t really help to have the right expertise when your aim is to be clueless. What would a degree in political science, law or the liberal arts do to help you govern Nigeria? Why not just get a doctorate in Chemistry, or Agric Science? or better yet, a jail term might do wonders for your CV. Whatever you study, make sure it serves as a pointer to the fact that you know absolutely nothing about governance.
So with these seven key points, i wish you the very best in your pursuit of the hot seat at Aso rock come 2015. I’m sure you might ask, why I haven’t taken my advice and become president myself? Well, my interests lie elsewhere but I am a sincere patriot of this great country *stifles laughter* and to prove it I am ending this piece with the pledge. I pledge to Nigeria my country, to be faithful, loyal and honest, to serve Nigeria with all my …….*struggling to breathe*…….. okay I’m done!

Authored by Lola

Lola is the editor here at La Critique and can be reached at lolaelblack@gmail.com
Follow him on twitter @lolaelblack
Follow La Critique @LaCritique_ng and like us on facebook too http://facebook.com/TheCritiques

You know I used to be a very good writer, I still am, I’m just saying I used to be too. So I’m sitting here, lying on my bed (The word ‘lying’ here is a deliberate pun) and experiencing a classic case of writer’s block plus its three AM in the morning and the mosquitoes in my room are doing a very good job at keeping me company to pull through my insomnia. I am however, *in Kanu’s voice* determined to scribble whatever thoughts and opinions form in my head as regards the U.S. (er…that would be the one in America) and the obliteration of its enemies. *Swats mosquito into bloody smear* (Why is that always so satisfying?) Yes! You’re right! The sudden need to talk about global politics is not borne out of my will to share from my versed knowledge on the subject, No! rather from the way my brothers and sisters here have taken up the issue of Muammar Gaddafi’s death and how the variety of asinine opinions I’ve heard have intrigued me the more to say the least.
As I always say, “Never underestimate the power of stupid people”. In other words, never let down your guard. Stupid people have a way of springing up surprises on you (especially the creative ones) even when you expect it. Better yet, as Albert Einstein put it “There are two things in the universe that are infinite. The universe and human stupidity and I’m not sure about the universe”. But I am of course not here to talk about stupid people nor wonder what God will do with them on Judgement day. That, my friends, is a subject for another time. I want to however, “objectively” analyze the Gaddafi case here and now. Now for those of you who don’t already know, Muammar Muhamad Abu Minyar Al-Gaddafi was born on 7th June 1942 in Sirte (Former) Italian Libya. Col Gaddafi was the Autocratic ruler of Libya from 1969, when he seized power in a bloodless coup, until 2011 when his government was overthrown in a civil war which consisted of a popular uprising aided by foreign intervention. His 42 year rule prior to the uprising made him the fourth longest ruling non-royal leader since 1900, as well as the longest ruling Arab leader. Libya enjoys large natural resources, which Gaddafi utilized to help develop the country. Under Gaddafi’s direct democracy system, the country’s literacy rate rose from 10% to 90%, life expectancy rose from 57 to 77 years, equal rights were established for women and black people, employment opportunities were established for migrant workers, and welfare systems were introduced that allowed access to free education, free healthcare, and financial assistance for housing. The Great Manmade River was also built to allow free access to fresh water across large parts of the country. In addition, financial support was provided for university scholarships and employment programs. The country was developed without taking any foreign loans. As a result, Libya was debt-free under Gaddafi’s regime.
Despite his role in developing the country, critics have accused Gaddafi of concentrating a large part of the country’s high gross domestic product on his family and his elites, who allegedly amassed vast fortunes. Many of the business enterprises were allegedly controlled by Gaddafi and his family. Despite the regime providing financial assistance for housing, segments of the population continued to live in poverty, particularly in the eastern parts of the country.
When the rising international oil prices began to raise Gaddafi’s revenues in the 1970s, Gaddafi spent much of the revenues on arms purchases and on sponsoring his political projects abroad. Gaddafi’s relatives adopted lavish lifestyles, including luxurious homes, Hollywood film investments and private parties with American pop stars.
The Economy of Libya was centrally planned and followed Gaddafi’s socialist ideals. It benefited greatly from revenues from the petroleum sector, which contributed most export earnings and 30% of its GDP. These oil revenues, combined with a small population and by far Africa’s highest Education Index gave Libya the highest nominal GDP per capita in Africa. Between 2000 and 2011, Libya recorded favourable growth rates with an estimated 10.6 percent growth of GDP in 2010, the highest of any state in Africa. Gaddafi had promised “a home for all Libyans” and during his rule, new residential areas rose in empty Saharan regions. Entire populations living in mud-brick caravan towns were moved into modern homes with running water, electricity, and satellite TV.
At the time Gaddafi died, some of the worst economic conditions were in the eastern parts of the state. The sewage facilities in Banghazi were over 40 years old, and untreated sewage flowed into ground and coast. 97% of urban dwellers have access to “improved sanitation facilities” in Libya, this was 2% points lower than the OECD average, or 21% points above the world average. In the first 15 years of Gaddafi rule, the number of doctors per 1000/citizens increased by seven times, with the number of hospital beds increasing by three times. During Gaddafi’s rule, infant mortality rates went from 125 per 1000 live births, about average for Africa at the time, to 15 per 1000, the best rate in Africa. Libyans who could afford it often had to seek medical care in neighboring countries such as Tunisia and Egypt because of lack of decent medical care in Libya.
Libyans have described the Great Manmade River, built under Gaddafi’s regime, as the “Eighth Wonder of the World”. Gaddafi also initiated the Libyan National Telescope Project, costing about 10 million euros.

Phew! With all these, I’m sure you might wanna ask “What the Fuck is the problem with Libyans??” (Excuse my French). Well here’s the rest of the truth: on September 1 1969, a small group of junior military officers led by Gaddafi staged a bloodless coup d’etat against king Idris of Libya while the king was in Turkey for medical treatment. Idris’s nephew the crown prince Sayyid Hassan ar-Rida al-Mahdi as-Sanussi, was formally deposed by the revolutionary army officers and placed under house arrest; they abolished the monarchy and proclaimed the Libyan Arab Republic.
On gaining power he immediately ordered the shut down of British and American military bases. He told western officials that he would expel their companies from Libya’s oil fields unless they shared more revenue. The oil companies complied with the demand, increasing Libya’s share from 50 to 79 percent. In December 1969, Egyptian intelligence thwarted a planned coup against Gaddafi from high-ranking members of his leadership. Many of the dissenters had grown uneasy with his growing relationship to Egypt. In response to the failed coup, Gaddafi criminalized all political dissent and shared power only with his family and closest associates.
In 1969, Gaddafi created Revolutionary committees to keep tight control over internal dissent. Ten to twenty percent of Libyans worked as informants for these committees. Surveillance took place in the government, in factories, and in the education sector. People who formed a political party were executed, and talking about politics with foreigners was punishable by up to 3 years in jail. Arbitrary arrests were common and Libyans were hesitant to speak with foreigners. The government conducted executions and mutilations of political opponents in public and broadcast recordings of the proceedings on state television. Dissent was illegal under Law 75 of 1973, which denied freedom of expression. In 2010, Libya’s press was rated as 160th out of 178 nations in the Press Freedom Index by Reporters Without Borders.
During the 1970s, Libya executed members of the Islamist fundamentalist Hizb-ut Tahrir faction, and Gaddafi often personally presided over the executions. Libya faced internal opposition during the 1980s because of the highly unpopular war with Chad. Numerous young men cut off a fingertip to avoid conscription at the time. A mutiny by the Libyan Army in Tobruk was violently suppressed in August 1980.
From time to time Gaddafi responded to external opposition with violence. Between 1980 and 1987, Gaddafi employed his network of diplomats and recruits to assassinate at least 25 critics living abroad. His revolutionary committees called for the assassination of Libyan dissidents living abroad in April 1980, sending Libyan hit squads abroad to murder them. On 26 April 1980 Gaddafi set a deadline of 11 June 1980 for dissidents to return home or be “in the hands of the revolutionary committees”. Gaddafi stated explicitly in 1982 that “It is the Libyan people’s responsibility to liquidate such scums who are distorting Libya’s image abroad.” Libyan agents have assassinated dissidents in the United States, Europe, and the Middle East. As of 2004 Libya still provided bounties on critics, including $1 million for one journalist. There are growing indications that Libya’s Gaddafi-era intelligence service had a cozy relationship with western spy organizations including the CIA, who voluntarily provided information on Libyan dissidents to the regime in exchange for using Libya as a base for extraordinary renditions.
Gaddafi often expressed an overt contempt for the Berbers, a non-Arab people of North Africa, and for their language, maintaining that the very existence of Berbers in North Africa is a myth created by colonialists. He adopted new names for Berber towns, and on official Libyan maps, referred to the Nafusa Mountains as the “Western mountains”. In a 1985 speech, he said of the Berber language, “If your mother transmits you this language, she nourishes you with the milk of the colonialist, she feeds you their poison” (1985). The Berber language was banned from schools and up until 2009, it was illegal for parents to name their children with Berber names. Berbers living in ancient mud-brick caravan towns such as Ghadames were forced out and moved into modern government-constructed apartments in the 1980s. During the 2011 civil war, Berber towns rebelled against Gaddafi’s rule and sought to reaffirm their ancient identity as Berbers. Gaddafi’s government strengthened anti-Berber sentiment among Libyan Arabs, weakening their opposition.
On 4 March 2008 Gaddafi announced his intention to dissolve the country’s existing administrative structure and disburse oil revenue directly to the people. The plan included abolishing all ministries; except those of defence, internal security, and foreign affairs, and departments implementing strategic projects. In 2009, Gaddafi personally told government officials that Libya would soon experience a “new political period” and would have elections for important positions such as minister-level roles and the National Security Advisor position (a Prime Minister equivalent). He also promised to include international monitors to ensure fair elections. His speech was said to have caused quite a stir.
On 17 February 2011, major political protests began in Libya against Gaddafi’s government. During the following weeks, these protests gained significant momentum and size, despite stiff resistance from the Gaddafi government. By late February the country appeared to be rapidly descending into chaos, and the government lost control of most of Eastern Libya. Gaddafi fought back, accusing the rebels of being “drugged” and linked to al-Qaeda. His military forces killed rebelling civilians, and relied heavily on the Khamis Brigade, led by one of his sons Khamis Gaddafi, and on tribal leaders loyal to him. He imported foreign mercenaries to defend his government, reportedly paying Ghanaian mercenaries as much as US$2,500 per day for their services. Reports from Libya also confirmed involvement with Belarus, and the presence of Ukrainian and Serbian mercenaries.
Gaddafi’s violent response to the protesters prompted defections from his government. Gaddafi’s “number two” man, Abdul Fatah Younis, Mustafa Abdel-Jalil and several key ambassadors and diplomats resigned from their posts in protest. Other government officials refused to follow orders from Gaddafi, and were jailed for insubordination.
At the beginning of March 2011, Gaddafi returned from a hideout, relying on considerable amounts of Libyan and US cash that had apparently been stored in the capital. Gaddafi’s forces had retaken momentum and were in shooting range of Benghazi by March 2011 when the UN declared a no fly zone to protect the civilian population of Libya. On 30 April the Libyan government claimed that a NATO airstrike killed Gaddafi’s sixth son and three of his grandsons at his son’s home in Tripoli. Government officials said that Muammar Gaddafi and his wife were visiting the home when it was struck, but both were unharmed. Gaddafi’s son’s death came one day after the Libyan leader appeared on state television calling for talks with NATO to end the airstrikes which have been hitting Tripoli and other Gaddafi strongholds since the previous month. Gaddafi suggested there was room for negotiation, but he vowed to stay in Libya. Western officials remained divided over whether Gaddafi was a legitimate military target under the United Nations Security Council resolution that authorized the air campaign. US Defense Secretary Robert Gates said that NATO was “not targeting Gaddafi specifically” but that his command-and-control facilities were legitimate targets—including a facility inside his sprawling Tripoli compound that was hit with airstrikes 25 April.

Libyan protesters during the uprising


Crimes against humanity arrest warrant
The UN referred the massacres of unarmed civilians to the International Criminal Court. Among the crimes being investigated by the prosecution was whether Gaddafi purchased and authorized the use of Viagra-like drugs among soldiers for the purpose of raping women and instilling fear. His government’s heavy-handed approach to quelling the protests was characterized by the International Federation for Human Rights as a strategy of scorched earth. The acts of “indiscriminate killings of civilians” was charged as crimes against humanity, as defined in Article 7 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.
The International Criminal Court (ICC) issued arrest warrants on 27 June 2011 for Gaddafi, his son Saif al-Islam, and his brother-in-law Abdullah al-Senussi, head of state security for charges, concerning crimes against humanity.
Libyan officials rejected the ICC’s authority, saying that the ICC has “no legitimacy whatsoever” and that “all of its activities are directed at African leaders”. A Libyan government representative, justice minister Mohammed al-Qamoodi, responded by saying, “The leader of the revolution and his son do not hold any official position in the Libyan government and therefore they have no connection to the claims of the ICC against them …” This makes Gaddafi the second still-serving state-leader to have warrants issued against them, the first being Omar al-Bashir of Sudan.
Loss of international recognition
In connection with the Libyan uprising, Gaddafi’s attempts to influence public opinion in Europe and the United States came under increased scrutiny. Since the beginning of the 2011 conflict a number of countries pushed for the international isolation of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. On 15 July 2011, at a meeting in Istanbul, more than 30 governments recognised the Transitional National Council (TNC) as the legitimate government of Libya.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, “The United States views the Gaddafi regime as no longer having any legitimate authority in Libya … And so I am announcing today that, until an interim authority is in place, the United States will recognize the TNC as the legitimate governing authority for Libya, and we will deal with it on that basis.” Gaddafi responded to the announcement with a speech on Libyan national television, in which he said “Trample on those recognitions, trample on them under your feet … They are worthless”.
On 25 August 2011, with most of Tripoli having fallen out of Gaddafi’s control, the Arab League proclaimed the anti-Gaddafi National Transitional Council to be “the legitimate representative of the Libyan state”, on which basis Libya would resume its membership of the League.
During the Battle of Tripoli, Gaddafi lost effective political and military control of Tripoli after his compound was captured by rebel forces. Rebel forces entered Green Square in the city center, tearing down posters of Gaddafi and flying flags of the rebellion. He continued to give addresses through radio, calling upon his supporters to crush the rebels.
In September, an underground chamber was discovered beneath Tripoli’s Al Fatah University, the largest university in the city, containing (among other things) a bedroom, a Jacuzzi, and a fully equipped gynecological operating chamber. Only Gaddafi and his top associates had been allowed access to it in the past. In the 1980s, several students were allegedly hanged in public on the university campus premises. On at least one of these occasions, young high school students were apparently brought by the bus loads to witness the hanging. The victims were typically accused of pursuing activities against the Al Fatah Revolution and the Libyan People
You see, in the end, it doesn’t really come down to what was fair or what’s right (or maybe it does) in my opinion, Gaddafi did improve the economy and lives of Libyan citizens but at what cost to the Libyans? He basically personalized everything basing policies on personal ideologies and principles rather than common or beneficial interest. So to answer the question “What the fuck is the problem with Libyans??” well nothing except they were oppressed and never free to express dissent even when it meant living in constant fear. Restricted freedom of association, controlled totalitarianism and finally because they were fed up, they had had it. A leaked diplomatic cable describes Libyan economy as “a kleptocracy in which the government – either the al-Gaddafi family itself or its close political allies – has a direct stake in anything worth buying, selling or owning”.

Capture and Death
On 20 September 2011, Gaddafi made a final speech, declaring that “Anyone who says Qaddafi’s government has fallen is nothing but ridiculous and a joke. Qaddafi doesn’t have a government, therefore that government can’t fall. Qaddafi is out of power since 1977 when I have passed the power to the People’s Committees of the Jamahiriya. When 2,000 tribes meet and declare that only the Libyan people represent Libya, doesn’t that say enough? This is the answer to NATO which has said the National Transitional Council from Benghazi represents the Libyan people. The Libyan people are here and they are with me, nobody can represent us. So no legitimacy to anything else or anyone else, the power belongs to the people. All Libyans are members of the People’s Committees. Anything else is false.”
On 20 October 2011, a National Transitional Council (NTC) official told Al Jazeera that Gaddafi had been captured that day by Libyan forces near his hometown of Sirte. He had been in a convoy of vehicles that was targeted by a French air strike on a road about 3 kilometres west of Sirte, killing dozens of loyalist fighters. Gaddafi survived but was wounded and took refuge with several of his bodyguards in a drain underneath the road west of the city. Around noon, NTC fighters found the group and took Gaddafi prisoner. Shortly afterward, he was shot dead. At least four mobile phone videos showed rebels beating Gaddafi and manhandling him on the back of a utility vehicle before his death. In one video, he was seen being rolled around on the ground as rebels pulled off his shirt, though it was unclear if he was already dead. Later pictures of his body showed that he had wounds in the abdomen, chest, and head. A rebel fighter who identified himself as Senad el-Sadik el-Ureybi later claimed to have shot and killed Gaddafi. He claimed to have shot Gaddafi in the head and chest, and that it took half an hour for him to die. Gaddafi’s body was subsequently flown to Misrata and was placed in the freezer of a local market alongside the bodies of Defense Minister Abu-Bakr Yunis Jabr and his son and national security adviser Moatassem Gaddafi. The bodies were put on public display, with Libyans from all over the country coming to view them. Many took pictures on their cell phones.

confirmed dead


Libya’s Prime Minister and several NTC figures confirmed Gaddafi’s death, claiming he died of wounds suffered during his capture. News channels aired a graphic video claiming to be of Gaddafi’s bloodied body after capture.

The lesson here, is no matter how long or how much power you think you have acquired or have over the people, their silence will one day turn to speech and if this is not given a listening ear and followed by effective action, their speech turns to aggression and their aggression into action. As a Nigerian, I have been witness to the recent uprisings and political protests in the Arab world, the ones in Morocco, Iraq, Sudan, Algeria, Egypt and all these have brought about a similar pattern. You can choose to see them as a conscious effort by the West (The West here would refer basically to the U.S and its allies) to obliterate its enemies or just see them for what they are; There is no place for Autocracy and totalitarianism in these times. I dare to predict a few more uprisings in the nearest future as we continue to move into a world that is finally coming to terms with globalization. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. That is why sometimes the intervention of external forces such as NATO, the UN et al is usually needed to quell these ‘injustices’ and ensure we do not inadvertently create the rule of precedence. I’m out!

Muamar Gadafi (7th June 1942 – 20th October 2011)

Authored by ‘Lola
‘Lola is the editor here at La Critique
lolaelblack@gmail.com
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