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”
Tag: Rivers State
There is a popular proverb in Nigeria which states, “The person who has never left his father’s farm thinks the farm is the biggest in the village”. If the meaning has not jumped at you, here’s another version: “Until you leave your father’s house, you will think your mother is the best cook on earth”. There’s some kind of epiphany that happens when you go outside your conventional zone and get to experience life in other areas. This has been my experience with Port Harcourt. Continue reading “Cry, My Beloved Port Harcourt”
On Friday, 23 November 2018, a seven-storey building under construction in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, collapsed. With conflicting figures being bandied about, one sure point is that there were a lot of persons in that building when it collapsed because that day was a payday for workers and suppliers. As at the time of writing this article, ten days later, many persons, dead or alive are still trapped underneath the rubble. Continue reading “One Emergency Away from Doom”
Caitlin Moran once wrote: “…the world will come at you with knives anyway. You don’t need to beat them to it”. Whereas it would seem counterintuitive that a people would choose to harm themselves, each day people in Rivers State make the foolish choice of harming themselves and the state they call their own. Rivers people keep complaining about marginalization by the federal government and the Hausa-Fulani hegemony. While some of the complaints are valid, a closer look would reveal that the real enemy lies within, not outside.
Somewhere, right now, a mother is weeping for her slain child, siblings are crying for their brother, a father is feigning composure over the headless corpse of his son. The mourners’ crime is very grievous. They had the effrontery to be either present, or have a relative present in Rivers State in an election season. Accordingly, the megalomaniac politicians have executed their punishment—the rivers flow with blood, not water. Continue reading “Rivers of Blood: A Clash of Egos”
If the 2015 Elections have shown us anything, it is that although we are closer to free and fair elections, we are still a long way from a democracy where votes are guaranteed to count. Forget all the hype about the free-ness of the elections. In many places, it was essentially a contest between opposing rigging strategies. Continue reading “Contest of Best Riggers”
Yesterday, for the first time in the history of the resource-rich Rivers State, a debate was held for the top contenders for the office of the Governor. Unlike the presidential debate, the three leading candidates took this debate serious enough to be present. The debate marked a watershed moment in the state, hopefully heralding the dawn of a new era. Continue reading “Yes! We’re Getting There”