The song I am singing was originally penned and performed by the Beatles, the chart-topping four British lads from Liverpool who conquered the U.S. in 1964 with their fresh, original, catchy pop music matched with their trendy good looks.
The Fab Four as they are also called are: John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. They turned the world upside down with their brand of rock ’n’ roll anthems featuring great harmonies and poignant songs like Eleanor Rigby and Hey Jude—my two all-time Beatles’ favourites.
In the annals of pop music, the Beatles occupy an immortal place as innovators and revolutionaries who changed the world with their art. In the same way as the Beatles shocked America, a black man called Barack Obama shook the world to its very foundation when he won an election to become the President of the United States of America four years ago. And since then, I have been Obama’s No.1 fan.
Mine is the case of a man afflicted with the twin diseases of Beatlemaniac and Obamaniac. Added to that is another lunatic addiction called Chelseamaniac. If there is any cure for this, I don’t want it. Just leave me alone with my madness.
For me, this has been one of my happiest weeks as we witness the return of President Obama to the most powerful seat in the world. Beloved members of Press Clips Pentecostal Church (PCPC), help me give God a thanks offering and 40 shouts of the loudest Hallelujah, because for 40 days and 40 nights, we have been fasting and praying for Obama to win!
First of all, let me congratulate myself on President Obama’s re-election into the White House. In congratulating myself, I am congratulating ‘Obamacans’ all over the world.
By Obamacans, I mean President Barack Obama’s worldwide fans. Those who would have wanted to vote for him if it were possible, but they couldn’t because they are not Americans. The only way they could have voted was to vote from the heart.
Among the Obamacans is Christiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid, a star named at birth after Ronald Reagan, another great American president who started as a movie star before veering into politics. The Reagan who changed America for good and created the buzzword ‘Reaganomics’ for which he is remembered just as Obama has created ‘Obamacare.’
I am talking about the Reagan who cheated death when an assassin shot him. Why do Americans love shooting their leaders? Leaders like President J.F. Kennedy and the black American civil rights leader, Martin Luther King were both shot dead. How will Luther King feel now about Obama’s re-election? He would surely be turning in his grave as a happy man who did not die in vain in his pursuit of human dignity and racial equality.
Ronaldo was asked on CNN that if he had a choice between Romney and Obama, who would he vote for as America’s President? And his choice was Obama. He loves Obama’s charisma, his leadership aura, his eloquence, his superstar good looks and his ability to score goals.
Well, you won’t be wrong to say that what Ronaldo does on the field of football, Obama does better on the field of politics. Not just in America but on the global political arena.
Obama is the leader that the world is comfortable with and wants to see again in the White House. He is one leader even the great President Bill Clinton describes as “cool on the outside but burns for America on the inside.”
From Kenya to Nigeria, Obama’s fans have been praying and fasting for Obama to win a second term. It hadn’t been an easy fight at all. The opposition from Mitt Romney was strong. So strong that the chances of our man winning stood 50-50. Not in the history of American politics has any presidential contest been this close.
For Mitt Romney, the turning point was the first debate. We know what happened. Suddenly, we saw a new Romney. A combative Romney who was attacking Obama ferociously and making him look silly and dumbfounded. Our man suddenly lost his gift of the gab and was at the mercy of his attacker. It was Obama’s worst night as a politician.
But in subsequent debates, Obama regained himself and came back smoking and firing on all cylinders like a true champion that he is.
The lesson in all this is that Obama is human after all. Every human being has his bad day. A day when nothing works in your favour. A day when you are simply not yourself. It was one bad day that nearly ruined Obama’s chances of regaining his presidency, but God was in control. God Himself is an Obamacan.
Otherwise, how would you explain the supernatural hurricane Sandy that suddenly came to attack America and bring out the leadership qualities of Obama as commander-in-chief and a crisis manager? Many people believe that the hurricane was God-sent. Just like God sent 7 plagues to Pharaoh in order to give Moses and the Israelites a leeway out of Egypt. This morning, I pray that God will do something supernatural in your life, just as He did for Obama. Like Obama, victory will be yours in spite of all oppositions.
Looking at the beauty of American democracy and comparing it to the ugliness of Nigerian democracy, I ask myself: Is it the same God who made America who also made Nigeria? It is the same question the poet William Blake asked in his poem, ‘Tyger’: Did the same God who made the tiger made the lamb?
Like America, why can’t we get our act right? Why can’t we get our politics right? Why can’t we conduct a free and fair election without rancour, cheating, fraud and manipulation of votes? Why can’t we stop violence during our elections? Why can’t we choose a leader on the basis of merit and not on ethnicity, religion and all those negative factors? Why can’t those who lose election concede without going to court or putting up resistance? Why are we so cursed that even the best election ever on June 12, 1993 had to be annulled because we have no integrity and no sincerity of purpose? Why can’t Nigeria have a leader like Obama?
Today, Americans have taught us that politics has no colour or creed, that the best man is the best man, irrespective of his race or the colour of his skin.
As the giant of Africa, let us wake up. Let us rebuild Nigeria. Let us put the right man in office. Let us bury our primordial tribal sentiments and face reality. If white men and women can vote a black man as their President twice in America, why are we still hankering after a tribal President instead of looking for a global leader who would lead us to the Promised Land of the future where the whole world is going.
Given what Obama had achieved in four years—how he revived General Motors from the dead and sent Osama to the ocean depths—I thought Americans will be mad to choose Romney. But now, I know Americans are not mad. They are rational and objective people who know what is good for their country and the world at large which they lead. Now, I can say: May God bless America. And may God bless Nigeria too!
NIGERIAN WHO WROTE A SONG
FOR THE BEATLES
MANY years ago, when I was a young editor of WEEKEND CONCORD, a Nigerian artiste came to my office with a complaint that he wrote the song, “Obla-di-Obla-da…life goes on” for the Beatles but he was ripped off, meaning he was never given any credit for the song.
I can’t recall his name, but when you Google “the Nigeria who wrote Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da, life goes on for the Beatles,” you are likely to come across the name Jimmy Scott-Emuakpor. He was a friend or acquaintance of Paul McCartney who is credited to have given the phrase Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da…life goes on” to the Beatles. In one interview, Paul McCartney confessed: “A fella who used to hang around the clubs used to say in Jamaican accent ‘Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da, life goes on.” McCartney admitted picking the phrase from him and turning it around into an immortal song. Who says Nigerians are not talented?