I had never really believed the news that filtered out of Ekiti from the last gubernatorial elections, because knowing Nigerians’ penchant for exaggerations and misinformations, it wouldn’t be surprising to see that the facts and figures which emanated from the conduct were politicised. In every rumour, there is an atom of truth. Well, this one has compounds in it. I was told that Ekiti people were keen to exercise their rice to vote, for they strongly believed their votes were their rice. They had consequently trooped out en masse-defying the scorching Nigerian sun-to cast their votes, so as to secure their rice. Some even had theirs being measured on the hands to them.
As if we haven’t swallowed enough shit, another Rice-man went on the prowl. Only that this time around, he seems to be smarter than his Ekiti counterpart. He seemed to appreciate the significant connection between early birds and worms. His advisers knew that of the over 180 million Nigerian souls, over 65% were youths. And so, they had decided to catch them young, unlike their Ekiti counterpart. And what were they to do. Rice-man(or iPAD-man, as you might want to rightly call him), a politically-motivated philanthropist, organised a nationwide essay competition for university students which had 3 iPADS and some sums of money as prizes to 3 winners.
At the last count by Nigerian Universities Commission, we had over 120 universities in Nigeria. And thus, in a no-category barred competition, iPAD-man was sure to have over 2000 students from each Nigerian university vying for the ultimate prize of an iPAD and some money. He was not far from the riveting truth. University of Benin where this writer is a student had two 1000 capacity lecture halls filled to ceiling, and more students were being expected for the essay was to take place on the last saturday of June, which every Nigerian knows in common-parlance as ‘clean-up’ day. His political do-gooder boys; bottom lickers, were very happy at the wide range of publicity their boss would receive. And so, they were all mouth and teeth that day.
Anybody who wasn’t a witness wouldn’t readily appreciate the injury suffered by this writer, and why he’s complaining, but for goodness’ sake! the essay had such a daring and audacious topic as ‘Securing Nigeria: Our collective responsibility!’ and to think all this while, we have a substantial number of youths who had the idea and knowledge of how to secure a frailing and disintegrating Nigeria and they kept to themselves! We never knew that Nigeria indeed had a lot of ‘sensitive’ youths who could proffer solutions to the seemingly never-ending issues of the country, until 3 iPADS!-I repeat, 3 iPADS!-brought them out of hiding. Virtually every youth that came out to write the essay in my school had one thing in mind: iPAD and money. For the first time in my well, limited life, I saw Nigerian youths united in one common goal and purpose: iPAD!
I had asked myself, what if on that day, the organisers had sent out a clarion call for all youths to come out en masse and lead a daring and frontal attack on the devious boko-haram sect… Or even to come out so as to protestingly march to government house and register our displeasure at the way our leaders are mishandling the affairs of the country? Only then will inevitable excuses be outdoing each other. It will be foolhardy to ignore the trumpeting aberration on ground. It will amount to the highest form of mental denial to become blind at the glaring and appalling situation at hand.
A very near perfect scenario of Ekiti has sampled itself this past saturday, and is clearly emitting signals of what to expect in 2015. Why did it have to take an iPAD-motivated test for such a tremendous number of Nigerian youths to show that all along, they had the initiative and wherewithal to secure Nigeria from cascading down the hill of political tumults? Clearly, therefore, it won’t take a soothsayer, pastor, prophet or an imam for a true Nigerian to know that the little of this mestasized and festered anomaly called Ekiti is patiently waiting to manifest on a grand scale in 2015, unless-and unless-drastic measures are taken to prevent this oncoming catastrophic head-on collision with doom! Enough is enough on this heavy reliance on rice( oops! rights), before we would do what is right and necessary. This is what you get where rice abounds.