Subsidies and extravagances, all in last week’s news…with a pinch of salt

by Stanley Azuakola

Nollywood producer shoots in Aso Rock

It’s no longer news that President Jonathan plans to spend N140 million this year irrigating the garden at the presidential villa. What many don’t know is that a movie producer, Kunle Afolayan, recently shot a movie in that same garden. The movie entitled ‘Garden of Patience’, has D’banj (Goodluck) and Genevieve Nnaji (Ngozi) playing the lead roles. Despite the familiarity of the names of the lead characters, Mr Afolayan insists that all characters are entirely fictitious. The movie trailer shows a scene in which a booming voice asks Goodluck in the garden: “Who told thee to oppress the people? Hast thou chosen to fail them despite vowing to never, never fail them?”

 And Goodluck said: “The woman whom thou gave me from the World Bank, she advised me, and I took it.”

And the voice said to the woman from the World Bank: “What is this that thou hast done?”

And the woman said: “It wasn’t my idea. The governors beguiled and assured me, and I believed them.”

Catch the rest of the action as the movie premiers in cinemas nationwide this Harmattan 2012.


Bribe-for-protest youths to be punished

Top officials who mobilised pro-subsidy removal youths to protest against the NLC/TUC led strike last week have deviced the perfect punishment for those youths who were foolish enough to allow themselves get caught on camera sharing the bribe money after the protest. One of the officials who pleaded anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the information, said the youths would be punished by forcing them to wear T-shirts bearing “I love President Goodluck” and then carefully dropping them from a chopper into the anti-subsidy removal rally at Gani Fawehinmi Park, Ojota, Lagos on the next protest day. A Pinch…is hopeful that there would be no casualties.


Maku rescues presidency

Once again Nigeria’s Information Minister, Labaran Maku brilliantly defended the presidency over scathing attacks on their 2012 budgeted expenditure. In an interview with AlJazeera, Maku was asked why the president budgeted over a hundred million naira for recreational facilities at the villa. “You know President Goodluck is our own Obama,” he said, “They’re almost age-mates, they have many friends on facebook and so on. But too much work is making President Jonathan occupy a slight pot-belly unlike Obama. It’s important for our national pride that he catches up with Obama on the sex appeal scale and that’s why the recreational facilities are important.” He also defended the N150 million budget for comprehensive public address (PA) system in VP’s conference room, saying: “Nigerians complain that they barely hear the VP’s voice on topical national issues. The new PA system will no doubt amplify it for all to hear.” When asked why kitchen equipment alone gulps N45 million, Maku said: “Well we all know that the first lady is a lady of grace in whom there’s no clumsiness. However she always mistakenly breaks plates after meals. It’s not the president’s fault. Or do you want him to eat and entertain guests with plastic plates and spoons?”




Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State scoops the Crowned Clown award this week for a raft of rash decisions. On Monday, Amaechi gathered independent petroleum marketers, transporters and labour leaders in the state into a room in the government house. Then he showed us how not to resolve a crisis. After the meeting, he announced a re-introduction of subsidies in the state for fuel prices above N137/litre. Next, he attempted to fix the market by announcing an immediate reduction in intra-city transport fares. Expectedly, nothing changed –fuel still sells above N137/litre and motorists still charge above Amaechi’s fiat rates. As if that wasn’t enough, two days later, Amaechi sacked 11 local council chairmen for failing to attend inter-government meetings. Absurd! By sacking elected chairmen, Gov. Amaechi usurped the role of the state assembly and pooh-poohed the will of the people. It’s true that the governor likes seeing himself as the centre of the universe and indeed, he is usually indulged. However, he’s gone too far this time and is hereby called to order. 


Follow A Pinch…on twitter @stanleyazuakola


Editor’s Note: A Pinch of Salt… is satire – a riff off news over the past week.


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