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The street hustler becomes the boss by Anthony Nze

The literary genius and social critic, Mark Anthony Nze always finds a way to expose the rot that bedevils most countries of the world, especially those in Africa through his conscious and well-crafted contributions to the literary world.

In the first two books of the trilogy released, ‘The Street Hustler’ and ‘The Street Boss’, he has efficiently highlighted that corruption in its entirety is a menace that has eaten deep and is still eating deeper into the very essence of government and its affairs on different strata and spheres.

In a sudden turn of events, the once simple-living Ikenna becomes the centre of a political interest he never imagined himself being a part of. Born into the family of Obinna and Nneka Amanze, he fully understood the experience of being the poor and needy in the scheme of things as well as being the hated one. All that not-withstanding, an inherent crave for excellence and his affinity for the right way of doing things stand him out as the hero in the midst of dangerous villains.

His father, Obinna, marries Nneka after saving her from the strangling clutches of his brother, Obum. That singular act, however, sees him create for himself, a mortal enemy in the form of his brothers, Obum and Kalu. This is regardless of how he established his brothers and sacrificed his own comfort for them in earlier times. Their affinity with hate as well as the quest for vengeance against their brother stands in the way of their humanity.

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The effect of the rejection and hate is soon evident in the way their life pans out. A steady, downward decline in the affairs and finances of the family, the deteriorating health of Obinna and the eventual reality of the unsure future staring them in the face soon cuts down the centre of the family. Obinna dies due to the inability to raise sufficient funds to aid in the management of the illness he had developed, diabetes. This further throws Ikenna and his family into the uncertain world of lack, hate and constant neglect.

As if that is not enough, the manipulative tendency of his father’s brothers finds its way into his family. His sister, Akunna, alongside her husband, are swept up in its wake, however, destiny had other plans for him. He meets an old time friend who had relocated to the city of Lasgidi and who seemed to be doing well. The allure of Lasgidi is brandished before him and soon, his mind was made up to explore the opportunities Lasgidi was said to hold and in no time at all, he was on his way to the city of Lasgidi. Thus begins his adventure into a different kind of unknown; the world of trade, politics and corruption.

In a systematic but speedy process, he evolves from an employee to a trader and a business owner then eventually finds himself in politics due to his insatiable desire to eradicate the corruption eating deep into the CAA. He becomes the secretary of the Car Accessories Association, CAA, a position once held by a corruption-embracing man, Adekunle Jibola and somehow, his long standing zeal to see things done right lands him smack in the centre of the dirty politics and corruption steering the affairs of the CAA.

Garnering the support of the masses, whose interest, he put at the forefront of his mission alongside the unwavering support of his dutiful secretary, Jane; he begins to wield a hard fought but well deserved influence in his bid towards completely eradicating the corruption that had bedeviled the CAA. He knocks off Babatunde Oluwale and his minions, bids to become the president of the CAA and eventually makes his way into state level politics. This ambition however, doesn’t go down well with the powers that be at the higher echelons of power.

Forces, much higher than his influence in the persons of Hassan Buhari, Laide Osun, Mbadinuju, Nana Elbar and various other influential figures, rise against his cause, his integrity is tested and his zeal, questioned, but this is the point where he needs to prove his worth. Can Ikenna scale through the seemingly insurmountable hurdles that corruption has thrown in his face especially when that face is faced with the nozzle of a loaded gun and then the shot goes, ‘poof’?

From ‘The Street Hustler’ to ‘The Street Boss’, everyone is certain to have their attention hooked as event after event unfolds in this thriller. As for a star rating, nothing less than a five star would do justice to this magnificent piece of creativity.

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