AMBODE AND THE MOURNING AFTER THE LAGOS APC PRIMARIES

By: Andy Akporugo Jr


AMBODE AND THE MOURNING AFTER THE LAGOS APC PRIMARIES

Because democracy is a corporeal sport, we do not expect a miracle at the day’s retirement when the results of the Lagos APC gubernatorial primaries would be announced. It will be the kind of result that makes non-participation a more honourable activity; but it wouldn’t rob Mr. Akinwumi Ambode of the self-respect of deciding, in the mute company of his own shadow, how his story will end.

Surely the size of his defeat, loudly planted on his disownment by those to whom he continually ascribes his paternity, would hurt him deeply and he would want to proceed from the lost battle into an outright war, where he would fancy that he would have the last laugh, trophy in hand and cloaked in an apparel made from patchments of the shredded egos of his godfathers and their accomplices. Trust me, he would find noisy endorsements were he to so choose. But I hope he would fall, by the inducement of an overfill of his favorite brew of which I am not now at liberty to mention, into a deep, long sleep on the matter and return fully convinced of the consequences of his own decisions.

And if he chooses a war, let it be a war based on ideas that further our fair humanity, about which he must not be deterred by the possibility of another rout. For although some wars are suicidal, it remains true yet, that in the battle of ideas, suicide may be the only glory that its honour demands!

AMBODE AND THE MOURNING AFTER THE LAGOS APC PRIMARIES

Question would be, what ideas will Ambode be fighting for? If we are to be recruited into his war, we must understand what they are. It will certainly not be against the evils of Godfatherism without him first offering some atonement for his luxurious benefit all this while, since the only reason he ranks above the rest of us in the first place is his anointment by the Godfather.

We watch and wait then, for that time tomorrow when he wakes up from his defeat and hopefully speaks from the assurance that at least until May 29, 2019 he yet has the ascribed love of us all, something the rest of us are not blessed with!

‘‘Warri no dey carry last’’, they say. And Ambode is a Warri boy!

SUSTAINING DEMOCRACY BY ITS MASQUERADES [1]

No girl, no women, no life

 

A FESTIVAL OF NINE [NIGERIAN] LESSONS AND CAROLS THIS CHRISTMAS (Lesson 3)


By: Andy Akporugo Jr –

A FESTIVAL OF NINE [NIGERIAN] LESSONS AND CAROLS THIS CHRISTMAS

LESSON 3 – Fall In Love, It’s A Slice Of Heaven!

My creed on love is best painted by the morbid ecstatic brushes of Charles Bukowski’s advice:

‘’Find what you love and let it kill you. Let it drain you of your all. Let it cling to your back and weigh you down to eventual nothingness. Let it kill you and let it devour your remains. For all things will kill you, both slowly and fastly, but it’s much better to be killed by a lover.’’

I have plenty more words to whip the topic but as I fear that whatever I add may do injustice to the purity of those expressed upstairs, I shall leave it here.

NIGERIA – THE CHANGE WE NEED!


By: Andy Akporugo Jr –

I am seriously thinking of 2019. We all should, in our small corners. Perhaps not only as politicians. But let us each seek to take responsibility for our weak; for every piece of our country – every little piece of it. Let’s fight to win and preserve its soul.

Let’s hope that if nothing else is achieved by PMB, there would be no money anywhere for people to throw around towards muzzling genuine choice. Let’s all go to the people poor as we are, and make oaths before them with nothing but our blood, our integrity.

And when known thieves and bigots come forth to challenge us for the people’s power, let us not be afraid to call them by their reputations. The people see; they know. They will react if we are brave enough to excite them about the power they wield.

Let’s talk and keep talking. Let’s shout and keep shouting. Let’s speak from our balconies, our streets, our clubs, our offices and even our homes. Let’s speak our beliefs, our ‘nobilities’. Something that lives in our blood and not that which is borrowed for election purposes, and let’s not be so lazy as to simply align with what we perceive to be the shortcuts.

Godfathers may mean well, but let us remember that even natural fathers however well-meaning, are usually the last to trust us to be able to take care of ourselves and yet the people would want us to take care of them. Godfathers mostly exclude the people from the nuclear family, they being approximate grandchildren. They take the driver’s seat by putting their Godsons in them. That can’t be the deal. It shouldn’t be.

And let the wrath of the Most Divine fall on us if we betray them when we procure their trust. So help us God.

Cheers!


 

THE LAST CHAPTER OF ‘‘CHANGE’’


By: Andy Akporugo Jr –

Around 2002, while I was still gate keeping legal matters in a foremost 5 star hotel in Nigeria, a theft of about N38m was discovered. The suspect, ordinarily a very good man, was an Assistant Pastor in a Church which, like other sovereigns, had embassies all over Nigeria and beyond.

He had donated the money to the church and a few of its administrators in cash, in gifts, and received in return, plenteous prayers – that he would be able to pay rent for his one bedroom house hiding somewhere in one of the dusty gullies in the Ogba area of Lagos or buy a car or anything that used an engine, since he had none. He owned tired feet that were mostly tucked in shoes, which soles bore scars that told stories of their frequent duels with hot tar and had forced him into a bowlegged man.

But this story is not about him. It is about the Police and its sister agencies. At some point after refusing to honour several invitations to the church’s sovereign, and after obtaining a warrant for his arrest. The Police approved a notice for publication declaring him wanted. I had been asked to briefly describe him, his last known address etc, etc, and I had. All that remained was for us to make the publication in as many newspapers as we desired. Everything seemed to make a lot of sense, until I stopped to do what no one was willing to do. Think!

The man who had been invited by the Police and on whom a warrant of arrest had been obtained by the Police and who was now the subject of a proposed publication by the Police in which he was to be declared wanted, was being provided security and orderly services at home and elsewhere, by the same Police. Chai!

Today I hear that whereas EFCC had long declared Mr Abdulrasheed Maina wanted, he was yet being provided protection and orderly services by the Police and the DSS and apparently the Attorney General, who was a Defendant in the suit in which Maina obtained the judgement quashing the warrant of arrest issued against him by the Senate, but now acts as his bailiff 4 years later. And now none of them can find him. They are all so helpless, that all they offer comes through a Minister of every inch of Nigeria’s interior, simply appealing to Mr. Maina to turn himself in. And again, I say, Chai!!

If ‘‘change’’ will ever be believed by me again, a long list of heads must roll in a hurry. Here’s my offering of the more notable ones, if ever one was needed. It is not presented in any order of importance:

i. Mr. Abubakar Malami SAN

ii. Mr. Abdulrahman Dambazau

iii. Mr. Abba Kyari

iv. Lawal Musa Daura

v. Mr. Ibrahim Idris

Let’s be clear. They all qualify not on the basis of ‘‘Mainagate’’ alone. That credit belongs to a long list of acts of hostility to the common good of the ordinary Nigerian where ever, and the mockery their acts jointly and severally, expose us to in the comity of civilized nations.

The President misses the list today, but only just!


 

WANTED: A PRESIDENT AS SERIAL DEFENDANT

By: Andy Akporugo Jr

Just after the results of the 2015 Presidential elections were announced and our ‘‘hero’’ advised to observe governance, like the rest of us, from the sidelines, Ms D fell dangerously ill and had to relocate abroad for treatment. There was something in the air of 1984 that seemed to re-emerge on the Nigerian atmosphere that wasn’t good for her health.

Although the thing in part, stood in some 6.3ft of gaunt, dour and austere human form, its existence was more in the brutal creativity of the minds of just about everyone who voted for change. ‘‘The people’s trouble was going to be in trouble once PMB was sworn in’’ we swore to ourselves to the hearing of thieves, and they panicked, fell ill and got involved in all kinds of accidents. Many rushed back to school mid-session. Anything was good, so far as it provided an immediate entitlement to peep at Nigeria from the safely of other lands.

For others, the promise of pneumonia, the prospects of carrying their own bags, shopping for their own groceries or simply living within the insecurity of not being friends with the police chief, judges or other headship of apparati of government elsewhere, advised against relocating. They considered a safer option: the willingness to return their anonymous loot, in the same manner that armed robbers abandon stolen getaway vehicles for their owners to come pick up from street corners. And on the first appearance of PMB on their television screens, many simply ran away from their wealth held in banks under fictitious names and operated with faces that didn’t match their signatures. Others avoided being greeted in the streets by their tenants who occupied properties that even the government was too poor to own.

They fled upon an expectation, but perhaps PMB won the elections more on the backs of certain pretentions to democratic ethos, even when they only existed in their counterfeit in Nigeria, than by the angry vengeful efforts of the ordinary electorate. And so we lost time. Time that it took him to pick up and truly get familiarized with, and convinced by, the heaps of books left behind by John Locke, Jean Jacques Rousseau and their friends, who if truth be told, may not have been talking to Nigerians and their situation. But that’s another matter.

When he wasn’t reading slowly, he yet kept the nation awake for almost 5 months [and up till date] while he snoozed upon files holding the resume of hundreds of men who had been recommended for appointment unto the new government. And a lot, a whole lot, was lost by the ordinary Nigerian while the frighten thieves began to gain such confidence as to question why they feared in the first place, when the EFCC, ICPC and the Police still retained their methods and leadership which were known to prosper as corruption grew.

The judiciary continued to keep equally matched teams and renowned captains, which played for and against justice with balls made of lucre, and in the meantime, the thieves continued to see at the helm of affairs those heads of MDAs with whom they only yesterday, tidied up dirty deals and against whom they felt entitled to lesser punishment, on the basis that they took the smaller portion of the heist. They all remained by the grace of a President who was, and is still monkeying with such ideals of good governance as would please the West, which apparently were his quiet collaborators in the apparent effort to save Nigeria from sleaze at the last elections.

And so under the guise that their tenures were statutorily fixed, he retains in his government those whose guilt convicts them to eternal loyalty to the previous governments against which the charge of relocating our public purse continues to pend. It is no wonder then that while the head suggests one thing the body speaks of another – acting in every manner as the enemy within; giving the conspicuous criminals peeks into the heart, head and strength of a Government, now apparently confused about its own mandate by its obedience to laws.

Little wonder then that today, those who were offering to return loot have started listening, to be sure that none of us heard when they made the offer. Those who had hidden in all manner of gutters and crevices have started creeping out to the urgings of their ilk; champions of the desecration of our humanity, but who have now become protectors of the law, justice and democratic ethos; the same ones that didn’t prevent them from running away with our commonwealth. The same laws which ensured that we remained in poverty and want and read of justice only in scripture.

And now Ms D is creeping out too and seeks the hand of the chief law officer to abet her with a ticket into Nigeria. She wants to defend a suit in which no claims or punishments are sought against her. She is certainly running from some heat into a place of peace. Peace guaranteed by a systems dysfunction and a government of diddlers. I wish her well, as I do all the others.

But here is my promise to the President. The constrictions provided by his interpretation of the requirements of law will not provide him any defence when the people demand that he explains why at the close of his tenure, corruption still measures to the same height as he does. We shall not listen to claims that the judiciary is corrupt and frustrated his efforts at fighting corruption. We shall not listen, because it is from listening that we get deceived. We shall be deafened by our own shouts of rejection until we see people in jail.

Laws abound which demand that public officers must not be rich by their own efforts. They scream from the books which demand that public offices who stand taller than their salaries must be called to account for their height. Let him start using them. The law is made for the prosecution and the Defendants. Let the Government stop being prosecutors only. Let them take such actions that also make them defendants, for the benefit of what is left of our suffering humanity in Nigeria. Government was not elected to patent as theirs, the right to allege that ‘‘the judiciary is corrupt.’’ If the judiciary is corrupt, then let it be corrupt for all of us. Let the accused persons say it is corrupt too. Let the government start saying just in the same way as those who rob us and mock our judicial and other systems do, that they are innocent until proven guilty.

The law in its strength and weaknesses must be enjoyed by all. It was not meant to be a hindrance to good governance. It must never be allowed to be. The President must now fold up his sleeves and start cleaning his mess. Trust me. The law will protect him. In its strength and in its weaknesses. Certainly if its weaknesses can publicly protect Fayose and Wike when with bare chests they confront the law face to face, it would owe a determined, but frail President similar, if not more protection.

Greetings!