My City of London: Overcoming Stalemate (5mins Read)

The very sad incidents over the last month has cast long dark shadows over my city of London, and the moods of the people have generally been muted. The fire at Grenfell Tower has shown the dark underbelly of a first class city, in which the local authority response was ineffectual in the early days, however the response of the public was beyond commendable.

We have all come together in small and big gestures of love and community esprit to send a message of our unyielding standing and stance with those who made it out of the inferno. My heart still bleeds for all the unaccountable victims of this tragedy, and others at the Manchester Arena, London Bridge and Finsbury Park mosque.

These occurrences have exposed deep issues within our communities. As it can be in any relationship there will be conflicts, and measures must be taken to resolve these issues.

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I will make my assertions clear below using marriage as an analogue  –

Marriage as well as society are interchangeable, they are birds of the same feathers and both goes through a period of togetherness and conflicts at times.

I grew up in and around West London back in the noughties – a few miles from Grenfell, and it had an atmosphere of tolerance, in comparison to other parts of London. This acceptance and inclusion was partly praised for a lot of the media houses (such as the BBC, EMI) established in the area which brings a lot of liberal minds into the community and also does employs a number of locals of which I was a beneficiary (I spent two years at the Beeb working on the production of factual programmes such as Top Gear amongst many others).

In addition, there are the wealthy enclaves in the surrounding areas of Chiswick, Fulham, Holland Park, Notting Hill to Bayswater and it does not matter where you are from in the area, you felt like you belong. We all ate Jerk chicken at the Ochi take-away in Shepherds Bush after a night of clubbing in the West End, after getting off Bus 94 from Regents Street or 207 from Trafalgar Square (oh I must say this was also the best era of music, we are talking about the like of Jodeci, LLCoolJ, Mary J Blige, Oasis, Blur and the likes, even the Spice Girls) and no one goes into the club strapped with a weapon. How times have changed right!

What is my point here? Things have changed, attitudes have changed, the people have changed; partly blamed on new arrivals and most importantly gentrification. Gentrification in the sense, the BBC has moved on (to Salford City, Manchester) and sold the studio and offices for conversion to luxury flats and boutique hotels. What is the cost-benefit analysis to the residents by having luxury hotels on their doorsteps instead of a behemoth employer like the BBC? What is the loss to the residents of White City, Harlseden, Latimer Road, North Acton, Ladbroke Grove who rely on the BBC for their sustenance. Yes, other companies have shoot up in the area, but cannot be compared to an employer that employs thousands of residents.

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What can the local authorities do and the government at large, (as in marriage) we cannot avoid conflict, we cannot ignore the issues otherwise the ‘sleeping lion’ will lay for a while until resurrected into something more destructive as we have witness recently. We must stop looking at the less priviledge as a nuisance to the system, those who have (the have-yachts) must invest locally and share their resources with the locals to resolve conflicts and use their resources to build a prosperous local economy.

We must note that the people are only reacting in the way they are (as anyone would with this senseless loss of souls), because they felt no empathy from the authorities. Empathy allows us to develop deeper understanding and insights into people’s daily issues and to come up with good lasting solutions.

In conclusion, local and national unresolved issues must be dealt with promptly through the set up of community-led public inquiry. Trust must be restored, it cannot be artificial. Real trust is what the local residents needs at this point.

This is my tribute to those who lost their lives in this horrible tragedy.

Please share your thoughts in the comment page

I wish you peace…

 

 

 

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Perfection is like chasing the horizon. Keep moving Auntie Theresa!

I believe the title above sums up the mood for this unnecessary snap election. In the last two years, the same party has thrown away its landslide victory and advantages for getting the nation’s finances in balance by calling for a referendum in the midst of austerity cuts and so on.

GENERAL ELECTION: HUNG PARLIAMENT CONFIRMED

PARTY SEATS +/- VOTES VOTE SHARE % +/-
Conservative 316 -12 13,568,716 42.4 +5.5%
Labour 261 +29 12,824,737 40.1 +9.5
SNP 35 -21 977,569 3.1 -1.7
Lib Dem 12 +4 2,327,425 7.3 -0.5
DUP 10 +2 292,316 0.9 +0.3
Plaid Cymru 4 +1 164,466 0.5 -0.1
Green 1 0 523,269 1.6 -2.1
UKIP 0 -1 593,852 1.9 -10.8

My opinionated view is that the conservative party should have embarked on policies that will impact positively on people’s lives rather than seeking a huge mandate to govern or focusing too much on the Brexit negotiations (a soft brexit will be better for the country in the long run!). The populace understood that cuts have to be made, but introducing policies for the elderly to sell their homes to pay for an inefficient social care package amongst a badly rushed-out manifesto is a stretch too far.

What lesson(s) can be drawn from this result – I will advise the government that we are not going to get the perfect Brexit deals as there are other external factors that are now in play. First of all, we have a pro-EU leader in France, meaning that there is no #Frexit, nor #Grexit on the table. It appears that EU leaders are now waking up from their grandeur Brussels palaces that the people will vote against unpopular policies in individual nation states. Secondly, Trump America’s isolationism (Paris Climate Accord – a case in point) will strengthen EU leaders to get their house in order as recently noted by Chancellor Angela Merkel about the US reliability as an ally.

Other interesting notions I have drawn is that, as in in life as well as in politics, you cannot count yourself out of the game. No matter your current circumstances, you never know what tide will carry you in or out of the sea of life.

As emphasised by a man that I adore, Warren Buffet (the Sage of Omaha) said “Only when the tide goes out do you discover who’s been swimming naked”The tide has certainly gone out for conservative’s Auntie Theresa. Will Uncle Corbyn be ridden in on a tide of real change and hope. Well, we have to wait for the next elections maybe in six months time as I wrote in one of my blogs dated 17th May 2017 – Elections, elections and more elections – democracy galore!

Thank you for reading and have a great weekend…

…Life goes on or should it? (4mins read)

Children’s lives have now been altered forever. The innocence that parents see in their offspring’s that sometimes make them to chuckle with silent pride and joy are now evaporating before their eyes.

Let me explain, the danger children encounters the world over are now truly global literally. In the years past, children in the West or in affluent economies or societies are shielded from the political and economic reality that children in other countries are exposed to on a daily basis.

Yes, you may say that children in the west are not exposed to child labour forcing them to work in an unregulated mine or in the plantation fields.

Yes, you may say children here are not being forcibly conscripted into a hidden militia in a despotic land or that they are not being put onto a dinghy boat to cross the rough waters of the Mediterranean Sea to safety and to seek refuge.

All of these are as a result of the politico-socio-economic failings in those countries, and children exposed to these elements are paying a huge price with their young lives.

Let me emphasize my point, the same politico-socio-economic assertions are impacting the lives of children negatively in the west as well, albeit differently. They are being impacted through the austere cuts to families and policing, security concerns; cyber-bullying…the lists goes on.

Children are no longer shielded from the impact of discrimination, intolerance and their ill-effects in their environments – they see it daily in the news, they hear it daily whilst playing innocently on the school playground. They see it planted on their mothers’ faces; they can hear it in the doubtful voices of the grannies and uncles. Oh no! The innocence has gone. CHILDREN HAVE BECOME ADULTS.

Our generation have let the youth down all over the world, as we have not taken enough responsibilities to confront the division in societies be it at home or abroad. We have done what we do best which is to transfer difficulties of our times to future generations. An example is the mortgaged-backed securities of the 2000s (2008 Financial Crisis), governments have borrowed to the hilt to avert those crises, only for the unborn to come into this world to pay it off.

What can we do individually and as a community to lessen the exposure that children faces all over the world. Yes, we must hold governments accountable to their part of the bargain to protect us and to create an enabling environment for children to grow up and to fulfil their potentials in safety and ease.

We must remember that these children are the policy-makers and leaders of tomorrow, and they will only enact laws and policies through the prism of their own childhood lenses.

I shed tears for the children of Manchester and around the world in this current climate of fear.

I wish you peace as you read and reflect on the issues of our times.

Elections, elections & more elections… democracy galore! (3mins read)

It is high time I challenge my own liberal views (I studied International Relations as a postgraduate @warwick – since then I have shaped my world views from a realism standpoint). However, in this current climate, I am coming round to the notion that I want my vote in this UK General Elections on June 8th to count.

How does this fit into my main topics such as health, lifestyle, fitness, travel etc; please allow my indulgence.

It first started with the GOP conventions across the pond in America, followed by our French neighbours across the channel and various austerity-induced parties in continental Europe springing up and gaining seats (not to talk of our supposedly Brexit – I was a Remainer). Nobody told us that it will cost us £100 billion to come out of this union! Well, as a Brit we just have to get on with it, don’t we!

Let me quickly cross over to motherland (Nigeria to be precise), I will say to those stakeholders at the seat of power that you must handle this ongoing issue with a lot of gusto. The Vice president role is not a co-ordinator of government, although it is partly, the primary function of this role is to lead in an acting capacity in the absence of the president (I wish PMB well). I will say, let us do the right thing for a change for Nigeria and Africa at large; afterall it is you the so-called elites that will continue to benefit regardless.

This brings me back to blighty (an informal term for Britain), the people are angry because it seems as if governments here and around the globe are against the citizens. Government policies Versus the People

Let me moan please, this government increased taxation on my side hustle in April, cutting off an important source of income to reside in one of the most expensive cities in the world and the opposition party is talking of raising more taxes whilst living in London. C’mon, somebody give me a break.

Taxes are important and essential if we want to enjoy the daily necessities such as good roads, NHS, schools, care for the elderly, infrastructure etc… and we do see evidence of improvements in some areas.

However, the people are still angry because there is no safety net for the working class anymore; some industrial cities have become ghost towns and are now blighted with substance abuse, families structure are now broken, there are many households and entire streets without any form of paid employment, senseless killings of young people by young people perhaps due to absent fathers, lack of proper policing, lack of discipline and respect at home (sorry for being judgemental!). In addition, there are no real consequences for the offenders across the board – a slap on the wrist at the most due to our liberalism emphasis on rehabilitation.

To sum up, I believe governments must make ambitious investments for the future, but must also balance the needs of the people especially those that contribute to the treasury coffers.

If you are in the UK, are you voting? Please refer to the voter’s registration below and if you are reading this blog anywhere else in the world, please hold your governments accountable with your votes.

Thank you for reading.

https://www.yourvotematters.co.uk/how-do-i-vote

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