In writing the Book, WE HAVE TO BELONG, the Author is emphatic about certain home truths. There is therefore a palpable feeling of urgency throughout the script as the author takes the reader through an unmistakably rigorous journey around an ever-budding nation ridden with daunting challenges alongside the prospects these unwittingly throw up.
The reader is at once immersed in the ongoing turbulence that is the author’s literary stomping grounds, as she traverses the Nigerian historical landscape with the vantage authority of an eyewitness who has chosen to peer way below the surface of the unfolding reality.This is a little more than a book because even as we meander around the bumps and the undulating waves of upheavals which this book introduces into the uneasy calm of our gaze across the political vista of Nigeria, a more numbing realization settles upon our shoulders – We are smack in the eye of this storm.
WE HAVE TO BELONG feels intensely personal this way. It is more than a brilliant commentary on Politics, Leadership, Youth Culture and socio-political Advocacy. It is overall a call to action; a summon to battle for the soul of a troubled yet promising nation. It is also important to foreigners who seek to understand the complex Nation of Nigeria since it provides an appreciable survey of the country’s current standing and the nuances of her people as they march forward.
There is no middle ground anymore as Toyosi’s work shakes the readers out of any illusions of maintaining a comfortable complacency regarding their roles in the future of Nigeria.
An action plan resonates through every chapter of the book and the author throws a challenge around the gathering. The reader is confronted with a clear option to join the march to Solution and Resolution.
This is a book which could not have been written at a better time. Nigeria is presently adrift in a sea of political upheavals. The national boat is ridden with deep striations of Corruption, inter-ethnic strife, a perniciously virulent strain of terrorism, spurious violence, poverty and instability.
This vessel though battered and callously buffeted this way, is not beyond repair. This ‘’repair’’ however should not be at the behest of political buccaneers and their unscrupulous co-travellers. This is what the author makes most clear.
The World has been inundated with all sorts of talk and text about the now seemingly intractable Nigerian Problem.
Sadly, a few are self-serving artifices as members of Nigeria’s political class who have over the years constituted what is arguably the most formidable impediments to the country’s march to progress have themselves written copious volumes about the same issue.
It has been a steady cacophony and Ms. Akerele-Ogunsiji’s compelling voice is a welcome emergence into the scene. Her mastery of the roles of Participant Observer, Analyst and Advocate instill deep confidence that this ‘Voice’, though relatively neophyte in the field of political opinions, is a voice we would do well to listen to.
The author insists further that we have talked for too long, and must now begin to walk and work our talk.
Talk doesn’t Cook Rice.
We must Mastermind, Mobilize and Move.