It’s 2022, But “90% of Northern Nigerians are not on the Social Media” — According to Atiku Abubakar

Michael Richmond Duru
8 min readJul 23, 2022

It’s 2022, But “90% of Northern Nigerians are not on the Social Media” — According to Atiku Abubakar

Pope Francis and the Vatican, world Church leaders, mega church pastors, world renowned Islamic scholars, Hindu sages, Jewish rabbis and the likes, — for good reasons — are on the Social Media.

The UN, EU, AU, global agencies and other world leaders, such as: presidents, prime ministers, partisan and non-partisan politicians in the world — for good reasons — are also all on the Social Media.

Almost all citizens of the civilised world, both young and old, are on the Social Media; including the great nations of the Islamic world and the giants of the Arabian Peninsula.

All multinational corporations, tech companies, banks, business moguls, online publishers, online libraries, investors, content creators, universities, buyers, sellers, law firms, students, trade unions, advocacy groups, both entrepreneurs and entertainers, musicians, footballers, influencers, advertisers, radios, TVs, NGOs, newspapers, security agents, charity organisations, and above all, the young people — the link between the past and the future generation — all connect to buy and to sell, both ideas and products, on the Social Media.

But 90% of people in Northern Nigeria are not on the Social Media; according to Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, former two-term Vice President of Nigeria and current presidential contender for 2023; who gleefully announced this mockery to the whole world and is quite happy about it.

Christians, Muslims, Atheists and all religious adherents, are all on the Social Media, because the Social Media is the new global Market Square and Public Square of the digital age — where the ideas that rule the present world are hatched and where today’s public opinion is both formed and informed.

So, why are the majority of people in Northern Nigeria not on the Social Media? Is the Social Media disallowed in their religion or in their culture? This cannot be true because, Atiku himself, a northerner and a Muslim, is on the Social Media. He tweets and shares videos on Facebook watch. So why is he okay with the idea that 90% of his northern kinsmen are not on the Social Media?

Muhammadu Buhari, Garba Shehu, El Rufai and his son Bello, Isa Pantami, Kashim Shettima, Musa Kwankwaso, Umar Ganduje, Ali Modu Sheriff, etc, — all northerners and all Muslims and all politicians — are all on the Social Media. Why then is a whopping 90% of their northern constituency not part of the new world of the Social Media? And why does it not worry them? Why have they not used their privilege of being in control of political power for so many years, to change this minus?

After 8 years of Atiku as Vice President and after 8 years of Buhari as President of Nigeria, why are their kinsmen, the millions, the masses in Northern Nigeria not yet ‘privileged’ to be part of the digital world of the Social Media?

Is it that they lack basic Media literacy or that they lack Media interest? Is it that they lack digital literacy or that they lack digital access? Or is it simply that they even lack basic (school) literacy? What is the reason they are not on the Social Media? Could it be the encumbrance of poverty and destitution or is it a deliberate, delighted way of life? Could it be that they have no electricity — since Atiku and Obasanjo spent 16 billion dollars on electricity, but the plants they built, only generate darkness?

Could it also be that Atiku’s statement is only a narrative of a professional political propagandist who wishes to sell out an idea to sway political sympathy towards himself? Atiku Abubakar would need to explain further on this; perhaps as he goes around to campaign to be chosen as Nigeria’s CEO in 2023. When he comes around, Nigerians should interrogate him!

Perhaps we can assume that the Northern political Cabal wilfully kept or left their people in the PAST of history, in the ‘dark age’ of Nigeria. We are free to so assume since there can be no patriotic or charitable reason for denying Northern Nigerians access to the digital world, other than self-indulgent political gains.

Like the nagging issue of ‘Almajiri’, there can be no doubt that these political merchants strategically, subtly, kept Nigeria’s Northerners in the DARK, tied to their political and economic apron-strings; and that these soulless perpetrators of ‘backwardness’, narcissistic harbingers of darkness, weaponize and politically instrumentalise the backwardness in Northern Nigeria, which, as Atiku has revealed, is symbolised by the lack of access to the Social Media.

Northern politicians like Atiku Abubakar, have governed Nigeria for over 45 years, yet, sadly, their almost five decades of political merchandising has not bettered the standard of living of their subservient people in Northern Nigeria. Even more saddening is that, from the gleeful tone of Atiku Abubakar — who wants to be another Northern president of Nigeria — this lack of access to the Social Media is good business for him; that Nigeria’s citizens in his northern country home have no access to the Social Media is a favourable factor for him and his PDP; and as his body language insinuates, this political good omen, is not about to change, should he become president in 2023.

Yes, Nigeria is the Poverty Capital of the World, but its head office is unarguably in Northern Nigeria; in spite of the fact that, profiting from the so-said majority voting power and numbers in the North, Northern politicians have been the most of Nigeria’s leaders, starting from Abubakar Tafawa Balewa in 1960.

It is now 2022, 60 long years away from 1960; it is now the 21st century and the digital age, therefore, the deliberate retrogressive strategy of political control, that is evident in Northern Nigeria, cannot continue. The opportunities of apex leadership in Nigeria which the North has enjoyed for quite too long, does not show forth, particularly, in the human development index in Northern Nigeria. This ugly and ungodly situation cannot continue! It is unacceptable, both to the Northerners and to all of us Nigerians.

Recently, Mr Peter Obi, described the vast arable land in Northern Nigeria as the real crude oil of Nigeria. If this is true, as it is, one then wonders why the Northerners who have literally been ruling Nigeria since 1960, have not really done MUCH — with their huge advantage of long years of presidential power — to industrialize the amazing array of arable land the north, at least, for the betterment of their States and their people? Or is it that they really did not want the people to be truly empowered and emancipated?

As Atiku did in his 21 July 2022 pre-recorded interview with Arise TV, the cabal, even insultingly brag about it openly as their political advantage. Such effrontery as displayed by Atiku (and by Senator Kwankwaso, in his ‘kwashiokood’ narrative that Northerners cannot vote an Eastern), such effrontery must be condemned and even penalised, at least, at the ballots.

To say the least, the remark from Atiku Abubakar, that 90% of Northern Nigerians are not on the Social Media — which insinuates backwardness and out of touch with the modern world — is both an insult to the esteem of civilised Northern Nigerians, as well as an indictment of his failure as a Northern career politician who has been making a living out of politics since 1989 — we clearly recall that Atiku Abubakar started contesting to be Governor of Adamawa State in 1990 and won the seat in 1998. Atiku has been in politics for 33 years.

People like Atiku Abubakar and Muhammadu Buhari, have long been unfair to our northern brothers and sisters for way too long. They have held them ransom using primordial sentiments of ethnicity and religion. All Nigerians — north or south- should refuse this situation and join hands to change it.

Let’s take for instance: in Katsina, President Buhari’s State, there is not only high level of Insecurity, there is also high level of hunger. Only a few persons are in possession of the resources! Yet, crowds of people are brought to line up in the streets and to shout ‘Sai Baba’ whenever Buhari comes home. How do you explain such dissonance?

To every Nigerian: is it not another national shame, if it is true, that half of our countrymen have no access to the Social Media and that they only form their political opinion on the basis of tribe and religion or on what their tribal and religious overlords tell them? Is it a pleasant national unity narrative that about a 100 million northern Nigerians vote according to what their parochial political leaders tell them? Is it not a crime or at least a slap on our faces that Atiku Abubakar openly plans to profit from a festering problem he helped to create?

To all northerners, is it not a slight that Atiku Abubakar openly proclaims that millions of you lack the capacity to participate in the open interactions in the Social Media, by means of which public opinions and social trends are formed? Is it not insulting that he insinuates that many of you cannot think and decide for themselves in matters of politics and governance? Is it not mis-deeming that Atiku Abubakar and politicians like him, wish to continue to be the ones to dictate political choice of every northerner, even before the stark reality that the masses in Northern Nigeria have benefited next to nothing from their five decades of doing so; not even as much as access to the Social Media.

In the year 2022, in the face of the confession that 90% of Nigerians in the north have no access to something as basic and as simple as Social Media, the question that Nigeria’s citizens, particularly, in the North must ask and answer is this: has the ‘SAI BABA’ style of politics — which politicians like Atiku and Buhari have enjoyed for five decades — blessed or blistered the North? Has it prospered people or impoverished them? Are Northern Nigerians sure that the seeming politics of SUBSERVIENCE, which triumphs in their region, is not really a subtle strategy of SUBJUGATION? The Northern elite and their people must thoroughly interrogate this as we all prepare for the 2023 general elections!

But whichever it is, it has proven to be an ill wind that has sickened and destituted the North. Therefore, such grave uncharity must be stopped; the spell must be undone; the yoke must be cast asunder, even if it happens that the northern beneficiaries — for obvious reasons — fail to see it in this same light or even misunderstand it.

As for me and those I represent their views:
The North must be freed!
Nigeria must be freed!!
Africa must be freed!!!





Michael Richmond Duru

Michael Richmond Duru is an Igboman. From Amaulu, Mbieri clan. His Igboland is in the gulf of West Africa. A priest of the Archdiocese of Owerri. Lives in Rome.