Imagine 2020 as a huge ship caught in a hurricane. It has lost the control of its engines and steering, struggling for safety and staying afloat. In 2021 we regain control, and while the storm still rages, we will slowly move toward safety and calmer waters.

The year 2020 was filled with different troubles and many ups and downs that affected the major part of our lives and existence, as the global pandemic ravaged economies and health sectors.

The educational sector was not spared, and our environments were all adversely impacted. Experts said the world had never experienced such global challenges since World War II. These global challenges brought terrible suffering and loss to the world – about 150 million people thrown into the ocean of poverty, and many businesses, including micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), forced into bankruptcy.

It is a pity that I foresee year 2021 is not going to be any different from 2020, but in a new dimension and look, though this year is going to be the year of change, freedom and new opportunity.

Many had predicted that the year 2020 would be the year of ‘new beginning’ because it was the beginning of a new decade, with people preparing for the future, reviewing what was on ground and setting new targets in realisation of the global goals – the SDGs. However, nobody knew the direction it would take, as the foundation became messy, rocked, shaking and shattered, affecting the goals and vision of a better world.

Beyond the negatives 

The disorder and confusion caused by the Covid-19 pandemic have given us the greatest opportunity in history to grow, recreate, validate, improve, and develop. Even when the world’s problems seem insurmountable, there’s always something to be happy about. The year 2020 brought a lot of innovations to education, health and other crucial sectors of the economy as they leveraged technology. Indeed, the year birthed many solutions that will help fast track development in 2021 and beyond.

The year 2021

In technical terms, the year 2021 is opposite of the year 2020. It will be a year with many thorns, but full of hopes and healing from the woes of the past year. As last year has left many scars on the world, the healing process will take a lot of time, patience, creativity, innovation, and dedication.

We all know that healing takes process, but for all of these to happen, all hands must be
on deck. If we must be free, like a bird in the sky, we must embrace the wisdom of our
people in the olden days. We need to leverage the skills and talents of young people for new solutions in science, health, and other areas. The financial sector will even be cracked
more than ever before. Indeed, it will be a great dive for the world, but this new solution
will come with a lot of pain as the scars are still fresh.

After all these mess, help will come. We will get a lot of help in charity, humanitarian
support, bailout, economy cushioning, and a series of sacrifices from wealthy individuals and governments. It is the year when we are healed as humanity; the
year of one voice, cooperation and togetherness. This year, 2021, is the year of collaboration, full of promise, hope and optimism. It is the year we are not only moving forward, but navigating a new direction, like in the pictorial illustration of the ship above.

On the negative, we have lots of forces to confront, as many of the powers behind this rocky ship are very strong, selfish, greedy, confrontational, aggressive and lack the ability to identify with anyone outside their closet cycle. The powers are stubborn and unwilling to compromise. To overcome this power, we must work as a team ready for change and freedom; we must be loyal, courageous, dedicated, dependable and be exact in our actions towards freedom and progress.

Message for Nigeria

As a nation, we need prayers; a lot of prayers is needed if we must experience peace, change and freedom. It is a year of inner reflection. If we must stay together, more prayers and attention are needed for the country, rather than a particular ethnic group or religion. Last year, 2020, was a year of multiple wealth transfer amongst elites and the government, with the raking in of resources belonging to the poor; the year in which the innocent and the downtrodden suffered more than they could bear. The year saw disruption in many policies and arms of the government. However, the disruption was truncated for selfish interest purpose.

Moving forward from the cry and anguish of 2020, 2021 is going to be a year of reflection, reset and dealing with the core of our unity as a people. It is sad that instead of capitalising on the opportunity provided by 2020 for a better 2021 and the future, it will be politicised and that will lead to a great disaster, unless we quickly go back, reflect on the past and reset the plans for a collective and progressive country.

No doubt, Nigeria is a great country, with a wonderful future, but it is sad that the foundation of the country has been tampered with, and that is why it is a year of reflection, more prayers and resets, needing a strategy to move forward or else the future is shaky. It is important to echo this again: whatever we do in 2021 will determine how wonderful or disastrous 2023 will be.

Sadly, the increasing agitation for separation will not stop. There will be many strange happenings and unusual events from the north to the south of the country. We must take a closer look, as the way and manner we handle these scenarios will determine what is in the future for Nigeria. A little bit of warning for leaders here: too much of desire for wealth and resources accumulation, rather than the focus for attention for the poor, may turn this period into a bad period for the country. But it accurately reflects we live in a time that feels extreme and critical on many levels. Let us step back a minute to widen our view and perspective of a greater nation.

This year, 2021, should be known as the year of national conversation because lasting national change and growth will only happen when our people come together to have genuine conversations, and tackle tough questions about cessation, resource control, ethnic
and privileges in the spirit of unity and compassion.

In general, the year 2021 is a year of battle for battle, and we must be firm, diplomatic, and be sensitive to decision and actions around us. The year will raise many issues at the foundation of our existence as a people. Despite the struggles and challenges, 2021 will be a progressive year for the world, with more positive response towards some of the global challenges facing the world now.

Shalom!!!

Ayodele Taofiq-Fanida is a clarity coach, counsellor and trainer with mandate for nation building, marriage and relationship, career growth and development. Ayodele has been called to help navigate people back to God, knowing their paths and reason for existence. For guidance and counselling, you can reach him via email: Ayodele.fanida@gmail.com or 08098746523 on WhatsApp.

Photo source: Ayodele Taofiq-Fanida

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