I have realized how many people in the world today squeeze their pockets to make sure they economize. When it comes to poor economies especially in Africa, it is taken to another pinching level. People fight hard to minimize their expenditure so that they can be able to have something to survive on the next day. They discipline themselves and deliberately deal with their bad financial habits.
- They monitor their expenditure on feeding, the wardrobe, home utensils, and electronic gadgets. They minimize their usage of utilities like electricity, water, among others.
- They economize the expenditure on leisure and relaxation which is supposed to give them a good and comfortable life.
- When it comes to basic necessities of life, they crimp and save something. Instead of buying the comfortable 5kg of food for the whole family, they opt for 3kg so they can save the rest for another day.
- When it comes to education, they sacrifice the very best of schools and take their children to the relatively good schools so they can spend less on a relatively good education.
- While shopping clothes, they go for something simply decent but not expensive so as to cut down the spending. They do this on almost each and everything in their lives.
Wrong People in Right Places:
In a harsh paradox, however, most leaders of such people do exactly the opposite.
- They take their children to the world class schools and attain the very best education that the world has to offer.
- They treat their family members from the biggest hospitals abroad, leaving their own hospitals at home not stocked and not equipped with medicine and medical personnel.
- They import and drive the most expensive, latest car models. Some have acquired fleets of such cars for themselves, lying idle in their spacious, well kept compounds.
- Others lavishly shop each and everything and end up throwing away the leftovers in the compost pit. Other leaders have become ‘shopaholics’ who only shop and shop and shop for the sake of being seen as expensive shoppers. They only want to please someone somewhere. Using the little money that belongs to the population, they buy the things that they even do not need so as to please the people that they do not even love at all.
There’s too much money in their pockets that they are very uncomfortable when they do not spend it quickly. They do all this at the perilous expense of the miserable people they lead. They have proved to be wrong people who are occupying in right places (or should I call them right people occupying wrong places?).
Tightening the Grip:
In the midst of all this, there are the wretched poor who remain poor. Some become poorer and poorer by the day.
- The street kids get hungrier and many of them die of hunger.
- The terminally ill remain with no medicine because the line minister has swindled the money. I may not need to remind someone that these are the people whose burial arrangements we hear being announced daily on the local radio stations.
- Those who have no shelters due to abject poverty keep living in dilapidated, leaking small structures because the leader does not care about getting markets for these poor people’s little agricultural produce – their only source of income.
- The uneducated remain ignorant with no one to help them out.
- The school dropouts, who usually are the youths, remain uneducated and end up in drugs, alcohol and theft.
The situations of all these people above continue to get a firmer grip on them on a daily basis.
Meanwhile, the stunningly rich leader continues to ask for more and more taxes.
- The extreme hunger for money continues to drive him to do extreme evils only to acquire another dollar to add onto his account.
- He hikes the costs of education and all utility bills.
- He eats more and more money – even the money meant for the unfortunate of this world.
- He treats himself to expensive saunas, massages, and tremendously expensive meals in five-star hotels.
- He belches the more as more and more people under his leadership die of hunger and malnourishment.
It’s ironical how millions of helpless people are dying of starvation, while such heartless leaders are dying of overeating! The people are kept both poor and ignorant because after all, these types of people are easier to rule and toss around in any direction as one wants!
Time for Resolve:
I vastly believe that it is high time leaders begun “looking like” the people they lead. The leaders need to be on the same planet with those that God has mercifully and undeservedly put under their care. They are supposed to be shepherds, and not slaughterers.
Leaders that have concern for the people don’t need to be strangers among their very own, living a kind of life that suggests that they have been imported from mars or Venus. They need to show this concern for those they lead by being concerned about their own usage of resources that their people should have access to. Otherwise, adverts may need to be run in the media, for example, inviting applications for presidents, ministers, chairmen, or directors, whereby only foreign applicants who are truly competent, caring and know what to do, shall be allowed to apply and be hired for these positions!
For the right thing to be done, therefore, the leaders must learn to economize as they execute their daily leadership duties. They must leverage: try to do much with less. In a poor economy, for example:
- very huge parliaments and cabinets may not be called for;
- unnecessarily huge administrative expenditures are close to unforgivable;
- giving posh cars to every government worker may not be an act of wisdom;
- Awarding exceptionally lots of privileges to the leader may be safely called greed and self-indulgence.
Sincerely, an economical people deserve an economical leadership. A people who cut down their spending on each and everything deserve a similar leader who restrains himself from overspending on each and everything. A people who spend with a thought of the future deserve a leader who does not spend with the here-and-now mentality. A people who struggle to have something to eat deserve a leader who eats relatively less so as to feed more and more of the people he/she leads.
An economical people deserve an economical leadership. Shall you therefore, solemnly swear that you shall provide this kind of leadership to those you lead, God being your helper?