Sunday 18 March 2018

Of Caregivers and Caretakers

Caretaker Vs Caregiver
I was thinking this morning... about Caregivers and Caretakers. If you were not conscripted into the '8 to5' army arrangement (popularly called 30 days make a pay), you may not understand how I felt last week. After a high-octane day at the office, feeling so cool that I have justified my pay for the day and even deserving of a raise, I got back home drained. While taking a much desired rest, I read the news that over 700 doctors and medical students in Quebec Canada were protesting against the huge benefits noticeable in their pay. They demanded a cut in pay to ensure care is given to other societal needs. The news reminded me of Genesis 33:9 'And Esau said, I have enough, my brother; keep that thou hast unto thyself.' My reflective submission was thumbs up for #Ihaveenough.

I can understand if one refuses a gratuitous offer, but can't understand someone refusing the benefit for which he had worked so hard. I was thinking, why is it that it is only the doctors pushing for #Ihaveenough? What about the engineers and taxi drivers in Canada? Oh, I can see why now. It is probably because doctors are trained to be caregivers, therefore their reason for the protest was 'to ensure care is given to other societal needs.' Hmm!!! #Ihaveenough.

But wait a minute. Are Nigerian doctors not caregivers? Why is it that all we hear around here are, doctors on strike because one allowance has not been paid or salary is too small? Are they caregivers or caretakers? Even though the dictionary says caregiver and caretaker are somewhat synonymous, to me caregivers care about others, while caretakers focus on themselves. If you have ever been a tenant in a compound with a caretaker, you will understand my definition. #Ihaveenough.

I recalled the news last week of 53 Policemen serving in the Presidential Villa, Abuja, protesting over their unpaid Risk Caution Allowances since 2015, when they were posted to the Presidency. I wondered if the occupants of Aso Rock are caregivers or caretakers. I believe they are caretakers, withholding the meager allowances of these policemen and budgeting over N300 million for foodstuffs and N100 million for kitchen utensils such as forks and knives. When will Nigeria 'ogas' say #Ihaveenough and divert any further increase in their pay and allowances to their security and domestic staff? #Ihaveenough.

In Nigeria, it might have been debatable to state that the National Assembly members are the biggest caretakers we have. They were elected to be caregivers for all Nigerians, but with a monthly allowance of over N13 million, it is apt to say they are caretakers, taking away what belongs to all Nigerians. #Ihaveenough.

While I am currently examining myself if I am a caretaker or a caregiver, one thing I know is that for many Nigerian doctors that believe in 'grab everything available,' Quebec will definitely be struck off their destination list. #Ihaveenough.

Happy Sunday.

....Just the thoughts of a certain Wey Mey.

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