My Goddess And Nigeria’s Macabre Dance - Remi Oyeyemi
For the last couple of months, I have not had the opportunity to really bare my mind, for whatever it is worth, on the unfolding Nigerian tragedies. Every effort made to seek and search for positive vibes about Nigeria is met with mind boggling miasma. For a polity permeated with existential pangs, petrifying spasms have become the lot of a pulverized populace. The more you look the less you see. The harder you try, the more you are disappointed. The more you hope, the more forlorn you become.
Nothing kills the spirit than the malnourishment of hope. To kill hope is to kill everything. To kill hope is to kill life, of and for a man or a country. Hope is the elixir of life. It is the sustenance of existence. Hope is the bouillon against the burrows of the brig. It is the greatest fuel that propels existential struggles for survival. Nothing draws downcast than expectations not met. Nothing murders enthusiasm and excitement than aspirations that remain a mirage.
It is this hope that Nigeria’s macabre dance in the last two months is trying to kill by every means. It is this hope that President Mohammadu Buhari’s nauseating incompetence is trying to kill. President Buhari’s continued fumbling, flubbing and fluffing have constituted the music for Nigeria’s macabre dance. President Buhari’s incompetence, ineptitude and ineffectualness are beating the drums at a higher crescendo for this macabre dance. The hope of the believers of and in Mohammadu Buhari is fading fast. Their ranks are reducing. Their numbers are decreasing by the day.
Given all the unrelenting manifestations of political, social and economic malfeasance that is contaminating the Nigerian atmosphere, it is very difficult, if you have the means to speak out and not speak out. Posterity will ask you your own contribution. Did you collaborate with those who enslaved your people and exploit them to no end? Or did you speak out against the evil of greed, corruption and political dealership? Did you conspire to deceive and mislead your people? Or you spoke out against dishonesty and doublespeak?
These thoughts are the things that have been going through my mind in the last couple of months that I have been busy while preparing to honour my Goddess, my Queen, a Double Princess, my Partner, my Wife and the mother of my beautiful children. It was her 50th birthday ceremony and our wedding anniversary. The last two months brought to the fore an admixture of unalloyed joy that has always been my Goddess and the unmitigated disaster that Nigeria has always been all my life.
While I was trying to focus on what I am trying to do for my Goddess, I am always jolted by one bad news and another and another. If the Boko Haram fundamentalists are not exploding bombs and killing innocent Nigerians, foreign investors are taking to their heels trying to escape the Nigerian confused and planless economy. If the Senate President is not trying to buy judicial officers to escape justice, the politicians were trying to rig elections in Bayelsa. If the Elections in Kogi is not being declared inconclusive, the winning candidate is vomiting blood to death.
The bad news about Nigeria continued unabated. If Boko Haram is not killing Nigerian soldiers, the government is covering up the news to deceive Nigerians that “everything is fine.” If Biafran independence agitators are not being detained, killed and murdered, Oodua Nation’s independence protagonists are being threatened, blackmailed, badmouthed, derided and maligned. If Deziani Madueke is not denying kleptomania, Adam Oshiomole is spreading falsehood and lies about Ngozi Okonjo – Iweala.
If “Senator” Deno Melaye is not covering his own corruption and threatening those exposing him, Senator Ballah Na’allah is hallucinating about his unflinching support for an alleged certified bank robber called Senate President Bukola Saraki. If Bukola Saraki is not hypocritically asking Nigerians to accept responsibility for their actions, his henchmen are trying to censor the social and conventional media, trying to avoid their own responsibilities. If David Mark is not being expelled from the Senate by the Courts, he is busy boasting and stomping around that he would win again and again and again.
If President Buhari is not junketing around the globe and leaving his job undone at home as the home front continues to burn, his fans are busy excusing him and coming up with mundane as well as ridiculous explanations as to why he is still failing. The corruption war has reached an anti climax. We now have a cabinet of looters who are fighting the war on corruption on the pages of the newspapers. As Okey Ndibe pointed out once, Nigeria is the only corrupt country where no one is corrupt.
We now have a government of the looters by the looters for the looters. The government is headed by a cunning looter called President Buhari but to whom is ascribed the highest form of “integrity and honesty” in denial of extant facts and subsisting history still fresh in our memories. He vowed to ensure that corruption “is killed” before it kills Nigeria, but his cabinet consists of those who have serious allegations of corruption hanging on their necks, woven around their waists and anchored on their ankles.
They trumpet on the pages of the newspapers that some looters have returned their loot. No one knows who the looters who returned their loots are, how much they have returned and when they returned it. Everything is shrouded in secrecy. The Buhari’s government consists a new generation of looters bent on taking Nigeria and Nigerians for a ride for a wild goose chase. The unwary Nigerians are buying it hook, line and sinker, though some are now seeing the light; that they have been sold a fake!
To the threat of General Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida, President Buhari has not been able to dare him. Buhari dares not. He dares not because he knows the truth about the threat of IBB. Buhari knows that IBB’s threat is real. Some of us think so too – that Buhari is not clean; that he has explanation to make to Nigerians on his stewardship as Petroleum Minister; that he is not honest as he has been portrayed; that he has been dressed in borrowed robes to deceive Nigerians into voting for him.
According to the American lawyer, Bruce Fein of Fein & DelValle PLLC in Washington D.C., the IBB’s subtle threat is as follows:
“On General Buhari, it is not in IBB’s tradition to take up issues with his colleague former President. But for the purpose of record, we are conversant with General Buhari’s so-called holier-than-thou attitude. He is a one-time Minister of Petroleum and we have good records of his tenure as minister. Secondly, he presided over the Petroleum Trust Fund, PTF, which records we also have.
“We challenge him to come out with clean hands in those two portfolios he headed. Or we will help him to expose his records of performance during those periods. Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones. General Buhari should be properly guided.”
I am waiting for the supporters of President Buhari to pick up IBB’s challenge. Let them urge their man Buhari to pick up the gauntlet as dropped on the floor. Let President Buhari try to expose IBB and let us see if IBB would make good of his threat to expose President Buhari’s records of corruption and stealing. Let us see if President Buhari is really courageous as he has been sold to Nigerians. Let us see if he is not a fake as some of us believe.
The only way out for President Buhari on this IBB quagmire is the death of IBB. But the fact is that IBB is still alive. Probe him while he is still alive and let us see if Buhari is really against corruption or he is just a pretender? Let us see if he has been deceiving Nigerians or not? Do not give excuses about IBB’s regime being beyond 1999 whatsoever. Nigeria did not start in 1999. Corruption did not start in 1999 or during President Goodluck Jonathan’s era. No excuse is acceptable. It is either Buhari is a coward, spineless and untruthful about this corruption challenge or not.
Despite the challenges presented in the last two months by the tragedy that Nigeria represents, I have been able to celebrate my Goddess. I have been able to make my Queen happy. I have shown appreciation for her partnership. I have shown gratitude to Providence for making her my wife. I have thanked my creator for making her the mother of my children. I have refused to allow the miasma of Nigeria to mar the joy of her 50th birthday. She can only be 50 years old once in a life time. Nigeria has been there for some time. I am not sure if it would always be there. But I am back!