Friday, September 7, 2012

What is Good For The Dame, Is Good For Her Followers

I am an idle man! That is why I have so much time on my hands, to talk about Nigeria!
When Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Mainasara Jonathan, GCFR, et cetera et cetera et cetera, was running his 100 million naira per day campaign, I remember one very touching thing he said! He declared, I am one of you! I did not have shoes when I was growing up!

Nigerians lapped up this uncanny, uncommon, and I must quickly add, unconfirmed, dose of empathy from leadership!

They all declared that this fellow was humble, he was in tune with the people, he knew their problems, and was sure to solve them!

What type of presidency were we expecting of Jonathan?
Talk is cheap they say, it only costs your breath, and a few muscle contractions! Deeds, on the other hand, show sincerity, or otherwise!

The president has declared that he only eats cassava bread, and Abakaliki rice! That is wonderful! Reuben Abati, who has suddenly woken up from slumber, has also told us, that he does not imbibe ogogoro, the locally produced gin, or Johnnie Walker, it’s foreign counterpart!

We too eat Abakaliki rice, but that is because it is the only option available to us, Thailand parboiled is a long way from our tables; as per the cassava bread, it is insidious, because it is making cassava expensive! And like we all know, it is the raw material that is used for producing the ‘cheapest’, but by no means affordable staples in Nigeria, garri, starch, and apu, making them more expensive!

The president, he declared with gusto, is a very frugal man! He fasts regularly, and seldom eats!  This is quite similar to the fasting by most Nigerians! The difference being that, while they fast because they do not have food, our president fasts in the midst of a billion naira budget on food!

His fasting would mean more to us, if the ridiculous budget on food in the presidential villa, was brought within commonsense!

When we make certain demands of leadership in Nigeria, it is not out of a sinister motive to make them do things that have never been done before! It is because we have seen them done in other places, to good effect!

The British Prime Minister, does not have a presidential jet,he flies commercial!

Nigeria’s president has six! I suspect that if our president flew commercial, our airspace would be safer, and service would be much better!

The American president pays for the food he consumes at the White House, except at state banquets, we will not go to that extreme! Just moderation, we plead! If Jonathan was paying for what he consumed at the villa, would the budget be that sinful? 

And this week, a comedy of errors has been running on the political stage! It seems we have one every week!

It was a game of peek-a-boo of sorts! The dame is sick, people declared! No she is not, Reuben Abati countered!

When the presidential magicians saw that it was foolhardy to seek to play magical tricks with a person blessed with the corpulence of the dame, they finally admitted in bits, and stages, at first, that she was resting in Dubai! Then the story changed to, she was being treated for food poisoning! And finally, they accepted that she had actually been misdiagnosed for food poisoning by her doctors back home, when her actual problem, was appendicitis!

This morbid medical madness, is actually similar to what the ordinary Nigerian goes through daily! 

As I write, a loved one is not very well! She has been misdiagnosed more than eight times, in the space of four months, after seeing more than ten specialists in six different hospitals! The missed steps have included asthma, ulcer, enlarged heart, cancer, blocked lung, and hypochondria! From all the enquiries I have made, it will cost me a small fortune to seek treatment abroad!

While my income is above the average Nigerian’s, it is still not easy to achieve!

For the dame however, it comes as effortlessly, as farting!

So how is the president like us?

He lives here, but his help comes from abroad, where there are no medical mistakes, or misdiagnoses!

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