Sunday, October 8, 2017

HOW TO FIGHT CORRUPTION


Darling Buhari,

So your deputy was speaking in public recently and he blamed Nigerians for not being angry enough about corruption. In fact here are some of his exact words: 
"I don’t think that the people, especially the civil society have shown enough outrage that one expects in order to consistently beam searchlight on the perpetrators.
“People come and ask where are the convictions but I say where are the campaigns, we should be able to point out these persons so that they will not be able to spend these monies. If we are sufficiently outraged about the delays being orchestrated by defence lawyers intentionally to frustrate such corruption cases, everyone will hail the move by the Chief Justice of Nigeria."

These words moved me. I know I don't personally control things like the police, the army, the EFCC but I agree with him. I am not a Governor, have no budget, am not a judge or prosecutor but I agree that it is my lack of outrage that is making it difficult for your government to do the things you swore you would do during the campaigns in 2015. And for this I apologise. 

I promise to be angry. Outraged beyond measure. In fact, I am typing this with outrage, with so much anger that the people around me are wondering why I hate my keyboard so much. They think I am typing an angry breakup letter. They don't know it is love for you and your government that is making me so angry. 

Maybe if I was angry enough your government might have arrested and prosecuted Babachir of grass-cutting fame, you remember him? Your former secretary. Yes, that one. 

I remember the week you became president. I had to fly out of the country to attend an event. At the airport, people were so afraid that someone was going to spy on them and report their corruption. No official at the airport asked for a gift. No one gave that smile that demands "something". They just did their jobs happily. And instead of being outraged like Yemi suggested, I was happy. A few months later I was flying again. This time you were already in power and there was no list of Ministers and people were tired of waiting. And there was no outrage. So the woman checking my bag asked me pointedly if I was not going to give her anything. In fact, she asked so aggressively that when I refused, I became afraid that she could retaliate by sneaking something in my bag that would show up in Casablanca where I was headed. So I paid someone to wrap my bag with extra foil. I know, thinking of it now that it was nothing. But I kept wondering what changed in those months. No, it wasn't the fact that people were no longer afraid that things were going to be different. It was that I was not angry. That is why corruption resumed at the airport. Again, I apologise. 

I promise to growl at every passing big man's vehicle, just in case he might be corrupt. I might even slam my head against every mansion I walk past. I will refuse to shake the Nigerian ambassador I am meeting soon, just to discourage him from being corrupt. 

Reading the news I just saw that you have arranged to see the Minister of State for Petroleum over his allegations of insubordination and corruption against the NNPC GMD. He wasn't angry enough. If he was properly outraged then the NNPC GMD would not have allegedly spent all those millions of dollars without seeking approval of the board. Outrage is important. 

In other news, I have to say that I find your dignified silence classy. You know how everyone said your Secretary of State stole money meant for IDPs and you said nothing. The airforce killed those people in Rann, nothing. The Kaduna State government together with the army admitted to burying 347 Shiites in Kaduna after killing them, silence. I want to be like you when I grow up, honestly. People always want you to speak as if they were foreign journalists. Ordinary Nigerians fa. Mtscheeeeuuw! Nothing like a silent dignified man. That's one reason why I like you. 

I hope you have begun saving money for the 2019 elections fa? Because now that you are well enough to run again, we don't want to be taken by surprise. We don't know if those Lagos people will support us financially like before. This time we have to have our own campaign funds. I am not sure how we will do this, but let us begin soon. Sai ka yi, mai gida na. 

Ps. As usual: let us release the Shiite man whose children we killed, please. I think it is time. 

Yours until 2023 and forever,


Elnathan John.  

Sunday, October 1, 2017

HOW TO CELEBRATE IN DEPENDENCE

Darling Buhari,

Before we entered a relationship, before we fell in love and you promised to Change my life, I used to give thanks every In-dependence day to all the people who make our home the amazing place that it is. This In-dependence day, the only person I really feel like thanking is you, for being the most loving president ever, for always being there, for taking care of our enemies, for solving all of our problems, for bringing about real Change, for being so flexible and kind, for being a great communicator and listener, for being dependable. But you know, I still think we should thank the other people who assist you and our great country in being the amazing place that it is. Some of them I have done before, but one can never be too grateful. Find below suggestions on who you should send a message to this in-dependence day. 

My dear, I think we should begin by thanking the United Kingdom. For keeping you safe. For helping you recover. For always being there when you need a doctor, a hospital, when you needed some rest, when you needed to park a plane and when nosy Nigerians decided it was their business what exactly you were spending money treating. We should also thank them for keeping some of our key projects afloat. For DFID without which some of our hospitals (yes, the ones who can't even treat you) would crash. For the projects which provide decent employment for our consultants and Phds and other development hustlers. For the schools which make sure your children can take over from you when you decide to retire. For not giving up on us the way they gave up on Europe. For hanging out with us even though they are going through a bad break up. Breakups are hard.  

We should also thank America, my dear. For supporting you. For helping you even though these days they don't agree with your definition of who a terror group is (I believe we can eventually convince them to hate those we hate). Darling, importantly we must thank them for that accent that our radio presenters across the country try so desperately to copy. Our cool radio stations would be dead without those grating, rolling Rs in words like 'lord' or even 'god'. Don't ask me how some manage to sneak an r into 'god'. You know how god works in mysterious ways. 

So, dear I know you don't drink alcohol. But you are a tolerant person and allow people to be who they want to be. I know the Shiite massacre is just an exception because this is not who you really are. Sometimes mistakes happen and hundreds of people die. Like that time our pilots killed those IDPs. But back to gratitude. I was saying that you don't drink alcohol but we should thank the country that gives our alcohol drinkers a sense of purpose. Many Nigerians may not realize Star Lager is a Dutch product, but they help some of our people effectively wash away their sorrows. So we must thank The Netherlands for providing this great product. 
Ps. We must also pray for our people to stop drinking. This is important. 

We must remember to thank South Africa. For all the companies that make our lives bearable. For DSTV. For Shoprite. For MTN which teaches us values like patience and knowing how to have a backup plan. For being a big brother who disciplines the children of his younger brother from time to time (some people call it xenophobia but don't mind them please). 

We must thank Switzerland. For consistently and safely storing money stolen from our country which keeps coming in handy and which helped us through this past recession. Such an amazing country with a big, non-judgmental heart.  

We must thank Dubai. For providing an alternative to some of our citizens who would be arrested if they travelled to the US. 

We must thank Germany (You remember West Germany? Yes that country). For Julius Berger. Without whom, in the event of an emergency, we would be in serious trouble. 

Other countries to thank include Ghana, Cyprus, Ukraine, Malaysia, you know, for providing our middle-class with an opportunity to give their children a decent education. 

I also think you should not forget Benin Republic. For all the cooks who keep the expatriates in Nigeria nourished while they provide us technical expertise and foreign aid.

My dear, we owe China a big thank you. For the shinier, cheaper versions of all the things most of our people cannot afford. For the second-hand trains. I know we are paying for it somehow, but still, we must thank them. I know America sometimes whispers into our ear not to get in bed with them too often, but at least they are honest. They don’t lie to us about wanting to marry us or be our best friend. 

Important non-state actors to thank include English football in general and the UEFA Champions League. For providing a distraction for young Nigerians who would otherwise have been in the streets being disloyal to you and asking you to fulfil all the promises you made in 2015. For the trends on Twitter on the weekends which gives us plenty to talk about. People don't realise how football has contributed to our stability as a nation: we spend time fighting over Arsenal and Manchester United or whether Ronaldo is better than Messi instead of fighting each other. God bless them. 

You must also thank foreign journalists who make it easy for you to express yourself. They make you overcome your shyness in speaking to the nation. We must thank them for knowing where to ask you questions and how. 

Let us thank Chatham House, where politicians who feel uncomfortable mixing with the natives can  travel to and safely express their political thoughts before the colonial masters who always appreciate it. Somehow it trickles down to the natives. Thank god for the internet and tv. 

Can we also thank Jacob Zuma? For making you look amazing? Imagine if we had a country in Africa which was not only giving our economy a run for its money but also had a decent president who could read full sentences? Too much pressure. We need more people like him. More state captures. 

Let me stop here my dear. 

Ps. Maybe we can send a note of gratitude to the Shiites, who have not reacted violently even with how we killed Zakzaky's children and followers? So calm, those people. Can we just try to release the man and his wife? To show gratitude?

Yours till 2023 and forever, 

Elnathan John

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

THAT UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY SPEECH

Darling Buhari,

I am still replaying your amazing speech at the UN General Assembly. I think it was the best speech ever. No other leader spoke better than you. And thank you for keeping to the time. Thank you for not being like Ghaddafi who used to spend hours speaking. I will just go over some of the amazing things you said.

You know how you mentioned that the world must protect Rohingya Muslims who are being chased out of their country? I loved it! Some disloyal people are saying you are a hypocrite for killing Shiites in Nigeria and asking the world to save Rohingya. They know nothing. I know while writing you forgot to mention the Shia Muslims who are also being chased and killed in Nigeria. I know why you forgot. One reason is that it really is not your fault. Also, it is not like the Rohingya touched the chest of a Nigerian soldier. Because we both know the proportionate response to that is a massacre. But I digress. The second reason is that I know you are already thinking of releasing Zakzaky after the court orders saying so. I also know that you are thinking of releasing the many hundreds of Shiites who are currently being incarcerated without charge. Because you are so kind and loving and caring and thoughtful and devoted to the rule of law.

You also gave a groundbreaking suggestion for how to deal with the nuclear threats from North Korea. You asked the United Nations to organize a visit of world leaders to Pyongyang to negotiate a settlement. You don't like conflict or war. Those same disloyal people rushed to point out that you respond to protests by rolling out the military, first to do a python dance and then to do a crocodile dance. They say that in response to agitation in the south-east you have gone to get a court order declaring them terrorists so that essentially you can kill them and detain them indefinitely. But darling they don't know you like I do. I know that you only declare them terrorists to put the fear of God in them, to make them repent from their ways. You don't really want to torture and kill them for simply protesting and asking for their own country. You love them more than you love North Korea only that you know with your own child you have to be tougher. I know this dear.

I am sure you have settled in London. Please, darling can we be better than the last time? Remember those months of silence? It was bad for our relationship and it made all the political hustlers and vultures come out, including that one who was leaking the memos he sent to you. Can you at least text me regularly even if you can't Skype or FaceTime me? I would really appreciate it and it will make our love grow stronger. Once a week, a few words to say you are ok and are taking your vitamins will be sufficient for me.

Hmmm, my dear, when I saw you with Trump in New York I was worried fa. I was hoping he wouldn't grab you by the you-know-where. Because we don't know if he does both. I am glad you left there in one piece. I am not sure what those Americans saw in him to elect such a person. He is nothing like you. First look at his chin, you can see signs of excess and self-indulgence. You have always been fit and trim. He tweets like a 12-year-old. You don't tweet at all. He is threatening to go to war with North Korea. You hate war and only roll out soldiers to discipline your own children. You never threaten foreigners with your army.

I was watching the news regarding Spain and the people protesting for Catalan independence are getting more determined. They have seen your Python dance that is why. Do you want to offer them some consultancy on how to effect smooth forced disappearances? I am sure they will pay handsomely.

I keep wondering, maybe I missed the news but have you dealt with the report of the panel about the grass cutter and his corruption? What have you decided to do about him? It is not that I have anything against him, it is just that we have been screaming about anti-corruption and this one guy who is close to us is still out there enjoying his money, eating suya and drinking beer.

Please try and swear sweater o. You know Europe is entering autumn which is really cold for us. Drink hot tea and wear socks when you are in the house.

Talk soon.

Yours till 2023,

PS. While I was posting this you came back home from London. I am glad you miss me that much. I hate it when you travel. Can we please build a hospital in Nigeria you can at least use sometimes? You know, something good enough for you (and me)? Hugs.


Sunday, August 27, 2017

NIGERIAN SOCIAL MEDIA CLEANSING AND 'LOYALISATION' ACT 2017


Darling Buhari,
I almost missed this week's letter because I was busy making your favourite dishes and changing sheets. No one is happier than I am that you are back and ready to rule until 2023. Your speech gave me goose pimples. Short, firm and leaving no doubt about your power and resolve. 103 days have done nothing to your soul. You are still my dear, dear Buhari. I noted one thing in your speech. You mentioned how people stay up at night to write nonsense on social media and believe in foolish things like freedom of expression.

So as part of my promise to support your recovery, I am writing a law to help you crack down on these lawless social media people. I know the National Broadcasting Commission wants to censor phone-in programs and live newspaper reviews but trust me, this is better.

SOCIAL MEDIA CLEANSING AND 'LOYALISATION' ACT 2017

An Act providing for the cleansing of the nonsense and disloyalty by persons of bad character on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and other forms of social media and other related matters.

1.   Interpretation
In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires-
      Social media means any online platform where posts can be made, comments received and/or nudes sent.
      Disloyalty means not recognising the divinity and fatherhood of our master and political saviour General Buhari.

2.   Every Nigerian at home or abroad shall believe in the infallibility of our lion king and saviour of Nigerian democracy General Buhari and shall profess same through loving posts, prayers, and if absolutely necessary, kind complaints directed at the appropriate quarters.

3.   All complaints about life in or about Nigeria should be preceded by declarations of how horrible the last government was and an acknowledgement of the saving grace of the 2015 elections which brought the incorruptible leader to power.

4.  No person shall conduct or take part in a poll on any social media platform directed at promoting disaffection toward our incorruptible benevolent leader.

5.  No animals, beloved or otherwise, shall be named after our infallible, incorruptible leader, at the mention of whose name every Nigerian knee (or finger on social media) shall bow.

6.  In the event of an extremely embarrassing situation, like a rat invasion, no person shall directly accuse our incorruptible benevolent leader of anything. All complaints and calls for resignation shall be directed at the minions whose job it is to make the incorruptible leader look perfect. For the leader can do no wrong --- only his minions can stumble.

7.   No person shall under any circumstance demand that our incorruptible leader through whom we received salvation from the former corrupt leader, resign from office before 2023.

8.  No person shall spread rumours or cause rumours to be spread about the health of our leader or question his decision to work from home or any other decision. This includes but is not limited to any rude or mischievous hashtags, memes or parodies.

9.  The offence of Social Media Disloyalty
(1)  A person commits the offence of Social Media Disloyalty if
(a)  He or she, upon being the beneficiary of the generosity of our incorruptible leader, decides to cast aspersions on his person or doubt his intentions.
(b)  He or she asks makes fun of our incorruptible, benevolent leader.
(c) He or she asks about the health of our incorruptible, benevolent leader and makes insinuations about incompetence of abdication of responsibility.
(d) He or she asks the leader to resign for any reason whatsoever, including but not limited to being away from office for any length of time.
(e) He or she commits any other act prohibited under this Act.

(2)  A person who commits the offence of Social Media Disloyalty shall be liable upon conviction to public flogging for one hour every day for three weeks in addition to having their devices confiscated and social media accounts deleted.

My dear, please look at the law and send me your thoughts about any amendments. I am sorry about the rats which invaded your office. But somehow you know, I am glad you are working from home. It means we get to spend quality time together.

Ps. Dear, my weekly reminder: The Shiite man whose children and followers we massacred and buried in mass graves. I think it is time to release him. I know you are resting now that you have returned but please think of it. We have hurt the man enough. Let us release him and his wife. It is only fair.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

NOW THAT YOU ARE A PRIVATE CITIZEN


Darling Buhari,

I was overjoyed at the recent ceremony on national television where you were crowned and declared a private citizen. This is the first step I think, to getting our healthy relationship back. There is nothing that destroys a relationship like third parties sticking their stupid noses in matters that don't concern them. Like your health or how much you are spending on your treatment or who is paying for your plane parked in London. First of all, your state of health is just between the both of us partners. It is my business whether or not you will be ready for the other room when you return. Or what exactly is wrong with you right now. Are they the ones who will boil hot water for you to take a bath? Or make miyan kuka for you? Also, about the plane, do they expect you to trek back from London? I don't understand these nosy people. At least now that that woman with the red eyes has done the needful, we can dispense with these silly inquiries about your state of health. 

I also hear some people have been protesting with the hashtag #ReturnOrResign. Imagine the effrontery. Return where? Are you not at home in Abuja House? As if you owe them anything. Are you their father? Even I who is your darling has not asked you to resign or return. In fact, I think we should promote the Inspector General of Police who sprayed teargas on them and chased them away. But even better he deserves a promotion for escorting those we paid to organise a counter protest to say how much we love you. This, after all, is what the police ought to be doing. Not dangerous things like kidnappers and crime. We need our policemen and women alive and healthy to guard you when you return. No point going after dangerous criminals. Especially kidnappers who aren't killing anybody. Sometimes wealth needs to be redistributed by unconventional means such as ransom payments. 

I read this terrible article saying that under your regime freedom of speech has suffered. I know they are making reference to a few governors who are addicted to Facebook and Twitter and get upset easily when they see something they don't like, including that short one with the burnt lips. Terrible article. I think we should just ban that phrase freedom of speech. Because it is not like the people who love you stop anybody from talking. They just don't like hearing a few things. So people can spend their time talking about useful things, like God or salvation or jollof rice. Not your health, or state-sponsored violence or discrimination or bigotry. What is the use in talking about these things and annoying people? Especially short people. Me I don't like annoying anyone so no one tried to stop my freedom of speech. I only write mostly about how much I love you. And if more people wrote about love instead of equal rights or development or being against police brutality, the nation would be a more peaceful place. 

One of your houseboys said a few days ago that "Media should be positively critical, media should be responsible." I love the term positively critical.  If you allow me darling I will define what this means so that no one in media will get it twisted. Because it is important for the media to be on board with this. Positively critical means that it is critical to be positive. So, before anyone asks where you are or how much your medical bills are or why you won't resign, they must say something positive. Like how much they love you. Like how amazing you are. Like how you are our life leader. Things like that. By the time they are done expressing their love for you, they will likely find that there is no space for any criticism. Because no one criticises the one they love. That is why darling, you can do no wrong in my eyes. 

Ps. Darling, my weekly reminder: The Shiite man whose children and followers we massacred and buried in mass graves. I think it is time to release him. I know you are busy taking vitamins to help you love me better when you return but please think of it. We have hurt the man enough. Let us release him and his wife and the rest that your worker Dick-Tai still has in his custody. It is only fair. 

I love you more than Jollof rice. 


Yours always,
E.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

HIGH SPIRITS AND SOFT DRINKS

Dearest Buhari, 

Glory to God in the highest. Your deputy just texted me to say you are in high spirits. I have changed the sheets in anticipation. In fact, your high spirits have made my own spirits high and I am busy whistling, removing cobwebs, washing curtains, writing down the names of people who have already been making moves to replace you, including those who leaked letters they sent to you so they can appear like smart people.  

I am glad the floods have abated around the country. I would hate to have to pick you up in a boat, not because I don't like swimming or boats, but I am not sure what type of boat you would like and all. We should talk about this when you return. But you know what I think? Just like the meningitis outbreak in Zamfara was a visitation of God (I trust the Governor’s opinion on this), the flood, especially in Lagos was connected to people’s attitudes. I know people say ignorant things like the Governor should have worked on a drainage system that works for Nigeria’s most important commercial city that his response should have been better, but I believe him when blames the flooding and lack of infrastructure on people who don't pay tax. I suspect the flood is not just about people not paying tax but also, with the number of hotels in Lagos, it must be connected to fornication. I remember staying in a hotel and hearing noises coming from a room. And I thought: God is going to flood this city one day. People really need to stop committing fornication whether in Zamfara or Lagos. 

You won't believe what Sahara Reporters said about your meeting with your deputy. They said he was with you for only 5 minutes and that all you guys did was exchange pleasantries. I know they did it to make people think you can hardly talk and are unfit to run this house and all but I was even happy when they reported that. For a few reasons. First off, it showed me you are faithful to me. You refuse to spend too much time with another person when you can't spend time with me. Next, really, most meetings can be compressed into 5 minutes. Nigerians just like long stories. Ask a Nigerian to convene a meeting he will begin by giving a silly opening remark about how he is very happy to be there and all the people who made it possible and how the event almost didn't happen. Then during comments, he will begin by thanking the organisers for organising the program then thanking them for inviting him then thanking the anchor for calling on him to speak. Then he will say he doesn't want to take too much of the time and will be brief. At this point, he will launch into a full speech. If we cut out all of this nonsense, meetings will last only 5 minutes. And finally when they said all you did was exchange pleasantries did they expect you to exchange hateful words? Why are people enemies of peace and progress? Can’t they just be happy for you? 

So I see that Boko Haram is showing up again even though your army has technically defeated it without quite eradicating it. I don't know why Boko Haram will not accept that you have technically defeated them? Is it by force? Why can’t they just respect these declarations that our army make? Anyway, they can keep trying to bomb and we will keep declaring them defeated. 

My darling I just read this new report which says that soft drinks lead to erectile dysfunction and I really got scared. I hope you are not drinking Coke or Fanta fa! Ba na son wahala. Life is too short to have ED. I am not saying you should start taking hot drinks, I am just saying be careful. We can organise someone to export Fura or Kunu to London. After all, we are already paying thousands of pounds every day to maintain you and your presidential jet which I am happy is parked in the UK just in case you need to come and see me very quickly. Me I pledge not to do any soft drinks. I am doing exercise to prepare for your return and sticking to tea and fruits. Our enemies will not succeed. 

As usual, I am reminding you about the Shiite guy whose children and followers we massacred and buried in mass graves in Kaduna. I really believe it is time to let him go. We cannot bring back the people we buried. But we can stop the injustice from carrying on. 

Send me a nice WhatsApp. Exchange pleasantries with me like you did with Yemi. Because you care about me. 

Yours always, 

Elnathan

WHAT I WILL DO IF I AM ELECTED TO OFFICE IN 2019

Dearest Buhari,

I am overjoyed at the rumours of your imminent return. When people start using your return to place bets, I know that you really are coming home soon. Darling, you remember that what is mine is yours and what is yours is mine abi? So, please don't take it the wrong way if I run for president especially now that the age has been reduced. At least it is better than risking one of those short men becoming president. Especially not the one who enjoys harassing people who write. I am sure you don't want anyone to harass me.

I am ready for your return -- the bed is made, the sheets have been changed, there is food waiting for you in the freezer. All I need is to warm it when you come. And I know you like dumame. While I wait, I am working on my presidential bid.

If they elect me in 2019, I will make a law stating that those who steal money just need to make a public vow that they will not steal again and declare that they have stopped stealing. Then perhaps make an apology. I mean the apology will not be compulsory but I will encourage them to do it. A bit like how Saraki simply agreed to stop collecting pension from Kwara State even though he is still a public officer. He is not even saying he will refund the millions he has collected illegally over the last 6 years. And people are angry. The real problem is that it is illegal. If my law is passed, no one will get angry over an issue like this. All Saraki would need to do would be to say, I have stopped. And everyone will be happy.

Now that the US has agreed to sell us millions of dollars worth of attack planes, I would advise all the communities within the Nigerian Airforce's flight path to go and declare themselves before they cause trouble for them like those people who went and made themselves get killed by the Airforce in Rann. People keep saying the army should hold someone responsible. Me I think we should hold the people responsible for not appearing on the map. I will as president make it unnecessary for the armed forces to apologise or be held responsible. I mean it already happens now, but I will make it illegal to complain about the armed forces.

Darling, I will also build a permanent Nigerian hospital in London (or any foreign country of your choosing). You know how people like complaining that you are abroad instead of treating yourself here at home? I think that once the facility abroad is a Nigerian facility, no one can complain because then you will be helping the country earn foreign exchange. Imagine earning money through our foreign hospital. In fact, I can designate the land upon which the hospital is built Nigerian embassy property, in which case anyone in that hospital is technically in Nigeria. Imagine, we can even get other African leaders to visit our Nigerian hospital in London or Germany so that they can tell their citizens that they are patronising African hospitals. Killing many birds with one big stone.

In a similar vein, I will build a Nigerian university abroad so that our children who study abroad can say that they are studying in a Nigerian university. No one will ever be able to point fingers at us elites and say that our children are abroad instead of being in Nigerian schools. It will be like the American University. We will have the Nigerian University, London, Berlin, New York, Beijing, Tokyo, New Delhi, Dubai, Paris. No one will ever be able to point fingers at you ever again.

I think I should also have a commission for politicians who want to attack writers or newspapers for writing about them. It is only fair. I want the attacks to be coordinated. Even violence should be carried out systematically. The commission will gather complaints from aggrieved politicians and allow politicians to attack together, a bit like car sharing. If two or more politicians hate an activist or writer or newspaper, they can just combine efforts instead of working at cross purposes.

I will continue next week my dear. But for now I will just remind you about the Shiite man whose children we massacred in Kaduna. It is time to release him. I look forward to welcoming you. The fura da nono is in the fridge cooling. I would have come to the airport with flowers but I know you don't really care much for flowers. Ina jiran ka maigida na.

Yours always,
Elnathan

Saturday, July 8, 2017

A PHONE CONVERSATION WITH MR DEPUTY


Dearest darling Buhari, 

I have spent all week ignoring the foolish people implying you are probably already dead. It is their erections that will die. Nonsense. So I was on the phone to your deputy. I will just write a transcript of the conversation because it is hard to explain. It makes me worry and but I don't want to stress you out. Anyway, please find below. 

Your Deputy: Saurayin Oga, how now? Long time. 

Me: Long time o, Oga deputy. How life?

Your Deputy: Life is scary o. You won't believe what has been happening.

Me: Oya tell me na. 

Your Deputy: You know I have been trying since your darling left. I have really tried. I have travelled to see all our people. I have tried to broker peace in the Niger Delta. I have visited markets. I have tried to raise confidence in the economy…

Me: Yes yes yes… so what is the problem?

Your Deputy: You are too impatient. Allow me to finish. Is this how you are with Daddy Bubu?

Me: Ok sorry na. Continue. 

Your Deputy: I have even done everything to make people know that I am loyal to your darling Bubu. I went to Katsina if you remember and called Bubu my father. I reassured everyone that I am not interested in taking over your darling’s house and pushing him aside. All I have done is work. And yes if I work, people will notice. And they will talk about it. That is not my fault. 

Me: No it is not your fault. Even I have told my bubu not to be worried about you taking over his darling. 

Your Deputy: Of course not. You are not even my type. 

Me: Whatever. Me too I can’t be darling to anyone who is as short as you are. Plus you like wearing grey. Which makes you look even smaller…

Your Deputy: It is ok. No need to fight. I think you have made your point. Anyway. Now they are trying to remove me as deputy. I just travelled once and they were trying to install another deputy. No one has respect for me. I keep hearing rumours that they want to sabotage things so that people will hate me. And no it is not because I am short. It is because they are afraid that god forbid, if anything happens to your darling…

Me: God forbid. It is your darling something will happen to, not mine. 

Your Deputy: Haba. I am not wishing bad na. I am just talking about probabilities. Don't take this personal. 

Me: Oya continue. 

Your Deputy: People are afraid that I will take over the house and want to continue the way Jonathan did. And we all know how that ended. And it is not as if I am even interested. Now don't get me wrong. Of course everyone wants to be the head of the house and all but I know our family has agreed that the northern people do 8 years and then others can take over. And you know my senior brother also is waiting and if I interrupt the flow, it will affect his chances of becoming president of the house in 2023. 

Me: Hmmmm. That is a serious matter. 

Your Deputy: Yes it is. You know in this our house it is more important where you come from than what work you are actually doing. 

Me: Yes, I know. But I have a suggestion. Why can’t you just change ethnic group and religion?

Your Deputy: Change religion I understand. But change ethnic group?

Me: Yes na. You don't see what is happening in the world. People can now be transracial like they can be transgender. See that Rachel Dolezal who said she is now black. You can also just declare you are now a northern Muslim and then write a book about it and launch it at Yaradua Centre in Abuja. You know?

Your Deputy: That is a good point o. How about I say I just found out that my grandfather was actually a slave from Kano stolen and gifted to my great grandfather. I will try that. Thanks for the suggestion. 

Me: No wahala. Anyway, you keep doing the work. I will talk to my Bubu in a minute. And please can you help release that Shiite man whose children we killed because… hello? Hello? Are you still there? 
***

Darling Bubu, this was our conversation o. I don't know if it is the Shiite matter that made him drop the phone or it was just bad network. Maybe the network. What do you think we should do? I would appreciate a WhatsApp voice note, the type you sent me for Sallah. Also, I hear the process of recall of Senator Mai Mota is progressing. The house is really interesting these days. You even need a boat to move around Lagos streets. I have always wanted to use a boat in Nigeria. I think it will be beautiful if Lagos can become like Venice. We can just do sexy things like host a film festival and have celebrities arrive in pretty boats and yachts. Great for photos.  

I miss you. I wanted to check our account balance to see how much we have left. Can you please tell me how much we have spent so far on treatment? I just want to know so that I can balance our accounts.  

Yours always,

Elnathan John. 


Sunday, July 2, 2017

NIGERIAN TAILOR VICTIMS SUPPORT BILL 2017


Dearest Buhari,
So, while you are recovering (by the way, thanks for that caring voice note you sent me for Sallah, you rock!) I have decided to be proactive and help you with governance. I have decided to sponsor bills on your behalf. I will start with a nationwide problem that needs to be tackled. Treacherous tailors who ruin our events. Please find below for your perusal. 

NIGERIAN TAILOR VICTIMS SUPPORT BILL 2017
A bill for an Act to cater to the millions of traumatised victims of tardy Nigerian tailors, to establish a Tailor Crimes Commission, Tailors Victims Support Commission and the Tailors Victims Support fund, to criminalise and provide punishment for tardiness by tailors and other matters related thereto.

1.   Interpretation
In this Bill, unless the context otherwise requires-
      “Tailor” means any individual engaged in the production of any type of apparel for human use irrespective of whatever cool appellation they may give themselves, including but not limited to pretentious titles like “seamstress”, “dressmaker”, “fashion designer”. 
     “Tardiness” means everything from non delivery of apparel given for production or delivery of said apparel at anytime after the agreed time and date for such production.

2.  Establishment of Tailor Crimes Commission 
(1) There is hereby established a body to be known as the Nigerian Tailor Crimes Commission (hereinafter referred to as "the crimes commission”)
The crimes commission shall-

(a) be responsible for all matters affecting crimes by tailors in Nigeria as provided for in this Act;

(b) monitor and supervise Nigerian tailors in relation to international tailoring standards and advise Government thereon;

(c) prosecute arrest and investigate tailors who cause heartache and sorrow to innocent Nigerians whose only crime was engaging a Nigerian tailor;

(d) enlighten and inform the public on matters relating to their rights with regard to tailors;

(e) maintain an effective data bank on tailors and their crimes and reward tailors who are crime free

(f) be responsible for such other matters as relate to tailors in Nigeria as the Minister (for Internal Affairs) may, from time to time, direct.

3. Tailor Crimes 
(1)  A person commits a Tailor Crime if
(a)  He or she, being in receipt of a fabric, or money to purchase said fabric for the production of any apparel for human use fails completely to produce such apparel.
(b)  He or she, being in receipt of a fabric, or money to purchase said fabric for the production of any apparel for human use fails to deliver such apparel to the owner at or before the agreed time for delivery. 
(c)  He or she, being in receipt of a fabric, or money to purchase said fabric for the production of any apparel for human use fails to produce the apparel according to the agreed specifications, making it either too small or too large or too different from the sample or totally unwearable or missing major appurtenances including but not limited to buttons or sequins or functional zippers, or button holes.
(2)  A person who commits a Tailor Crime shall be liable upon conviction to a term of imprisonment not exceeding 4 years including a fine covering the cost of a new apparel.
(3) The following shall not be acceptable defences to Tailor Crimes 
  1. “I get Catarrh”
  2. “I no well” when said excuse is not accompanied by doctors report or evidence of total physical incapacity.
  3. Wedding
  4. Wedding of one’s relatives
  5. Death of one’s grand mother or aunt or great-grandmother especially one who has died before
  6. “No light”
  7. “I no find landing for your cloth”
  8. Anybody’s second burial 
  9. “My pikin no well” except when accompanied by evidence. 

4.  The offence of Aggravated Tailor Crimes
(1)  A person commits the offence of Aggravated Tailor Crimes when he or she commits Tailor Crimes more than once against the same person within a period of two months or commits more than one Tailor Crime against the same person, for example, being tardy AND ruining the apparel. 
(2)  A person who commits the offence of Aggravated Tailor Crimes shall be liable upon conviction to a term of imprisonment not exceeding 8 years including a lifetime ban from being a tailor. 

5.  Establishment of Tailor Victims Support Commission 
(1) There is hereby established a body to be known as the Nigerian Tailor Victims  Support Commission (hereinafter referred to as "the support commission”)
The support commission shall-

(a) be responsible for the emotional support of all victims of Tailor Crimes in Nigeria as provided for in this Act;

(b) respond to all emergencies relating to Nigerian tailors including but not limited to providing trauma counselling to victims whose spirits have been broken because a Nigerian tailor ruined their wedding, party, event, funeral, job interview, date, award ceremony other important event;

(c) hold town hall meetings to sensitise Nigerians on the dangers of Tailor Crimes;

(d) coordinate meetings and create local chapters of victim support groups online and offline;

6.  Establishment of Tailor Victims Support Fund 
(1) There is hereby established a fund to be known as the Nigerian Tailor Victims  Support Fund (hereinafter referred to as "the fund”)
The fund shall-
  1. consist of monthly tax from all tailors in Nigeria whether or not they have committed Tailor Crimes
  2. Be used to support victims of Nigerian Tailors and run the support commission in general
  3. Be used to pay for trauma treatment and new fabrics in compensation for Tailor Crimes. 



Let me know what you think dear.

Your always,


Elnathan John

Sunday, June 25, 2017

SPEECH IMPAIRMENTS, RECALLS AND EYESIGHT

Dearest Buhari, 

They have come again o! I just read the Sahara Reporters people again and now they are saying you have a speech impairment. What nonsense! People wanting to use this as an excuse are saying that in 2010 you were asking where Yar’Adua was and demanding that if he was too sick to run the house he should resign. All I have to tell them is, jiya ba yau ba — yesterday is not today. And you are not Yar’Adua. Yar’Adua did not love me the way you do. Yar’Adua did not have or care about the “other room”. Yar’Adua did not give me my special place as the head of the 97% while protecting me from the 5% of people who do not deserve his love. And about the speech impairment rumor, do they not know that we communicate weekly, that our hearts speak as one, that I can feel you even if words do not pass between us? You know how growing up our parents will look at us in public and without saying a word we knew what they meant? Did they need words? And neither do you. I feel you. (Also, it is not like we need words in “the other room”.  😘)

Albishirin ka! They have begun the process of the recall of Senator Mai Mota. INEC has received bags of signatures signing the petition for his recall. Those Kogi people are serious fa. But you know I trust Senator Mai Mota. The God that made it possible for him to go to become a graduate of foreign universities by just doing one-week courses and helped him get his many many vehicles can help him dissolve those signatures into liquid, merge them and turn them into a blot on the paper. Because the God of Mai Mota works in mysterious ways!

My dear, I am so happy you are not in Nigeria o! Imagine just sitting there recovering from illness wearing a t-shirt and shorts, maybe even before taking a shower and then someone like Shehu Sani descending upon the house with journalists and cameras taking photos of you and posting it on Twitter and Instagram. Hmmmm. God forbid that Shehu Sani will use you for politics. Even me who is your darling, I don't share pictures of you in shorts on Twitter. Not even the ones you send me via WhatsApp. Please o, if you hear Shehu Sani is coming to London, wear your Caftan o, and in fact let him and his people keep their phones outside the door before you let them in. I don't want everyone seeing your sexy legs. 

Let me tell you some gossip. So, Rotimi Amaechi has threatened to expose Nyesom Wike’s wife because Wike alleged that when Amaechi was governor state politicians used to make monthly payments to his wife. Amaechi then called Wike a thug, said he speaks bad English and that he is poorly dressed. The same Wike who was Amaechi’s Chief of Staff. I wonder if his English, being a thug or dressing has worsened over the years or if he was not these things when they were working together. In fact Amaechi once claimed that he begged Goodluck Jonathan to make Wike minister. You know those men who will sleep with a woman then when things don't work out will turn around and call her ugly and a whore? I am not saying Amaechi was sleeping with Wike (even though I do think they would make a charming couple), I am only saying Amaechi reminds me of those men. I hope they settle. Or that Wike maybe changed his dressing and takes language classes. Whatever will make them both happy. Because like we say, sun fi kusa. (I am sorry if now the thought of Amaechi and Wike sleeping with each other is in your head and won’t go away.)

So, you have to help us pray o. That small Kaduna governor who swore to arrest the old men pretending to be young men who gathered to tell Igbos to leave the north still can't find them. I know he wears glasses. But I also know his eye sight was perfect when he wanted to arrest other people who wrote things did not like. I hope it is not river blindness returning to Kaduna. Anyway, let us hope he finds them. Because I know they are not hiding. This is why when you come back, I want to do a pet project. I want all children to have carrots in their diet. For vitamin A which strengthens the eyes. I will buy truck loads of carrots and make carrot juice which we will donate to all school children. So that when they grow up they will be able to find what they are looking for. This will also lead to growth of the economy as carrot farmers will benefit greatly. 

I miss you. Send me a WhatsApp soon. 
And my weekly reminder: release the Shiite man whose children and followers we killed. There is no point holding him when the courts have asked us to let him go. Do it for me baby…

Yours always. 


E.