I was occupying my couch on Monday morning when I received a text message from a friend, it read, “An Igbo man whose wife had just delivered a baby boy named him Chibusubsidim which means the Lord’s my subsidy." I guess the message is one of those jokes making rounds on social media and Blackberry chats, attempting to make mockery of the of the fuel subsidy crisis or trying to view it from a lighter note.
If the aim of whoever composed that particular message was to make people laugh, then it was achieved because the joke cracked me up. But it also got me thinking- Can the Lord really be my subsidy? Can Chibususidim be a real Igbo name?
Subsidy is money paid by a government or organization to reduce the cost of services or of producing goods so that their prices can be kept low, examples are the fuel and fertilizer subsidy. I am convinced that that any Igbo man who name his child thus didn’t make a mistake. The name Chibusubsidim isn’t out of place at all. As a Christian I believe that Jesus came to pay for my sins and so God has subsidized the cost of by salvation by sending his son. Actually, did He subsidize it or gave it all for free?
In the midst of the whole subsidy brouhaha, we can’t deny how Nigerians have grown from their subservient state of mind into becoming analytical intellectuals. Gone are the days when we accept any government policies by sitting back at home and saying to ourselves "It is well" or consoling ourselves with bible passages like Philipians 4:19 "But my God would supply all my need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus" or Romans 8:28 "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose." It is not that these verses are not relevant but not to make us wallow in self pity and denial.
Eight years back, many of us wouldn't have reacted this way towards the fuel subsidy removal. We would really nam our Children Chibusubsidim and afterwards go on with our normal businesses waiting for God to provide more money for us to meet up with the high cost of living.
Thank God we Nigerians are beginning to realise that God made Lemon and gave man the brain to make lemonade. We are gradually seeing reasons why we should to leave our comfort zones and get more informed on our rights and responsibilities as followers and citizens.
And of course, our government leaders are noticing the difference too- it is no longer business as usual!