Home Silhouette David Mark Versus New Media – By Chinedu Ekeke

David Mark Versus New Media – By Chinedu Ekeke

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Nigeria’s Senate president, David Bonaventure Mark, is deeply troubled. And his present state of mind is justifiable. The criminal empire which prince he’s one of is at the verge of crumbling, or so he thinks. He’s eyeing the kingship of the empire in a few years from now. He wants to rule and reign in the kingdom. He has amassed enough wealth and bought enough souls to make this possible. He dreams of joining the league of candidates for prison who became presidents of Nigeria in the last three or so decades.

But the turn of events, especially since January this year, has jolted him. It doesn’t seem as though he would have any smooth ride to the kingship he so much covets, neither would he have the rest of mind to consume the millions he has so far amassed. He recently heaped the blame on new media or social media. The credibility he has sought to build in the last thirteen years hasn’t even taken off the ground, to his utter dismay. Millions of Nigerians don’t see any reason to take him seriously. He knows – or thinks – social media is responsible for this.

Last Thursday, while declaring open a two-day retreat for Senate Press corps in Umuahia, Abia State, he said there was a need to check the use of social media as Nigerians were using them to demean their leaders. Hear him: “We need to change our attitude on how we report things about our country and we should emulate the foreign reporters who never report negative things about their countries.” So Mr Mark wants to sponsor – and pass – a legislation that would impose restrictions on the use of social media in Nigeria. Once that is done, his confidence in the empire will rebound, and his hopes of assuming the kingship will come back to live.

Again, Mr Mark is justified, because, you see, there’s so much money can buy; and there’s even much more plenty of money can buy. The more money you make without working, the more you want to spend without sweat. He pays himself N600 million from Nigeria’s treasury in one year. That isn’t heavenly or biblical year. It is earthly year as we know it; twelve calendar months, the one within which Barack Obama, the United States president, earns N60 million.

What Mr. Mark pays himself in one year is the salary of a US president for ten (yes, ten!) good years. What Nigeria’s number three citizen takes home, legally, in one year, is what the number one citizen of the world’s biggest economy, and only remaining super-power, earns in ten years. Because no president stays beyond eight years in America, it means what David Mark gives himself as earnings in one year is what will pay at least two American presidents – one for eight years and another one for extra two years. That means before Mark concludes his four year term, he would have amassed enough money from our treasury that will pay United States presidents for forty years! You see why he has to checkmate social media? You can’t have access to such amounts of free money without being sensitive to any avenue through which opposition rears its envious head.

Interestingly, what Mark is supposed to be doing to be taking such a humongous amount home every year is the same job the United States Vice President combines with his official job as the Vice, and for which he earns less than one-tenth of the money Mr Mark allocates to himself. Actually, it is the president of the US, not his Vice, who earns up to one-tenth of Mark’s annual bazaar. So for taking home N600 million for doing nothing, why will David Mark not feel threatened by social media?

It is even more annoying because years before now, nobody knew how much of injury his avarice –and those of his ilk – inflicted on the nation’s treasury. It was easy for him to buy up the entire mainstream media peopled by brown-envelope-seeking journalists and editors in a hurry to join the resource-grabbing frenzy of those who rule Nigeria. His Ghana-must-go bags were handy for willing media people who had no regards for the sacred role the society, and their jobs, had thrust upon them. Today, Mark can’t control what gets into the new media. He can’t control the number of people who read just a tweet, or Facebook post or blog post, detailing how much David Mark grabs monthly from the purse of a nation in pathetic poverty. He can’t control who reads this piece or who doesn’t. He can’t pull down this website or the other ones linked to it through which this piece will be read by thousands or millions of Nigerians. And this is why he is troubled.

There is also the conscience – or even emotional – side to his discomfort. He hates the poor, and gets angry at the sight of any poor person enjoying whatever he (Mark) considers a luxury. Most of the people who attack him and his tribe of nation-killers on social media do so with telephone which, years ago, he had declared wasn’t for the poor. The society-made super rich which Mark loves dearly can’t say anything wrong about him on social media. They are all colleagues in the nation-wrecking industry. Clearly, it is those “poor” ones, or those who should be poor but have somehow risen above it, that criticise Mark.

As Babangida’s minister of communication, he told whoever cared to listen to perish the thoughts of making telephone available to Nigerians. He stated, clearly, that telephone wasn’t for the poor. It was for the rich, eaters of hundreds of millions of naira from Nigeria’s commonwealth. Today, the senator watches even roadside mechanics clutching their phones, reading the internet and seeing how much of a curse to them this government has become. If you were Mark, you’d be troubled too.

He saw the shape of things to come from social media last January. The OccupyNigeria protests jolted him and his co-travellers. Forget the lies they took to the market of how opposition hijacked the protests, he knew that the power of social media was at work. But for lack of patriotism of the labour leaders who sold the protests to Mark and his government, the government would have been brought down. And since then, he has watched the social media project himself and the government in their true picture: enemies of the Nigerian people. He saw the Arab spring and how social media swept away his mentors in Egypt, Libya, Tunisia and others. The senate president has stomached enough. He isn’t going to take it anymore.

It is a paradox that the same society which David Mark has so much undermined sent him to the Senate to represent them. It is even more shocking that the same Mark was made the president of the Senate, the nation’s symbol of democracy. Yet it is more paradoxical that the head of the institution which should bear the torchlight of democracy is the first person who has openly demonstrated his desire to outlaw the right of the people to freely express themselves.

Mr Mark’s ingratitude deserves a special mention. Here’s a man who was part of Babangida’s gang that collapsed Nigeria’s economy while their private economies, represented by their numerous bank accounts, blossomed. This is the same Mark who failed as a communications minister. Isn’t he supposed to be serving a lifetime in jail? Instead, he bulldozed his way through our polity and just happened in the senate. And for not taking a punitive action against him for his failure, he has got emboldened to punish us.

David Mark has always represented darkness in Nigeria. The senate he leads, which is an effective retirement house for former state treasury looters, has represented everything a nation’s senate should not be. While the lower house rose to the defence of Nigerians during the fuel subsidy protests, Mr Mark and his senate looked the other way round just to preserve the darkness which so much benefits him. While the lower house set up committees upon committees to perform their constitutional oversight functions on federal government ministries, departments and agencies, Mark’s senate chose silence which darkness brings.

He is preaching how reporters should follow their foreign counterparts. Unfortunately, the Senate president, like the other “leaders” in Nigeria, does not read. That raises another question: what does he do with the newspaper allowance he pays himself? If he reads American or British newspapers, then he would understand that a vibrant media will always question their leaders.

But let’s even assume Mark is right about foreign reporters not reporting the negatives about their countries; and we choose to emulate them, has Mark emulated the same foreign countries in insisting that politicians only earn realistic and sustainable salaries? Part of what he wants us to report is that he doesn’t pay himself ten times the salary of the US president, or that he hasn’t made efforts to frustrate, through his senate, the demand of Nigerians that subsidy thieves be prosecuted. Mr Mark hasn’t seen anything yet.

I understand he is a Christian. I would refer him to an interesting portion of the Bible. It is John 1:5:

“The light shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehendeth it not.”

New media is the light of the 21st Century, it is shining forth and forcing darkness to give way.

In the coming days and weeks and months, we would know who gives way between David Mark and social media. But I am convinced it won’t be the latter.

Follow @ekekeee on Twitter for more direct engagement.

  • http://Livnews.wordpress.com mohammed

    Well written piece with glaring facts. Mark and the Nigerian looters have got no other abode than to rot in hell!

  • Ken Tabs

    Nedu, Thanks for this brilliant piece. The issue is that those that voted David Mark as the Senate President are the real enemies of the people. He is one of those that forced Gen Babaginda to annul Abiola’s victory and ensured that he stepped aside. Time is surely running out for Mark and his group. Heaven is watching and for impoverishing Nigerians they will never go unpunished.

  • @dreamygiorgi

    No wonder David Mark’s hackers hacked ekekeee.com This write up is beautiful,we have seen the light,we comprehend it and shall ensure the light continually glows. Whatever David Mark and his like do in the dark shall be brought to light for all to see. Great job as always

  • Ayobami

    Criminals and thieves are agents of darkness and as such prefers darkness to light. No wonder they hacked into this site to hide their crime. There is a constant cosmic war between light and darkness and between good and evil but like we all know, the light will for ever prevail of darkness, just as good will always triumph over evil. This was a masterpiece, Chinedu, thank you for shedding this much light. We shall not relent until good triumph and truth and righteousness prevail in Nigeria.

  • abdullah

    They are making us poor so we have no choice than to follow them,but let me tell you our silence doesn’t mean we are afraid .God is with the patience and GOD will so continue to let us know that the devil is among us ie our ruler are all devil’s agent and our only weapon is prayers. Thanks chinedu 4 this brilliant piece.B

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  • http://ogechikero.blogspot.com Oge Chikero

    Now we have a voice! Our voice is so strong that GEJ and his entire lame cabinet are ashamed at what the Nigerian people think of them.He made a very big mistake by even leting us know that social media is getting at them. This just the beginning because very soon, they will start seeing abuses on T-shirts. This is the just beginning of a peaceful revolt against Feudalism in Nigeria. Welcome to the new Nigeria -OgeChikero

  • AdaezeZita

    Fear, wen ur past is startin to catch up with you, makes one do or say stupid things. They vnt seen any tin yet. Even d children of Nigeria will know dem n deir deeds. God bless Nigeria.

  • ogbonna Henry

    Great Job Chinedu. 2015 is the liberation year. We are ready to free Nigeria whichever way the evil wants it. Keep the inspiration burning. 1 love!

  • ibrah shuwa

    Nice one by ekekee.com… Mr Mark is really getting bothered, the throne is becomin more impossible for him to claim…com 2015 Nigeria will be liberated! Viva la revolution!

  • Timi

    Keep up the good work.Welcome back

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  • Tarlumun

    Oh finally despite the hack yesterday I have read this tonic.David Mark would have been history today if not for one of d state treasury looters who have retired to the senate as its Minority leader hadn’t have forced Mark on Benue-South electorates.

  • Abdulkadir Mohd

    It was the Same Mark that stole Billions of Naira,hide it in his house for the fear that his account should nt be investigated.The money were in sack more than 200 sacks all containing 1000 notes,the money was overtaken by mucuor in it hidden place.The Evil that Men do live after them,we shall see if His indian native doctors can save him come 2015.

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  • http://www.amainarepublic.blogspot.com Amina

    Because they pay the pipers of the print media, that why they can dictate the tune…..this is social media! how many pipers can you possibly pay? certainly not Nedu the prolific writer, the greatest wordsmith of the 21st century!They can only hack the website but not your heart. keep it up bro! shame to David Mark

  • http://www.ekekee.com joe

    whatever goes around comes around. The day of reckoning is approaching. Those who have skeletons in their cupboard should not be allowed in any public offices come 2015.

  • raysflavor

    Good one….Good.

  • balorhino

    Its a pity GEJ and this goat mark might be in power for the next 3 yrs more disheartening they might even be there for another 4 yrs after. I keep asking myself how on earth can mark be senate president this is a man so short sighted or is he just arrogant or an outright imbecile to have said telephone is not for the poor? even if telephones were not for the poor wouldn’t it be noble of his position as minister of communication to make it available for the poor? sadly after such unpatriotic statements he is made the number 3 man in a nation of over 150 million 90% of which is dirt poor.Nigeria made a fool of themselves voting GEJ and PDP my stand then was anything would be better than both at least it would have boosted the confidence of the people in the power of their votes i still hold my ground my prayers is that it would not take a bloody revolution to unseat this evil institution PDP

  • @toobaski

    people like David Mark are enemies of Democracy both locally and globally. If Civil Society refuses to handle his case with the seriousness it deserves, as a deterrent to upcoming buffoons, then Nigeria is indeed in trouble

  • Camilia

    this is really nice, but to add a little, i strongly believe that he was mis understood, we know most of our politicians r corrupt, and the earn fat salaries, that’s not new to the outside countries, the r aware, but wot he meant to my understanding is that, we shud try to project nigeria in a right way not necessarily individuals, but the country, we shudnt make de world believe that nig is so bad, dis cnt help dev the country, it scares away foriegn investors, and we nid this investment…these r facts we failed to see, we r just blinded by the huge pay they go home with, and the hatred we hav for them, even if YOU r there, i believe u wont fight for a reduction of pay, u can tell de world how much our politicians earn, i dnt hav a prob wit that cos i dnt support it, but Nig is ours, we nid to love the country, and give a good image abt it, it isnt too bad after all, go to syria and mali and c wot is happening there, u’ll love ur country…#naijagobeta i believe

    • Editor

      Thanks for stating your point maturely, Camilia. Your civility must be appreciated.

      However, your assumption that all of us will collect the same obscene pay if we get there isn’t particularly true.

      We are conscious of the fact that Nigeria can’t be developed on such unrealistic pay structure. That is the real issue here.

      Thanks again, for your civility, Camilia.

  • @kj_hova

    Nice piece. @Camilia, you cannot possibly love Nigeria & see anything good to write about its present state. Unless, of course, you are ignorant of her potential. We are talking of a “China” that has been effectively reduced to an “Afghanistan”!

  • Donmeca

    Odogwu Ekeke! I dee ya ede!!! Wish we have up to a million pple like u…God bless u bro!

  • Editor

    Thanks to you all for taking time to read.

    Nigeria will be great again, to the benefit of all of us and our children and their own children.

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