Jovo Yurip: Yankius, which ones now? Why you no tell me say Senator Ovie Omo-Agege na Pyrate? You bad O!
Yankius: Jovo, look my eye well. Omo-Agege no be Pyrate at all at all. Wetin make you think so to the point say you come my place this hot afternoon come dey accuse me anyhowly?
Jovo Yurip: You never hear? Senator Omo-Agege storm senate chamber for national assembly this afternoon through back-door with 15 men, come carry mace from Ekweremadu hand. Small thing remain Omo-Agege wan head Ekweremadu fall but chance no dey. The guy na real Wafi guy. Continue reading
At the moment the Urhobo nation is both essentially saviourless and leaderless, forget the ethnic bosses. Chiefs Mukoro Mowoe, Michael Ibru, David Ejoor, Great Ogboru, and James Ibori have all been arguably seen as saviours of the Urhobo nation. However, only the legacies of Mowoe and Ibru remain as genuine saviours unperturbed and Mowoe the singular unobstructed unifying leader of Western, Central and Eastern [Isoko] Urhobo. This is shocking considering that Mowoe, the foremost Urhobo nationalist and first president-general of the Urhobo Progress Union (UPU), died 70 years ago. This no disrespect to (Urhobo Progress Union) UPU and its host of influential leaders. The Urhobo people have produced many illustrious sons and daughters in many endeavours of life, some even rivalling in achievement the five named saviours. One may wonder what it is that distinguishes these five men as saviours to Urhobos but not necessarily leaders? Continue reading
As ridiculous as it may sound, if Anioma were to be granted a State today, the new capital of Delta State would be either Koko (Itsekiriland) or Bomadi (Ijawland) or even Oleh (Isokoland). However, some Urhobos are crying for a [reinstated] “voice” in federal politics at the 90-day suspension of Senator Ovie Omo-Agege (Delta: APC) from the upper house of the National Assembly but they cannot even handle themselves well politically within Delta State. Is this not the time for the Urhobo nation to look inwards and sort its cohesion challenges out?
Fejiro Oliver of Secret Reporters recently wrote about his utter disillusionment with the Urhobos (his full heritage) and his embrace of the Anioma people. He cited his betrayal by Senator Ovie Omo-Agege as the reason for his chosen ethnic preference. He was poached by Omo-Agege from NTA to be a staff writer with Urhobo Vanguard newspaper set up to assist Omo-Agege in his gubernatorial ambitions. When Fejiro was kidnapped in Niger State for investigative journalism in 2014, Omo-Agege and the entire Urhobo nation turned their backs on him giving mostly unbecoming excuses. Continue reading
It has been one year since Ayo Odebisi went on another kind of going abroad trip. When I heard and looked at his photo, I saw more the love and friendship we had, and spontaneously I tried to reach out to him, I named him “Jimmy”. All the people I love I give pet names, Paramole’s has been the only posthumous instance. In the eulogy “I Will not Mourn for Ayo Odebisi (Paramole)” I wrote what many have said encapsulated his life and what he represented on one page. I will not repeat such here. What I valued most about Odebisi was his perspicacious construction of eudaimonia in the image of the 4-7 Creed, the Creed of the Pyrates. His approach to creating a better society could never have been more sincere or practical, but it somehow remains to many lofty.
Akpunwaism is a cultural reaction to defeat and the subaltern status of an ethnic or regional group within a state. Akpunwaism is unique to the Igbo ethnic group but its manifestation is not exclusive to it. The Japanese and Germans have their unique forms of Akpunwaism as a reaction to their defeat and domination by the Allied Forces during and after World War II. Many wars have produced the same in other parts of the world but with varied approaches and circumstances. Misunderstood, Akpunwaism is often portrayed by other Nigerians as a composite of greed and domination by the Igbo man and woman. To the Igbo people, on the contrary, it is a necessary and peaceful approach to both survival and prosperity. One then wonders what Akpunwaism is after all.
Voting, votes and honest election results are not enough to prevent elected officials from misbehaving or misgoverning once they get into office. Constitutional checks and balances are not usually sufficient enough to check and balance the activities of those in power abuses of power in the form of malfeasance, misfeasance and nonfeasance. Such abuses are hard to detect by the everyday citizens and those in government have no incentive to report them. Those who independently report such incidences quickly become “enemies of the state”. Therefore, other strong pressures and institutions are required to subject those in power to govern well, but they must emerge from the citizens themselves or a significant number of them. Nigeria is no exception. Continue reading
Yankius: Heeeyyy!!! Prickson, himself! The Sexual Man! Expert on Practical Urology! How you doing, Brother? You look so happy, man! Another sweet honey don confuse you?
Prickly Heat: I just tested HIV negative. The test was requested for the new job I will start in the Middle East. I was really scared but I have come out all okay. God is great. Continue reading
The complete metamorphosis of the butterfly is a thoroughly adequate analogy for civilisation: the gradual progression from egg to slug to pupa to imago [the beautiful butterfly]. In the Nigerian context, it starts with the colonised state to the inexperienced independent nation-state to transitional nation-state to strong state. The furthest stage Nigeria ever go to was the ugly butterfly that never blossomed. However, after the initial euphoria of the return to democracy, it is now evident that Nigerian politicians and clergy are busy reversing the progress of the nation back into the stage of a slug as a consequence of their thefts and misrule; it suits them well. But does it suit the everyday citizens?
Nigeria once [for several years] had constant electricity, reliable tap water supplies, a world-class education, a modestly corrupt civil service, a postal system that could be depended upon, rape was associated with slum areas, robbery was not something that bothered people, people drove their cars to their home towns 100s of miles away by night, educated women did not have to sleep with men to get employment, kidnapping was unheard of, sexual attitudes were responsible, people were not desperate enough to be easily conned by clergymen, major politicians did not serve rice with an apron in the streets to win votes. Most of all people wanted to be something, upwardly social mobility was open access and the moral cost of doing wrong was high. And this is not a glossy nostalgia for something that never happened, we all lived it even better if one is old enough to remember.
Where has it all gone? Continue reading
Nigeria has path-dependently or even habitually allowed bad leaders and kakistocrats to enter positions of power and govern it either by means of coup d’etas or fraudulent ballots with relative ease and the resultant dissatisfaction is left to be managed by even worse leaders. The cycle of bad leader to bad leader to worse leader has thus become a solidly stable equilibrium in the nation, escaping it seems unlikely. Most Nigerians wonder endlessly how this habit can be broken or bad elections ended in order for good leaders to come into power and foster best governance possible in the society. All by itself this is a very mistaken expectation.
Knowing that one is living with oppression is a blessing whenever it decides to come, not knowing is a curse that will forever leave one much worse off. – Guynes
Before attempting to answer a few interesting questions arising from readers of the article Oppression as a Test: A Metaphor for the Nigerian Youth (https://wp.me/p1bOKH-P5), it is important to explain a simple taxonomy of oppression.
A photograph of Hon Evance Ivwurie, Delta State legislator, appeared on Facebook a couple of years ago that uncannily emitted a tangible glimmer of hope out from the groundswell of the intractable political despair that grips Nigeria. The photograph showed Ivwurie vigorously searching for Fulani Herdsmen menacing the area, completely unarmed in the bush of Abraka (Delta State) with the unassailable expression of much physical energy, genuine indignation, utter fearlessness and a hint of finality. This article not another declamation about the terror of Fulani Herdsmen in Nigeria but grounds for the possibility of a necessary shift in the attitudes of elected officials towards adopting “Toe-to-Toe politics”. Continue reading
“Those who have come to know and trust death embrace it with love. It is the very foundation of freedom. Oppressors love no one, not their wives, not their children, not their friends. How can such a person love death? Behind the empty shell of the oppressor, he fears all the real tests of his worth that are imminent.” – Guynes
Oppression is a test or testing event. Some strange men habitually oppress others, and they commonly do so by the actual practice or simulations of “bone testing”. Bone testing works because it is the violent use of bones by those who claim to be “strong” [bullies?] and can in varying degrees damage the bones, muscles, tissues, and nerves of others, thus securing their submission. Bone testing not only causes ache and hurt, but it also can maim and kill too. Why would the oppressed and opressable not fear it? Such is the stuff of oppression; inducing fear. All resistance breaks down. The next level of oppression is the use of “word testing”. The words of mouth are perhaps the most effectively used human instrument of domination known, mainly, where the hypocrisy of peace and doing good exists. It is the domain of intimidation, scaremongering, perplexity and verbal dehumanisation on the one hand. And deception, persuasion, feel-good-factors and the sale of hope on the other. It is also oppression by mind-control. All dissent or oppositions takes a crushing. Bone and word testing as used to oppress are very physical and psychological, respectively, derived from a wide array of evil incentives.
In 2012 an Odua Peoples Congress (OPC) operative intimated to me very intensely that the then President Olusegun Obasanjo was a traitor to the Yoruba race citing many things he did as military and civilian head of state as proof. One accusation was the nationalisation of Western region-owned assets to the federal government dominated by the Hausa-Fulani. Another accusation was the initiation of the transfer of the Nigerian capital from Lagos in the South-west to Abuja in the North. There were other accusations mentioned and they were supposed to persuade me and others that Obasanjo was a thoroughgoing agent extraordinaire for Northern hegemony or imperialism. In the 1960s and 1970s, the nationalisation of major industries was a global vogue and blaming Obasanjo as one head of state in a thoroughly global trend is harsh. Continue reading
Natural Injection: O mi Yankius, which ones? I know say you go don dissect the open letter when Obasanjo send to President Buhari. What’s your opinion on the matter?
Yankius: I did not and will never read it.
Natural Injection: Really, why? You normally read everything. Wetin dey pepper you inside?
Yankius: When Obasanjo was president of Nigeria, if anyone voiced criticism of him he simply to them dokuously to “Shut Up!” then head up.
Natural Injection: Okay, that’s true. You read the letter when his own daughter, Iyabo, write take call her Papa hypocrite because of him open letter to Buhari?
Yankius: Yesio, I don dissect the letter with many different styles.You self go like. But na ancient news. Continue reading
People when no dey happy, people when know dey look
– Fela Kuti, Overtake don Overtake
Last week Ibrahim Malu, the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) was delighted to announce that its training college had graduated 183 cadet officers with 331 more to come. It was an expedient statement intended to assure Nigerians that the fight against corruption is intensifying in concrete ways. Many Nigerians reacted with smiles, emotive comments and dancing. Deja vu?
Uncritical support for anti-corruption activities in Nigeria always discounts the over-ruling problem. The entity that created and maintained the culture of wanton corruption in Nigeria is the “Owners of Nigeria Technostrucrure” (ONT), Nigeria’s leading special interest group. Without any iota of blame apportioned to the recent EFCC cadet graduates and their trainers, they are merely analogous to doctors trying to cure cancer with Panadol.
Namadi Sambo is yet another victim of Wole Soyinka’s and the Pyrates Confraternity’s mischief. As an ambitious and bright student, in 1974 Sambo as an architecture undergraduate at Ahmadu Bello University (Nigeria) chose to join the Pyrates Confraternity. Namadi Sambo later became Governor of Kaduna State and subsequently the 13th Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. We must understand that Islamic Northern Nigerians, particularly of the Hausa-Fulani stock rarely ever join University Campus Grown Fraternities (UCGF) since their ethos goes against the everyday sensibilities of Islam. Sambo’s (and others) interest as a Hausa-Fulani to join the Pyrates Confraternity seemed like a breakthrough in expanding the network of membership among Northerners. Nigeria is lucky today to have him alive considering the consequences of his initiation into the Pyrates Confraternity.
Usani Uguru Usani is another example of the protean victim Wole Soyinka, and the Pyrates Confraternity create. Again, in the late 1990s, Usani was made a commissioner in the cabinet of three governors from 1995 to 1999 holding various portfolios in Cross Rivers State. He was then seen as a future governor the state and today he is currently Minister of State for Niger Delta in the government of President Muhammadu Buhari. However, if the Pyrates Confraternity had their way, his political career would have ended a long time ago.
Ben Oguntuase is a prime example of being a systematic victim of the mischief of Wole Soyinka and the Pyrates Confraternity. A very bright and energetic graduate of petroleum engineering from the Universities of Ibadan (Nigeria) and Louisiana (USA), Big Ben as he was often called, quickly rose through the ranks of National Oil plc (an oil marketing concern). And was a star in the corporate class of Nigeria. By the late 1990s, he had become the Capoon of the Pyrates Confraternity (a.k.a. National Association of Seadogs International). One thing he tried to achieve as the Pyrates Capoon was to eliminate the heinous and proliferating incidences of University Campus Grown Fraternities’ (UCGF) violence causing death, mayhem and ruin to the lives of so many young higher education students across the country. It was a great national concern of the day which persists. As noble as this quest of Ben Oguntuase was, it cost him his brilliant career at the singular order of Wole Soyinka.
Fire!!! Fire!! I have to repeat it, Fire!!! When two or more Otukas gather, a fire is nearby ready to consume habitually bad men mercilessly. No ashes remain, and the Fire is too hot to scream in. Kegs of rum and seas of brine cannot quench it. The Fire though is always a potentiality, and it is only the purity of the human spirit. The Otuka encases that which turns him away from such an eschatology of the wicked. Inevitably, sometimes it has to be done. Plenty of indications, no announcement required.
May one resort to God’s word in this endeavour? For those who read the Bible or never will, I want to interest them in the “Book of Kings” 1: v 9-10;
The Otuka (a.k.a. Akanda Eniyan) is born into this world very lonely, living on his terms, mostly. He misunderstands everyone else; he is someone everyone else misunderstands. For those he encounters, everyone else is his challenge, and he is everyone else’s challenge. Trouble? His life is never easy even if gifted, successful, influential or content and is harder when this is not the case. He, as the intersection of misunderstandings, cannot find a like mind as others naturally, e.g. as thieves and drunkards do. What frustration! Yet he thrives.
Yankius: Shukus, what’s gwan? Why you squeeze face like corner of anus when diarrhoea don distress small?
Shukuli: You rap shit always so no surprise in your welcome, ode. Just see how Buhari betray Southern Nigerians internationally. Can you image? Buhari serious tell the World Bank make them develop Northern Nigeria leave South behind. Meanwhile, Southerners dey support Buhari like dense slaves. Southerners are born fools, you know. Continue reading
In the UK and the USA, the spectre of Nigerians achieving academic excellence in institutions of higher learning everywhere has increasingly etched for itself a significant space in the folklore of immigration. Such widespread excellence is even used with dubious effect to show how Blacks born in America or in the UK are simply lazy, unambitious and even of criminal disposition. This is certainly the Hegemon’s and Black Conservative’s comfort; one side of an overstated story. The prospect of Uber, the mobile app taxi business, losing its UK licence for gross corporate irresponsibility exposed a most understated side of the story in a shockwave. Continue reading
Comment: Over the past six years I have written several articles about the wrongs and decadence of University Campus Grown Fraternities (UCGF) (some deleted) with insider knowledge. I more recently even developed two essay series out of them, namely, Fraternities are Viruses in Nigeria and The Leadership of a Bad Brother (both which do not names persons or fraternities) with another series in making that does mention names. A major international media house and a documentary filmmaker have even contacted me for my expertise on the matter. However, over a decade before me, Omoleye Sowore (in 2002) had written one of the most important articles on the source problem of cults (UCGF) in Nigeria and its possible remedies. I am sure many readers will agree.
Sowore writes: “It takes a lot of gut to disagree with someone of Professor Soyinka’s standing in the world. In almost every sense he has used his courage, expertise, connections and skills to intervene on behalf of Nigeria to obtain freedom from terror, democracy and respect for human rights, it is common knowledge that he has done very well and I mean excellently well in his capacity as a literary giant, activist, Nobel laureate and Pan Africanist. Continue reading
Many talking points in Nigeria and diaspora are increasingly focused on the undeniable necessity for a ‘proper revolution’ to happen and soon as a singular means to decisively sort out the poly-faceted corruption and misgovernance entrenched in and withering away the country beyond recognition. Talk of revolution is good for expressing various dimensions of despair. Notwithstanding, the realities of revolution are not represented in the everyday chatter of it and appear to be tacitly hiding in many brains. A thoroughgoing political revolution has a very high cost that involves mass coordination, mass murder, mass destruction and mass deception [propaganda]; are Nigerians ready for that? How possible is it? Continue reading
Numerous factors are acutely responsible for the persistence and worsening of the phenomenon of corruption in many so-called democracies. These factors include regulatory capture, lack of transparency, inappropriate political systems, vertical policy transplantations, the weak rule of law, harsh economic conditions, the absence of political legitimacy etc. All these factors tend to be invisible to the general public and require scandal to be known. Another critical factor in the growth of corruption is the much less talked about “guilty accuser syndrome”. The guilty accuser syndrome is a sophisticated political selection strategy that ensures that only politicians with “dirty hands” can get into positions of power that are both strategic and lucrative. Such a syndrome is more associated with new and transition democracies than mature liberal version. The guilty accuser syndrome is a significant weapon of corrupt political patrons since it can ruin strong institutions and render institutional reform useless.
Anti-corruption is not a simple task to handle and it is not always straightforward. There are practical exhaustive steps to fighting corruption if properly executed (even with mistakes) that could certainly lead to massive reductions in the incidence and scale of the phenomenon. Currently, there is nothing of substance either straightforward, indirect or practical about the mission of anti-corruption in Nigeria that swept the current government of President Muhammadu Buhari into power. Corruption has at best become a “spiritual exercise” in the sense that the President and his Anti-Corruption Czar are behaving more like minor biblical prophets sent to warn their people than kings and administrators who ruled people with effective direct instructions. It’s time to pray. Continue reading
Thursday, two weeks ago I had just come out of hospital after a two-week stay there. As a resident of a Bermondsey, my brother wheeled me to the shops. As we got to the former Santander Bank premises on Southwark Park Road, then turned into the headquarters of the Simon Hughes Liberal Democrats Return campaign, we bumped into the man. Simon Hughes was all alone carrying a large cardboard box out of the headquarters and headed for a yellow-painted black cab which he was known to drive. My brother and I greeted Hughes, but he barely responded, he looked unhappy. Hughes is usually a cheerful and accessible person. The June 8 elections had just ended, and the former MP had lost. It was a very personal irony for me, a very difficult one. I did not want Simon Hughes to come back as my MP.
When sociologist Donald T Campbell came up with his eponymous Law, one wonders if he expected it to be of theoretical or practical use. Campbell’s Law states that “the more any quantitative social indicator is used for social decision-making, the more subject it will be to corruption pressures and the more apt it will be to distort and corrupt the social processes it is intended to monitor.” Originally intended to measure crime rates and other social phenomena, it has been in also in use in corruption studies. Tony Blair, as Prime Minister of Great Britain, is exemplary as a textbook case of Campbell’s Law.
A “billionaire” kidnapper, Evans, is now the new icon shining in the dull skies of Nigeria. One may ask how a ruthless kidnapper can either be an icon or hero to millions in Nigeria? Because it is Nigeria. Claude Ake once stated that “Nigeria is the only country in the world where no one questions the source of one’s income.” The depth of the statement is far from casual or mere observation. Amassing wealth in Nigeria, whether legally or illegally, has a highly regarded and venerated virtuousness of its own. In many cases, the more crooked the source of income, the better it is rated by the public. That is why you find young men who have legitimately worked very hard for their money blatantly lie that they made the same money by crooked means. How twisted can things get? Continue reading
One may wonder who within the Nigerian Ministry of Education orchestrated the removal of the History [of West Africa] as a subject from the national academic curriculum several years ago. Many have claimed that the removal was to hide the ‘darkness of the Civil War’ and to quell potential tensions it might harness. Has it worked for contemporary Nigeria? We know it has not. The Muslim-dominated North defeated Christian East in a very bloody and savage conflict that claimed millions of lives, and they want the people to ‘forget’ by robbing them of a significant component of their educational freedom? History is ultimately a reflection of the handwork of leaders for all posterity, and they know it. Agnotology does not often work enduring, and it has limits.
When I wrote the articles Getting Ready to Islamise Nigeria? (http://wp.me/p1bOKH-BE) and The Complaints: Getting Ready to Islamise Nigeria? (http://wp.me/p1bOKH-BT), it was taken by many as mischief with a keyboard or a pen. Muslims denied any attempts at an Islamisation of Nigeria and Christians compatriots said it was neither possible nor even thinkable. As I have said before the Islamisation of Nigeria will be ‘structural’ or ‘institutional’, not ‘martial’ as some unwittingly expect. Christian Religious Knowledge (CRK) is now being completely removed as a subject from the national academic curriculum while Islamic Religious Studies (IRS) and Arabic Studies (AS) remain. Why not ban Use of English Language from the curriculum too? History was taken out some time ago. Continue reading
When the realm governed by the Bad Brother is hollowed out from the inside by the purposeful preponderance of evil, excesses and abuses to the point everything that held it together is so polluted and its rules irreparably unenforceable, a power vacuum is created. That is the art of negotiating oneself out of power by sloth. Folly. The high and mighty in society that once gave credibility and legitimacy to the realm turn their honourable backs and conveniently depart gradually if they were not expelled earlier. The least among men devoid of rectitude, creativity and intelligence then come into ascendance and potentially power by way of hunter-gather style ambition. The realm then gets hollowed out further till the skin breaks from the inside to the surface. Only the memories remain and the smell.
There has been too much optimism invested in what is widely touted in Nigeria as the ‘dividends of democracy’ i.e. the benign and enabling outcomes of democracy. After 18 years of a return to democracy in Nigeria, the dividends of democracy on offer has only meant the military is no longer in government. The dividends have neither been delivered in the form of better leadership nor better governance. Unsurprisingly, the crisis of leadership in Nigeria cannot be solved by democracy as a system all by itself. Democracy can fail societies terribly. Continue reading
Excerpt of a talk ‘The Crisis of Leadership – The Case of Nigeria’ given by Grimot Nane at a meeting of the Democratic Alternative (DA) about the leadership problem in Nigeria – 15/05/2017.
Today, on Nnamdi Kanu’s release he has become “cause celebre” supreme in Nigeria. He visits and is visited by an impressive list of the ‘high and mighty’ in the land. Despite his oppressive bail conditions which prevent him from undertaking any activism or agitation activities, Kanu’s persona is flourishing. Kanu has become an unlikely but genuine national icon of the “Igbo struggle”. Igbo leaders who shunned Kanu when his troubles began must now embrace him, expediency would not permit otherwise. Otherwise, Igbos and other Nigerians who saw him a mere nuisance cannot deny his current moment of greatness. Yet, Kanu’s greatness was a far too visible and predictable product of an unwitting incarceration by the government of Muhammadu Buhari; Buhari made Kanu [great] as foreseen in The Government Has Jumped Up Biafra (see http://wp.me/p1bOKH-pt). Continue reading