Another Diplomatic Success By Nigeria: But Where Is Our Flag?
Paul I. Adujie
New York, United States
The people and government of Nigeria deserve congratulations from everyone, for the deft handling and successful resolution of the crisis in Liberia! More diplomatic laurels! This new effort is particularly gratifying, coming on the heels of Nigeria’s recent diplomatic victories in Sao Tome and elsewhere, which we have written about in Masterstroke Diplomacy And Statesmanship Nigeriana and also in Political Solutions And Compromises As Disputes Resolutions Strategy Of Crises In Africa My heart and soul are with Nigeria’s gallant soldiers, I wish them God’s speed and utmost protections, as I pray that we remain focused on our goals and result oriented peacekeeping mission.
President Obasanjo and his team, diplomatic and political negotiators and others, definitely deserve our praise, encouragement and support, we should give them every credit for their valiant and successful efforts that culminated in successful negotiations. It is clear now, to all, that the success in these matters took tact and profound diplomatic savvy and finesse! The complex issues and the multiple parties required the marshaling of all requisite acuities! This tremendous success and the attendant praise is deserved by Nigeria and the other peacekeeping partners in West Africa and South Africa as well, the active participation of these other African countries and friends of Africa, contributed to the success of these just concluded resolution of an impasse that has lasted for too long.
However, I must mention that my exhilaration and euphoria was tampered by the conspicuous absence of the NIGERIAN FLAG! But where is the Nigerian flag? I have asked myself this question everyday since the arrival in Liberia of the vanguard Nigeria team that was to assess the situation on the ground and the logistical requirements, even before the larger contigents arrived subsequently. I have seen the Nigerian troops being hailed and hugged, I have seen the Nigerian troops on CNN and every other television networks in America, and major American newspapers replete with stories, reports and presentations of the Nigerian troops’ triumphant entry into Monrovia Liberia, with the overjoyed jubilations that the obviously relieved war weary Liberians spontaneously engaged in! But not once! Not once have I seen the Nigerian flag! Where is our flag? Where is the Nigerian flag? What are troops without national colors? There was no sign of the Nigerian flag on the Helicopter that delivered the first team of the Nigerian troops. There was no sign of the Nigerian flag on the larger aircraft that brought more of contingents and reinforcements! There was still no sign of the Nigerian flag on the armored vehicles/cars while our troops rolled into Liberia in them! There is no sign of the Nigerian flag on the chest or shoulder badges on our soldiers’ uniforms, why are our soldiers without our flag and insignia? How could we have missed the pride and place of these events? How could we have missed such monumental public relations opportunity? Are Nigerians unfamiliar with the importance that the rest of the world attaches to national colors and national flags in matter like these? Will Nigerians remember to plant Nigerian flag when we make it to the Moon and Mars?
How could we have missed the American troops quick-ease with which the US flag was hung around Saddam statues all over Iraq? Or when the American got to their moon landing? Or the Americans in Iwo Jima Japan? Anyone watching these events as they unfold, would soon seen and notice that if and when the presently very-reluctant Americans disembark and come ashore from their war ships, the American first order of business will be the hoisting of the American flag! American war ships have been hovering over the Liberian horizons for quite sometime now, the first the Americans would do, will be to display their national colors! American flags will surely be in their uniforms, crafts and everything that they touch!
Where is the phenomenal Nigerian nationalism and pride? Where is our collective swagger? Where is WAI? Where is MAMSER? Where is National Orientation/NOPA when you need them? There is no excuse for these lapses! Oh, we are part of a West African Multinational Force? Please! We are part of a United Nations efforts? Please! The equipments are not for Nigerian troops alone? Please! Where is our flag? I do not see any evidence of our flag! Where is our flag and national colors? Nigeria’s flag matters! It is simply wonderful to be a Nigerian living anywhere on earth! I congratulate the people and government of Nigeria over these serial diplomatic successes in the Congo, Ivory Coast, Sao Tome and now Liberia! Perhaps the Sudan and Zimbabwe are next?
Paul I. Adujie is a Nigerian Lawyer and an Information Technology Professional.