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No Bobo! No Zobo! (Part 3)

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Dele Jegede In Conversation With Prince Yemisi Shyllon

By Toyin Falola

Honesty is more than not lying. It is truth telling, truth speaking, truth living, and truth loving.
― James E. Faust

Chinedu hurls himself through the crowded roads in Alaba Market, brisking through grabbing hands, and whisking his head right and left to fish out which outlet is exactly honest and good enough to buy a phone. His phone had been stolen a fortnight before, and he had borrowed 70,000 Naira from a famous “loan app,” using his girlfriend’s phone and details without her knowledge.

“How far, bro? We are from the same village; are you not from Aba?” The right guess it is. Chinedu finds someone from his village, and they see each other as brothers, the trust coming instantly. Everything continues from there.

READ ALSO: No Bobo! No Zobo!! (Part II: Merchants of Salvation)

“Jesus! What is this?” That was Chinedu’s reaction when he got home, opened the well-sealed pack of his new phone, and found four wraps of fufu carefully placed and sealed. He had been boboed. Chinedu’s brother had given him zobo and duped him! Do you think he trusted too quickly? Or since he had practically stolen from his girlfriend, would you retort, “Ole gbe, Ole gba?” If your phone is stolen during a Sunday service in that most elegant Cathedral, located in Abuja, is it not a case of God having forgiven the thief as a sinner and rewarded him with a gift, a sign of His blessing?

In the two previous series, I wrote about men and women in high places and those who sit in the holy of the holiest but with unholy hearts. The pastors who kidnap your wallets and sleep with your wives. I have talked about the instrumentality of zobo and bobo in political and religious circles, emphasizing their readiness to use their sharp bobo claws to feed on people’s gullibility. The politicians who arrest your progress in the name of change.

But bobo is not only an act of the pulpit; the pew is also the master of the act, and the citizens are much more bobo men and women just like the politicians. I mean, Chinedu’s newly found “brother” is neither a politician, Imam, Pastor, nor an Ezemuo. Many have and can become tycoons in the bobo and zobo markets, depending on who can sell it best and make more. This series addresses those bobo and zobo masters who are no better than those discussed in the previous two series, and as always, I promise not to bobo or zobo you in any way. My fear is how you won’t bobo me!

VIDEO: Suspected Yahoo Ritualist Caught After Dropping Off An Insane Lady

After reading this piece, take a walk through Dugbe, Bodija, Alaba, Kontagora, Sabon Gari, Onitsha, and other popular markets in Nigeria to concretize what you are about to read today. Then you can ask what happened to the old stories about how a farmer could leave his tubers of yam on the roadside for sale, and even when he was not there, he would get his complete cowries or pennies for the goods because buyers would drop the monetary value of the goods next to the stack. I did not read this in story books—I experienced it in real-time in Ibadan in the 1950s and early 1960s when I, too, bought corn and bananas and left the cents. The farmer also valued his or her customers and would not put substandard goods on sale, nor did anyone in the community think of stealing the goods or the money. These stories are true: they demonstrate that the old communities thrived on trust and honesty, and their people were seen as united in faith. We have killed those communities and, with them, a culture of honesty.

Sadly, we cannot say the same for contemporary societies anywhere in the world. Dishonesty and corruption have eaten deep into the Nigerian system, and it is not because the politicians are corrupt, even though they are the ones we talk so much about. Most people are corrupt, dishonest, and full of bobo and zobo to serve around. If we then must salvage our society from these damning issues, incidents like those around Chinedu and the grassroots zobos and bobos must be cut out. This is why I ask you to visit some of those markets to make these points register well with you.

We must talk about Iya Solo’s bobo measurement cups, or those “Congo” cups with the tops slightly cut off at the top for incomplete grain measurement, in order to sell more cups in a bag of rice, beans, or other food items. About the price, the market woman will never forget to tell you how “things are costly” and that because she developed a liking for you, the profit she will be making from the transaction is just 50 Naira. Mama Solo! Why the zobo?

READ ALSO: Excellence In Education In The Context Of Pan-Africanism And Digitization

She zobos you about the quality of the grains, saying a little measure will fill your pot. Ewa oloyin, my delicacy, is mixed with brown beans, both of which will cook at different speeds and produce a different taste. You may eat dog and donkey instead of cow meat when you buy suya. When you take home a light-skinned woman, by the time she removes the wig and the powder, you confront a goat with multiple colors—red face, brown neck, and dark body. A shameless man confronts a shameless woman, bonded in the romance of deception.

We must also talk about the Omo Nna’s “Luic Vitton,” “Abidas, Varsace,” “Chaenl,” “Nkie,” or Pumba’s (sometimes with the Puma cat in the logo walking rather than leaping) merchandise branded in the corners of his room with prints and dyes. Omo Nna is ready to sell at a bogus price while telling you bobos about his containers on the sea from France; meanwhile, his factory is his room. Or should we talk about Musa’s fake Apple wristwatches with the small and half-eaten mango logo? It is hilarious, but it is the reality in the market, and much more is happening on the streets and on the internet.

Obviously, bobos and zobos are worse in the e-commerce, affiliate, and online marketplaces than in the physical markets. Prices are canceled as old prices, and items are discounted as if the outlet is offering a limited-time bonanza; however, the supposed bonanza price is slightly higher than the original price. Stories of “what I ordered versus what I got” never stop, as many online vendors deliver substandard products packaged otherwise. What about the fuel stations that rig measurements and hoard petrol, especially when there is scarcity, causing the populace so much pain? During fuel scarcity crises in the country, pump prices spike and rarely fall when supply is normalized. To make matters worse, at one point, many fuel attendants had the habit of collecting 20 Naira “gallon money” from those who bought into containers.

READ ALSO: Trickster Gbajabiamila’s Cleverly Packaged Deception Bait

Let us talk about the Omo Onile, or the popular illegitimate land sellers and land grabbers. In Lagos, one plot of land can be sold to eight people, and the proceeds can buy you a chieftaincy title, with a cut for the king who keeps his loot in a coffin. These individuals bobo their title in a piece of land, sell it to you, and then resell the same land to another person. When the real owners of the land question you and you are lucky enough to see them again, they take you to another fake piece of land, and the circle continues, with you paying through your nose. Baba Wande in Oba L’onile to the rescue! Stories of how the ancestor who originally owned the land emerged, as the founder of the place used to be a fish who wandered into the land and drove away all the crabs to possess it. The other ancestor of the person who sold the land to you was a snake who fled to Aso Rock, never to come back. Sometimes, they also harass landowners and demand money before they can use the piece of land or build on it. At every building construction stage, “owo omo onile” must be paid, and failure to do so could result in deadly conflicts.

These land grabbers come in different shades. On March 16, 2022, Vanguard News reported a protest in Lagos State by the residents of Okegun-Museyo in the Ibeju-Lekki Local Government Area. They were lamenting to the State Government about how bobo land grabbers had displaced over 2000 residents in the area, some of whom had lived there for over 12 years. Yes, the residents were being displaced, not due to natural disasters, but by the inhuman treatment excised by fellow humans. Unfortunately, the land grabbers have positioned themselves in high places of influence and government positions across the country. Some of them are traditional leaders, political appointees, and politicians who believe nothing can be done to check their antecedents.

While we talk about all these shades of bobo and zobo masters, we must also talk about the celebrated scammers and Yahoo Boys who have become a phenomenon in the country. In 2020, Nigeria was ranked by the FBI as the 16th among the countries heavily affected by the pangs of cybercrime and fraud. Fake data, as we should be among the top ten! The bobo Yahoo Boys give zobos to their unsuspecting victims, especially those abroad, by either portraying themselves as potential lovers, sugar mummies, sugar daddies, refugees, finance experts, agents, sellers, crypto-currency flippers, or people in need of help, among others to create trust and dupe people of their money and property. The local victims are targeted in similar ways or through phone hacking, disguising like an old Baba who mistakenly sends recharge card pins to the wrong persons, and many other ways.

Nigeria is said to lose over 127 billion Naira to cyber fraud yearly, and in 2020, over 5 billion Naira was lost in Nigerian banks due to fraud-related electronic transfers. The statistic is worse for the international community as this is fast becoming a global stain on the country’s image. Unfortunately, it seems the madness will not end soon as more people are being recruited into the “business” daily. A sting operation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), as reported by Channels Television on May 13, 2022, led to the arrest of a 24-year-old owner of a “Yahoo Yahoo Academy” and 16 other trainees to be nurtured in the act of boboing and zoboing to fraudulently obtain what other people have made from honest toils. These bobo and zobo masters become very desperate that they even resort to ritual killings to bolster the spirits that will help further enchant their victims.

Do not get me wrong; I am not saying these are the absolute or major representations of the people of Nigeria. Every society has its own shades of bobo and zobo masters and mistresses in different proportions; however, I have chosen to focus on addressing Nigeria’s. Nigerians are largely good and honest people, and their resourcefulness will always stand the nation out anytime. But citizens’ boboship is more dangerous because it forms the basis of political dishonesty and corruption that have become a major problem for the country. The nation is not in the best possible state. People struggle with poverty, lack of opportunities, insecurity, amenities, and many other challenges. Why should we then turn against one another? Why must Chinedu’s “brother” hoodwink him? Why must Chinedu swindle his girlfriend? Why must we bobo and zobo one another when, as Nigerians, we have enough trouble knocking on our doors daily?

If our country will improve, we must start from the grassroots. We must be honest with one another. We must not bobo one another or serve others zobo. Nigeria needs to change from the bottom to the top and from top to bottom. If you bobo as a citizen, you and the politicians are destroying us.

Falola is a Nigerian historian and professor of African Studies. He is currently the Jacob and Frances Sanger Mossiker Chair in the Humanities at the University of Texas at Austin.

 

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Opinion

Where Are The New Notes?

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Where Are The New Notes?

By Hope O’Rukevbe Eghagha
It was with mixed feelings that Nigerians first received the news in October last year that the federal government was redesigning certain denominations of the nation’s currency. From December 15, 2022, the new notes would be in circulation, the CBN governor Godwin Emefiele promised. It was also announced that by January 31, 2023, the current N1000, N500, and N200 notes would no longer be legal tender. Government explained that some unscrupulous politicians had accumulated billions of naira in private vaults and would deploy the illegal funds to compromising the general elections scheduled to start on February 25th. What has become of those billions?

Owing to the level of distrust between the government and the people, conspiracy theories surfaced with ‘stupendous alacrity! The Minister of Finance did not help matters when she openly disassociated herself from the new policy announcement. She asserted that her ministry ‘was not consulted before the policy was announced and she believes the policy is wrongly timed’. CBN Governor countered by saying that he did not need clearance from the Minister to initiate new policies, adding that he was accountable to the President.

This aspect of the controversy was only laid to rest when President Buhari’s spokesman Garba Shehu issued a statement that ‘the president said the CBN’s decision had his support and he is convinced that Nigeria will gain a lot by doing so! The government explained that the policy would compel persons who had stolen monies and had hidden same in vaults, septic tanks, and warehouses to deposit same in the banks before January 31. Limits as to how much could be deposited per day by individuals and corporate bodies were specified. The National Assembly had tried on different occasions to make the CBN extend the deadline. They have not succeeded so far. What exactly is going on?

READ  ALSO: How Nigerians Keeping N2.7 Trillion At Home, Others Caused Naira Redesign – Emefiele

Suddenly, Emefiele became a target of arrest for possible prosecution by EFCC. A narrative that he was a financier of terrorism was pushed into the national space. He was accused of massive corruption. Push backs came from counter forces. Emefiele was being persecuted because he had hit the big money bags in society with a harsh policy. It was reported that Emefiele was on the run like a common criminal. A court refused to grant an order to EFCC for the arrest of Emefiele. The general question on the lips of everyone was: what exactly is going on? While this charade was ongoing, news came that the CBN governor had secretly returned to Nigeria. Men of the DSS raided the governor’s office but did not arrest him. Another report came out that the Chief of Defence Staff had deployed soldiers to guard the embattled governor. Two arms of security fighting a battle of arrest and protection? Who gave orders to the Army? Who gave orders to DSS? Is the president aware of the madness at large? Who wants the head of Emefiele and why?

The uncertainty and controversy around the CBN governor are unsalutary. In other climes, the economy would take a nosedive. Perhaps because the economy is already sick, there is nowhere to fall into. He that is down, like the Nigerian economy, needs fear no fall! But there is great confusion in the land that foreign investors no doubt would be watching out for what would happen next. Emefiele himself had got himself into many controversial actions, one being his attempt to contest for the office of the president while heading the Bank of bankers. It seems that because he is in the good books of the powers-that-be, no harm can befall him.

It’s a few days to the deadline. There are still many questions. The most important question right now is: where are the new notes? As a corollary to this question, why are the banks reluctant to dispense the new notes? Is it true that some Point of Sale (POS) operators have the new currency while banks claim they do not have the same currency? How much has entered the banking system since the October announcement? How can the banks be monitored for compliance? What are hard hit politicians planning to do next?

READ  ALSO: CBN Extends Withdrawal Of Old Naira Notes Deadline

APC presidential candidate Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu recently cried out that the currency and fuel scarcity was met to sabotage the February elections. Buhari has asserted that he wants to leave a legacy of free and fair elections, not tainted with money. He has somewhat withdrawn himself from the political fray and directed that money should not be allowed to determine the winner. Some irony here. Our president now wishes to distance himself from the system which gave him the presidency and sustained his rule for some eight odd years. How the politicians will react is not clear yet. But it is possible to become a statesman after experiencing the rot of the system at close range.

For the common man, the main question is: where are the new currency notes? I am yet to set eyes on the N200 notes. I didn’t have access to the N1000 note until two weeks ago. This has exacerbated the level of desperation in the land. Suddenly changing the currency has its advantages especially if the security of the nation is threatened. One of the first groups to ask for extension of time was Miyetti Allah. They claimed that because they keep a lot of cash, they would need more time. Fittingly the government has stuck to its guns. No compromise. Kidnappers and bandits who keep huge sums collected as ransoms from their victims must be caught in the web.

The Central Bank of any country is insulated, should be insulated from politics and politicking. It ought to be the last economic institution standing tall even when all others collapse. But the CBN under Emefiele has been hijacked by powerful interests who do not have the common good at heart. Emefiele symbolizes that takeover. History will judge him harshly. But for now, Mr. CBN Governor, let hapless and hungry Nigerians have access to the new currency. If the CBN is unable to enforce its directives to the banks, it will be because the bankers see that institution as a weakened and weak one that can only bark without the capacity to bite. Let us end the uncertainty now!

. This article was sent in before the Central Bank of Nigeria on Sunday, January 29, 2023 extended the January 31, 2023 deadline for the withdrawal of old naira notes from circulation.

 

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Post-2023 Policy Advisories: Youth Unemployment  And Job Creation

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Stoic Philosophy, Resilience And Nation Building Project In Nigeria

By Tunji Olaopa

In this piece, the focus of my policy advisory will be on the critical connection between education, unemployment and job creation as fundamental elements in the transformation of Nigeria’s economic growth and development. And this is crucial because of Nigeria’s low-employment intensity and its collateral effects on the non-inclusive growth of the national economy. Over the years, so much analytical ink has  been spilt over the largely uneven, unbalanced and socially non-inclusive growth trends of the Nigerian economy, deriving essentially from the unimaginative monocultural dependence of the economy on oil. This is further aggravated by several deep-seated structural debilitations at the heart of national low development policy performance over the years. I have in mind, first, the crippling national infrastructural deficit which is now estimated at $100m yearly, and requires $80billion in financial commitment over the next ten years to build up. There is also, second, the cost and ease of doing business. In the 2022 ranking by the World Bank, Nigeria currently stands at 131 out of 190 countries. This simply implies that the regulatory environment for doing business in Nigeria is not friendly enough to boost the economy. Nigeria’s heavy dependence on the oil and gas sector is also inhibiting because it is not a labor-intensive sector in terms of its production process and the dynamics of its capital formation. 

READ ALSO: You don blow!

All this has grave implications for the chances of the Nigerian economy to achieve a robust diversification through a multi-pronged and strategic policy rethinking of the developmental components. The resolution of this problematic is inherently connected with the governance imperatives of a restructured Nigerian federation that has the capacity to harness the non-oil resources of its federating units based on comparative advantages. It is easy for the reader to immediately discern how such a critical move, especially the unbundling of the agricultural sector, can easily alleviate the lingering unemployment tension. This policy challenge has consistently been crucial to the social inequality which has instigated the unbridled draining of human capital made up of essentially young Nigerians who cannot be blamed for choosing the Japa option in privileging their life prospect rather than be undermined by a state that is not rethinking its potential.  

READ ALSO: Tribunal Sacks Adeleke, Declares Oyetola Osun Governor

What is also immediately certain is the significant role that education and training will play in arresting the drift in Nigeria’s human capital and workforce dynamics. This is because the challenge of unemployment is complicated by (un)employability as a result of various levels of skills deficiencies and mismatch. And this not only demonstrates the defectiveness of the educational system skewed in favour of formal certification, but also points at the urgent need for an education reform as a critical part of the larger development equation in driving Nigeria’s progress. On the other hand, and also quite unfortunate, the informal education sector is not only disarticulated, the policy innovation that ought to creatively reconnect it as a structural base for productivity has been scant and far-between. And when successive governments have been earnest in their investment in technical and vocational education and training (TVET), it has also been to the detriment of the proper structural reprofiling of the traditional apprenticeship system and non-formal training models as equally fundamental elements in the education provisioning that generates productivity and human capital for jumpstarting Nigeria’s development. And this is not to say that even TVET itself has been properly grounded since there is still a serious gap between the available opportunities and the skills and competences the education made possible. 

 

We are then sensitised to the creative policy direction that the new administration needs to pursue—an urgent and comprehensive re-articulation of the education sector in ways that (a) strengthen the formal education and certification process to fit into the industrialization objectives of the Nigerian state; (b) connect the formal and the informal education sectors together on a continuum of learning and training; and (c) leverage the traditional apprenticeship, informal and vocational training and formal certification into a reprofiled human capital development policy. Such a proactive policy strategy will surely be a significant complement to the Nigeria’s 6-level National Vocational Certification Framework (NVQF) which links the education and training systems in terms of industry and competence-based qualifications. This has the advantage of facilitating a strategic collaboration between the higher education and industrial dynamics in Nigeria; in terms of connecting the dots between theoretical and practical realignment to rejuvenate the workplace for national development. The trajectory of the Students’ Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES) is also lamentably stalled due to the total lack of synergy between students inchoate theoretical learning and workplace demands. 

 

So, while the incoming administration crucially needs to start mapping the policy framework for a proactive education reform that will connect learning and training to human capital development, at another fundamental level, there is also the critical imperative of land reform as part of the development reflection. Here, land reform relates to leveraging land and agriculture as development complements for rejigging job creation and youth employment. This calls for the meeting of governance and constitutional reforms to facilitate land reform as a legitimate means of aggregating and expanding the means of production that Nigeria needs to achieve economic growth. The focus of this governance and constitutional alignment is the repeal of the Land Use Act of 1978. This has an immediate relevance of freeing up land use in ways that aggregate it for economic development. The Act contradicts all the critical norms of land use for economic growth anywhere on the globe. And its logic is only due to the lopsided unitary federalism that is suffocating developmental initiatives. Whereas land is supposed to belong to local communities in terms of customary and legal dynamics, Nigeria’s anomalous federalism gives all lands to the Nigerian government. And this becomes an immediate constraint on the socioeconomic dynamics of national development.    

    

It not only undermines the subsidiarity principle that engineers the grassroots as the context for a people-centered development initiative, it also fundamentally ties landholding to the tough and debilitating environment of doing business in Nigeria. Unfortunately, however, when farmers—the fulcrum of any agricultural resurgence—fails to hold the titles to the lands they farm, then the agricultural unbundling will be affected in ways that prevent their being coupled to the governance reform to activate development. More important still, as Hernando de Soto argues, in most third world countries, land and other critical resources for development are held in “defective forms”. In other words, “houses built on land whose ownership rights are not adequately recorded, unincorporated businesses with undefined liability, industries located where financiers and investors cannot see them.” The problem of this observation for farmers and agricultural investors in Nigeria is therefore that any land that is not properly documented cannot be capitalized for investment and national development. 

 

We then turn back full circle back to the governance challenge of the ease of doing business in Nigeria that links landholding to the surveying and regularizing land use for investment purpose. Nigeria needs a land development policy, with an institutional framework, that frees up land use for investment and development purposes. But in the long run, the land reform must be insinuated into a broader and more comprehensive local government/governance reform that will tap into the larger objective of restructuring of Nigeria’s federalism and all its debilitations. At this point, we have a confluence of reform fundaments—democratic governance, national development, local governance, federalism and education. And they are all intertwined into a policy framework that the next administration must be willing and politically courageous to hold together. Federalism speaks to a local government/governance imperative that instigates grassroots development founded on social capital and the subsidiarity principle. When development is genuinely taken to be about the people, then its dynamics must emanate from below, and within a rural and local governance context that unbundles the growth possibilities that could radiate democratic governance. This includes the traditional and informal apprenticeship system and the non-formal vocational training that could complement the formal educational training for the harnessing of Nigeria’s human capital for development. 

 

The Igbo apprenticeship system is a good case in point. This singular example brings to the fore how a local innovation can serve as the nexus for developmental policymaking. It is an educational initiative that brings a solid entrepreneurial spirit into the development equation. This provides a leeway for undermining the vicious cycle of unemployment, while also redirecting focus away from the government as the sole provider of everything. And this is just one example, among many, of how the government can harness the social capital and subsidiarity represented in the local government arrangement that has already been, to all intents and purposes, excised from the federal dynamics and the framework of stultifying centralization. 

 

The next government has a lot on its plate already. And what must be done must be dictated by the agonies of Nigerians who have had to suffer too much for the simple fact of being born into a country that lacks developmental leadership. The flash point of the urgent policy intelligence and direction are already clearly outlined in painful reliefs in the lives of Nigerians. Unemployment is not something that can be subject to bad politics that kills Nigerians. This is the politics that past governments have played. The next government cannot afford to do the same.      

 .  Olaopa is a retired Federal Permanent Secretary, and Professor, National Institute For Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), Kuru, Jos. tolaopa2003@gmail.com

 

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Readers’ Showers Of Encouragement

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Readers’ Showers Of Encouragement

By Tony Afejuku
It is time for me to wake up in the New Year in my waking mind to catch the pictures of the unseen and seen inhabitants who help to make this column the stuff of dreams. These inhabitants are my readers whose words see me any time they come to me or are called up by music of words, showers of encouragement, that help to seize and define the column.
My readers help me to see and feel the beauty and truth, ever bright, ever potent, ever lovely, in the things I set my mind to all the times it tip-toes to the rosy sky with its lure of some-thingness. I quote now select readers:

On ASUU and the “conquistadors.”
Professor Ademola Da Sylva
TA, our TA! Your resilience is amazing, your uncommon focused energy and optimism have continued, so far, to serve as essential fuel that keeps the ASUU collective struggle steadily on course, and very assuredly to the expected end. There are tricksters and there are tricksters: when a trickster-character attempts to make a society worse than he meets it, the trickster always ends up unwittingly, burning its own boat! Ditto the Speaker of HoR under reference, a chief trickster indeed, and his current ruling Party. No country’s leadership treats its academics this shabbily and disdainfully with impunity without serious short-term and long-term repercussions. Any further delay on the part of the society in taking decisive actions against these clowns and self-styled “conquistadors” could lead to a permanent and further irreparable damage to Nigerians’ warped psyche, and any meaningful development in the country. TA, the payback time is surely nigh. Cheers.

Professor Ademola Da Sylva
TA, our TA, ageless and timeless! When this current ASUU struggle shall be over, predictably victoriously, and hopefully pretty soon, either the principalities in the current government like it, or not, your adorable portrait, and name written in bold gold, shall surely adorn a conspicuous place in the nation’s Hall of Fame!; but the tricksters, interlopers, who constitute themselves, lately into a bunch of elitist-Boko Haramists, shall similarly have their names in the nation’s Hall of Shame! Kudos for an essay well thought out, and lucidly crafted! My 2 Kobo appreciation! Cheers.

Professor Ibrahim Bello-Kano
Ha! Ha! Ha! You nailed the imbeciles once more. You’re quietly gathering a reputation as the Jonathan Swift of terrorist academic journalism or is it you as the columnist-academic-Professor terrorist? A student of mine said sometime ago that he would soon begin imitating your writing style. I told him in response that he should wait until he has mastered the language well enough. It’s not easy for a PG student to imitate a Professor!

Anonymous Reader
Dear Mr. Afejuku, good morning. I am always eager to read your write ups. You are among the three highly rated journalists in this country. I have learnt so much from you in both content and form. I am an Associate Professor in the Arts Faculty in UNICAL. Keep feeding our brains and minds with your grip of the language, your knowledge and your expertise in journalism. God bless you immeasurably. The unfortunate thing is that you are speaking to minds that are depraved and have been inhabited by demons. Demons know nothing but wickedness and oppression. However, there’s always a day of reckoning, where the chicken will always come home to roost. Thank you profusely, Sir. Accept the expression of my esteemed regards. Have a useful and fruitful week ahead, while I await your next write up, Sir.

READ ALSO: Pele: World King Of Football Had Warri Ancestry

A Reader from the Diaspora
Good afternoon, my dear Brother. Thanks for your usually brilliant piece. It is obvious that the intent of the Buhari administration is to drop the ASUU file for its successor. Perhaps a bilateral conversion with each of the leading presidential candidates should be considered. Have a Blessed day and weekend.

Anonymous Reader
Good morning, Sir. I appreciate your thoughtful article on the trickster beggars, and I love the inclusion of the allegories from the erstwhile FIFA World Cup, where professionals behaved like true professionals, upholding the integrity of the game by employing the best human and electronic resources to get the best out of the game. In our national climate, the different interest groups and personages in government and not in government, who begged ASUU to call off or suspend the strike, suddenly went mute. Even press and media personages involved in the begging charade are now fully engrossed in the flimsy stories of distraction created by the CBN sector and the Naira. The courts, which were employed by the FGN to force the lecturers to pick up their chalk by force, have ceased from advocating for the truth regarding the debilitating decay in the educational segment. A handful of those columnists, like you, who maintained a respectful distance and wrote about it truthfully, decently, genuinely, are now vindicated for writing objectively and absorbingly about the subject of begging and taking a stand. CONUA or whatever the alleged traitors of academics are called, are allowing themselves to be used to be playing a nauseating game against their mother union and colleagues.
SSANU members did not get their due for listening to the beggars. Now we are all waiting… Waiting… waiting…, while the present administration prepares for their swan song by inflicting financial pains on the populace with un-thoughtful money policies.

On Pele: World King of Football
Professor Owojecho Omoha:
Were you there at the invention moments of capture theory? You theorize the admiration of King Pele to recapture the attention of the world on coach Izilien. This vibrancy of your memory lives in poets, and only poets memorably work passionately to capture the attention of readers, the way you do, Afejuku. The year has begun with your poetry. Hold further passionate lyrics till you capture the attention of the world on Nigeria, when Coach Izilien and the rest of us shall dance gracefully turning backs on the criminals in February. This happiness makes greater sense, when you shall turn the attention of the world on Nigerians who survive the dark years in our history.

On Pele’s Warri ancestry
Professor Owojecho Omoha
A true African writer must be traditional in spite of the burden of modernity, from the ancestry, and again, back to the traditions that we know. This piece scores high on both points.

Suyi Ayodele
Passion and passionate passion! Now to our Waffi enclave. Pele was a Waffi Boy? This is a bad suspense and only a poet does that! I have started counting the day, to next Friday! Good morning, Sir.

Suyi Ayodele (On Pele’s Warri ancestry)
Nobody, I repeat, nobody can dispute those revelations. I sat in divination sessions with my late uncle. Reading this piece brought back graphic images of those times. The Ifa priest was right, is right and will eternally be right. This is one of your best I have ever read. How did we abandon that plain religion, IFA? And about your younger brother, pity that you folks did not do what Ifa prescribed. It is always like that with Ifa, the Atori Eni ti o suhan se (The repairer of humanity). I would have personally ‘bewitched’ you if you have not written this! VINTAGE AFEJUKU!!!!!

READ ALSO: Pele: Coach Izilien Revises His Memory

Professor Olu Obafemi (On Pele’s Warri ancestry)
This is a very fascinating treatise, especially because of its crisscross transcendent of the abstractive ineffable to the physical/archaeological referents. The narrative’s rhetorical strategy is suspenseful with the capacity to provoke insatiable yearnings for the remit of the story. These days Africans in the Diaspora are Evoking DNA identity/Descent retrieval. Unfortunately, Pele has left.

Professor Sony Awhefeada (On Pele’s Warri Ancestry)
This is thoughtful, enriching and instructive. I wish you published this when Pele was alive he would have come home. And how is your younger brother now? I am really moved.

Nonso, Owerri resident (On Pele’s Warri ancestry)
Good evening, Afejuku. I am totally intrigued by your write up on Pele’s Warri ancestry. I am enchanted with the eloquence of your pen that glides through the white sheet of paper and the attendant satisfaction that gladdened my heart to have stumbled upon this great literary work. Allow me to say that the article is un-putdown-able and the accuracy of the Divine revelation of the Ifa Priest should be announced to the world. Who knows? Or may-be Pele’s offspring may be interested in knowing the tree they were carved from … Thank you for the great work.

Professor Dan Chima Amadi (On Pele’s Warri ancestry)
Good, good historical touch. I could not stop.

Roland Uyimulam Aleshi, from Calabar (On Pele’s Warri ancestry)
Greetings, Mr. Afejuku, I read your well researched write-up on Pele’s Warri ancestry. You impressed me a lot with useful information and updates on Pele’s Warri ancestry ties. Well done.

READ ALSO: On Pele’s Warri Ancestry

Professor Mabel Evwierhoma (On Pele’s Warri ancestry)
I agree (from personal experience) that the art of divination is a means of finding out deep truths. We could know more, from such researches, but how can they be untainted by the factors of selectivity and monetary inducements? – May we know that which will not lead to perdition.

What do I say other than to thank my readers and readers, listed and un-listed, whose words charm me beyond any measurable afflatus? My nib gives applause to your lovely music of words – whose peroration I charm myself to let be.
Afejuku can be reached via 08055213059.

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