2023 Presidential election and the Nigerian quagmire By Samson O. Lukman
The 2023 Presidential election in Nigeria is around the corner and Nigerians are about to be served their self-chosen dish of amnesia. All the protests, eulogies for Nigeria, dark poems, and the dirges for victims of insecurity shall soon be forgotten only to be replaced with ballads and odes extolling their beloved oppressors. The amnesia goes by quickly as the election and then, dirges from the West, elegies from the South, and the blood of the terrorized Northerner will be composed in Ballads narrating the tales of a collective yet unwanted misery.
In their usual manner, right from the pre-primaries, Nigerians take to Tweet-savaging, Insta-trolling, and Facebook-cursing each other while the elderly ones did not forget to broadcast the numerous Whatsapp propaganda. Emeka and Obi play Jake Tapper and John Harris respectively at Mama Ngozi’s beer parlour as the stench from their alcohol-filled-breath reach to high heavens, the lies no more than the noise, and the ignorance no less than the lies. In a rather unfamiliar sight, Baba Awero and his friends gather at the palm wine joint to feed one another with political fables as robust as the bushmeat while each man drinks the fables to his fill as much as the complementing palm wine – and Danjuma with his radio who only hears vote a Babanriga-wearing Northern candidate only.
Lagos newsstands; the wife of bachelors, soberness of the drunk, the hope of the depressed, and employer of the jobless, welcome Nigerians from different tribes as each man, loquacious by varying degrees, start the election campaigns and win the election right there on the spot. In such a setting, there will always be an aspiring Martin Luther who knows what others do not know, – moving, gesturing, sweating as he sermonizes in gracious garrulousness.
The mimbar and pulpit are desecrated; worshippers seeking eternal knowledge fed with eternal folly in the name of the LORD. “In the name of Jesus…Bismillahi ar-Rahmani ar-Raheem” chant the Pastor and Sheu respectively as they flip the pages of the ‘Holy Books’ to deliver an unholy sermon while the congregation chant Hallelujah and Allahu Akbar as little and as much as the degree of how thrilled they are with the lies. Each man forgets how he had been hornswoggled into voting the Lord’s anointed, and convinces his wife, friends, and family to vote their man-of-God recommended candidate, albeit, the voice from heaven is nothing but crisp naira notes.
As the ‘coutinhonization’ of politicians continues (transfers from one party to another), the citizens suffer from amnesia and fight over politicians as they make it to the ballot boxes to choose their beloved oppressors. Y’all sing (in Fela Kuti’s voice);
See them o, dem dey lie o
Politicians, dem don come o
Dem com o, witi fat lie
All the street o and dem papers, na lie o
Saudi Arabia, dem run go
Isireli (Israel), dem go pray o
See robe o and dem ihram
Hallelujah! Allahu Akbar!
Seem dem form o, bigi money o
Shey na service or investimenti
Dem pay o, million nairas
Shey na service abi business
APC dem dey lie o
PDP dem barao
Who go save us from this quagimaya (quagmire)
PDP member today, APC tomorrow
See Jackson carry Qur’an
Lawal o, for altar
Muslim for Friday, Christian for Sunday ooo
Ẹ gbawa ooooo
See civilians, dem fight o
Why dem dey fight fight – for politician
Him go rob dem, e go beat them and cheat o
e go wound dem, e go kill them, dem go suffer
Citizens o, dem dey fight o, ẹ la wọn ooo
Written By Samson O. Lukman