Thursday, 17 July 2014

Pep talk to Voters in 2015: Keep calm and vote right even with the rice.

Easy... It's your season. 2015 is almost here! It's the Christmas of Nigerian politics,  a time of harvest of and for the electorates. This electioneering period is special in so many ways. Your leaders would remember your house address now. They would impress their speeches on how inevitable your support is to their aspirations. And importantly, they would honor with gifts and titles, slot for injury time service.  That's just the way it is.

After these rituals are concluded it is now time to touch the pigs for slaughter directly. Password correct, access is granted now to lie as much as possible to the electorates just to get one more shot at power for the coming term. In the realm of politicking,  no price is too high to pay for the power in your thumb. It's the reason men would leave their beloved families, stop down from their prestigious thrones to the streets despite the vulnerabilities. 

For influential men to be convinced to endorse candidates there may be alot of technicalities but for the common man who holds the majority the answers are far too simple and less sophisticated.  Speak no much English, let the stomach infrastructure do all the ' Rock and Roll' . It speaks volumes.

 Let me be more specific-- Bring more rice! Rice is medicinal, it is the Nigerian opium approved by N***** to be used by the masses. And it is not harmful to the body.

Money has found its way into Nigerian campaigns because of the Third degree poverty level that has bedevilled the vast majority.  It has seized the voice from the call of reason and that may just be disastrous.  So what do I have to say? If I advise people not to collect money from politicians or rice coming masked as charity would I not be speaking German to rustic Africans?

Just like telling someone with HIV that they should live without anti-retroviral drugs when you haven't found the cure for the virus. A poor man lost his belongings to flood, no bank, no means of livelihood and then after a hungry midnight rice came with the morning.  Knowing his story, would you advice him to say no to the rice?  Of course you should not if you are not offering anything better.  Situationism, remember, is also an ethical theory.

I'll tell you what to do dear Electorates. The same wisdom that was employed during the  Mimiko re-election campaign.  Collect what they bring but don't vote for them. By that logic the burden of conscience versus pleasure disappeared like a fleeting shadow. The dichotomy between Money and Morality erased and people calmed down to vote overwhelmingly for their choiced candidate.

You may not have the power to stop a bird from flying over your head but you can keep it from building a nest over it. So when they come luring you with their rice be sure to do the needful which is giving thoughts to the credibility of each candidates.  Scratch deeper to see what lies beyond their dramatic roles and vote for who you think is best.

Never let anyone bamboozle you. Keep calm and vote right even now that rice is involved.

Rex Showunmi is the Senior Editor @ DeltaForte Magazine(  Twitter handle : @remirex

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Sunday, 13 July 2014

A Short Tribute to Wole Soyinka : The Williams Shakespeare of our time.

The advantage of being 80 years old is that one has many people to love" says Jean Renoir , the French film Director and Author. Let me add that living up to 8 decades gives you the privilege of being loved by many, as well. Let's all thank God for the Life of Wole Soyinka,  the Williams Shakespeare of our time . For while History may have been garnished with subtle prejudice during documentation,  the present offers us with a better reality to grasp. Even with the subjectivity of diverse humans we still find objective grounds to agree.  We may have arrived this place through inter-subjectivity. However, it is beyond reasonable doubt that the Man Wole Soyinka has lived a life not only worthy of emulation but also Worthy of education.

Starting out with a life of excellence that far out runs time, he has turned out to be greatness personified. While in his Thirties he had already written some of the best African literary works  including  The Man died, the Lion and the Jewel , The Trials of Brother Jero, etc.

A thorough bred African who admonished the pragmatism of Negritude  stressing that with the anology of "a tiger does not shout its tigritude" instead it acts. He reflected in almost all his works the need for Africa to develop. This he emphasised in his numerous satirical works.

If we sum up Soyinka's life in a little phrase it has been one marked by an unusual zest for all that is humanistic. Aside that, Kongi has lived a highly productive life -- absolutely phenomenal.   The one that has seen several masterpieces come out of his literary loins. Some immortal, many living. One of which I will be honored to be called. Perhaps we should connect his "high tension" energy to his spirituality which radiates around him. For he speaks dearly of Ogun -the Yoruba deity  which he acknowledges as his companion deity.

Twenty Eight years ago he won the Nobel Prize for Literature which is unarguably the most remarkable event of his career being the first African ever to win such  prize. It opened several doors including the rapport with World class( Ivy League) Colleges . He earned honorary doctorates and  faculty membership, among other benefits.

After all said, it interests me to affirm that He will remain to us a source of Inspiration...that we can achieve a lot within our lifetime by being creative , hardworking  and passionate in our calling.

Long Live Wole Soyinka! Ogun, Nigeria and Africa as a whole is proud of you. And as you grow younger remember;  "Igba odun ojo kan ni".

•Wole Soyinka clocks 80 today 13th July,2014.

Rex Showunmi (@remirex) is the Senior Editor at Delta Forte Magazine (

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Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Agony from Sambisa Forest

I woke up that morning, unsure of what the day holds for us, but certain of one thing, that the WAEC examination is still ongoing, I got dressed and bid farewell to my folks, unknown it was the last time I will ever set my eyes on them, that I and many other girls will become the victim of the evil lurking round the noon.
We filed into the examination hall, waiting for our question papers and answer booklets to be distributed to all the candidates. Amidst the examination jittery, I heard several gunshots, there was great pandemonium, students and teachers scampering.
I heard a crusty voice from a megaphone, we were commanded to lay down wherever we were, which we obediently obeyed, I was scared to my skin and suddenly blacked out.
The operations lasted for hours, I was revived and ushered into a waiting sport utility vehicle and sandwiched among my mates, like cows taken to abattoir, we were driven away. There was great wailing, we cried until we lost our voice. I stopped crying few weeks ago, and told myself probably this is the prize I have to pay for been a girl child in a country like Nigeria.
It is almost the first semester since we were forcefully adopted from our country, however it seems like eternity. We have become victims of political propaganda, forsaken by a country we call our own, neglected by a government our parents elected. We were carted away like the spoils of war, our adopters in jubilation and chanting victorious songs.
Life in Sambisa has been traumatic, few days after our adoption, our human dignity was forcefully taken away from most of us, freedom of worship which is enshrined in the Nigerian 1999 constitution was taken away, those of us who were Christians were forcefully converted to Islam. We were distributed among our adopters, in hot tears and pain, our dignity is serially violated.  Amidst fear and trepidation we unwillingly submitted our pride to our captors. Daily I feel awfully lonely, and I have become an outcast. Sleep has become an enemy, I stay up late every night escaping into the wonderland of mystery that contains broken fragments of my dreams. Tears and sore is salty, I long to return home if help will ever come before my last breath.
Let me leave now, you will hear from me soon, if I am still alive.
With pain from Sambisa.

Onyibe Oliver.

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