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Absurd world and Nigeria’s politics


National Assembly

If (as women) you are playing football with men (quite uneven competition) you have to use all means, hands inclusive to score goals…Zika on STV.Jean Paul Sartre and Albert Camus are two great authors who wrote on backgrounds of the absurd world that got some politicians after the Second World War to rethink. On such writings General Charles de Gaulle recanted his approach to colonisation and the Algerian war as well as pleading for getting China (people’s republic) replace China (Formosa or Taiwan) in the United Nations Organisation. In effect de Gaulle could not understand the foul goal intended by UNO as it decided to exclude 1/3 of humanity in favour of tiny Taiwan.

Wars and killings get so much to absurd levels that those who have no capacity to withstand such could turn inward for their own goals, foul means inclusive so as to obey the immediate quest for survival. Recently, a 92 year-old woman killed his son of 72 year-old in USA in a struggle of who should live the house and join old people’s home. And, so, which law could attempt at convicting 92 year-old woman? That is absurd world we are in and it is not far from Nigerians, as a collectivity, being asked by N’PDP or R’APC to remain forever in irredeemable state so that their quest to amass more wealth, their only goal scoring intent, could be assuaged. It is not far from asking them to dig their own grave and be buried alive as one sees in some war situations when the loser is desperate to sink with whoever is not obeying their orders.

Listening to the same STV on press bill presented to the National Assembly and its absurdity; that is, how to emasculate press freedom one started wondering if Nigerians are not going to see rules which could make them leave on SOS by any foul means because when a law becomes so oppressive those it is intended for could resolve not to obey it and more prisons could be built to accommodate majority of the collectivity. It is also as debated on that platform that Nigeria is going to import crude oil for a refinery it intends to install on the borders of Nigeria and Niger and the crude is to be imported from Niger from a distant of 900 kilometers north east of Niger. Courtesy of Engr Onovo, it is like carrying coals to Newcastle. It is also absurd that Nigeria that ship out about two million barrels of crude need to import mere 20,000 barrels to service such refinery.


So, Nigerians are on a field, very much unleveled, playing with no fewer than 2000 politicians who are about to bury them alive in a non-equitable competition. Very very much insignificant figure of its population far beyond the 1% Americans cried loud about that derailed their economy in 2008 if not for Obama’s stimulus input that created a renewed hope response. Remember the tag: we are the 99%. Nigeria is running ¾ of the year without visible budget implementation and the politicians are still earning, by Lamido’s beckoning, 25% of the nation’s earning and more people in the working class are not yet paid for months.

So, where is the level playing ground for the poor masses and the politicians? In deed it is turning to men and women playing football. I just witnessed that in a Lagos market on a Sunday and it was quite absurd. Somebody went to carry the money bag of a seller and started running and people started shouting Ole! Ole! Whereas no one was emboldened to pursue him and I wondered what was going on only to notice that he has lined up his likes and people around just mentioned ‘awon omo xyz niye’. It was as if who dare pursue him when they know where he came from. In deed quite absurd.


Reading the book of Brigadier General Alabi-ISAMA on Biafra-Nigeria, he said that faced with a stronger competitor like General Madiebo when they were in the same Nigerian battalion he learnt to observe foul play to win just as Akin Osuntokun just revealed about the success of Obj as he was faced by uneven competition all the time in the Nigerian army. Noticing the predicament of Brigadier Babafemi Ogundipe in which common rank and file disobeyed him, Obj knew that the field had no level playing ground and, so, as politics had permeated the rank and file he had to aim at building his political capital which is now great enough to re-engineer Nigeria as the north still trust him.

Even when you listen to some Biafran survivors they reminisce on what they learnt from the man they call Air Raid – only brave soldiers survive the war. Like also in the ‘man of the people’ of Achebe, historians are the bravest, men go to war women tell the story. Isama, also, narrated encounters that make him praise the quality of great women of our time, Okereke-Onyiuke and even his own mother who provided materials for filming his war stories; and I agree with him as the woman proved tough on the stock exchange terrain. So, women are to come to the rescue of Nigeria in this absurd politics playing out.

Yes, it should be noted that it was Okereke who led the battle to keep NSE in Lagos like it was known of Aba women riot. In deed how I wish a lady of such substance could show up to win Nigeria for Nigerians. I don’t even mind having the wife of the current president as a Presidential candidate as she had proved a great lover of the Nigerian project either as a ‘retribalised’ Nigerian speaking the language of true federalism as against the current language of ‘them and us. Only two ‘tribes’ exist in Nigeria now- the tribe that speaks the language of true federalism and the tribe that speaks the language of ‘them and us’ and the woman is on the camp of true federalism and as said let foul play be allowed if only to save Nigerians from digging their own grave just as Spain did by allowing non elected businessman to form a government for it so as to survive disintegration.
• Ariole, professor of French and Francophone Studies, wrote from University of Lagos.

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