• Monday, June 24, 2024
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Tough times? Take it easy; it shall come to pass!

Tough times? Take it easy; it shall come to pass!

The days of punishment have come; The days of retribution are here. Hosea,9:7

Today, I will be indulging in Afghanistanism, the journalistic practice of leaving critical and controversial issues at home to face inconsequential issues elsewhere. It did not start in Nigeria but it was very popular in those bad old days of Decree 4 and allied instruments of military oppression, suppression and repression.

Today, I will practice another form of Afghanistanism: ignoring the life-threatening challenges facing Nigerians to focus on other small-small things that will divert our attention, even if in the interim, from those existential challenges . This is because, in trouble, to be troubled is to be more troubled. And scratching the head does not solve any problem; it only makes you a craze baldhead according to Bob Marley

Last weekend, I was in Lagos for a two-point agenda: the Original Weekend (a marriage enrichment programme), organized by the World Wide Marriage Encounter, and engagements connected with Association of Anambra State Development Unions, Lagos. I decided to play the big-man and drive to Lagos, pretended to be unmindful of the situation of things( Lagos-Ibadan go-slow and the suffocating cost of fuel).

My fuel gauge was reading about 75% full when I left for Lagos in the wee hours of 8/7/28. By the time I rounded of my engagements on Sunday evening, the fuel gauge had ‘bend down low’ as one musician would put it. I didn’t know how it happened but I found myself at a special filling station at IsaleEko, down-town Lagos. Fuel was N200 for those wearing APC T-Shirts, N184 for carded members and N97 for those with that special BATified caps.

I did not belong to any of these categories and as I was strategizing on a way out of the situation, I heard from a radio the bitter complaint by Ayoola Oyejide, the National Coordinator of League of Youth Voters for Tinubu and Shetima, that the rise in cost of living is ‘unprecedented and unbearable’.

I also heard the report that the National Association of Academic Technologists kicked against 200% fee hike in federal Universities, expressing its concern and worries over the development. I was shouting who are those speaking like ASUU when I woke up from my trance and proceeded to NNPC filling station at Alapere where I coughed out N30421 for 62+ litters of fuel.

Everybody knows the situation of things in Nigeria, 5 weeks after May 29th. It has been operation shock and awe in the economic front. The price of fuel has gone up by almost300%; the exchange rate has gone up by about 100%; import duties on certain items have gone up by 40%. Inflation is about 24% and still galloping furiously. On top of all this, Federal workers were not paid as at 6/7 because of a glitch in Integrated Financial Management System .

I thought it was a budgetary glitch! Sellers are in a quandary because the jump in prices of their wares was unprecedented. Workers are confused because the value of their salaries ( for those lucky to be paid) has gone down by more than 50%.

Some of us are even casting and binding their fuel gauges to remain static! Survival becomes the major issue even though some of us are still worried that a country the size of one small local government ( Seychelles ) has asked Nigerian holidaymakers to leave them alone. Some people are even complaining about the cost of foreign flights which have moved by more 200% on the average.

And some a complaining the sale of Tokumbo cars has fallen by about 70% Holidays? Foreign holidays and travels? Sale of Cars? Are these people Nigerians and/or in Nigeria? As our people would say, it is the person who has taken tea that should be aspiring to take over-tea( Ovaltine).

Many japaists are stranded because of the increasing cost of relocation and those who have started the process are now in a quandary. A friend asked me to celebrate because the government has suspended the 5% telecoms tax; a tax we did not know when it was imposed or when it was removed. Anyway, I am off to Afghanistan.

Many Nigerians have joined TAN; not Ifeanyi Ubah’s Transformation Ambassadors of Nigeria but Trekkers Association of Nigeria and the membership is growing faster than that of Threads, the platform that is giving Musk sleepless nights.

Several non-fuel consuming transportation modes have been developed while some people are reading up the book ‘ have to make your own fuel’ As a survival strategy for the tough times, some ladies have turned or a planning to turn Davido into their lifetime ATM by crowning hm their baby-Dady, by fire by force the latest being Akosua Sally Kora Obidi and Hauwa Saidu Mohammed, popularly known as Jaruma, They hope to get money from him, trend by cobranding with him, have more followers etc.

What is left now is for men to show baby-bumps resulting from their ‘doing’ with the very active and vibrant young man who now occupies the office of the first nephew of Osun State and will soon win the GWR plaque for being the most versatile babymama. What was a hidden show years ago has now become institutionalized with some terms developed along the line. Things are so bad that a bride had to attend her wedding with a convoy of horses while among the gifts received was a bundle of fire wood

During the Mmesoma affair, I remembered how a snake swallowed some cool millions at the Jamb office and a search online also reminded me of the chimpanzee that swallowed more millions from another government office. That was when I saw the same chimpanzee online cooling of in the seashores off Bahama coast.

Just the other day, they caught a supervisor who skinned the very animals in his butchery, tied them around his body and clothed up! A woman of means has learnt from the Governments de-subsidisation agenda and withdrew the subsidy( financial support) she used to give his husband when he married a second wife.

It was a classical case of reverse-subsidy where the wife was paying the rent. So, she refused to pay the due rent, leaving the husband to figure out how to accommodate the new wife. And while all eves are on the economic ball, the Borno Hisba enforcers have been forcefully shaving boys with hairstyles that violates the good morals, ethics and culture of the people of Borno State. Immoral Haircuts?

I had to checkout the meaning of that term as I was writing this. But this policy is double economic wahala: for the barbers who have lost customers and the boys who have lost value for their haircuts and may need to go and re-barb the hair which these fierce Hisba officials have crudely shaved without regard to shape or form.

And this was after the Governor Idris of Kebbi State sacked his SA on Youths, Babangida Sarki, for making an indecent heinous post on his WhatsApp status which negated and denigrated the morals, values and integrity of the people of the state. Morality again? But these culprits are all from these states. Are these morals espoused (what ought to be} or operative(what is?)If they are operative, why should indigenes and residents of these two states desecrate these morals?

In a worrisome and unfortunate twist of fate, it appears that the gods have lost their potency. Muoghalu Obi, 45 chief priest of Okija shrine has been sent to prison for defrauding his ‘client’( so, he is now a certified consultant), Jeffery Okoro Eze of at least N5m. And he is in prison.?

He did not disappear from the prison and the policemen who arrested him, the client and Judge who imprisoned him are still walking about freely? Is this the real Okija Shrine chief priest? If you don’t know the intimidation-quotient of the Okija shrine, ask Ngige and eselu Uga, And then, the Osun State Police has the audacity to arrest a Cow which has been already consecrated for the 2023 Cultists day celebration on 7/7/23.

It is guilty because oroki and axe symbol were inscribed on its skin. But our people say that the tortoise atop a tree must have been aided by somebody since the tortoise does not ordinarily climb. As an advocate for the cow, I declare the cow innocent since it could not have written these things on its skin. And by the way, where are those who did it? Since the police claimed to be working with intelligence, reports, why did they arrest the hapless cow while the real culprits were allowed to escape?

Just the other day, a woman was pleading with the men to come and marry her daughters. I don’t know whether she has confirmed that the girls want to remain ladies or transform into transgender or whther they even want to get married to men.

These things are getting confusing but she should hold on! About 70 years ago, one of my friends was named Nwokediuko: (men are scarce) but our ladies ignored the import of that name and have been doing shakara. Now, the come has come to become as people are now marrying animals!

Victor Hugo Sosa, mayor of San Pedro Huamelula in Mexico has just tied the knot with a crocodile bride in an age-old ritual for prosperity. But the worst is that Must has gone 95% in the manufacture of robot wife: beautiful, no maintenance cost, no quarrels, no women empowerment stuff.

Read also: Tough times, tough people

The tough times obviously affected the last Eid Festival. I can testify to that because for the first time in living memory, I did not receive even a cube of ram from ANYBOBY! But this is a small matter vis a vis a man whose house is thrown into domestic instability because he could not buy a ram, which he had been doing since he married 12 years ago.

The wife had become rebellious, refused to cook or do anything in the house and worse of all, declared the oza room a n go area. I also do not know whether to sympathise with one Vehicle Inspection Officer, (VIO) Papu Prosper who in the normal course of duty went to arrest a driver under these tough times. The culprit knowing what the arrest entailed fought tooth and nail with his teeth and chopped off the mans ear, and abandoned the car for them.

Well, I hope I have been able to convince you, not to confuse you that under these trying times, laafta is still the best medicine. And I thank God that I am a Nigerian in Nigeria because the Saudi Court has just sentenced Fatima al-Shawarbi to 30 years in prison for criticizing the government

Now that you have finished with it, relax a little bit to savour it in full and then go outside and fight for your survival!.