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Artificial Intelligence or Sabotage? Warning Against Rising Trends



In a recent address, Delta State Governor, Sheriff Oborevwori, issued a stern warning to contractors in the state, cautioning them against exploiting inflation to delay contract execution. The governor emphasized the importance of adhering to deadlines, highlighting the detrimental practice of contractors prolonging projects to inflate contract sums through what is known as contract variation.


This warning sheds light on two significant issues. Firstly, it underscores Governor Oborevwori’s stance against a prevailing trend in which contractors deliberately prolong projects to inflate costs, contrasting sharply with the common practice in some regions where such actions are tacitly encouraged by authorities. Secondly, it serves as a wake-up call to a burgeoning trend of sabotage within the nation.


The governor’s message resonates amidst a backdrop of similar concerns raised by Minister David Umahi, who recently convened a meeting with cement manufacturers to address price gouging—a practice that disproportionately affects the economically vulnerable. These incidents underscore a troubling pattern of artificial scarcity and economic exploitation, which Vice President Kashim Shettima further highlighted by exposing the multitude of routes through which essential goods are diverted, contributing to inflated prices and widespread scarcity.


Furthermore, the discourse extends beyond economic realms, touching upon the manipulation of currency values and speculative practices within financial sectors. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has initiated measures to combat activities such as spoofing, wherein unscrupulous individuals artificially inflate demand and supply dynamics within cryptocurrency markets, exacerbating economic instability and undermining legitimate market mechanisms.


In essence, what emerges from these developments is a stark juxtaposition between the concept of artificial intelligence as heralded in the technological realm and its manifestation as sabotage within societal frameworks. While advancements in the West aim to simplify life through innovation, Nigeria grapples with the complexities of artificial scarcity and economic manipulation, perpetuated by vested interests and shadowy actors.


The pervasive nature of these challenges underscores the urgent need for collective vigilance and proactive measures against forces that hinder progress and undermine the nation’s welfare. As Governor Oborevwori aptly asserts, the onus lies not only on leaders but on every citizen to thwart the insidious influence of sabotage and chart a course towards genuine progress and prosperity.


In confronting these adversities, Nigeria must confront the stark reality that it risks becoming an “imaginary invalid,” akin to the protagonist in Moliere’s renowned play, whose self-inflicted ailments serve as a metaphor for societal malaise. The path to redemption lies in collective resolve and a steadfast commitment to upholding integrity, transparency, and the common good. As the nation navigates these turbulent waters, it must heed the wisdom of the playwright Moliere: “We are our own remedy. Let us not be our own curse.”


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