The Police Special Anti Robbery Squad, popularly called SARS has come under heavy criticism for a couple of days now. What started as a few complaints from one or two people has quickly morphed into a social media campaign that is expected to culminate in a street protest. Nigerians are calling for the section of the Nigeria Police Force to be scrapped. Numbers don’t lie, and the hundreds of thousands of people employing the power of the virtual community to register their dissatisfaction with the operating unit of the police force are enough proof that we just might have another “Occupy Nigeria” looming if the government of the day does not take appropriate steps to ensure the issue is adequately addressed.
I like people who do things their own way. People who are not afraid to be themselves or air their opinion regardless of what others think. I like them because I know that one of the hardest things to do, especially in these parts is go against popular opinion. Everyone wants to belong, everyone sees the need to jump on the next pop culture bandwagon. It’s safer to do so. You don’t stand out, you don’t stand the risk of being insulted, mocked, subjected to snide remarks, and sometimes, public criticism. You blend in nicely, and all is well with you and world around you.
A young man is allegedly stabbed to death by his wife on suspicion of infidelity, and there is silence in the land. Unsettling silence, apart from the usual run-of-the-mill reportage by the media and a smattering of social media posts from individuals. There hasn’t been any outcry over the shocking circumstances that led his death. The human rights activists are silent, “social media warriors” are taciturn, and feminists have lost their voice.
We had been given forms to fill as part of the requirements for opening an account in one of the new generation banks. We had only started observing the mandatory one year of national service as fresh graduates and were due to begin receiving the monthly stipends to be paid by the government. I was in the process of filling my form when she walked up to me. Dressed in the traditional light green khaki attire of the NYSC, she was draped in the hijab, and had the unmistakable accent of one from northern Nigeria.
I don’t trust people who are friends with everybody. Might sound judgemental, but I hold the belief that one who’s friends with everyone can’t be loyal to a particular person or group of people. As humans, we have our individual values, standards, personal code of conduct, and principles regarding how we live our lives and the kind of people we would like to associate with. Now, there’s no way every single person we come across can fit into our idea of who a close friend should be.
“Awon wa’ye wa gbadun ni,” he had said in Yoruba. The spectator’s remarks translate literally to “They came to the world to have fun.” His comments were in response to the auto electrician who had expressed his empathy in that exaggerated manner artisans are known for as he fixed my vehicle. The subject of their small talk? Women. The electric mechanic was also quick to announce that he didn’t like to subject women (compared to men) to any stress when it came to haggling about his charges.
Since I kicked off my writing journey some years ago, my life has taken an interesting and revealing turn. The dynamics of my relationships have changed, and I have found that people relate with me differently. I’m guessing it’s pretty much the same experience other writers have too. I have also observed that there are many assumptions other people have about writers which are generally off the mark, and so this article is aimed at debunking some of the myths surrounding writers. If you have believed the following to be true about writers, you really should begin to have a rethink. Here are 5 misconceptions the average person has about writers;
A final year student of a private university was expelled on account of a Facebook post that was deemed to be a campaign of calumny of sorts against the authorities of the school. The post which took a swipe at the management and officials of the higher institution was scathing enough to earn Debo Adedayo, the writer, an expulsion from Redeemers University. Mr Adedayo had concluded his exams and wrapped up his final year project when he was handed what has been widely adjudged to be a harsh punishment by the school.
The past week was an interesting one. And while an event such as the 50th anniversary of the Asaba Massacre could have dampened the mood of some section of people, it’s safe to conclude it was a largely happy week for most Nigerians. We often find ourselves lamenting one situation or the other, and it’s not because we are a people who are naturally wont to dwell on the unpleasant. No. It’s a function of the myriad of problems we are plagued with. But sometimes…sometimes, the stars just appear to align to our favour, and in those instances, we must never fail to celebrate our little victories.
I have never considered myself rich, in monetary terms. But in the last couple of weeks, my “acute” financial limitations ha,ve become more apparent. Apart from the generally reduced purchasing power caused by inflation and the prevailing economic circumstances, the pervading poverty in the land and my helplessness in the face of it all has me feeling frustrated. And then it dawned on me – many of us are deluded that we are comfortable when we are in actual fact poor.