Monday, November 23, 2009

Are You Sure They Won't Kidnap God?

What we have nowadays is no longer kidnapping but ‘adultnapping’.

The reactions to “M’God, They Have Kidnapped the President”, TELL, October 12, 2009, have been both funny and scary. Some see it as a clarion call for the security agencies to be more alive to their responsibilty while others see it as a comical indictment of the system that breeds kidnappers in the first place. Other issues come to play in this voxpopilogue. Happy reading.

The opilogue, “M’God, They Have kidnapped the President” is satirical but informative as well. Please don’t get yourself ‘adultnapped’ as the whole country has been ‘massnapped’ by the politicians. S A Adejuwon, Esa Oke, Osun State.

You are right. What we have nowadays is no longer kidnapping but ‘adultnapping’. When we were young, we used to hear only of “gbomo gbomo” (kidnapping or kid-nappers). Nowadays, it is “adult-napping”, “man-napping” and “woman-napping”. And you know what? This is outright stealing of human beings! Are we that cheap? Let the prayer warriors continue to pray that we do not all end up in the kidnappers’ den sooner than later.

The kidnappers are devilshly ambitious and daring like the Somali pirates. I just hope that they would not think of kidnapping God. Ayo Ademuyiwa, Ode Omu.

Don’t be too sure. Niagarans can do anything for money. If they can throw a day-old baby into a mortar and pound it like they do pounded yam in Mama Put’s buka, then nothing can faze them. And for your information, if Piriye, the little boy, could kidnap God’s mother in “God, We Have Kidnapped Your Mama”, TELL, October 12, 2004, then God, Himself, is game for those sons of a dog.

How I wish kidnappers could try and kidnap all the officials of PHCN. It may help solve the electricity problem in this our Niagara. Diana Omars, Warri.

I think that’s a good wish. The officials could be forced to give us uninterrupted supply of power for a particular period before they are released. That’s ingenious, if not abetting (crime)!

They have kidnapped the president? How I wish this to be real, maybe the government and the security agencies would wake up from their slumber. Aderemi Omolola, Abuja.

The security agencies are already alert to their responsibility. Every public official has a retinue of combat-ready, amphibious body guards that accompany them to board rooms, banquet halls, the loo and even their bedrooms because of lurking kidnappers. When travelling, they move in a convoy of several dozen armoured cars and wear bullet-proof apparels at public functions. That is their armour against hungry Niagarans in general.

Our country has been kidnapped already.Jude, Masaka, Nasarawa State.

Who told you? The oil wells are still running. What else do you want? Mind your language o!

Irefer to “Mama Fela of Burma”, TELL, October 19, 2009. I consider this to be a clarion call to Oby and Ngozi to come back home and perform political miracles since their sister is busy rebranding Megida’s cattle ranch. Muyiwa, Osun State.

I can assure you that they will be kidnapped on the tarmac the very moment they step on this already kidnapped soil. They will be lucky if their chartered plane is not held for ransom, too. Things are just too bad. The kidnappers would think that working in the World Bank is a sure banker for raking in dollars and pounds sterling from the duo. They went for Soludo’s father because they believed his son, a retired CBN governor, must be awash with brand-new currency notes. Lamido must be extra careful. If a retired CBN governor’s father could be kidnapped, then his own father, wherever he is, whether in heaven or on earth, will be a more credit-worthy target! Who will tame the bounty hunters? The answer, as they say, is blowing in the wind.

You are selfish for holding and hiding the picture of Aung San Suu Kyi to yourself. Hope you are not planning to kidnap her. May she live long to see her dream Burma.Ogundijo S A, Ibadan, Oyo State.

The woman is too beautiful to be shared (not what you are thinking) with everybody. Thus I have hidden her on Check the ravishing beauty today. She is, indeed, “obinrin meta” (three-in-one woman). Brain, Brawn and Beauty.

We also have many “obinrin meta” in our country. If the men can pocket their ego and allow women to rule this giant of Africa from the grassroots to the tree top, all our problems will be solved and the difference will be clear. Kievwe, Warri.

You sound like Sir Shina Peters to me who once sang that 90 per cent of the corruption and 90 per cent of the motor accidents in this country are caused by men and as a result men should give women the chance to rule. There should be no sentiments here. Women should come out openly and present a credible alternative to the cacophony of bullet-riddled, crime-riddled, sleaze-riddled and profanity-riddled voices on the political stumps. Aung San Suu Kyi did not wait to be cajoled or caressed by the political stockbrokers before throwing her ‘heart’ in the ring to be pumelled and trampled for the sake of the teeming masses of Burma.

We really need leaders who are portmanteaux of brain plus brawn unlike some of our past and present leaders. Biodun Soretire, Ijebu Ode.

The beautiful ones — sorry, the heroic ones — are not yet born.

Re: “Wanted, A National Day for Fools and Yahoos”, TELL, October 5, 2009. At times I wonder why a few fools would be lording it over many wise men and women. Aderemi Omolola, Abuja.

I wonder myself why we are wandering in the wilderness, yet we all each carry a compass. There’s hope that one day we shall be jolted to the reality of that compass in our breast pocket to show us the way out of the chaotic jungles of our own Babylon.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Our Gods Must Be Crazy!

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This is “Pack a Punch” FM Radio transmitting from Onipetesi, Agege Motor Way, Eko Akete, to all the concerned people of Niagara both at home and in the Diaspora. We are now suspending our regular programming to bring you Broken News, the latest cliches as compiled by our editorial team led by Kashmir Igbokwenu.

Thank you, Amaka Abodehreen. Our research team has discovered for the umpteenth time that Niagara is a broken record and it remains stuck in a perpetual groove of oddities. What we see every day as new problems are really not. They are, indeed, recycled headaches. Most happenings and talkshops in a particular year are a repetition of the issues discussed in the previous years. What we say today is what we said yesterday, and what we are going to say tomorrow. We talk of corruption in the valleys, in the plains, on the plateaux, on the mountain tops and even in the crevices of our leaking skulls. That’s no news. The only breaking news is that yesterday’s 10 per centers are no longer in power, having been replaced by 90 per centers because inflation has made a mess of their illicit gains. Corruption is what the Okirika people call the snuff of mercantile trade while the ngbati-ngbati people call it the “agunmu” (tonic) of business. In a few words, corruption is the key to wealth in “stone-age, modern” Niagara. No need for hard, honest work. The poor continue to sweat it out in the burning tropical sun waiting for a roasted harvest from heaven. But their harvest is not forthcoming! Yet they have to pay their tax. They borrow to pay lest the tax men frog-march them to Kirikiri ... shouting lefu rete, rete lefu (left right, right left). And the powers that ought not to be but are, do not give a damn if the masses continue to writhe in pain until they succumb to abdominal paralysis. Sadly, nobody cares. Well, to care is to create breaking news. Every year we also regale listeners with persistent stories of political crisis in almost every local government area, state, geo-political zone and the general capital territory which is gradually graduating into a centre of excellence in “cosmopolitan corruption” or what the frustrated “shattered” accountants call “a melting pot of creative accounting”. Religious crisis is a must every year with its attendant rivers of blood and the usual government’s promise that it would never happen again. But we all know that before the gun smoke clears, another uprising must have erupted over an “infidel” wearing a pair of jeans and shaking her bum-bum two kilometres close to a mosque. Our country’s tale may not be that of an idiot but it sure signifies lack of collective wisdom. Every year government promises 6,000 megawatts, MW, of electricity but what we get in return is 600,000 MW of darkness, scandal, shock and pain. The Power Holding Company of Niagara, PHCN, remains perpetually on standby while generator sellers open new bank accounts every year where they tie down our hopes of ever getting adequate power supply in fixed deposits. With the sadistic support of the powers that ought not to be, they roll over our troubles year in, year out to yield more interests of pain for the masses. The only breaking news is when there is a flicker of hope for one or two hours in a neighbourhood and innocent children run wild with joy shouting, “Off NEPA! Off NEPA!” And true, true, before anybody could say, “Let there be light,” the brief sunshine has been turned into darkness. Bad roads are a recurring decimal in our mathematics of ineptitude. How about water? Every year, ordinary Niagarans get their supply of drinking water through street hawkers who sell “iced water tutu” to a hapless, dehydrated nation. The more privileged ones spend a fortune digging holes in their yards to look for trapped water underneath the earth’s surface.

At this juncture, we have to pause for a public service announcement. After it, Kashmir will continue by reading an extract from one of his random musings, which is relevant to the issue being analysed. …

Thank you, Amaka. I remember writing that piece in a moment of abject frustration. I believe our country was running out of ideas and it appeared we were all doomed because what we are witnessing every day, every week, every month and every year is a vicious cycle of hopelessness. Instead of things getting better for mother-witch, she is busy producing more female children, thereby piling witches upon witches. Apology to our female listeners for the gender-insensitive proverb. Yes, as I was saying, the editorial news analysis I did bears some relevance to this current issue and I quote. “As someone who discusses (the nation’s) problems at different fora, I’m beginning to have constant headaches now. Year in, year out, the same problems keep recurring. Most comments and editorials in the media this year are a repetition of the issues discussed in previous years: Niger Delta crisis, cement and fertiliser scams, water and electricity problems, poor and dilapidated roads, railway and aviation contract fraud, election manipulations, pipeline and tanker fires, et cetera, et cetera. They only have different pegs and headlines.” I wrote that analysis last year (see Pack a Punch, July 27, 2008). If you go through the same analysis and compare the content with what you have this year, there is little or no difference. Next year, it’s going to be the same. It will be the same problems of political gangsterism, “myturnocracy”, “kleptocracy”, “militancy”, “kidnapocracy”, “adultnapology”, “subsidiology”, and so on and so fifth. What then do we do? Some have suggested a peaceful revolution, the kind of revolution that will change the mindset of the people from docility to positivity. But this is no breaking news either. We have heard this before. Magazinefuls of grammatical bullets.Aluta continua! Aluta continua! Everybody has been saying it but nobody wants to use his head to break coconut for others to eat. The country has remained a country of ‘anything goes.’ We have become local dogs that eat any rubbish thrown at them! Even the national anthem has been condensed into a popular chorus: “You eat your own/ I eat my own/ 50-50 no cheating. Potential heroes have been amputated and consigned to the wheelchair of national disorientation. For instance, Balarabe dared the lion in old Kaduna State during the Second Republic with his people-oriented programmes and he was eaten up by a ferocious, blood-sucking mafia. The same hydra-headed mafia forced another revolutionary governor in the same state to throw in the towel, despite his awe-inspiring military accoutrements. Kongi, the literary wizard, tried with his plays, poems and pantomimes but ended up lamenting that his is a wasted generation. True, the country continues to waste away its potential because the ultra-right wing rebels have continuously captured the national beef. The powers that ought not to be have turned Niagara into a giant anthill of the savannah where “monkey ants de work and baboon queens de chop.” Yet the masses continue to grumble and do the same thing the same way and expect a miracle! The gods must be crazy!