By Prince Charles Dickson
“Kowa ya dade yaga dadau”. – Hausa (Whoever live long, will see wonders).
This is my first admonition for the year 2014, and permit me to share my New Year resolution with us. If topics are anything to go by, don’t be alarmed; hopefully in the next few paragraphs we would have learned a few things about our Nigerian experience for the year.
It would sound like something from the pulpit of our Nigerian god of men. The only difference is that it is not a prophecy but from reality.
My friend KOC shared this–While on an international flight recently I witnessed thievery or stealing. (Here in Nigeria, corruption is the word).
Seating adjacent to me across the aisle was this woman who was having four center seats all to herself because the plane was not full.
Ordinarily I could not have noticed the woman but for one man who periodically visited her, then would leave after a while, at first I thought they were something like husband and wife but my curiosity was drawn when I discovered that the man was not always at ease when he sat with the woman.
As soon as the man sat in the company of the woman, he would dart his eyes left and right, front and back, making sure that no one was watching him, after a while of repeatedly doing this I decided to really check out what was happening, why the man seem not at ease or peace whenever he paid this nocturnal visit, then I saw that the man always planted a kiss or rather stole a kiss after looking all around to make sure no one was watching.
The dude who probably was in his fifties was sitting somewhere else but periodically come to the woman to steal a kiss and some cuddling otherwise known as romance.
His escapades reminds me of those of us who picked a few nairas from our father’s ‘coatsubla’ hanging in his wardrobe or ‘picking’ change from our mom’s piggy bank where she put sales money from her local bean ball (akara)
We took our time, checked all the environment to make sure all is right before we snatch but one thing we do not know is that, some eye must see us, just as this dude did not know that KOC ‘ji odu anya ele ya’. (Looking at him with the upper eye).
I knew that the woman was not his wife, for no man steals what belongs to him and no man comes into the plane and started wobbling like jelly towards plucking a kiss from his wife, the same woman he lives with, we also have a saying that, “clear conscience fears no accusation” thus a man will not be surveying his surroundings to make sure no one is watching before he plants a kiss or before he snuggle to his wife.
After witnessing the man’s coming and going several times I forgot about the issue till we deplaned, as people stood at and to clear immigration I noticed the same woman standing alone, all by herself with the man nowhere to be found, and what I not only suspected and believed was then confirmed that he was not the woman’s husband but just a “thief” out to steal “waters” probably belonging to another man.
While this incidence happened on the airplane I remembered what the bible said about stolen waters: “Stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant. But he knoweth not that the dead are there; and that her guests are in the depths of hell” Proverbs 9:17.
I know there are “thieves” like the one on the airplane who go about stealing “waters” that are not theirs.
In a society that worships money mongers, where certificates are bought, elections rigged, opposition clad with greed, ruling party at odds with itself. The temptation to steal this year would be high.
And I have decided give in, to steal, and steal more. Whether the people are watching or not. I need to feel my garage with more cars. I must get more properties.
It is a pre-election year…the pension scam of last year would be childsplay. I would steal from NNPC, so much that the PIB won’t make any difference. There would be monies to steal from road contracts that won’t be executed.
I would steal plenty kisses via phantom projects. My bounty would be so large that I would open accounts in New Zealand and Madagascar.
My constituency project monies would be ‘thieved’. I would belong to PDP in the morning and APC at night.
Letter writing doesn’t work so with stolen money from public tile I would try novel ideas.
Its stealing competition, some of us are not coming back to office, so it will be a little democracy, plenty lootocracy.
The people are gullible; it is easy to catch them on religious or ethnic leanings. Very little significant change would occur.
Whether I find myself in the public service or private sector, the motto would be aloota continue. The budget is in trillions, I must get my share.
I am not going to sit and watch and swallow that patriotic garb. This is my year. For those who live long enough in Nigeria’s 2014, we will see wonders in stealing from local to federal level. This is a caveat; don’t say you were not warned.
Finally for many Nigerians, this is another year to join the ‘big league’ at the expense of the ordinary street folks. If Nigeria will take a significant step forward in governance, development in most sectors, it would be a function of how we deal with the thieves amongst us. Do we really want to curtail the stealing, looting, corruption or whether we resolve to steal sweet waters, only time will tell.
Written By Prince Charles Dickson