Friday, February 24, 2017

TO THE NAIJA ROAD USER BEFORE THEY DIE

Dear Naijaman,

Before you cross the road, please look left, then right, then, importantly, left again. 

If it is a small village dirt road, please look left, then right, then, importantly, left again. 

If it is a small township tarred road, please look left, then right, then, importantly, left again. 

If it is a dual carriage highway with all vehicles supposed to be going in the approved direction on each half, please look right, then left, then, importantly, right again. 

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When on a dual carriageway in Lekki, you look right and then left, and then start to cross, you reckon without that rusted-ogogoro-filled okada rider or the other cheap-hemp-saturated danfo driver who has decided that driving "one-way" is no big deal. 

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You may think that you know your rights and that heaven will fall if you get knocked down by an errant driver. Well, maybe you know your rights. But if you get knocked down, heaven will not fall down. If you get killed, heaven will just go from being your dream to being your (possible) destination. 

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When all is said and done, when the driver has hit his victim and run, it is those who are left that get to determine who was right.

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On a small road, look left, then right, then left again. On a large road, look right, then left, then right again.

If there is a pedestrian bridge and you are a pedestrian, please use your bridge. The Nigerian road is a sea full of alligators called vehicles.

Friday, February 3, 2017

WHILE YOU WERE AWAY - DAY 10 OF THE PRESIDENT'S VACATION


Dear Mr President, 

Now that the vacation has ended, let me update you on events that took place while you were away from Nigeria, away from Facebook, away from Twitter,  and away from all the wahala that happens in those three social media websites. You don't agree Nigeria is a social media site? Don't worry. There are many smileys and frowneys today. You can react by using one or another. Not like those days when the only possible reaction was LIKE or when the only available news outlet was FRCN. But before you react, remember that on the social network called Nigeria, you have more people following you than Donald Trump has following him on Twitter. 

But I ramble. My task is to tell you what has happened in these ten days.

1. YOU FELL ILL AND THEN YOU DIED
Yesso. You fell ill, were urgently whisked away from the country where there are no doctors to the one where doctors abound. And then, despite the best efforts of the best doctors, you were placed on life support, and when your life couldn't use the support, you died. The announcement wasn't made by your friends and well-wishers. The announcement was made by your fiends and death-wishers. Your friends responded by making two announcements: neither was the standard professional demonstration of commercial sorrow; the first comprised pictures of you watching a channel on your television called CHANNELS with your feet on a coffee table; they called those still pictures proof of your life; the second consisted of twitterings from your aviary; those twitterings sounded like you had prohesied you would die and resurrect in 10 days. Just like your friends had two responses, your well-wishers had two responses. One group responded by praying for your resurrection in 10 days so you could return to Nigeria in a blaze of glory. The other group prayed for your ascension into heaven at the end of the 10 days so you could be our modern day Elijah. My questions to you: Are you dead? Did you die? When will you die again?

2. AMERICA BECAME THE APPRENTICE
Donald Trump picked near-quarrels with Mexico and Australia, gave Russia and Israel some head-scratching to do, created alternative facts, fired the word diplomacy from diplomatic circles, and pushed the green cards of many of your dependants that much closer to useless. Some of us now understand that when Wole Soyinka ripped up his green card, he was not only being comical (that too, but not only that); he was being prophetic. Besides, Trump is now giving the world an option: "You're either with me or you're with that woman". No, no, no. "That woman" is not UK Prime Minister May. She is not "that woman" although she could be "the other woman". "That woman" is Angela Merkel. Remember Angela Merkel? The F├╝hrer of West Germany? Trump says you must now choose between him and her. He does not like the Chinese, polyandry, or the Russian weather.

3. TUFACE GOT UNDER FIRE FOR PUTTING YOU UNDER FIRE
Tuface thinks you are doing a shitty job at stabilizing the economy. He may be right or he may be living in his own alternate universe where everything you do is wrong because the doer is you and no reason else. But this is a democracy and you and he have subscribed to this system. The system protects his right to protest whatever. Your friends are pissed that the system affords him that protection. They call him names for daring to protest anything. They forget that they - like I - took full advantage of this system in calling out the unprecedented cluelessness of your predecessor. They want to shut him up and shut him down. Shaa, me I like that his song, African Queen. I wish though he sang it on Key B-flat. 

4. WE GOT OUR SANDAL-FREE WEEK
I think this phone has has a problem. I did not intend to say sandal-free. We still wear sandals made of finest Daura leather signed off as Made in Dubai. I intended to say scandal-free.  We had a scandal-free week. No Dasuki. No Buratai. No Rann. No billions in the clearing of weeds. No scandal. Just the minor inconvenience of having a presidency that cannot convincingly account for the president when his whereabouts become a matter of national discourse if not national concern. Definitely minor. Not at all scandal-worthy.

5. MMM FINALLY DIED
In this case, unlike in yours, both its friends and fiends, well-wishers and death-wishers alike, agree it is dead. The only controversy is in how dead.

6. EWU GAMBIA FINALLY LEFT GAMBIA
You remember Ewu Jammeh Gambia? The one you sent troops to oust and then promptly disappeared on vacation? Well, he left. Finally. They say he left aboard Tinubu's jet. They say that that exit cost Gambians a lot of Gambian money, saved Gambians a lot of Gambian blood, and depleted the Gambian internal reserve of ewu by one.

7. MOROCCO JOINED THE AFRICAN UNION
I just included this bit so that those of us who are unaware become aware that in this post-West Germany world, Morocco is colonizing an African country called Western Sahara, the Saharawi republic and that this is the reason for many of Morocco's problems with the rest of Africa.

So you see, a lot has happened while you were away.

Now I am watching to see whether you will come back, when you will come back, how you will come back, and what happens when you do. 

Sunday, January 29, 2017

MY KINSMEN AND MY COUNTRYMEN

That is how I was strolling along those news channels that I have been watching while I wait for the 10 days to be over so vacation can end and work - or resurrection - can resume, and I stumbled across a piece of news on CNN (I love CNN, (you don't like that, chew some udara seed and drink hot palm oil)) that said that the US Department of Homeland Security had indicated they would be complying with a court order that temporarily blocks President Trump's executive action on immigration.

I like how my kinsmen, Americans, behave. They are so different from my countrymen, Nigerians.

What do I know? The Bible says that in the beginning He made man. In his image He created him. Male and female He created them. American from Nigerian he delineated them.

Praise the Lord.

Monday, January 16, 2017

RUNNING OUT OF TIME TO BE THE ANTICHRIST


They said he was the antichrist.

That no one could be America's president and be so globally loved if he wasn't of the devil.

That his signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act, was the means by which he, the antichrist, would stamp his seal on foreheads and arms of his followers.

That the end of the world was near and that he would start the Third World War and Armageddon (how is that word even spelt sef?)

They said all that they said had been spelt out by or in the Bible.

Well, his tenure ends in four days or less. Four days or less for him to stamp his seal of 6 6 6 on all foreheads and try to turn the whole world against Christ and do whatever else they said he was sent to do.

Four days for Barack Hussein Obama, the President after my own heart, to prove them right. Or illiterate.

Isn't that what we call those who cannot read? Illiterate?




Perhaps.

But let us step back a little and attempt to start from the very beginning. From the early days of the presidency of the first African American leader of the United States of America.

From the moment his black feet darkened the threshold of the White House, Obama was guilty. In the hearts and minds of the white conspiracy theorists who sought, first to delegitimize his presidency, then to derail it, and then, when that did not work, to defame it, it was an inconceivable horror that a black man should desecrate the halls of their White House with his black wife and decidedly very black daughters. It did not help any that he was a Democrat and had a name that sounded like Saddam's surname.

These racists decided that Obama was guilty; he was guilty because he was a black man in the White House, a slave presiding over the affairs of free men. But being a black and a descendant of slaves was not the kind of crime they could unashamedly accuse him of in the public domain. They had to be more subtle; they had to be able to cast him as unworthy of the position he held without showing their racist hand. They had to ensure that there were crimes they could accuse him of having committed so that, in the eyes of the less discerning, in the eyes of those unaware of the roots of this conspiracy, his "crimes" would speak for themselves and against him. So, like the Sadducees and Pharisees who needed the perfect crime they could accuse Jesus of, having already predetermined his guilt, Obama's traducers needed the perfect crime to accuse Obama of; the perfect weapon to wield against him.

They found that perfect weapon in religion. 

Today, those who dismiss everything Obama stands for as "ungodly" and refer to the man himself as the "Antichrist" justify their claims by accusing him of legalizing same-sex marriage in the United States of America and attempting to implant the biblical mark of the beast - 6 6 6 - on the forehead of every American and every world citizen by means of his Affordable Care Act.

In accusing Obama of being the Antichrist based on the legalization of same-sex marriage, they pay no attention to history; to the fact that same-sex unions had been legally recognized in several countries around the world many years before Obama's black feet stepped on the gray tiles of the White House as its lord:
  • in 1989 in Denmark, 
  • in 1993 in Norway, 
  • in 1994 in Sweden, 
  • in 1996 in Iceland, 
  • in 1999 in Belgium,
  • in 2001 in Finland,
  • in 2005 in Canada,
  • in 2006 in Israel, (Israel! And before Obama)
In 2013, the United States Supreme Court, which does not have on the Bench anyone by name of Obama, upheld a previous court's decision that effectively set aside the ban on same-sex marriage in the state of California. In 2015, the same Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in all of America.

Obama's accusers are angry that he did not use his powers to muscle the court into upholding a ban on same-sex marriage in California. But they ignore the fact that as president, he has no business interfering in the courts. They pretend to be unaware that even before his presidency, several US states had already given different levels of recognition to same-sex unions. They do not tell you that Obama himself had several personal scruples about gay marriage and made no secret of their existence; nor do they tell you that Obama's eventual support for the judgment is based on his overriding conviction that all men - and women - are created equal and so should not be discriminated against based on whatever indices. No. They do not tell you that because that would spoil their Antichrist narrative. Never mind that several countries around the world already permitted same-sex partnerships years before Obama became an Illinois senator. 

Obama's accusers also point to his signature healthcare reform law as evidence of his antichrist agenda. I am not American; I am not directly affected by Obamacare. I cannot comment on its merits and demerits. But the much I know about it, it has no provision for emblazoning the number 6 6 6 on the foreheads of its subscribers. At some point, the conspiracy theorists said the mark would be engraved on microchips in letters too tiny to be appreciated by the human eye and then the microchip would be implanted in people's foreheads.

Chai.

Obama was a president who was not afraid to be human. His courage was demonstrated time and again when he stood up to popular thought and sometimes against it. 

Israel will not forgive Obama because he had the guts to tell the Israelis that a path to peace required more good faith from their end than they were coming up with.

The White American racists will not forgive Obama for being the Black Man who stepped into their White House to blacken it. I guess they will be using bleaching lotions to expel all of his blackness when he is gone from their house, thank goodness!

And the Pro-Christs will not forgive Obama for being the Antichrist who came to teach them tolerance, that all men and women can live together, disagree in peace, and move forward in harmony.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

IT’S CHRISTMAS


They say it’s Christmas. And they are right. It’s Christmas.

While celebrating Christmas in 2016, try not to forget to remember to:
  • -         wash your hands
  • -         wash your fruits
  • -         wash your vegetables
  • -         use a condom
  • -         not reuse condoms
  • -         avoid fights, including Twitter fights and Facebook brawls - and MMM
  • -         avoid motorbikes if you can, control the speed of the motorbike riders if you can’t avoid them
  • -         drive carefully – and that includes avoiding the paths of reckless drivers
  • -         check your blood pressure and get your family members and loved ones to do same
  • -         ensure your pregnant folks are not over-stressed; they really don’t have to do all the cooking and cleaning
  • -         do not over-spend. January is notoriously unforgiving.
  • -         store petrol safely. That is a lesson we learnt from a few years ago.



Merry Christmas!