My father told me the story of a green field, where the horses and eagles lived and made a coat for their arms, resigning from war and just recovering from the brisk hold of slavery, they called it colonialism. Where the people sit daily counting their days without a worth for it. Where the history of truth and identity is far and the concept of peace and justice remained a dream. I remember my father saying that we live for the fun of living, because we did rather take one step at a time or even go slow like the traffic on our roads. He told me, yes he called me and said “son, those guys that sit on the rocks of Aso over there; they talk to us like we have no trust in ourselves, like the little cups of rice and the table spoon of salt they share would feed us for eternity. He said “they told us also, of stories that made our hearts melt like ice under the sun but it was all a Mirage, a chase to what end? And now we have suddenly become the muse for their sticky kleptomaniac fingers…” He even said those days, the days when a son followed his father’s steps was over. He said its over ’cause oil has covered the water bed of our farm and daily we cry for our fishes die and now our sons have began to rush for diamonds they have forgotten their baits and their hooks. “What a shame these Aso rock guys have brought on us!” He cried.
But now I age, and my thoughts are mine, then I review the calls of my father and they sound like none of quality. Now I see the light and I can see the beam of beauty he refused to see. They, our fathers, they refuse to see this beauty because they chose to point a finger at anyone while four others are facing us. It takes two to tango but all of us to make a night club fun. We share in the flaws so let go of the leaders’ collar. Our papa and mama said the government is bad when papa chose paying owó àjo (daily thrift) over his tax and mama chooses “aso-ebi” (party cloth) over chinchini public school due that would secure our future. Young Dickson ignores the undignified practice of the yahoo boy in his backyard and the cleric that made the money fast and points at the centre building of Abuja calling it dark. Oh? Really? My youthful reader blame Dickson? When the cursed first syllable of his name is the most prominent in their ears and thus the only attractive thing they’ve read so far… We ignore the parks, full of several righteous sinners. We ignore how the SHE we used to find on the street has gone executive and now works as a ‘marketer’, everybody’s wife (aya wa). Rage and violence over peace, religious war over religious practice, and we all say our various practices are not just religions but way of life. I better then stand amidst than live a riot.
When would that green field my father talked about grow you ask? When we stop seeing d blind spots of d chief farmer and see the farm we choose to fence round and call a compound and go back to our hoe. When we quit burning and cutting the trees that would shield us from the warming globe. When we quit complaining and seek what we can do to make it all work. When we see what we should have seen as far back as when the blind Bathlomew received his sight- the beauty within. When we stop accusing our leaders of the corruption we are all pregnant of and agree on one thing ‘we can still make it right’. When we join our leaders and say ‘together we shall fight!’. When we see the future with Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and help him to help us get there. When we start being what and who we should be! True Nigerians! So, Arise O’ Compatriots and obey Nigeria’s call.
Article contributed by: AROWOSHOLA OLUWAFEMI JOHN