“Count your blessings, name them one by one;
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done”
The quote above is from a popular Christian hymn, “Count Your Blessings” by Johnson Oatman Jnr, however, fear not; this is not a proselytising article. The hymn just kept ringing in my head as I picked up my laptop to compose this article. I’m typing this article at the twilight of Good Friday 2019, influenced by four key events from the receding week.
Continue reading “When Privilege Comes Knocking”
A little while has passed since the last time I tapped my keyboard composing a document that was unrelated to my day job. In the intervening time, I got married, and Nigeria held its most expensive elections ever to select office holders for the next four years. Except for my Rivers State, which now operates a different wavelength, other states have concluded their selection processes. Today’s article is more of a potpourri of my thoughts on different issues related to the elections. Although each issue merits a full article in its own rights, let’s accept what will be a summarisation.
Continue reading “Now that the Elections have Ended”
After reading my last article on issues affecting Port Harcourt, a certain friend of mine called me to discuss the main ideas in the article. In a one hour-plus WhatsApp call, this Nigerian “externally displaced” in the United States, made the point that my article was trying to solve a problem by complaining about the symptoms. Whereas I did not necessarily agree with his entire viewpoint, a key idea stood out—his application of Jesus’ Parable of the Prodigal Son to events in Nigeria and Africa. Continue reading “Still Washing Pigs”
It is no longer news that Mrs Folakemi Adeosun is no longer the Nigerian Minister of Finance. If like Jesus on the way to Emmaus, you are unaware of the events surrounding her exit, you might want to read the Premium Times (PT) article that set off the stack of dominoes. While Nigerians continue discussing her exit, amidst insinuations that the announcement was timed to obfuscate President Buhari’s latest SSS appointment, my view is that her resignation should not be an end in itself but rather, the start of a reflective process. Continue reading “Kemi Adeosun: Beyond a Resignation”
Prologue: The following is a redacted chat between some members of a certain WhatsApp group. The banter is around President Buhari’s candidacy in the 2019 election. I decided to turn the transcript into a blog post. Only members of that group can identify the participants. If the “S” in “Sarcasm” has not already informed you, please be aware the following conversation is intended for humour.
Continue reading “S for Sarcasm Unscripted”
Let me begin with a quote attributed to Howard Dean: “I’m just disappointed that once again, we may have to settle for the lesser of two evils.” This quote was issued with respect to the 2004 US Elections. Applying this quote to Nigeria, especially in light of the fast-approaching general elections, a reader would be forgiven for quickly linking it to the presidential election. However, that is not my intention here. The presidential election, unlike some would argue, is not a choice between two evils. Continue reading “None of Two Evils”
“Beware that, when fighting monsters, you yourself do not become a monster… for when you gaze long into the abyss. The abyss gazes also into you.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche
There is this crude joke by some Nigerians that should they find themselves being sentenced to hell, they would argue that God should not cause double jeopardy since their lifetime in Nigeria was spent in hell. While this joke may seem out of place, it highlights what some (maybe many) Nigerians think about living in a country where illegality is legal. Continue reading “SARS: When Lawlessness is the Law”
In his book, Gravity’s Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon added a thought-provoking quote: “If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don’t have to worry about answers.” Getting citizens to look at the wrong places has been a key operating principle for governments around the world disinterested in true accountability nor doing right by their citizens. Trying to get at a problem without asking the right questions is like trying to diagnose pregnancy by asking if a mosquito recently bit a lady. Unfortunately, Nigerians flirt with such irrelevant questioning. Continue reading “Alex Ekwueme: Asking the Wrong Questions”
What better quote to start this article than one by Vladimir Putin: “Those who fight corruption should be clean themselves.” In case you’re wondering if this was said by the famous (or infamous) Russian president, allow me to calm your nerves. Even I hoped this Putin is the Putin we love to hate, and alas he is the author of this starter quote. I think Putin preaching against corruption is like a beautiful oxymoron. That’s why this quote launches today’s article about Nigeria’s corrupt saint. Continue reading “A Tale of a Corrupt Saint”
Here we are again at another start to the month of October. For most people around the world, October is just the first day of the tenth month for each year, but in Nigeria, it is a day to mark the country’s shift from a colonial serfdom to an independent entity. Go throughout the length and breadth of Nigeria and the views of Nigerians would likely range from intense optimism to resigned dejection. On my part, herein lies my own view. Continue reading “Another Independence Day”