“U be thief, I no be thief.?
U be robber, I no be robber.
U be armed robber, I no be armed robber.
Argument Argument Argue”
Life is sometimes massively cruel. What won’t anyone do right about now for a week with the inimitable Fela Anikulapo-Kuti? Just close your eyes for a moment and imagine the deceased high priest of Nigerian culture sitting on his throne in Ikeja and waxing poetic about the latest rot from Nigeria’s high and mighty.
What a thought! That would be the very definition of bliss. It might even blow up into a street party where the poor and the hungry will join the trying and tired as they chorus to the beats of the corrupt princes of Abuja. We might even get a cameo from President Olusegun Obasanjo, cooing the lines, “I dey laugh O”.
Fela and OBJ in the same soundtrack! Well, a man can always dream!
You should know the story like a nursery rhyme by now. Yesterday’s hero and revolutionary lawmaker, Lawan Farouk accused Femi Otedola, the president’s buddy, of trying to influence the oil subsidy report with enough money to buy diesel to fuel Nigerian airports’ generators for a year.
If you have problems with the esteemed salutation, president’s buddy, please advise on what you call a man who was once always by the president’s side you begin to think he’s trying to reverse the fact that Siamese twins being are co-joined at birth. Or, is that what they call a presidential shadow these days?
As the tale goes, Otedola was mighty pissed that a man of his dignity was suffering the indignity of being threatened by a common lawmaker got lucky like Farouk. So, he called the State Security Services to help in roping the lawmaker turned lawbreaker.
The great SSS did what every secret services agency in the world does. It took a collection around the office, came up with the six hundred and twenty thousand dollars in crisp, marked notes, gave it to Otedola who passed it to Farouk who was perfecting his own plot.
Why I never looked for a job with the secret services, I don’t know? With all the dollar notes flying around, I’ll be a naira millionaire many times over by now.
Meanwhile in the blue corner, as they say in boxing, Lawan was perfecting his own plans too. He got several calls from Otedola inviting him into the league of dollar millionaires. A man with his stainless conscience enlisted the police in nabbing the corrupting baron.
That’s when the tori come get k-leg as Fela would have sang. Lawan who claimed the police knew about his counter plot got to spend time with the friendly mosquitos of a police cell. Otedola who took the first swing and whom some very mischievous Nigerians are claiming is a tool of the president in the attempt to rubbish the oil subsidy report, got to do what every billionaire does on weekend – count their money as they sip champagne.
Now I don’t know when people started thinking the president changed his middle name from good luck to mischief. Nigerians need to get a life. The president does not spend his days thinking of how to derail the ship of the nation. He has enough trouble trying to figure out what his job really is, prioritize what needs to be done, draw up a calendar when to do it and remind his crew that maybe a year after inauguration is long enough of an holiday.
I have no clue why Nigerians are so hot and bothered about a little thing as $620,000.00, a sum that is a fraction of the constituency allowances of the legislators who sometimes avoid those same constituency because of bad roads and the little matter of constituents actually waiting to see their representatives. This is the same allowance many opposition members campaigned against and promised to repeal but once they got to the National Assembly and the money hit their accounts they decided that protesting against wealth is for the poor.
So, two powerful men have a little argument over who gave what! What really is the big deal? That we cannot trust our lawmakers again? If you trust your lawmakers to do their jobs with a conscience as clear as a white piece of paper, raise your hand. We can just chop it off and save you from a daily heartbreak.
Or, is it that an oil baron paid someone off? I thought that came with the job description.
I am just having fun and a headache trying to figure out why the SSS, having caught Farouk’s hand in the pot of corrupt soup, forgot to arrest him. Maybe it’s just me but does anyone really care why it took two months for the whole mess to blow into the open.
Is Otedola going broke and in need of a measly few hundred thousand dollars for the weekend? Or, did Farouk suddenly realize he forgot some change in a billionaire house, got on his mobile and asked what was his due? Or, is this the prelude to the president doing the January 1st oil subsidy dance all over again?