Archives for category: Personal Bites

JAKES WEDDING 1030

 

It feels far away but the strains are close enough for me to make out the shrill voice of the female soprano and the strident choir.  Sunday.

It all feels rather melancholic in an almost over-familiar kind of way. Perhaps the shrillness is a deliberate part of the Sunday serenade, determined to get me up one way or another.

The sounds are all around me,  seemingly coexisting quite organically outside my bedroom window. Impossible to deny, they march stubbornly into my thoughts, nudging me to life. Each sound with its own distinctness, it’s own singularity of purpose, each telling a story of the different lives fused effortlessly in this auditory Sunday morning offering in the ancient town of Ife.

My plan though is to have a lie in and thus  I try to subsume these sounds into my consciousness. Deep, bass thumping, rhythmic and constant like a heartbeat from somewhere in this  soundscape. Drumming perhaps. Another church certainly.

From the balcony next to my window,  two hearty voices  sing out some snippets of “Eleda Mi O”-and the echo is carried by more unseen voices. The sounds of splashing water from the apartment next door reminds me the Sunday morning stream of consciousness is on the move. Church is on.

All in all, I could probably have managed my lie in except in comes a very different beast. The “Igwe” ensemble have joined into the symphony of sound  and considerably racked things up.
It’s intense. This choir of revving and spluttering generators at the starting line is completely unrehearsed;  a rising fracas of sound pushed to the  limit.

My cue is complete. Get up I must. This is Nigeria.

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“Beasts of No Nation, egbe kegbe  na bad society, beast of no nation oturu gbeke…..”

 

For some reason I had heard nothing about this Netflix event that everyone had apparently been waiting on; the film  premiere of ” Beast of No Nation” directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga.

Naturally, my face flushed with expectation the minute I read the title: Beasts Of No Nation (BONN).I felt that familiar warmth which happens to my brain whenever I speak about, dance or listen to the music of  the great Fela Anikulapo Kuti. Had Netflix  outsmarted the competition completely and decided to launch its first movie about one of the greatest musicians of my generation?   These guys got game for real!

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And It all made perfect sense.The launch of  Fukunaga`s Beasts Of No Nation was slated for the 16th of October. October is Felabaration month. Now in its 18th year, Felabaration  is a yearly music festival at the  new African Shrine in Lagos which brings Fela apostles and  lovers of Afrobeat  together in an intensely spiritual celebration  of a musical maesro and a deeply concious human being.

World Music - Fela Kuti - Lagos - #uj_0114

If Netflix was sharp enough to ride the Fela wave, kudos to them. I was thrilled to be a witness to see how a director might tell both the human and the socio-political stories which Fela vocalised in his political lyrics. Stories of lives in a  society struggling to shape its identity amid corrupt public officials, insane corruption and  a global hierarchy which was only concerned with its own survival.

Alas, as I read teasers and watched the trailer for Joji  Fukunaga`s Beasts of No Nation, a forced acceptance dawned on me and  the applause began to dim.

BONN it is, only in title.
No Fela. No Egypt 80.
No dancers of beautiful vibrant ebony.
No Pepple street.
No lanterns on wooden tables selling many things  for the head.
No Reagan.
No Thatcher.
Not even a Botha lookalike!

So second base jare.
In BONN like most of his songs,  Fela was in a state of direct protest; making a mockery of failed governments and political leaders both within Nigeria and internationally  who were  not just corrupt but cruel and completely oblivious to the suffering of their people.

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One such leader  was  P.W. Botha – president of South Africa who in 1986 was famously quoted as saying, “This uprising will bring out the beast in us”, in reference to the U.S  introduction of  the Comprehensive Anti-Apartheid Act.

Fela was fearless. As many nations across the world pretended that aparthied was acceptable, Fela  wanted his voice to ring out clearly at the continued cruelty of  Botha`s brutish and arrogant reaffirmation  that the apartheid system would continue unchanged.

In BONN Fela says:
MANY LEADERS AS YOU SEE DEM
NA DIFFERENT DISGUISE DEM DEY-OH
ANIMALS IN HUMAN SKIN
ANIMAL-I PUT-U TIE-OH
ANIMAL-I WEAR AGBADA
ANIMAL-I PUT-U SUIT-U
 

These words continue to unpeel the layers of  the “beast” , espousing the inhuman attributes of  many leaders who simply are deaf to the voices of the people they govern. He develops  the metaphor  further suggesting  that there are many  leaders who look human on the outside in their suits and fancy  clothes but lack the compassion which qualifies them as human. With their nations in chaos and dissary, these leaders disguised as humans are  really beasts of no nation consumed with an overwhelming sense of their own importance and  a distinct lack of sensitivity and disregard for anyone or anything else. 

Growing up in Nigeria,  listening to these songs was instrumental.  Watching Fela perform live at the Kalakuta Republic at Pepple street was an experience to be repeated over and over again.  It was a deep sizzle of  intensly stirring  rhythms, politically charged lyrics,  an ambiance created by an unleashing of all inhibitions and a journey  somewhere quite extraordinary. Fela inspired me to think outside the box. He inspired me to understand that the process of political agitation to challenge injustice and raise issues of social change in society is a responsibility for every citizen.

Watching his travails and his cruel mistreatment at the hands of  government allowed me to understand that not all of us can be brave and openly fearless in challenging  the wrongs in society. However,  to those who do so at great risk, the rest of us must graciously acknowledge and give revered respect where it is due.

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I remember cutting everything I could find in the newspapers when Fela passed on. And I can safely say the streets of Lagos have not seen such an outpouring of respect  and grief in such numbers for any man dead or alive since then.

Warts and all, Fela was human, a poet whose lyrics even now continue that metaphoric resonance. 26 years after these words were first written, they seem almost prophetic as we watch on a grand stage the tragic consequences of having leaders who are beasts of no nation. 

The beauty of Fela for me is in the freshness of his message, the genius of his music and the truth which he refused to be quiet about. As I sing along to BONN and stomp my whole body in response,  I am still moved to action- no jonesing here-exactly as Fela would have wanted his audience to be.

 

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  On the 28th of March 2015,  Twitter became the cauldron of all things relevant and irrelevant, the melting pot for anyone and everyone caught in the  Nigeria Decides  mantra. It was a hodgepodge of fascinating characters waiting for one of the most important elections in Nigeria’s political history.

 

We were all thrown together: the keen observers with unspoken agendas;  the solemnly accomplished satirists and would-be bloggers;  the quick to comment contributors; the self-made champions  fueled by their fervent aficionados and  the reckless but certainly bloodied political lieutenants and their battle-ready Twitter lords.
It was in everyway a community of people  linked by a common denominator- a shared passion  for Nigeria’s future. This is one account of many.

 

Day 1: March 28th 2015
I  woke up anxious.
A curfew had been imposed from dusk to dusk across Nigeria and with the sort of trepidation which lingers under the skin, it felt as though everybody I spoke to reluctantly waited for news of disruption or polls postponed or an outbreak of significant violence.

However, by midday, it was evident that Nigerians were on the move. #Nigeriadecides rapidly began to swell with  “live” commentary and random images from across the country. Images  taken by mostly anonymous Nigerians, armed with smartphones,  determined to retain a  souvenir but also I suspect,  as a tool to record anything suspicious as votes were cast.

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As the 28th drifted to an end,  I scoured feverishly through the feeds- the realization hit first -then the relief. The unexpected had happened. The all-consuming, hurly-burly predicted by so many simply did not come to pass.

Millions of Nigerians had come out to vote  and by and large the first day had  been mostly free of violence and intimidation.

As Nigerians shared their thoughts on social media, many seemed pleasantly unprepared for this outcome; somewhat surprised that it was all going well.
It seemed to me that we had somehow underestimated the positives that were possible. We wished it, we desired it, we prayed for it but on the day, we simply assumed it would be impossible!

Was  the first day just the calm before the storm or something else? A good omen perhaps? An indication of the protracted change already taking place in Nigeria?

 

Day 2. March 29th – Voting continues.

Twitter was buzzing with an interesting cocktail of pride and surprise. The  four letter abbreviation featured in almost every other tweet. INEC.
Nigeria’s electoral college had promised an organized affair, it had promised practical efficiency , it had promised a thorough job; by all accounts, it had mostly delivered.

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However,  a greater victory was afoot.

On the ground, on the streets, in the towns and cities of Nigeria, Nigerians continued to deliver something quite spectacular. Pictures of voters of all ages, patiently waiting to cast their vote, some amid technical glitches and blackouts, images of  visibly exhausted but determined electoral officers and observers all plowing together to keep the process moving- come what may.

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As the 29th dimmed, votes were counted, results verified, reported and shared via public and social media. Tweets were adrenaline- fueled,  oozing nervous energy and an unbelievable sense of pride and expectation. We could do it. Nigerians could show the world  that “your vote counts”!

 

Day 3 Monday 30th March- Gasps and groans galore
As the anouncement of results seesawed into  lunchtime, the margin that mattered narrowed perilously,  it was too close to call and Twitter was close to cyber meltdown. The tension was palpable. This was the sort of battle which forged heroes from ordinary men; the stuff of epic folklore with the battle lines drawn in numbers.
Day 4 Tuesday 31st March- The day of the newly converted.

The deciding votes dripped in from the last few states and  for most on Twitter, God was the focus. The prayer warriors were out and took over in the eleventh hour.

And then the news. It was over. Done.  A new president-elect. A time for new heroes. A chance to chart an alternative narrative in the telling of Nigeria`s great journey.

 

Presidential aspirant and former Nigerian military ruler Buhari speaks as he presents his manifesto at All Progressives Congress party convention in Lagos

Nigerians I hail thee.
We have overcome our own deepest fears, we have shown ourselves and the world that  change was here all the time; quietly waiting in the wings to make it`s grand entrance.  Change was in the heart and civil actions of every Nigerian who overwhelmingly refused to  be derailed amid the high tensions of these elections.

These elections have also shown that we must have greater faith in ourselves. Greater faith in our own institutions- some of which are capable of delivering results if manned and piloted by Nigerians of great integrity.

Through our voices and considered choices let us continue to demonstrate that faith again and again.

 

As I eased into the sweet lyrics of ” Jesus Na You Be Oga, the atmosphere was electric as the luxurious bus fizzed  with  that un-matchable  vibe. That vibe  which makes you smile at nothing in particular as you join  a bus full of strangers gyrating and singing loudly to the same  Nigerian gospel song; and let me tell you, “Jesus Na You Be Oga” is up there with the best of the best.

Undeniably, in Nigeria, music, song and dance does it all the time.  Nothing I know works quite as quickly and as miraculously, morphing total strangers into laughing cronies in the time it takes to wriggle in your seat and join the melee of voices. Nothing except perhaps  the familiar phenomenon of ”

Nothing except perhaps  the familiar phenomenon of “The Forum.”

 The forum is a social construct only possible under very specific conditions: naturally gregarious people; a shared state of fermenting frustration  with  everything political and  time to kill.

And, just as we are highly attuned to  group recitals of  popular gospel songs, Nigerians have mastered the art of striking up discussion forums quite seamlessly anywhere and at anytime.

I mean you would not believe it but just a few  hours earlier, as they made their way to Yaba to catch the Cross-country bus to Accra this group of shrill debaters  were complete strangers.

Now, voices rang out in animated tones as men and women spoke in varying degrees of volume and brash eloquence. Each  voice determined to contribute to the heated conversations on the continuing quandary that is the Nigerian State and of course who rules it come …. sometime in 2015!

 And as eyes brightened and voices mellowed with laughter, I could sense my camaraderie with these voices.  Regardless of where we all started our individual journeys, we are Nigerians-we are  connected by that wistful expectation of a different future and the forum is necessary wherever it might spring up.

It provides a social outlet blanketed  in anonymity and  the proverbial “safety in numbers” as we spew and proffer about our vision of a different Nigeria which continues to sit perfectly polished in our minds.

And as dates are moved and agendas rearranged,  many voices  are jostling to be heard; eager voices cloistered in different places in Nigeria and around the world, connected  powerfully  by the uniformity of our displeasure and uneasiness with the politics of Nigeria and the disjointed narrative which permeates it.

Like millions of Nigerians, I  want to see a  Nigeria dragged out of the doldrums; but like many I am struck by the tense juxtaposition of disparate ideologies, wishy-washy dialogue, monotonous  charades and what sometimes feels like the theatre of the absurd.

So I ask- as we watch the next few weeks unfold- Naija which way forward now?

 

I am reassured as I creep closer to the long awaited corner. Hopefully, the cause of this delay would become clear for all to see.

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I might just see the lone harassed immigration officer having to deal with all of us, perhaps his colleagues were taking a day off; that might explain this almost un-moving mass of tired, hungry and seemingly deflated Nigerians.

I am wrong.

There is a stable of immigration officers and it would appear that things liven up a bit as you get closer to the desk. People are marshaled here and there, questioned about this and that. The vigilance is commendable but does it all have to be painfully slow? As a proud Nigerian, it tires me to ask: is all this ever going to change?

When can Nigerians expect to be treated with some obvious compassion by those paid to serve them – by officials who represent something greater than the lone individual.

Don’t we deserve some conciliatory words after standing on tired feet for eons?
Don’t the mums rocking  tired, crying children deserve somewhere to sit and maybe an offer of some water?

Faced with these  scenarios , for me, the eternal paradox resurfaces again and again. On one hand is a real sense of confusion about why what appears like a straightforward organizational routine -checking and stamping a passport in an orderly and expedited way becomes a blinding, painful chore, takes hours to resolve and does not end quietly at all, as hungry, tired people will be heard one way or another!

On the other hand, I am home. My own inner sense of triumph is  real and palpable; indeed it  fuels my feet and my mind as I am determined to try and make it all make sense. And finally, as I stand in the baggage hall waiting to collect a trolley in another line, it all makes sense again- this line is orderly and happily swirling with conversation.

As I gyrate with bouncy feet with my mass of fellow Nigerians towards the exit, my relief is imminent and yes- I can taste the fresh fish pepper soup trapped in my imagination!

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His gallery was alive with colour, ethnic motifs and imagery rich in African themes delicately expressed in a collection of different artistic styles.

Gbolade Omidiran in his gallery showing me  his online gallery

Gbolade Omidiran  on his IPAD  showing me his online gallery

This was such  an awesome place to be.Here I was in Gbolade Omidiran`s art gallery, 5 mins from my home in Ile- Ife, Osun State Nigeria.

As my eyes darted in glee, adjusting to this fairground of colour and creativity, I literally didn’t know where to begin my visual feast. Every piece was unique, every piece drew me in and excited both the aesthetic  eye and the imaginative spirit.

Wall to wall colour- beautiful paintings by Gbolade Omidiran

Wall to wall colour- beautiful paintings by Gbolade Omidiran

Being a teacher, I am always so enthused when I get the chance to see young people engaged in learning and I can tell when young people are enjoying their learning.

All around me Gbolade`s students were clearly having a blast.

One of Gbolade`s many students avidly explaining the difference in styles between the variety of paintings.

One of Gbolade`s many students avidly explaining the difference in styles between the variety of paintings.

The bouncy ambiance and learning chatter  in the working studio which adjoined his gallery was vibrant.

Students (mostly undergraduates from the local university) were in various states of learning and experimentation; sharing and discussing ideas, actively discovering the balance between raw talent and self-discipline.

JAKES WEDDING 1642

Gbolade himself wistfully recalled his apprenticeship with the great teachers – Agbo Folarin and Baba Lamidi Fakeye of Obafemi Awolowo University.

The iconic mural outside the Department of Fine Arts at the Obafemi Awolowo University where Gbolade  completed his first degree in Fine Arts.

The iconic mural outside the Department of Fine Arts at the Obafemi Awolowo University where Gbolade completed his first degree in Fine Arts.

All in all, it was a great afternoon.

To have spent an afternoon inspired by this soft-spoken gentleman was truly satisfying and an eye-opener.

Despite what else may need fixing in Nigeria, people like Gbolade Omidiran and his contemporary Ibukun Ayoola were using their skills,  passions and individual agency to make their dreams a reality and inspire a future generation of artists.

It made me imagine how much more they could accomplish with support from the state government, you never know!

With Gbolade and his students at the end of a fabulous day.

With Gbolade and his students at the end of a fabulous day.

See more pictures of Gbolade here Gbolade Omidiran in Pictures

Click here to contact Gbolade and see more of his exquisite pieces of art online.

 

As another year draws to an end, we buy presents, hook up with loved ones, feast on food and drink in lavish proportions and ultimately find ways to express the relief and gratitude of making it thus far.

However, that emotion becomes hyper-stimulated for me when I realise that for so many, in so many corners of the world, there is no relief from violence, no relief from threats, no relief from the fear of intimidation everyday.

And 2014 has been particularly flushed with acts on a grand scale of man`s inhumanity to man. Scores of men, women and children have been the victims of ghastly events and circumstances provoked by the very deliberate actions of individuals and groups disconnected from all notions of compassion. Chibok Girls.   MH17. Sewol.  Michael Brown.  Peshawer. Potiskum Bombings. And you know this list goes on.

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So what happened to our world? How come after millennia at living as a human race, in global communities fast evolving into techno capsules, we still seem vastly incapable of interacting with one another first and foremost as human beings. As these tragedies show, at one end, many people continue to use violence as an outward expression of dissatisfaction while others are fascinated by violence as a source of morbid stimulation.

As we welcome in the new year, what would happen I wonder, if we each actively took on compassion as an alternative religion; practicing acts of kindness as part of our everyday living, almost as frequently and as fervently as we pray.

Empathy and compassion everyday, not just at Christmas, birthdays or those special anniversaries. Everyday. Not just when we happen to be in the mood for it but consistently treating each other in a manner which shows that we care about what happens beyond the point of our immediate interaction.

It may seem utopian, it may even seem incredibly naive to think we can consciously interact with other people primarily through the lens of empathy and compassion. Well, When I consider where the alternative continues to lead us, I have no difficulty making compassion my abiding philosophy.

In truth, as human beings we have more in common than all the facades we choose to hide under.
This is wishing you all a safe and joyous season and a happy new year.

 

 

As I gasp at images of federal lawmakers lumbering ungraciously up metal gates at the  National assembly in Abuja, many thoughts jostle for space in my mind. But  Fela Anikulapo`s 1986  song Beast of No Nation overwhelms me decidedly.

Animal in human skin
Animal I put u tie oh
Animal I wear agbada
Animal I put you suit oh

 I do not know these people and it is not my intention to  to be disparaging about them personally. However, I cannot escape the feeling that  as these images are beamed across the world, their behavior disparages all of us simply because ostensibly they have been elected to the National assembly to serve us.

And as the very  ordinary individuals that they are,  I imagine that they perform all the basic rituals of human necessity quite appropriately; wake, feed,  work, play and fume when provoked. But, must they be burdened with the business of law making?

 

HOUSE-OF-REPS-CLIMB-FENCE suit

Or indeed, must we all continue to be corralled into this political arena  where watching the  tomfoolery of our leaders- some elected and some bestowed – has become a daily feed. These people who demonstrate very readily their continued concern more  with petty squabbles  and less with dignity, decorum and a little bit of common sense.

Haba!

And all this as  Boko Haram continues to unlease mayhem unmanned. Thousands spend every waking moment in shuddering fear as bombs continue to go off in school playgrounds  whilst families remain displaced and flung in all directions of Northern Nigeria.

 All this as our law makers are busy soothing their fragile political egos and  displaying  laborious agility as they heave themselves -torso and all -over high metal gates  amid celebratory cheers in full view of the whole world.

 

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In my view, the quandary of political leadership in Nigeria will persist as long as  perfectly humdrum, simpleminded folk are asked to do jobs of extraordinary importance , asked to show intelligent foresight in their actions and utterances when in truth they are unsuited, untrained and uninterested in anything beyond an ideology of service; one dedicated only to self.

These people have no business being in the front row, cockpit or indeed at the bridge, steering Nigeria`s political future. Must we then continue to vote these  law makers into office simply because of ” stomach infrastructure”? Nigerians need to watch these  embarrassing  comedic spectacles and ponder what all this says about the people  who elect such leaders into office in the first place.

“Beasts of No Nation, egbe ke gbe Na bad society” might indeed for some be too strong an analogy here but  with 3 more months before new presidential and federal elections in Nigeria,  must the  ” egbe ke gbe” theme be the default setting when it comes to  choosing  our  political leaders ?

 

Watch video clip here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J6BBGJaiSoE

 

Fresh fish fetishism is delightfully a part of the psyche of  many Nigerians at home and abroad.

I cannot honestly think of a single Nigerian who would turn away the opportunity to eat some fresh fish done up in hot, spicy pepper soup.

 

 

 

 

Fresh Fish -Epe market

Fresh Fish -Epe market, Lagos

It was  early Saturday morning and Lagos was awake and bustling.

My friend was in the car and ready to roll.

We were off to waylay the ladies with their cache of fresh fish and unlike me- the alien in Lagos- she understood this ritual perfectly.

The earlier you leave home, the higher your chances of getting anything done in Lagos.

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We hit the road

Whether like us you were cooking your fish at home or like many Nigerians who regularly found themselves with  fish pepper soup in hand, positioned in one of the many evening joints sipping a cold Gulder, Star or  Guinness , you paid a small premium.

Nonetheless, you found a way to hustle yourself some.

And trust me, with some money in your pocket, good haggling skills and an easy smile, you will find fresh fish just right for  your budget.

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We arrived at the stall to set up our ambush and unbelievably, there was already a small party of people waiting .

I was surprised at the mix of faces.

 

Fish sellers- Isheri Market, Lagos

Fish sellers- Isheri Market, Lagos

 

A young lady who worked in a bank and cooked fresh fish every Saturday as a treat for her husband, an older gentleman who was buying fresh fish for  his wife, a rather tense looking teenager and of course there was us-the two fresh fish disciples.

The atmosphere changed in an instant.

Voices were raised, miraculously,  a surge of bodies appeared from… everywhere.

They had arrived.

 Laden with blackened baskets  bulging with their treasure of golden gills, the fish ladies quite calmly took their places behind the stalls and laid out their wares.

 

 

Fish sellers Falomo Bridge Victoria Island , Lagos

Fish sellers Falomo Bridge Victoria Island , Lagos

 

My friend looked at me. We only had a thousand Naira between us.

Was there any real hope of outbidding the affluent looking madams who arrived in SUVs and big jeeps or the stern faced market women who had come to buy for further resale?

As I waved the naira note in my hand, I realised this was not going to be easy.

This was going to take some special  Lagos style haggling -I pushed my friend forward and prayed silently.
1 thousand naira

In the end, we didn`t  get the biggest fish of  the lot but  in typical Nigerian style, we did not leave empty handed.
We got  enough to make a truly satisfying pot of homemade fresh fish pepper soup –hot, spicy and just right !

 

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Click here to for a video on how to make Nigerian Catfish Pepper Soup

 

Read more about Fish markets in Lagos here

If you don’t like something, change it.  If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Maya Angelou

 In typical ” Naija” fashion, many voices gyrated unceremoniously ( all at the same time, I might add) in passionate response to the question: if you could fix one thing and one thing only in Nigeria , what would it be?

We all mostly know how it works.

Everyone has an elaborate opinion as to what needs fixing in Nigeria- yet it’s never quite one which can be explained in a few clearly articulated sentences.

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Nonetheless, on this occasion, I was determinedly at odds with everyone else. My answer, unlike the group favorite, did not lie with executing a line of corrupt Nigerian leaders in a ” Rawlings-like” coup, or a French Revolution style rebirth in the cold light of day. The way forward  in my view, lies not with our leaders but with us- the general populace and Nigerians in the diaspora. We  who think so little of ourselves as agents of change that we cannot demand more from those  we have democratically elected to  serve and protect us.

Well, after spending most of the evening not really listening to each other but happily  spouting individual theories of change, the rhetoric exhausted, we moved on to other matters…as we do.

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A few days later, quite unexpectedly, two things happened in quick succession  .

First I read Okey Ndibe’s typically scathing but deeply thoughtful article : ” Again, A Case of Uncounted Billions” (http://saharareporters.com/column/again-case-uncounted-billions-okey-ndibe)

Despite the wrenching weight of hyperbole which hit home in the first few lines, I had to shake my head in vigorous agreement – the truth of his assertions seemed completely undebatable.

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That Nigeria has been and continues to be mostly  blighted by a continuum of “small minded” political leaders who scuttle along in nonsensical but highly destructive self -gratifying labyrinths of darkly corrupt networks, nefarious wheeling and dealing and blatant cronyism is a truth well corroborated in Mr Ndibe’s article.

That these same leaders are propped up by a psyche completely disconnected from notions of service  is a view that many of us, in our collective social pods have come to accept and discuss. In strident voices  we writhe in what sometimes feels like a cauldron of  overwhelming frustration.

vanguard inec cartoon

However, what really got me gasping in total discomfort  was Mr Ndibe’s  statement that: ” many Nigerians, one suspects, are hostile to the deep thinking that is a precursor to remarkable transformation”. 

Many Nigerians”? Surely, the man could not be referring to me as part of  that dubious herd? Then, the second event .I clicked on a link which took me here: http://youtu.be/wUX6LP6H3Z8.

Egunje.com ke?

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There they were,  the well knitted, highly stimulating documentaries put up on Youtube by  Egunje.com  and Public Integrity Networks (PINS) in  2012  to promote the message of civil action against corruption.

Here was a civil organization proactively  instigating a platform  akin to  having a civilized debate about  conquering the culture of corruption in Nigeria.

Shockingly, out of an estimated 150 million potential  “Nigerian” viewers in this new age of an internet savvy audience, I was only among the first handful of people to view these videos almost two years after being posted online.

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Why wasn’t this campaign being highlighted, talked about and debated back and forth by the Nigerian media to at least  begin a series of conversations which people could pick up and maybe run with?

Why hadn`t any of my 458 FB friends posted or shared any of these videos on their page in the last 2 years?

In fact, with all my self-acclaimed interest in a progressive Nigeria, why had I not heard about or come across these very engaging clips?

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My mind churnedThe penny dropped.  

The picture of inertia which emerged had me brooding dis-quietly for days. Clearly, it’s not just  our  leaders who are really far gone. In all honesty, it appears to me that through a distinct lack of proactive acumen, we, the so called educated elite may be slipping down the abyss of “all words-no action” so steadily  that  we may become part of the problem of Nigeria.

Therefore, as we look to a future Nigeria we rhetorically  insist on being a part of, we must envision a country that we can all collectively  take responsibility for shaping and steering as much in actions as in words.

Less talk. More work.

Floating School-Maroko

Floating School-Maroko

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OSUPA – lightness & brightness

Commentary. Poetry. Insights. Wellbeing. Nigerian in the diaspora

sevenstarhalo

"Sometimes I can hear my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I'm not living."- Jonathan Safran Foer. || student, loves travelling and perhaps baking a cake.||

A Narcissist Writes Letters, To Himself

A Hopefully Formerly Depressed Human Vows To Practice Self-Approval

Bosnian Beauty Pics

Bosnian tourism, nature and beauty pics. Welcome!

Natalie Breuer

Natalie. Writer. Photographer. Etc.

Indie Hero

Brian Marggraf, Author of Dream Brother: A Novel, Independent publishing advocate, New York City dweller

pperbetsky

Art of Africa, Oceania and the Americas!

joeseeberblog

This WordPress.com site is the cat’s pajamas

SuperGirl Advent

A Humor Blog of Life Adventures

Juju Films

Cutting edge Multimedia Programming

Break Room Stories

Service Industry Stories and More Since 2012

Crazy Green Thumbs

Chronicling a delusional gardening experience.

Homemade with Mess

who wants life to be tidy when you can have more fun making a mess??!

Writers In The Storm

A Blog On Writing

The Daily Post

The Art and Craft of Blogging

The WordPress.com Blog

The latest news on WordPress.com and the WordPress community.