Happy Mothers’ Day, mothers
Mother comes along life’s miles,
Bringing time’s baggages along.
All her scars earn proud smiles,
As her priorities pile and age on
Happy Mothers’ Day, mothers
Mother comes along life’s miles,
Bringing time’s baggages along.
All her scars earn proud smiles,
As her priorities pile and age on
By Ahmed Yahaya Joe
These are Wagyu cattle from which the most expensive beef in world comes from in Japan.
They are arguably the most pampered of domesticated animals, because their daily routine consists of regular massages, beer drinking, baths and listening to relaxing music.
It is believed by herdsmen over there, such delicate care helps to keep the highly priced beef known as “Kobe” so tender.
Meanwhile, other cattle, in you know where, are raised against the backdrop of Rat-ta-ta music of AK 47 gunfire.
With more civilized herdsmen, Denmark is not left out as
a group of students of the Scandinavian School of Cello dropped by to perform Tchaikovsky’s “Pezzo Capriccioso” to the delight of a herd of classical music loving cows.
Do not ask me if the following day milk production reached all time high. It did!
Meanwhile, over here the Rat-ta-ta…..Kwantinues.
Simply put –
Garbage in, Garbage out!
By Ahmed Yahaya Joe
Sir Hanns Vischer
As they say; “An Englishman’s home is his castle.” Sir Hanns Vischer, was an agent of His Majesty’s Secret Intelligence Service in Nigeria. He was referred to as “Dan Hausa” due to his mastery of the Hausa language which he helped in standardizing. He was also prolific in Arabic, Fulfulde and Kanuri in addition to Greek, French and German. Based in Kano from 1907 to 1919, his cover was head of the Education Department.
Gidan Dan Hausa, now a national monument was his official residence. The building had being in existence for about a hundred years before Kano was conquered by the British in 1903. It had previously served as the base of the overseer of the royal farming plantation outside the ancient city walls known as Rumada. Vischer rebuilt it from scratch making improvements in 1907.
The spymaster first came to Nigeria in 1901 and was based in Lokoja before he was reassigned to Maiduguri in 1903. By 1906, he crossed the Sahara Desert. He recounted his journey in a 1911 book entitled; “Across the Sahara from Tripoli to Borno” Another book he wrote is; “Rules for Hausa Spelling” printed in 1912.
Kano was crucial to the British in two aspects. First, in creating an elite that would oppose national independence. Second, it was a crucial cross roads in monitoring Francophone territories and the German colony of Kamerun.
According the historian, Dr. Yusuf Bala Usman;
“The Hausa-speaking people, not only do they have dialects, which were barely mutually intelligible, but they have no tradition of a common origin.” Hausa as spoken and written today was therefore a British project. Vischer was one of the arrow heads.
Vischer’s residence also served as a school for sons of emirs from all over the North. With his wife who joined him in 1912, the couple moulded the young aristocrats teaching them how to read and write in English and Ajami (Arabic in Roman script) The school started with 30 pupils in 1909. Their hostel was within the Nasarawa palace of Kano emirate nearby.
Enrollment increased to over 200 princes by 1913 from the 11 provinces of the Northern Protectorate. It produced the first Western educated elites in the North that eventually became the first members of the House of Chiefs and Assembly both in Kaduna. Vischer’s school relocated becoming Katsina College in 1921, which is now Barewa College in Zaria.
The Vischers had two children at Gidan Dan Hausa. Their photographs including that of their house maid still adorn the main living room of the historic house to date.
The British did not come to the colonial contours of what became Nigeria for sightseeing – they came to plunder.
To pull that off they needed to apply “divide et impera” – divide and rule. They ensured no level of national consciousness could develop eventually preparing us for national independence without economic freedom.
The likes of Sir Vischer were instrumental to Pax Britannica. Such people are described as “capax imperii” – capable of ruling an empire by understanding and study of languages;
“One had only to watch him in his daily avocations in those early days to realize how completely at home he was with every class of society—whether he was engaged in grave deliberations with emirs, viziers and other high personages of the ruling hierarchy, or whether he was chaffing the hucksters at the market stalls as he rode through Kano city. No less revealing was it to see him in his own home pick up a native drum and, squatting on the floor, croon local Hausa songs to his own accompaniment. So inimitably did he do it that, if he had been hidden behind a screen, one would have said that an African musician had been engaged to entertain his guests”
At Gidan Dan Hausa, Vischer reorganized traditional Hausa building materials of “Tubali” and “Azara” by creatively using “Chafe” for plaster and “Makuba” for relieve motifs retaining “Zankwaye” (the horns at the top) and “Dakali” (the horizontal platform at the base)
Vischer used local labor sourced within the ancient city of Kano from “Unguwan Gini”
The original inhabitants of Kano are the “Abagawa” of the Nok Civilization. The “Wangara” from present-day Mali conquered and incorporated Kano into the Songhai Empire. Eventually the Habe held sway before the Hausanization process that followed the formation of the Sokoto Caliphate.
It has been the southern entrepôt of the Trans Saharan trade for millennia. Arabs and Tuaregs have been part of Kano’s mosaic for centuries.
It provided the perfect cover for Sir Hanns Vischer, a spymaster par excellence according to Nigel West in; Historical Dictionary of World War I Intelligence (2014)
It is more than a shade easier for a girl to be corrupted sexually, than it is for a boy. A girl is naturally more endowed with the implements to lean back on and conveniently make a living off in the dark, more than her male counterpart.
Besides, her clients are naturally conditioned to pour in, in droves. Most times, the girls are culturally pressured to play along when economically tasked. It is a merry go round legacy they inherit and grow up to bequeath to their successors.
When they are hounded out by circumstances, covered and wrapped up in the uncertainty’s mist, they avert the gaze of morality and succumb, expectantly. The spurious infallible laws of most customs appear to be in one long corroboration mode with nature to shortchange the woman.
While the woman cannot fathom the unending impertinence to the legality of her fight, she recognizes them easily. To some degree, this dependency of hers is harnessed for her, such that she perceives them as right. She feels as virtuous as compelled.
On the other hand, the mans indignant antecedents are never realigning their reliability. Even when the woman excels and is allowed to glut, she endlessly feels more of a consultant than a senior employee in this living enterprise. It isn’t an issue of semantics or shades, it is purely double standards by nature. It is as simplistic as that. It never ceases, even when possibilities are marginally upped or proclaimed.
Even when the possibilities that abound for her are marginally upped or proclaimed and redeemed, they continually humiliate her painstaking efforts still. But the woman is nevertheless passionate in her continuous efforts, never abandoning her tedious trials.
Yet at the peak of her fiercely gotten triumphs, her rich tapestry would still feel like her man’s discarded rags. It feels destined that men will manage to mount the wild cow of the woman’s fears and boldly grab her swaying horns into submission.
The irony of it all is, at the right time for her to make a decision to split open his dominance, she never actually does. Instead, obsessed by her peculiarity, she omits to be steadfast, prune her potentials, squint naturally, not wink pretentiously. His sun shines on as her eclipsed moon and leaves no traces again.
As far as life is concerned, the sole weapon nature endowed her with is submerged within her and confined to her thoughts only. The very core of her difficulty is a theorem nature had solved long ago, which time and man hadn’t yet changed, though they never don’t stop trying.
The man cannot ever emotionally harm himself with pictures of the woman he conjures up his mind. It is only this folly he might choose to try to cringe from, he is either hooked up or not. His broken heart is misinterpreted to atone nothing and to wrestle away from his dominance, the undercut tactics the woman can resort to and rely on; tends to neglect the fact that it cant quench the thirst it slakes.
The woman remains the smelling monstrous carcass in the mans dreams. He only needs to wake up every morning and go on with his life. She is only an eye witness to his dreams and cannot step into his living world, unless he decides to enroll her. The turbulence that is her apprehension for some control gathers momentum to be slighted.
The key central delight the woman enjoys the most for all time is her procreation grant, and only because the natural trepidation of time uses her with it. Even then the consternation involved in bringing forth a physical marvel someone else had sired inside her, is apathetic. It is like a badly crippled spider delighting on the spoils provided by another spiders cobwebs. She endlessly baffles at how easily her active role is truncated. The passive contribution of the man hinders the glory of her pain.
Unclouded by the impersonation of her man, in the flurried act of birth, the fierce heat of subtle neglect by tradition always insults her ultimately. The man ever lives on, strutting along in accepted honour for just being a cameo of sorts. While the woman can merely dramatize her emotions, still only skeptical whether she is honoured or not, abhorred or exalted. She never really knows and can tell quite little.
The diatribe lingers, intruding incessantly on her real position as the harbinger of life and love. She has to rely on this bias acceptance which she is infinitely chastised and castigated for. It is perplexing how the eccentricity of the situation belittles her, when it should celebrate her. But there is an eternal good in all this, granted that this portrayal seduced her. It understandably ought to make her deficient of undying love. It would make anyone else inescapably furious. Being so indulged in this solitary abstraction is quite punitively irritable. Dot on the spot, it scotches logic with tentative and doubtless ease. Still well acquainted with not just insinuated, outrageous accusation of it being a mere tool and not the worker, she remains doggedly devoted.
She exhibits an earnest and distilled shine of love and extraordinary dedication. Trembling with genuine affection she actually reinforces her floundering faith in her man, lavish him with some more of her branded selfless love. The spontaneity of which is not tarnished with any misplaced aggression on her part. The calculated belittling of her is conspicuous. But the conviction of all this natural, as well as artificially crafted cruelty notwithstanding, it triggers off what become a bloom of mild beautiful eruption.
Regardless of whether the woman is treasured and receives a big bequest, she is fascinated by her masculine distractor. Her dedication may stumble and still it deepens into an overall vital part of the mans wellbeing. She delved into living this way fully, only hesitating to sparingly investigate a partner. Whether she unearths a chunk of coal or a gold nugget, is inconsequential to her. She gives the man his ratcheting room, to make up his mind if he would harm or protect her and her interests. Rather than dawdle about, wondering which kind of person he will be, she decides which kind of person she is.
By Taiwo Sanni
Tell my mother I was unarmed.
Tell my father I had the flag in my hands when I was shot.
Tell the unborn Generation that I died singing the national anthem.
Tell the cowards who shot me that my spirit lives on in the life of every good Nigerian youth.
Tell the government that they shot my body but not my spirit.
Tell the world I died for freedom like many good people before me.
I regret nothing, for I have done what my father’s, mother’s, uncle’s and aunt’s couldn’t do out of fear. Let God judge me, I am only sorry for the pain of leaving you this early.
My prints will forever remain in the sands of history for I have done my time based on the path I chose freely & willingly.
Now that my torment in Nigeria is over, please lay me to rest on mother earth where you all will join me in due time, take my voice and hand it over to the next good youth whom I hope by Gods Almighty grace will benefit a better Nation.
For I know that freedom is coming, yes freedom will come tomorrow.
“The trouble with Nigeria is simply and squarely a failure of leadership. There is nothing basically wrong with the Nigerian character. There is nothing wrong with the Nigerian land or climate or water or air or anything else. The Nigerian problem is the unwillingness or inability of its leaders to rise to the responsibility, to the challenge of personal example which are the hallmarks of true leadership………..
“One of the commonest manifestations of under-development is a tendency among the ruling elite to live in a world of make-believe and unrealistic expectations. This is the cargo cult mentality that anthropologists sometimes speak about – a belief by backward people that someday, without any exertion whatsoever on their own part, a fairy ship will dock in their harbour laden with every goody they have always dreamed of possessing………
“In spite of conventional opinion Nigeria has been less than fortunate in its leadership. A basic element of this misfortune is the seminal absence of intellectual rigour in the political thought of our founding fathers – a tendency to pious materialistic woolliness and self-centred pedestrianism…………..
“But whereas tribalism might win enough votes to install a reactionary jingoist in a tribal ghetto, the cult of mediocrity will bring the wheels of modernization grinding to a halt throughout the land.
Unlucky is the country where indiscipline is seen by ordinary people as the prerogative of the high and might. For, by the same token, discipline will be seen as a penalty which the rank and file must pay for their powerlessness………
“My frank and honest opinion is that anybody who can say that corruption in Nigeria has not yet become alarming is either a fool, a crook or else does not live in this country”
– Chinua Acbebe (1983)
Culled from Ahmed Yahaya Joe on Facebook
By Mohammed Babafari (on Facebook)
It’s exactly 6 years since Muammar Gadaffi was assassinated!
Muamar Gaddafi’s Prophecies:
“I will not go into exile to any foreign country. I was born here in Libya, and I will die here. This country was a dessert, and I turned it into a forest, where everything can grow.
“No one Love this land more more than its citizens. If Europe and America tells you that they love you, be careful. They love the wealth of your land. The oil and not the people. They are helping you to fight against me but, it will be more wise for you to fight against them because they are fighting against your future and progress.
“My message to you the people of Libya is, they are helping you to kill me but you will pay the price because you will suffer. And my message to you America and Europe is, you will kill me, but be ready to fight a never ending TERRORISM.
“Before you realise your ignorance, terrorists will be hitting you at your doorstep.”
COL. GADDAFI’S IMPACT IN LIBYA:
1. There is no electricity bill in Libya, electricity is free for all its citizens.
2. There is no interest on loans, banks in Libya are state-owned and loans given to all its citizens are at a 0% interest by law.
3. Home is considered a human right in Libya. Gaddafi vowed that his parents would not get a house until everyone in Libya had a home.
4. All newlyweds in Libya receive $60,000 Dinars (US$50,000) from the government to buy their first apartment.
5. Education and medical treatments are free in Libya. Before Gaddafi, only 25% of Libyans were literates. Today, the figure stands at 83%.
6. Libyans taking up farming as a career, they received farm land, a farming house, equipment, seeds and livestock to kick- start their farms – all for free.
7. If Libyans cannot find the education or medical facilities they needed in Libya, the government funded them to go abroad for it.
8. In Gaddafi’s Libya, if a Libyan buys a car, the government subsidized 50% of the price.
9. The price of petrol in Libya is $0. 14 per liter.
10. Libya has no external debt and its reserves amount to $150 billion – now frozen globally.
11. If a Libyan is unable to get employment after graduation, the state would pay the average salary of the profession as if he or she is employed until employment is found.
12. A portion of Libyan oil sale is credited directly to the bank accounts of all Libyan citizens.
13. A mother who gave birth to a child under Gaddafi, received US $5,000 as child benefit upfront.
14. 40 loaves of bread in Libya costs $ 0.15
15. 25% of Libyans have a university degree
16. Gaddafi carried out the world’s largest irrigation project, known as the Great Man- Made River Project, to make water readily available throughout the desert country.
If this is called “Dictatorship”, I wonder what type of Leadership Democrats have!!
Twenty years today we lost our father and we suddenly aged beyond our ages.
Baba, mutuwa na da wuya?
Mun amince duniyar ka da wuya.
Father, is it hard to die?
We acknowledge the hassles of your world.
With life’s wards always roams a lie;
We all are reproductions of its mould.
Choking in the presence of its grip,
The inscrutable crux not familiarized.
Do we sit out the stages of its trip,
Like your peaceful love that wasn’t recognized?
From the weep the baby wails
To the whip’s lashes life hails,
These tastes we own and inherit.
Say oh father, is there better to merit?
Rest in peace Baba. We miss you so much, more now than ever.
THE POET IN THE POEM
A short story in honour of the anniversary of this Queen of England
1st February 1992
Dear Mrs Queen,
My mama tells me you will not get to read this letter of mine, but she suggested I made it very brief all the same.
I wish to prove her wrong, so please write back and say you got my letter. I promise to be your pen pal if you do.
14th February, 1992.
Dear Miss King,
We got your letter and we were quite glad to read from you. We are sure this letter will make your mother eat her words and apologise to you.
We will love to be your pen pal, so do please write us again and tell us about yourself, your family and your friends, your home and your country too.
We have very few real friends ourselves, and only get to meet mostly boring people who do not know how painful it is to keep smiling everyday of the year; especially if we do not really feel like it most of the time.
We are looking forward to your next letter. We hope you will write us very soon. Do please write your name on the top left corner of the face of the envelope your letter will be in. This will help us locate and identify your letter quickly.
1st March 1992
Dear Mrs Queen,
My mum is seated beside me as I write you this letter and she is beyond herself with wonder. She gave me thirty naira to buy the stamps for this letter and has promised to correct all the mistakes I make in my letters to you. She sends her regards.
I was born on 15th April, 1980; which I’m told is a Tuesday. I’m twelve years old and I’m too short for my age. I like blue, sweets, cakes, cats, bicycles, comics and I am in class five. My first name is Titi but I love being called Miss King. I have one brother, he doesn’t have many teeth now though. He lost most of them somehow. He is still only six.
Daddy and Mummy are married. Daddy is a lawyer and mummy is everything else. She drives us to school and back, cooks, washes, cleans and even does most of the talking too. My friends are many but I’ll not tell you about them. You see, I’m punishing them for not believing I’m your pen pal.
I live in Northern Nigeria. They are always burning houses here. I live in Tudun wada. They are always shouting out of loud speakers in Tudun wada. My country is very big and we have so many states, but I do not know all of them now. Daddy says I should not bother to learn the names of the new state governors because they will change them again very soon.
I am of the country’s western Yoruba tribe. Last time when there was trouble we went to stay with my grand mum in Ibadan. When you write me, please tell me about London. Is it true that the people in London do not wear wristwatches because there is a big clock in the sky? My paper is finishing and I must stop now. Please write me soon.
14th March, 1992.
Dear Miss King,
We can understand your mother’s excitement and the disbelief in your friends’ attitude. It is not always that people so different, like you and we become pen pals.
We were very interested in what you had to say about your country, your home, your family and yourself. We assure you that we are not as tall as our age either!
It is easy to notice how you made your country appear rather unpleasant. We wonder, is it really? Do you always have trouble in your country? What kind of trouble do you usually have? Are you always is some sort of danger in these times of trouble? We do love to know more.
We do love to tell you about London. London is our very big capital city. It is very old in a quite modern sort of way. It is noisy in most parts of the larger city and that is true for most times of the days of the week and all year round too. It has lots of people living in it from all parts of the world.
We do not know about people in London not wearing wristwatches because of a ‘big clock in the sky’. We do know that there is an old big clock on a tower called BEN, which can be seen (and heard) from many places in London. The people we are allowed to see always have wristwatches on, but then we suppose they always dress themselves up rather well, to meet us.
We would be delighted if you will keep on writing us. Do not forget to write your name on the top left corner of the face of the envelope that your letter will be in. It makes it much easier for us to locate and identify your letter from the hundreds we receive everyday. Our regards to all you love.
25th March 1992
Dear Mrs Queen,
Daddy bought me a new writing pad today and mum got me some more envelopes and stamps. So as you can see, I will never stop writing you until I die. I was glad to hear about London and BEN. Daddy showed me a picture of BEN. He says it also has some kind of bell. You make London sound interesting. I will love to visit it some day.
I did not wish to make my country sound so unpleasant but it is quite hard to write anything about my country without making it sound so. I know that there is always some kind of trouble everywhere else; it is human. Actually, I borrowed that last bit from my daddy.
My country is one; at least it appears to be. But even the number ‘one’ has its fractions, so my country also has its ‘factions’. These factions know they must agree, yet they do not agree always just like the fractions in the number ‘one’ don’t agree often, most of the time. I hope you understand all that numbers bit; I am not so good in arithmetic. Neither are most of the factions in my country, it would appear.
The trouble is mainly that of superiority. Each faction claims to be more important than all the others. Religion, population, tribe, politics, literacy and commerce are used as a yardstick to measure and establish the superior faction. It is a sort of social mathematics. This affects the weak oneness that we have amongst all of us and always causes lots of trouble.
At times of trouble, it is dangerous to stay on in the opposing faction’s town. They may burn down your property and kill you too, if you don’t run away. Daddy always makes sure we run away in good time when our neighbours are our current opposing faction, or there is a hint of any trouble.
My country is a beautiful place. There are many tribes and people of very different customs and religions. I think we are together because we had no choice. Daddy said YOU gave us no choice, but he didn’t sound sure. It is late and I must go to bed now. Mummy is breathing down my neck; after making me write most of her own stuffs too. Please write me soon.
1st July, 1992.
I’m Titi King’s mother. I must apologise on her behalf for her inability to reply your letters. In fact, I just discovered the last two letters and birthday card you sent her. You see, we were away in Ibadan with Titi’s grand parents. There was an ethnical and religious uprising in the town we reside in.
It started on a Sunday evening. Titi’s father and I were away, visiting friends in another part of town. Only Titi, her younger brother and our maid were left in our flat. The maid got out with Titi’s younger brother but Titi was burnt down with the flat by a mob and we lost her so painfully.
I am sure she would want you to know that you had made the last three months of her life so wonderful. Thank you so much for this and God bless you.
10th May, 1992.
Dear Mrs King,
We are so sorry.
I am so, so sorry.
“How do I tell how you feel,
Sitting on this height’s will?
Personal love trapped within,
Expectations curbing peace in.”
“I can easily say your state,
As only a child truly taste.
For love within is personal,
Our judges are then eternal.”