Thursday, February 3, 2011

We Steal, We Kill, We Rig…

Ibadan City Pix:

“No matter how independent you may think you are, he who pays the viper dictates the poison”

Mr. Iru, I am surprised that you could initiate a political party conference without inviting people like me, or is it that you don't know me in this land? Who is your own father nihahin? If you don't know the sea, don't you taste salt in your wife's soup? It’s when people want to demystify the elephant that they say they saw something pass by. It’s a lie! Ajanaku (elephant) is more than "something" passing by. If I'm not the whale, at least I'm a shark, in the Niagaran waters. In this democracy, there is no stakeholder greater than I in our zone. Every politician, including the Owu chief, knows that I'm a free-for-all agent. If you want to be democratically elected before the election, you need to see me or else your pounded yam will turn into ordinary porridge in the mouth... Perhaps, I should introduce myself better. I'm a general political contractor. We beat. We kill. We steal. We rig, sorry, I mean...emmm...we can democratically elect you before the actual election. Ours is general merchandise.

I'm sorry, it's not your type that we want here. This is not democracy of mediocre politicians.

Stop there! Mondioka ko, Mondi amala ni! You think this thing called politics is for alakowe (the elite)? You must be joking. You think politics is child's play? Ah! I'm sorry for me. What a pity! Can you do roforofo fight in the streets? Can you kill? Can you lie three thousand times before the cock crows at dawn? Can you swear for fun with the Koran or the Bible? The real alakowe that I know cannot do these, can they?

Are these the only criteria for participation in Niagaran politics?

What have bacteria got to do with what we are saying?

I didn't say bacteria. What I wanted to know is if these are the only conditions that can make one participate successfully in party politics...

Not enough o! You must have money. You must have mouth...

Beg your pardon? Is there anybody who does not have mouth?

There you are! And that's exactly what we are saying. You are just alakowe for nothing, you don't know anything. Listen to me carefully. You must have money, you must have big mouth or what these larodo (young) people call basket mouth and … emm…plenty juju...

What?! Juju for what?

Look at you! Can't you see all of them just dying like rats all over the place? Before the assassin pulls the trigger, they have fallen down yakata and died, just like that! Is that how to do oselu (politics)? If it's not Ewedu State today, it's Lagoon State tomorrow. And if it's not Osemawe State this week, it's Okitiland next week.

Chief, you mean you still rely on this your useless juju power? As for me, it's blood of Jesus...

Look at you! Who says it is blood of satan that is in his own vein...? A youngster, not knowing danger, sees hand grenade and calls it small pineapple! If you cannot carry a tortoise around on your chest and be ever ready to pull the trigger first before the assassin does, like the mystery man of Ado Okiti did, then you are a goner!

I'm still baffled how you got here, chief.

Don't worry. Actually, my governor is not here because I sent him on an errand to Upper Yemoja River to settle some disputes between the Ibariba and the Fulani herdsmen who are always fighting over grazing land. And as for his deputy, you know that one is my house boy. He was still busy cleaning my bedroom when I decided to come myself.

By the way, who really allowed you in?!

Iru, or what do you call yourself? You have to be very careful when it comes to election in Niagara. You must consult and listen to the elders. If not, you will regret the day you were born, like Henry Nwosu.

You mean the footballer? Has he ever regretted being a footballer?

Who is talking about a footballer? I mean your oga before before. That one overstepped his boundaries by not consulting with the council of elders before releasing the so-called free, fair and peaceful election result. Na peace we go chop? We quickly sent our thugs in uniform after him. Have you heard from him ever since? Those boys dealt with him well, well. They slapped him a little to the right and kicked him a little to the left. He was so dazed that if he saw Babangida then, he would have thought it was Nzeribe he saw. Your own will not be like that o! Say "aamen!!" But let me tell you, to be forewarned is to be forearmed. No matter how independent you may think you are, he who pays the viper dictates the poison...

It’s not like that. It is “he who pays the piper dictates the tune”.

Is it not the same thing? Just let me warn you…

If you will just allow me to talk, sir…

Sure, why not? The slave master cannot be so wicked that he will deny his steward the right to urinate. Spoke on (sic).

With people like you in the corridors of power, there is no hope for the electoral process.

Eeemi?! (Me?!). Who is talking of hope? Politics in Niagara is not for HOPE but GOLD. Have you not heard their excellencies arguing lately?

Over what?

One says his goldmine is big. The other says his is bigger. And they are drawing more daggers as they dig in in their respective holes. While they are at each other's throat, the other parties are making hay on the campaign ground, trying to win the heart of both the men and womenfolk.

What are they saying?

One is trying to woo the male voters by saying: "The other party has been robbing you for eight years, now give us a chance too". Another says to the women: "That party has been killing your husbands' batteries for too long, we are here to revive them with ACiD, insha Allah!".

We are in trouble!

Note: This Opilogue was first published in TELL, September 25, 2006.

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