Friday, September 14, 2012

Five thousand naira denomination and accidents!

Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, is looking for trouble! Or how do we describe this his new misadventure called the five thousand naira note?

I can see all the problems the man intends to cause already! He has declared that the note is for high-volume cash users only ( I thought we were now transiting into a cashless economy?) And that the circulation would be limited!

The rich, and powerful, those who do not want us to know their business, love the note! 

Can you imagine what would happen when next the presidency wants to bribe the national assembly members? 

Instead of the regular burlap sacks (Ghana must go) hitherto used, the delivery might just be forty bundles in a regular gift bag, with the inscription, "A complementary copy of the book, Do My Bidding" inscribed boldly on it!

The rest of us would see "books" being given to members who do not read, and we would not be wiser!

Imagine what Farouk Lawan would have done, if he had been paid (not bribed) with the five thousand naira denomination? Everything would have fitted in his babanriga, and he would not have needed his cap to carry more!

This note is a game changer! The world has been shrinking everything in the last twenty years, and so bribery needs to fall in line! It is uncool to begin to lug huge bags of currency, when everything could be "nanonized"!

This same denomination, would have been a big relief to the civil servant working with the National Pension Commission, who was caught with two billion naira at home! With this note, he probably would have needed just a small safe to keep everything in, as opposed to the rooms where the money was discovered!

In this life, problems come both for the rich, and the poor, and they are usually of different strokes!

You are probably thinking that common folks like us, will never see that money, but that is where you are wrong!

A story would suffice here! I was told,( I was not present at the occasions) that a particular governor from the South West of Nigeria, when he was still in office, had a ritual: anytime one of his girlfriends was visiting, her taxi fare was always five hundred thousand naira! If one of her friends was also on the girl's entourage, she would receive two hundred and fifty thousand naira!

They say this governor, who happens to be fond of bleaching his skin, and wearing a chain around his ankle,( I was not there, and these are just rumours, and allegations by some "alligators") did this every time!

Now imagine if that governor had been in office at this auspicious time of the imminent arrival of the messianic five thousand naira note, is there anyone who could prevent the fellow from slipping one bundle of the good stuff, to the object of his amorous affections?

The consequence would be that Sidika, to pretend that is her name, gets home, and subsequently decides to oppress the neighbours, by throwing her newly acquired fiancial muscle around!

If she buys a recharge card of five hundred naira from Chukwudi, with the wonderful note, Chukwudi suddenly finds himself in the elite class of those whom the gods have favored! 

But, there is a twist to the tale! In the afternoon, the young man decides to branch that wonderful amala joint behind Adamasingba stadium,Ibadan; and consumes amala fifty naira, and saki (offal) twenty naira! 

On finishing his meal, Chukwudi produces his newly acquired gold card, the five thousand naira note: the problem is that all the woman's sales for the day, is less that two thousand naira! You can imagine the tumultuous turmoil this would cause! The woman would probably beat him up, accusing him of premeditated fraud!

If, on the other hand, Chukwudi did not eat that day, but decided to go to Dugbe to see his Uncle, trouble would still dog him! Were he to hand his five thousand naira note to the conductor, for a twenty naira fare, you can see that the equation would not truly balance, and another round of trouble would ensue!

Conversely, if the conductor were to collect the note, and a strong wind were to snatch it out of his hand before one could shout "Mapo", we are more likely to witness a scene in which God receives two visitors in one day: the conductor, and Chukwudi, all on account of a piece of paper no larger than three by seven inches!

I have not even bothered to tell you about Husaini, the security man, who, on collecting his monthly salary of ten thousand naira, just two notes, decided to visit the market for some needed supplies for his small business on the side! 

Unbeknownst to him, as he fiddled with his pocket, trying to bring out his phone to answer a call, his two magic notes surreptitiously slipped out! Allah hu akbar! That day, they had to beg him to come down from the high tension power lines he had climbed to commit suicide!

Must I tell you of Chief Nonso, who while enjoying the music of Morroco Maduka at a party, did not know that the wad of notes he thought was just five thousand naira, was actually half a million! 

His eyes were closed, and the music was touching all the right spots! 

As he threw the bundle in the air, as is the fashion of spraying in the Eastern part on Nigeria, he wondered why people were screaming, and scrambling, for ordinary change: poverty, was his conclusion! 

It was when he opened his eyes, and saw half a million naira blowing in the wind, that he realized his error: he joined them in the scramble! Alas, he was only able to wrest a note, albeit from a little girl!

As you can see, the five thousand naira note is an accident waiting to happen, the problem is, it will be difficult to predict when, or prevent it!

I rise!

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