Wole Balogun, Ado Ekiti Fulani herders in Ekiti State and South West have taken a traditional oath binding to assure the host communities in Ekiti, and by extension, the South West, that they will no longer kill or allow their cows to stray into farms. The oath, said to be an effective cultural sanction on…
Please do not ask me what or who I have fallen in love with or why or how I have allowed myself to fall in love again. Again implies that I have fallen in love more than once. Of course I have. I have been falling in and out of love for many times since, I guess, 1949 or thereabout when I fell in love with the recitation of the Holy Quran. I must have fallen in love too with the opposite sex, may be platonic, since about 1955 after graduating from the Quranic school.
I chose to change from political commentary and move to matters of the heart and some entertainment to ease the polity which has become worked up since our President went back to the UK to resume medical conversation with his doctors. By the way the word conversation has become the new love of our radio and television commentators and Talk Show hosts and hostesses. Everybody now uses the word conversation the way they basterdised the US inventions called ‘stakeholders’ and ‘the needful’.
Back to the subject of the moment, which is my falling in love again. I know many people would be eager to know the name of the lucky lady that has suddenly tickled my fancy after I have stayed married for close to five decades. You may have to wait beyond the pages of this newspaper before arriving at the name.
I must have fallen in love several times after my love affair with Quranic recitation. I did fall in love with the study of Yoruba language especially Yoruba story telling and Yoruba poetry which resulted in my being an Akewi [Yoruba poetry chanter] on Radio NIgeria at age 16. About the same period I fell in love with the Rosicrucian movement while at the same time I flirted with Astrology and Astronomy. My romance with Astrology and Astronomy is still intact just as my deep romance with The World’s Religions a subject I touch base with practically on daily basis.
One big love of mine is the study of the Origins of Man and the place of Olodumare, the Inscrutable in the affairs of Man and the world. It is this love affair that led me to the discovery of the Yoruba as the possessor of the oldest DNA.
One may begin to wonder how one man has been falling in love with so many Loves and Objects and Subjects of love. And it is not flirtation.
Now I have fallen in love again. But is it possible for anyone to fall in love in the present day Nigeria and in the present circumstances? Is anyone deserving of being fallen in love with? Is it the presidency submerged in unprecedented nepotism and parochialism that deserves anybody’s love? Is it the National Assembly whose members are overripe candidates for the prison or the gallows that one should fall in love with? Is the Judiciary? I am not qualified to talk about judges whose love for currency notes is greater than the love they have for justice and equity.
I was initially tempted to fall in love with the serially raped country called Nigeria when it fell into new hands. But within the shortest time the new hands got scandalized with grass cutters and cabals of the most devastating genres.
Now I have found new love. Believe me I am in serious love. But my new love is not just one piece of phenomenon. It is a series. Sometime ago one big man went to his constituency to show off his new position in the country. He was hitherto considered a big hero, an untouchable in his place of birth. But unknown to the big man his constituents had got a dossier of his looting and plundering of their commonwealth. As soon as the big man arrived the praying ground for celebrations his country men pounced on him and pelted him with stones and dangerous weapons. He escaped death by the whiskers. Those demonstrators stole my heart and became the first set of my new love.
Somewhere in the North West or North East of the plundered country of Nigeria, I found love in the riotous men who seized their representative in the Senate and almost tore him into pieces. They did not allow him entry into the town.
And just last Monday the day Obasanjo fraudulently dubbed Democracy Day in obedience to his paymasters who put him in office, a sitting Governor was chased into his official residence after the bogus democracy, demoncrazy parade. My new lovers were brandishing cudgels and various weapons as they chanted ‘A sh’ole l’adibo fun un’ [So it’s thief we voted into office!]. These sets of Nigerians who have suddenly found their voices are the people who have made me to fall in love again.
I was hoping that the youths of this country were the ones that would steal my heart and make me fall in love again. Unfortunately they have not lived up to expectation. They tend to forget that all the heroes they read or heard about made their mark when they were in their late 20s and 30s. Adaka Boro the unforgettable hero of the Ijaws was a final year student at the University of Nigeria Nsukka when revolutionary zeal stole his heart in defence of his people. He gave his all including his life to the Revolution. Ohonbamu, Wole Soyinka, Ayodele Awojobi, Mokwugo Okoye and Raji Abdallahy were all in their 30s when they shook Nigeria to its very foundation. My Aba Saheed columns were written in my late 20s and early 30s in both the Daily Times and the Nigerian Tribune. The generation of Haroun Adamu, Gbolabo Ogunsanwo, Doyin Abila of the fiery writers group of the 70s were all in their late 20s.
Labour leaders who were to have taken my heart are a huge disappointment. They just could not make me fall in love with them.
Nobody should ask me why I shunned the helicopters of the new generation Prosperity Churches and their money chewing pastors and refused to give my heart to them. I had no need for the huge dollars they were shipping to South Africa or their pretentious American accent and stage theatricalities while preaching their outlandish miracles.
Let me make it clear that my heart is still available for as many stone throwing demonstrators and revolutionaries who are willing to chase away those who are ruining this country.
I want to fall in love again.