2018: Nigeria and its 19 year life cycle



2018: Nigeria and its 19 year life cycle


Dr. Abubakar Sani


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Everything has a life cycle, and there is actually a life cycle for countries. A number of philosophers and sociologists have written about this. It’s like a plant where you plant the seed, it grows to a seedling, sprouts, matures, drops its seeds and dies. We’re seeing that… and without understanding that, you’re not going to survive.” ~ Dr. John Bergman


Not everyone believes in numerology but there are certain events in life or circumstance that will compel us to believe that sometimes numbers do have deep meanings. Nigeria as a country has a life cycle of 19 years whereby events culminate to an end for new chapters or phases to begin. This is not just numerology but a fact that any casual observation of the occurrences of events and their intervals will attest to this. Now the misconception here is that many people are thinking about 2019 instead of 2018 because they fail to take into cognizance the fact that this year, the present life cycle of Nigeria is coming to an end. But first of all let us study the number 19.

Number 19 is a prime number only divisible by number 1 and itself. Number 19 is made up of the first and last single number of the Roman numerals—1 and 9. This according to a school of thought in numerology makes number 19 a number of completions. Number 19 is the number of beginning and end. Similarly there is a belief that 19 is an auspicious number that is mostly associated with success and honor. This number is filled with joy and happiness. According to astrologists and astronomies as well, the moon usually appears in the exact position among the stars every 19th year. This is called the Metonic cycle or Enneadecaeteris (Greek word meaning nineteen years) and is the 19 year cycle of the moon. Also the lunar and solar cycles coincide every 19 years. For those who know Kabbalah, number 19 is the number of spiritual activity in Kabbalah.  In the Tarot number 19 is the Sun. All great things are associated with the sun. This is a very auspicious card. Number 19 has much of the same qualities as number 1. This is because the digit sum equals 1; 1+9=10=1+0=1.Number 19 is a masculine number. In Islam number 19 has the numerological value of Wahid. Wahid is one of the names for God and means “One”. In Islam there are 19 angles guarding Hell stated in the Qur’an 74:30: “Over it are nineteen [angels]. “ Research has also shown that the number 19 is used 6 times in the Bible. The word star which also has a special uniqueness appeared 19 times in the Bible. Most importantly the word creature also appeared 19 times in the Bible. The word guilt is used 19 times in the Old Testament. Some scholars rightly or wrongly associate the number, 19 with perfect order or perfect judgment. I concur. The number 19 is the atomic number of Potassium (K).

Notable leaders like Sir Ahmadu Bello started the first cycle after independence which started from 1960 to 1979

Number 19 is an important number in the Baha’i Faith. Their calendar has 19 months. Each of the 19 months consists of 19 days. They have a 19 year cycle. The super cycle is 19X19, 361 year. There were 19 Apostles. Every 19 days people of the Baha’i faith come together for a meeting they call “The Feast.” So you can see that number 19 is a very special number. No wonder it is associated with a very special country like Nigeria.

Public opinion is the way people think and feel about a matter. Nigeria is a country blessed with so many opinions. There is a plethora of opinions from the various divides of Nigeria concerning the problems and challenges facing Nigeria. There are so many people who believe that the major problem with Nigeria is weak institutions or paper tiger institutions. This school of thought believes that all the necessary laws and policies are there but the institutions to implement them are weak or rather dormant.

There is another school of thought that postulates that the major problem confronting this geographical entity named Nigeria by Flora Shaw, mistress to Lord Lugard is corruption. Insecurity, according to another school of thought is the main obstacle to Nigeria‘s journey to reach the promise land.

It is a concrete fact that cannot be disputed that weak institutions, corruption, and insecurity are major problems confronting this country but the school of thought that postulates that the major problem confronting Nigeria, nay Africa as a whole is bad leadership is right. That is the crux of the whole matter. There is a shortage of good, credible leaders. And without a reputable, credible and qualified leader, no meaningful progress can be achieved no matter what. The first rule is, seek ye first a good leader, and then all other things will be added to you including strong institutions. This is where the major change is going to take place. Leadership.

General Abacha and Chief Abiola’s death brought the Second cycle after independence (1979-1998) to an end

Now we all know that Nigeria became independent in 1960 after which a bloody coup was staged in 1966 and another counter coup followed in the same year after six months. From that moment on, things deteriorated from bad to worse as people begin to look back at the 1960-66 years with regret. Many Nigerians still see these years as Nigeria’s golden era. After that it was the military coup that brought in late General Yakubu Gowon to power and later on in 1976 General Murtala Mohammed came to power and subsequently General Olusegun Obasanjo in 1979.No one ever believed that at a time when most African leaders were thriving and basking in the euphoria of sit tight rule (President Idi Amin Dada and his Central African Republic counterpart, J.B Bokassa were busy entertaining themselves with unprecedented misnomer that the latter transformed himself into an Emperor), General Obasanjo could agree to hand over to a democratically elected president. But it happened. Why did this happen? The simple answer is that God Has planned things and events in Nigeria with a life cycle of 19 years. Remember that from 1960 to 1979 is 19 years. The second cycle started with a civilian rule that many regarded as highly corrupt and incompetent because of the way it handlers mismanaged huge oil revenues that Nigeria got from the sale of oil crude. The administration of Shehu Usman A. Shagari scaled through its first term but was short-lived in its second term when Generals Ibrahim Bako and Ibrahim Babandida and others through the tacit support and collaboration of Olusegun Obasanjo brought in Major General Muhammad Buhari to power to restore sanity to the polity and rid the country of monumental corruption that was ravaging it at the time. Nigerians still remember how the NPN became a party specialized in collecting kick backs from government contractors in the name of endowment to the party. A particular example here is the France based firm known as Fugeroulle. General Buhari’s regime was also brought to a dismal end by the same people who helped him to ascend to power, namely Generals Babangida, Abacha, Dogonyaro et al and still again, with the tacit support of Obasanjo. General Buhari’s Chief of Army Staff, General Babangida took over as president; military president he calls it and reigned with absolute power until when Nigerians got fed up with him after he cancelled one of the most transparent elections this country had ever witnessed. He left the House of power in 1993 but created an easy route for General Abacha to take over, and for reasons that have to do with treachery and betrayal, the winner of the election,MKO Abiola was murdered inside the prison barely a month after the death of Abacha. Then came in General Abdusalami Abubakar in mid 1998 to start a new democratic process which culminated in May 1999. Now if you take a close look at the dates and do your math right, you will discover that from 1979 to 1998 is 19 years. So a new cycle was started in July 1998.

Chief Obasanjo who brought the first cycle after independence (1960-1979) to end when he handed power to a civilian government came back in 1999 to start the third cycle after independence (1999 to 2018)

Let us go back a little further to 1941.So many things happened in that year. Most of those who ruled or misruled Nigeria were born in either 1941. A casual check will show you that Generals Babangida, Sani Abacha, J.T Useni and many others were born in 1941.Same with people like Ken Saro Wiwa, W.F Kumuyi, E.A Adeboye and others. Curiously there was no census in Nigeria because of the outbreak of the Second World War disrupted the conduct of decennial censuses and as such no population census was conducted in 1941. You see from 1941 to 1960 is 19 years of course. If you like you can go backwards again and see what happened in 1922 and you will discover that this 19 year life cycle is not just an assumption. Similarly if we can go back in history and take a casual look at the history of constitutional development, we will discover that the first constitution that granted some rights to Nigerians to vote for their representatives was brought in to law in 1922 which is just 19 years after the country was amalgamated in 1914. Notably, the 1922 Sir Clifford Constitution established a 46 member Legislative Council which was given law making responsibilities for the Colony of Lagos and the southern provinces. The Council had 27 members including the Governor, the Lieutenant-Governors, other elected and nominated members including three representing Lagos as the administrative and commercial capital and one representing Calabar as a big commercial centre. Notably, the 1922 Constitution introduced, for the first time in any British African territory, the elective principle with Lagos and Calabar being granted the franchise to elect their representatives to the Legislative Council. 

Will President Buhari end this cycle that will end in May next year, and also start a new one ? Only time will tell.Will Nigeria and Nigerians get it right in this coming cycle that will start running in 2019? Only God knows.

Now we are in a new year that is not just like any other year for us as Nigerians. Why? This is because this is the final year of the cycle that started in 1999.This year will signify the summation and consummation of all things, especially the status quo and their antecedents. Nigerians need to know this so that we may appreciate what manner of year we in, and what we need to do to salvage our nation. This year, regardless of whatever anyone cares to say is a consuming year that will bring an end to this present Order so as to usher in a new Order. It is beyond the scope of either APC or the PDP, or even Obasanjo himself. In fact both APC and PDP may go with the Old Order. The Universe has so decreed that this nation must undergo a change of things every 19 years and there is nothing we can do about it than to think about whatever is right and do it. Furthermore both 2018 and 2019 will be spectacular because of this 19 year life cycle. Let us not forget that next year will 19 years after the new millennium so it will signify the end of many Orders in the universe. However for us in Nigeria, let us concentrate on 2018 for now.

Now I am scared to say this but I will say it anyway but this is just my own opinion. First of all many people who represent the old Oder will either die mysteriously or go into oblivion. Secondly in this 2018, the power of money shall fail to deliver the corrupt, inept and merciless demi gods that were opportune by the Universe to have the stage to display their leadership and serve but have deliberately misused the opportunity. Many of them are of the opinion that their filthy gotten lucre will save them and give them the opportunity to lead again. They will be disappointed. I make bold again to remind you that this is the beginning of yet another cycle and the end of this cycle that was started in 1999.Who knows there is a strong possibility that it might even go with those who started or represented the cycle in 1999.Thirdly and last but not the least of my assumptions is that this is the cycle that will either make or mar this entity called Nigeria.


Now what is next? I know that some people will criticize me for saying this but many others will take time to ponder on this matter so as to know what to do. There is no need to scheme and manipulate things. Apologies to Idriss Galadima here! That doesn’t mean we should remain docile and inactive. No. We must be actively involved in doing that which is right. If we know that something is right, let’s just do it. Let us know that the Universe will prevail and do Its good pleasure no matter what. I will bring this article to a conclusion with the words of one of the gifted American writers I know about. His name is Oscar Wilde. In his book Lord Arthur Savile’s Crime, Wilde wrote:

“…He seemed turned to stone, and his face was like marble in its melancholy. He had lived the delicate and luxurious life of a young man of birth and fortune, a life of exquisite in its freedom from sordid care, its beautiful boyish insouciance; and now for the first time he became conscious of the terrible mystery of Destiny, of the awful meaning of Doom. How mad and monstrous it all seemed! Could it be that written on his hand, in characters that he could not read himself, but that another could decipher, was some fearful secret of sin, some blood-red sign of crime?…Were we no better than chessmen, moved by an unseen power, vessels the potter fashions at his fancy, for honor or for shame?…Actors are so fortunate. They can choose whether they will appear in tragedy or comedy, whether they will suffer or make merry, laugh or shed tears. But in real life it is different. Most men and women are forced to perform parts for which they have no qualifications. Our Guildensterns play Hamlet for us, and our Hamlets love to jest like Prince Hal. The world is a stage, but the play is badly cast.”





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