Wednesday, October 28, 2020 4:37 pm
By Uzor Maxim Uzoatu
It is nightmare time in Nigeria.
All over the place it is gloom and doom, but a writer must perforce write.
The great French novelist Balzac called himself “the secretary of French society”. It is in that spirit that I render here the minutes of the last Nigerian meeting.
Call me a fake secretary or what you will, but the minutes of the last meeting must be written and rendered by me.
After all is said and done, I am not a speechless president.
Now that I have mentioned the matter of the speechless president, I do remember that most “speech-full” countrymen and women kept asking for a speech from the president but when the non-speech was read they all became speechless.
The first item on the agenda of the last meeting was the EndSARS uprising.
If the memory of my old head serves me right, it was back in 1970 that Gill Scott-Heron sang the poem: “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised”.
Against the meat of the song-poem, the EndSARS revolution was on live TV. The youths of Nigeria made up of swanky babes, hunky guys, happy-go-lucky blokes and never-say-die firebrands were having such an endless party on the Lekki Tollgate front in Lagos.
Then the lights went off and gunshots rang out.
The Nigerian nightmare was writ large on television, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and all the other modern gizmos of the new age.
The catch in the patch is that the authorities started out claiming that nobody was killed, and were asking for the dead bodies to be shown to them.
The youths insisted that the shooting soldiers carried the dead bodies away, whence their need to put off the lights in the first instance.
In this wacko time of Fake News and Hate Speech, any secretary worth his PC or Android phone needs to be very careful.
It is more so when one realizes that the leader who was roundly rumoured to have fled to France suddenly made an appearance to stress that he “went nowhere.”
“I did not run away!” screamed the wannabe president, waxing high. “I am Asiwaju! I am still the Jagaban!”
Not even Louis XIV of “l’etat, c’est moi!” could have been more eloquent and resounding.
What followed after the Lekki shootout, or lack thereof, was a pan-Nigerian looting and raping and pillage.
Prisons were broken into and prisoners were set free without any reference to the so-called prerogative of mercy.
Ill-assorted protesters and allied hoodlums broke into warehouses where state governments stored palliatives that ought to have been distributed during the COVID-19 pandemic – and they helped themselves to the shimmering items.
There was the crooked dimension of breaking into the shops and warehouses of traders and businessmen only to tag the looted booties palliatives!
Talk of bare-faced stealing as a palliative!
It was a melee in which the self-advertised slay queen could in short seconds be seen fleeing with three big bags of rice on her daintily bewigged head!
The matters arising from our last meeting are definitely too large for the short minutes I am writing now.
The custodian of tradition, in short, the monarch of the commercial hub of the land had to flee from his palace to save himself from being torched alongside the sacred place.
It goes on record that the irreverent youth who took away the staff of office of the monarch has since announced himself as the new king in need of a fresh palace and a new cabinet!
The Ekiti State House of Assembly signpost has been towed away to a never-land unknown to any map.
Even the signboard that read “Jalingo” is in the custody of a self-assured hoodlum striding into nowhere, having obviously stolen an entire town!
One state governor looking for the prisoners who fled from the broken jailhouse in his state gave the jailbirds an ultimatum to get back into prison within two days.
Trust the hardened criminals to obey no law. The prisoners did not obey the governor’s order of course.
The governor then extended the deadline to four days, but again the call was not heeded.
Only one escapee prisoner wrote the governor a letter that he was already on the border of Sokoto State en route to Libya and Europe.
There is the angle that EndSARS turned to EndDogs between Calabar and Uyo where five hundred or so dogs were released by the police to enforce the stay-at-home order and now only six dogs are remaining of the lot!
As if to cap it all up, it is also on record that the hoodlums looted a psychiatric hospital and set all the lunatics free.
One of the loonies reportedly ran after the chief psychiatrist with a sharp knife. When the madman caught up with the frightened professor of psychiatry he handed over the knife to him and said: “Oga, na ya turn to pursue me!”
It’s a case of mad country, madder citizens.
So ends the minutes of our last meeting. Soro soke, jaguda!