2020: THE LONGEST YEAR OF THE DECADE

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For a long time, we have been hearing of Vision 2020. Anytime that year is mentioned, we just waved it by as just another year that will come and go. Little did we know that it would be a symbolic year that will take the glory of God to survive. Situated strategically at the tail end of the decade, 2020 is a year that won’t be forgotten in a hurry. Covid-19 pandemic that started in 2019 but wreaked havoc in 2020 put the whole world on a standstill and brought the world order onto its knees. The events and occurrences of the year are so overwhelming and consuming that it seems the year is foot-dragging and doesn’t ever want to end.

2020 is a year of plans disruption. What started as a normal year, with plans laid out by people to accomplish one thing or the other, but most of the plans would never be actualized. Many prospective graduates, many planned but never done weddings, many collapsed businesses and endeavours, many abandoned personal physical projects, and so on. Most of these socio-economic activities might never see the light of the day again. Gone for life. Gone with 2020.

On a national scale, the year further exposed our ineptitude as a nation. Forced to stay and treat their various ailments in the country, year 2020 has shown that we have a long way to go in putting our health sector in shape. Have our ruling elite ever thought of a time when they have to feel the hopelessness being faced by poor Nigerians anytime they want to access healthcare services? The wise among those who God allows to escape the calamities of this year among our elite should channel their gratitude towards giving Nigerians a perfect health care system that can withstand any future pandemic.

When the nation thought all was over and that the rest of the year would end peacefully, the EndSARS protests erupted across the country. Almost the same time, looting of palliative warehouses started. Both events, though sad, are indications that the political and ruling class are sitting on gunpowder that could explode anytime. Unless something is urgently done to correct the culture of improvisation of the Nigerian youths by the elite, a day will soon come when everything will go out of control. So, the year 2020, among many things, is a year of warning to leaders to sit right or be seated up.

Apart from the high profile deaths due to Coronavirus infection, this is also a year when many billionaires emerged. In the midst of the lockdown and starvation, it was common to hear of billions budgeted for one relief project or the other. Whether they get to the real poor people or not will be taken care of by time. Ironically, some people started the year as paupers and are finishing it rich and vice versa. Call it a year of twisting fates.

Now, it is December and the year is winding down. But 2020 is not yet done with us. The abduction of the 344 Kankara schoolboys in Katsina and subsequent release is one of the goodbyes the year is giving to us. As we are about to say ‘Thank You for Coming’ to the year, our ‘friend’, Covid-19 is saying ‘Hello’ again. May 2021 be good with us but surely, 2020 is the longest year of the decade.

Comrade Abdulateef Usman Abiodun, Ede, Osun State