by ‘Yomi Kazeem
In the past year, media reports have been awash with gruesome tales of natural disasters around the world. From Japan’s 8.9 magnitude earthquake, Australia’s floods and America’s tornadoes, there has scarcely been a moment when TV screens have been devoid of such tales. As always this led to discussions centered on divine providence. Our elders are not hesitant to educate us the, ‘MTV generation’ about how lucky we are in Nigeria, how God has spared Nigerians from being victims of catastrophic natural disasters such as earthquakes, tornadoes and volcanic eruptions.
As kids we were taught never to disrespect elders, but no disrespect, the elders are wrong on this one! God might have spared us of earthquakes and other climatic mishaps but the man up there, unfortunately for us, “dashed’ us disasters of our own!
Think about it. What do you think bad roads are? Wonders of the world? We have the worst roads in the entire solar system, the moon and the Sahara desert inclusive. When roads are heavily laden with Olympic pool sized potholes and are synonymous with death triggering automobile accidents, you have a disaster on your hands. We never experience any earthquakes because roads are bad enough. Roads render cars ‘undrivable’, render themselves unusable and their decadence over the years has remained unstoppable. In all honesty, some road signs should read ‘Exit into hell from here’.
And then you have the men in black who mount roadblocks everywhere but at crime scenes and where they are needed. They are evidence that natural disasters may be human after all. They stop cars and quiz owners on their legal properties. Needless to say, their questions range from partially sensible to absolutely ludicrous in a manner that defies logic. Where did you get this car? Which money did you use to buy it? Was it naira or kobo? What’s the size of your seat belt? Carrying ancient guns around as though they were latest gadgets and pretending to be street savvy yet taking off at the faintest slight of danger or the sound of banger the bastions of our safety cannot save themselves. They try to look as mean as possible, tell them about a robbery operation in progress and watch them quake in their worn out boots! Shina Rambo on the inside, Mickey Mouse on the inside.
I have a question, think carefully before answering. Have you ever slapped yourself? Before you say no, remember that one time when a silly winged insect called a mosquito sat on your cheek crossed its legs and was sucking blood from your cheek with a straw? In Nigeria, there are more
mosquitoes than humans. If the mosquito population was included in the 2005 census, we’d easily outdo China as the world’s most populated nation. Notorious for making people inflict painful slaps and bruises on their own skin, mosquitoes constitute a big problem in these climes, and it’s a dilemma trying to figure out which we despise more, mosquitoes or corrupt leaders.
NEPA. Never Electric Power Always terrorized Nigeria and Nigerians for much of its eventful existence. Epileptic in nature and arrogant in demeanour. Whether you had light or not a bill arrived at your gate with indefatigable promptness. They climbed your electric pillars with menacing nonchalance and declared war on all electrical appliances on a steady basis. When the voltage is not high enough to give appliances the equivalent of an electronic cardiac arrest, it is lower than the morality levels in the National Assembly. NEPA destroyed our mental processes in
some ways. If you had light for more than a certain number of hours you start to get the feeling something has gone wrong, if your transformer had a fault that took 6 months to fix, all was well. With pessimistic relief we welcomed the metamorphosis of NEPA into PHCN. However after a few weeks, in light of how the Power Holding Corporation of Nigeria always holds on to power like the PDP holds on to power even though they claim it’s for the people, we all understood why it was aptly called Power HOLDING Company of Nigeria
Enough has been said about our politicians need I say more?
After 50 years of independent governance, there’s hardly electricity, fewer good roads than saintly politicians, more mosquitoes than oxygen and we don’t have disasters? Yeah right! Our afflictions may pale in comparison to earthquakes, floods and tornadoes but then again fingers
aren’t equal are they?
Follow Yomi on Twitter @yomiceo67.