“I have a vision of a justice system which is simple, fast, efficient, effective and responsive to the needs and yearnings of the citizenry.”

– Hon Justice Dahiru Musdapher CJN.

One thing is certain; the former CJN’s vision is not a reality. Nigeria’s judicial system is so slow that it takes an average of 6 years for criminal proceedings to come to a successful close. This time can be further prolonged depending on the caliber of lawyers involved, the status of the accused and the nature of the offense charged. Ten years ago, the Central Bank of Nigeria’s deep assessment exercise of the country’s banks exposed large scale fraud committed by various CEO’s. Five of them were charged for fraud and since then, only one has been successfully prosecuted. The other cases have been frozen in time, courtesy of an unending cycle of dismissals, appeals, and retrials. Civil procedures are no better, and many families including mine have suffered injustice from judicial sluggishness.

“Justice delayed is justice denied”. The famous statement by William Gladstone proves true decades after its pronouncement. Thankfully, with the help of academic proficiency, I have a few recommendations to salvage this dire situation. The first is a series of judicial reforms, the kind that places limitations on loopholes, such as preliminary objections, usually exploited by lawyers in proceedings. Also, the full adoption of technology would fast-track the judicial system. An example of such adoption could be a policy, encouraging the filing of court processes electronically. Judicial officers should be educated on the benefits of efficient case flow management and judicial corruption should be tackled. These and many more positive innovations, if applied tenaciously will inevitably lead to the fulfillment of the learned CJN’s prophecy.

– Isibor Kelvin Nnamdi



Narrative of a sluggard

I had a long serious conversation with a lazy man today. True story! I summoned courage gathered strength, and got off my bed. I managed to make it to the couch; there was no stopping me now. I took a tour around the couch, relishing in its cool warmth, before making it to the dressing table. Enjoy the story! Don’t ask me why I have a dressing table. There are worse things than being a finical narcissist. Looking right into the mirror, my conversation with this very wise but lazy man began.

You see, the history of laziness goes back a few centuries; nay millennia. It is said that there was a time of hardship. This hardship created strong hardworking men who in turn created peace and repose. This peace went on to create lazy men who in turn created hardship. It is believed that this coarse cycle continues till this day. This is the story you know. This story is false. Answer me this; which lazy man would want to create hardship, the very thing he doesn’t thrive in? In truth, this story was fabricated by the potentates to keep people strong in order to fight their wars. Hardworking men love hard times because it enables them prey on the weakness of the feeble majority. Lazy men love peace because they don’t have the strength to fight wars. This is the truth! The reality of this world! Wise sages have kept mute, because they would rather sip rosé, or get inebriated on special vegetables while playing Call of Duty Black Ops on the latest  Play Station, than go to war over fiat notes and shining rocks. You see, in the end, all is vanity.

So far as this tiny blue world is concerned, money is everything. Thus the words of rich men mean everything to everybody. No matter, wealth is on our side; “I would always choose a lazy person to do a difficult job, because he will find an easy way to do it” – BILL GATES. There, you have it! Even the no 1 pillar of success on Earth and Mars is a proponent of laziness. How ironical is that! For those who think hard work is everything: good luck getting into Microsoft. A lot of great inventions out there, where inspired by lazy thoughts. Lech Walesa opined “I’m Lazy. But it’s the lazy people who invented the wheel and the bicycle because they didn’t like carrying things”. We didn’t like doing it, so we made machines to do it. We used birds; because we didn’t like going long distances, just to deliver messages. The birds went rogue, like we did God, so we made telephones. Let’s pray God doesn’t make something else in our stead. We made elevators; we got tired of using the stairs. Rats infested our homes and our courageous cousins caught them one by one, to the admiration of all. We were too lazy to get our hands dirty so we thought of another way to catch them. Gbam! Just like that! Rat traps! You’re welcome! It became a drag to sought out traitors who refused to follow back on social media, so the unfollow app was devised. Tell me how many souls have been saved by hearing the word through speakers that we made? Even God is proud. It goes without saying, the list is endless.

“Shut up you disrespectful boy!” My father scolded me. How was I supposed to know that my primary 3 integrated science teacher was unaware of the fact that the skin is not the only organ in the body that regenerates? What happened to the liver? He reported me to my parents for undermining him and in turn, they scolded me. They were in the medical field, they knew I was right, but they scolded me still. You see; parents scold not only to correct but also to prevent contempt. It is for this reason that our predecessors could not tell us point blank; “Be Lazy!” They however hid this expression in witty proverbs illustrating patience or some other virtue. But the enlightened understand. “The patient dog eats the fattest bone”. What dog does that! “The second mouse gets the cheese”. There weren’t even mouse traps when that saying was enunciated! But the enlightened understand. These were just our ancestors ways of saying; “It’s okay to be lazy!” No worries masters. I understand.

I may disagree, but it is said that laziness is the mother of all bad habits. Ultimately, she is a mother and she deserves respect. “He who is lazy; he will not eat”. Bullshit! The evil Senator sits in assembly doing nothing while the labourer toils under the scorching sun. Tell me; who among these will have problem eating tonight? Lazy persons are clever and many clever people are lazy. Ask the professional businessmen for the meaning of the pareto principle. It’s a drag to explain, but it supports my idea. You know; Kurt von Hammerstein-Equord, the German chief of army before World War II, once opined that the most dangerous officer was the one who was stupid and diligent. In turn the lazy but clever ones are most favoured for leadership positions, because of intellect and composure.

Are we lazy? Or are we just good? My great grand dad was extremely successful only because he was too lazy to be lazy. Laziness is not so bad! I would love to end this narrative with lovely summary and wonderful quotes, but am too lazy to conclude. Conclude yourself; could you? Thanks. Its only 11am I’m going back to bed.



“And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:  But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die”. We may not all believe in the existence of the above speaker, but this much is undisputable; law is old. I love the law; she is ancient, dare I say, as man himself. She stems from the need to protect; to ensure orderliness in what would otherwise be a chaotic world. She is warm; too warm to leave. She is cold; too cold to keep. Sanctions are her tools of justice, to prevent those who defile her from recidivation. 
Call me smart, but I remember what she wore that day; gold coloured shirt with a blue jean skirt. “Computer is an electronic machine that can take in data, store data, process data and produce meaningful result called output”, said the teacher; she was a student on teaching practice. She went on a spree about hardware and software, CPU, ALU and so on. They should have stopped there! I was in primary two and those would be the last meaningful things I learn about computers from a classroom. It kept on coming. JS1, 2 ,3, just like that! I wanted it to stop; it didn’t. Like the peculiar kids in Peregrines safe home, we were in a loop. Same syllabus de die in diem. No! It changed; but the manner with which it was taught, remained in constant petrification. Theories today, dates and names tomorrow; how boring. Had I been properly schooled in the practical intricacies of the computer system, I may have been a computer engineer. What genius wasted! Then again, this is not the first dream to have been quashed by the Nigerian educational system. 
She is like God, our educational system; never changing. After having the same subject for eight consecutive years, I finally got to write it in WAEC. I got an A of course! A subject for which I had zero enthusiasm. Kudos to cramming of which our system advocates. My thirst was sated. Why didn’t they stop there? 200 level hits and for the purpose of iteration, I found myself facing yet another computer examination. I write them; we thank God. It doesn’t stop there; it gets worse. “Wetin this guy just dey talk!” exclaimed an honourable member of the House of Lords; the back seat of the class. The legends say that it more difficult to understand from there. Well not for this course. The whole class was in pandemonium. Third year Law students and the Nigerian educational system insist that we learn programming! What are they grooming us for? The Legal Ethics of G? What’s worse is that it still has not changed; the theoretical nature in which it is taught. Now he speaks of flow charts, next you know algorithms, soonest; integers. The class can’t keep up with his Q-Basic. He tolerates our ignorance; God knows he doesn’t have to. He is good.
My humble mind is still trying to understand the relevance of programming to Law. Do they want us to program Legal applications using the various types of machine languages? Can’t the computer experts be employed to do that? Or maybe we are being armed with an alternative to the compromised legal system in Nigeria? Is it at all possible that computer programming is related to Civil or Criminal Law? Still, it is so theoretical; lacking practical relevance . Our elders say: “What an elder sees while sitting, a young man will not see it, even though he climbs the highest of trees”. Well done sirs! The rate of deforestation is continually increasing. There are no trees left to climb; you refused to plant seeds. So we will sit like you have; the real tragedy. 

                                                                                                      ISIBOR KELVIN……INK

THE TRAGEDY THAT IS NIGERIA; Requiems for the power sector.

It riles me; the fumes. With vigour they emanate from the dark metal boxes, not unaccompanied, but with resounding vibrations, most unfriendly. Yes! We hate them, or at least I do. For those of us who can’t afford their bigger, fumeless and more silent counterpart, the fumes and sounds are necessary evils. The alternative darkness and heat is simply excruciatingly painful, so even persons with hypersensitive bronchi or asthmatic citizens learn eventually, to endure the discomfort it brings. The one-above-all foresaw this madness and in kindness, gave our lands his blessings. The veins of our soil flow with the juice, for this metal monster, so at least we can revel in our noisy illumination. A little digging and refining would do the trick, and our most crude oil, would be ready to fuel our generators. Think again. Somehow! Just somehow! The devils of this republic like mosquitoes sucked on the veins of our lands and took these blessings for themselves.The result is poverty, chaos and injustice. Requiems for the misused resources and  “OPL 245”. 

Life, they say, is a dream for the wise, a game for the fool, a comedy for the rich, and a tragedy for the poor. Requiems for a country supposedly lush with riches, yet the wealth now belong to a few; living like monarchs in what was supposed to be a democracy. One tragedy of men is that they get old and wise too late. However, the worst tragedy that befell Nigeria was her riches. It was too much too soon. In a world that was run by oil, the brains and soul of the past leaders and citizens alike were too unwise and weak to spend rightfully. The result was an all you can eat buffet, then blood, no sweat, just blood. When the blood stopped flowing, the eating continued……stills continues, but it’s not everyone who eats; just a few fat mosquitoes. 
Without a government, life would be “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short”. Smart as he was, what Hobbes didn’t tell us here in sub-Saharan Africa, was that all those terrible things could be, nay, could linger persistently, with a complete government. Had we known we could have prepared better, not rush with naïveté into a flawed democracy. A child terrified by the dark, can easily be forgiven. The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light. Plato was graced by death to escape the sight of this awful tragedy. Requiems for a republic, 57 years of age, but is scared of illumination, that it has planned dexterously to fail in its power generating sector. Yes! Failing to plan is as they say, planning to fail. A high record of 4.600MW!? Younger states have achieved far greater in less time.
The darkness is painful. What’s worse is that we suffer this alone; the poor; we who need the light the most. Entrepreneurial ideas perish at the altar of darkness because certain persons have no care for the impecunious; the majority of the country. The tragedy of darkness does not rest in the nothingness it brings, but with the glimmer of light that shines from the wall cracks. The poor see these rays of light; the clergy refer to it as hope, but the wise who know they cannot reach it are the ones left hurting the most. Azrael, cannot be bribed; and when his death takes the perpetuators of this darkness to Hades, I pray He keeps them in a spot where they can see the light of heaven. From hell, the gaze of heaven is the greatest torment. Placebos in honour of the dead and pleasant epitaphs mean nothing to a soul that journeys through Styx’s black waters. It is only fitting that flashy obituaries be giving to these ones; much suffering awaits. In the end, the evil dead will rue the day they caused darkness to the land of the living.

                                                                                                                 ISIBOR KELVIN NNAMDI.    …INK…


Hackneyed squabbles occurred as of late due to carnal relationships between two strange bed fellows; a parson and a stripper.

The facts of this case are in no way terse, as bulk of it is an uncorroborated accusation from a disputant of questionable credibility, while the rest is constituted of demurrals from an accused with nothing to lose but his reputation. In Summary;

The peeler claims that sometime in 2015, she entered into intimate relationship with the pastor in need of more sons, who after numerous amounts of intercourse and cash giftings (supposedly more than ‘£8,000 in two weeks’), prognosticated marriage. She claims she believed the pastor to be divorced and that in one of their drinking sections, the preacher administered poison to her which caused her to haemorrhage all through a year. This happened shortly after she informed her lover that she was with child. She claims that the Muslim born pastor is a fraud who engages in kinky carnal knowledge with numerous women including an unnamed Nigerian actress, whose face she remembers. In one of her more detailed accusations she opined that the clergyman draws spiritual sustenance from his bizarre sexually activities and that he is capable of performing even while asleep. For some reason, the Canada based exotic dancer still wanted the preacher to honour his marriage proposal. The peeler adduced evidence of nude photographs to support her claims. She was however arrested following an investigation by the police, for blackmail and possible terrorist affiliations; a crime against the state. She has been granted bail, and is to be represented by a team of lawyers led by a renowned human right activist, and is demanding N500 million in damages.

The parson vehemently rejects these claims, averring that the ‘prostitute’ was a troubled lady who alleged that she was touched by his sermons and that taking a new leave by quitting her job would prove to be a financial strain on her. The clergyman claims that after due consultation with his spouse, he gave her money of what amounts to N1.4 Million. His claim is simple. He insists that he was blackmailed and that the blackmail is not unconnected with attempts by powers that be to punish him against his positive stand on the killing of Christians. The police are apparently on his side as investigations on a lead proved to incriminate the stripper. Recent confession from another woman on the street suggest that the preacher was set up and and that the stripper in question was simply a replacement for the blackmail job.

The available facts are greatly antithetical and as such a definite issue cannot be raised. The peeler is however accusing the pastor for attempted murder.


“If the devil wants people to start doubting you, he attacks your reputation”, blared the preacher. Apparently, the long favoured doctrine of discrediting the witness was enunciated by the fallen archangel. Social media chatter that were aroused by this most stimulating occurrence, proved that the bulk of Nigerians do not understand the concept of “innocent until proven guilty”. So far as the law is concerned, both the pastor and the peeler are as innocent as a newborn. It is shop-soiled that our educational system amongst others is pathetic. This may be the cause of bestial comments from citizens who saw fit to school themselves on the use of numerous electronic devices, but never saw as relevant the need to learn basic civic education. Evidently, there are few rational Nigerians. “Pastors in this country are wicked and they should be exposed!”, commented a woman, who was apparently sane. “Only God will punish this prostitute, for accusing a man on God of this calibre… smh” averred another citizen, presumably with an averaged sized brain. The accusations were indeed intense for a man of the preacher’s standards; he was indeed a man of God. Make no mistakes; a man of God is a man and when evidence however bleak, point to incriminate a man, irrespective of the suffix “of God”, he must be investigated.

Variety, they say, is the spice of life. One man’s meat has over time been proven to be another’s poison. Little wonder while some look to the preacher and see a messiah being persecuted, some see only a lingering evil that must be eradicated. Whatever we choose to see, the law is the law: dura lex, sed lex. 

We live in a surprising century, you and I. Men have learnt to fly, communicate over extremely long distances and of course, manipulate digital images. Some of these inventions have become so popular, to the extent that they are used as verbs in our day to day conversations. Nevertheless, all hell let loose when incriminating pictures of the clergyman were posted online by the accuser. Photoshop, CorelDraw, Pics Art; there are many explanations to this incriminating evidence. These explanations were unable to prevent persons from thinking the worst the preacher.  

Our assumptions are the windows with which we view the world. Like all windows we must learn to scrub them regularly, or we risk being like the man who constantly vilified his neighbour for being unable to wash his clothes properly, only to discover it was his windows that were filthy. Benjamin Franklin once enthused, “Being ignorant is not so much as a shame as being unwilling to learn”. The accusations brought against the pastor are obviously rebuttable. However, it is not at all impossible that he is guilty. We must remember this, is if we are ever going to be a civilized society.




“I will practice what I preach or change my speech”, those were the words that came gushing from his mouth, or at least when translated from vernacular, it was the end result. He stood there with his fellow mechanics, gourmandizing a bowl of fufu and giving no regard for his digestive system. From his tone, I could tell he was deeply pained, not just from the ache in his swallowing throat, but in human nature. “What nature?” you may ask. Well, it is the nature of pretending to have virtues, moral or religious beliefs and principles that one in actuality, is not only void of, but whose actions belie stated beliefs; Feigning desirable or public approved attitude. Yes! Am talking hypocrisy. A vice sometimes found in the least expected places, but always in abundance. Seemingly scarce but so ubiquitous, so overlooked but has dealt significant damage to this blue globe.

 But for Gods divine intervention, hypocrisy should have achieved a state of omnipresence in all spheres of Nigerian activities. Am talking politics, religion, family, law, education, business, music, you name it. Halting my thoughts, I lapsed back into this fellow’s lecture. He was finally done with his humongous meal. “If poor man lie to people wey dey government, na felony dem dey call am; but when dem lie give us, dem go talk say dem dey play politics”.  His lecture had taken to the tune of political hypocrisy; the most prominent form of hypocrisy in Nigeria. I was, at this moment bedraggled at the way this unkempt mechanic was giving lecture on political science. “Even our constitution is not exempted from hypocrisy” (he said in lingo). In truth he was not by any means wrong. A people of whose constitution in section 224 reads: “The programme as well as the aims and objects of a political party shall conform with the provisions of Chapter II of this Constitution.”, and in section 6(6)(c), declares such provisions as contained in chapter II as non-justiciable, should not be suprised when their politicians, promise utopic realizations, only to end up in an utter and unqualified failure. Since the Nigerian constitution, by implication supports promise and fail in respect to political manifestoes, we citizens are simply doomed to the “fool me twice” lifestyle.

“I no know why pastor go dey collect money from big man make e pray for am!” yelled the fufu seller. She stood there waiting for the balance of her meal (blessed memory) and couldn’t help but overhear this didactic conversation. “Some go even dey receive money from dem talk say na seed” added another. “Make I tell you!” bellowed the first mechanic. As lead speaker, he had regained control of his seminar on hypocrisy in Nigeria. They had threaded into the realm of the spirit. “Spiritual Hypocrisy!” he yelled. “Even bible don talk am say; when end time don reach, we go see many fake prophets”. He was, at this moment quoting Matthew 24:11 and so many other bible verses. Wow! A behaviourist, constitutional scholar and biblical don! I couldn’t be more impressed. The bulk of this arc of the seminar centred on the opulence of our Christian leaders. They are simply so damn loaded! What happened to Christ’s analogy in Matthew, of a rich man, a camel and the eye of the needle? Modern pastors according to the speaker, where more interested in the reward of Christianity than the sacrifice involved. What happen to God feeding Elijah with ravens? Our modern pastors have decided to feed themselves and save God the stress, wallowing in complacency and smugness while there so called “flock” are fed with the generous proceeds of privations and kept alive with hopes of miracles, spiritual rewards and the afterlife. Our churches are engulfed with preachings of Abraham’s sacrifice and the widows mite but no heed is given to the Matthew 19:24 and Mark 10:25. Our pastors and spiritual leaders in general simply need to do more of giving; and I don’t mean that in the spiritual sense. “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone” (James 2:17).

Our churches preach many good deeds, and to a great percentage, our constitution is sufficient. Why then is our society plagued with prodigious botherations? The answer is quite simple; “Actions speak louder than voice”. Ralph Waldo Emerson once said “What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say”. Citizens are more concerned with what the government does than what it says and vice versa. A good government begets good citizens and good citizens in turn establish good governments. A canal minded member closely watches out for his spiritual leaders in order to justify his mistakes with theirs. The fanatics on the other hand are overwhelmed with what others do wrongly that they simply forget their own shortcomings. I remember the old saying: Don’t judge someone else just because they sin differently than you. “First remove the log from in eye!” We all have our shortcomings so no need for the “Holier than thou” attitude.

Hypocrisy thrives in families; the grassroots of the larger society. It is here youngsters learn to behave this way in the first place. Very few parents are known to tell their children “You need to steal! Stealing is profitable!” Indeed even the archetypal robber would give his child an intense spanking, swiftly followed by a lengthy speech on right virtues, for swiping an old lady’s purse or less; for stealing meat from the refrigerator. What they fail to grasp is that an average child has keen senses of curiosity. Time flies and he or she takes up the family business of thievery without even being told. Why? Who sinned!? The thieving father of course! Don’t let your lips and life send two different messages! An ass whooping and the right behaviour is message received for an average child. However a hundred flagellations at a child may not be enough when such a child gets a hold of the fact that he is just a chip off the old block.

Every veil secretly desires to be lifted, except the veil of hypocrisy. This by implication means that a conscious effort must be made in ameliorating and eliminating hypocrisy. Actions speak so loudly that voice is seldom heard. Hypocrisy can be ended by active expression of our statements. “Husbands live peaceably with your wives” says the preacher. Such a preacher will most likely find marital harmony in his congregation if he lives in congruence with his spouse. Likewise, the people respond to a leader who fulfils his promises. Such a leader will be extricated from the physical and spiritual implications of a warring society. A kind father, who constantly gives, will be amazed at the benevolence of his offspring. Hypocrisy kills! Hypocrisy is vice genuflecting at the presence of virtue. As Socrates would have it “The only way to live with honour in this world is to be what we pretend to be”. Let your actions speak and the world will hear; wise words from an illiterate mechanic.




An article on human nature…

Once I was impressed by my civics teacher; short with fair skin and bulging eyes Mr. Theo was an ebullient fellow. Warm now, cold soonest; his eccentricity was second to none. Being vivacious, he was a people person. They said his teaching style was impeccable. In carrying out his duties as an examiner, he was altruistic. His reluctance to set real questions, reiterated his benevolence. It was trite; the answer of the first ten questions usually fell in the same option; and the next ten being another, and so on. Thirty objectives with only three long vertical shades on the sheet!!! He couldn’t be more loved! Once an invigilator, reprimanded a lazy student, who turned his sheet horizontally and started shading vertically in flawless excitement. Question 1-10 was C, 11-20 A, and 21-30 B. In no time everyone, got an inkling of the objective trinity, and the atmosphere was alighted with whispers of a certain ‘CAB’. For all they knew, he was from welkin, sent by God to jettison failure from our education system. My virtuous soul, wouldn’t stoop so low to loving  the farmer of a lazy students poultry. I never liked him; Mr. Theo. He made the handful of us who were studious look absurd, spitting on the face of proper knowledge acquisition. Such academic sacrilege!!
Once I was impressed by my civics teacher; the topic was long but I think it was; “Truthfulness and its civic impartation”. The sub topic being, evils of self-preservation. His lecture was lively as usual, but something pulled from the depths of Tartarus, and Cerberus was revealed. Like a flash, his countenance changed. He punished us; to the scotching sun, we were led and he asked us to man up and stare it in the face. We lay there facing the biggest star in the Milky Way galaxy, diminishing our ocular prowess. Now that I think about it, I should have probably sued; surely section 295 of the criminal code did not contemplate this. It happened that in those days our government teacher was a man given to laziness. Mr. Silas had a double period today, but in his unmotivated kindness, he had bequeathed it to certain man. Guess who!! Correct!! Theo!. 10 minutes into the starring contest, it was clear I was going to lose. He sat in his chair in the shade, making sure our eyes where open. “Who insulted me!!” He yelled. “Who said my eyes looked like goggles!!?” Was that it? Was that why he tried to blind me? Because someone said the truth!? Too pained to be riled, I swore to myself, promising to enact vengeance on his posterity. My eyes kept starring at the shimmering glow of the sun; she was not a beauty to behold.
Once I was impressed by my civics teacher, 30 minutes into his inhumane act and he was unperturbed. Ayo’s optics had little resistance to pain. He laid there, whinning, crying, shouting. His father was a renowned Senator; the things he would do to Mr. Theo. One word of this to his dad and our school would not just need a new Civics teacher, Mrs. Theo would need a new husband. He threw in ‘ a get out of jail free card’. “Whoever tells me who said such will be saved”. Just like that, Mr. Theo had become Jesus. Doling out the offer of salvation as though he were a Messiah. Of course, in a Catholic school like mine, there were no shortages of Christians. It is said that it is a man’s own mind, not his foe that lures him to evil ways. Buddha was right! Right now, our minds were in sync, thinking the same thing. “Solomon did it!” Yelled a few. No a lot. Now, Solomon was a bully, but this smelled nothing of him. I mean, he barely talked.  Solomon tried his best in refuting all allegations but his history betrayed him. Whatever little knowledge Mr Theo had in Constitutional law, included the right to fair hearing, or at least, his version of it. It was time to ask the trustworthy. Of course that included me. We were about to partake in the devil’s business. Surely it was a logical choice to sacrifice one man, for the greater good. I was not his enemy, but for someone like Solomon, that meant being a friend. I was the only one of the trustworthy who didn’t say anything. Literally, I kept mute. I was sure he didn’t do it so I didn’t say he did. Apparently, I did not say he didn’t either. I would later understand that my silence hurt the most. Indeed, the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for the good to do nothing. Nigeria is probably a dangerous place today not because of the people who are evil, but because of the so called good persons who never do or say anything about it. To a victim, the assailant and a third party are no different. The poor are worse off in a system which cares little for its citizens. People are no better than assailants if they do nothing to ameliorate the dire situation. If we only pity the poor and even ourselves, while doing nothing to stop the decadence of the ineffectual power holders, we are just as guilty. The power of constructive criticism and of speaking the truth irrespective of conflicting desires and emotions cannot be over emphasized. The danger and strength of silence is so overwhelming, little wonder why sages regard silence as golden as compared to its silvery counterpart. In the words of Martin Luther King Jnr: “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friend’s”. I couldn’t disagree less.

Once I was impressed by my civics teacher. Today he had literally showed me a painful light, not the type that obscures, but the kind that illuminates. In the end he said to us disappointedly; “No one called me anything you blockheads! Now you see the dangers of self-preservation”. I was truly impressed. Don’t get the wrong idea, Mr Theo tried to blind me, for that his family should be in apprehension of my eventual retribution, but for revealing to me this rare truth, I promise not to exact my vengeance in his time.



​Look! The patients; leaning, dying,

From avarice of doctors most vulpine.

Our illness never declining, never waning,

all because we are treated with an inert medicine.
The “sugar pills” and false procedures don’t work,

this our old doctor knows.

The good drugs they take from our stock

leaving us with mere placebos.
Our patients chilling in penury;

no power; our wards left in opaqueness.

Here, nyctophilic doctors perform bad surgery,

but oh! Their offices are bright with darkness.
Our sickbay is as our hospital.

Clinics suffer from lack of capital.

As there are blights in our dispensaries,

so there is death in our infirmaries.
Eight winters past; we expected new doctors;

good ones with antibiotics to cure our infections.

But Alas! The old ones remain.

Even the new ones, in behaviour, are the same.
We are doomed! Our fortress now invaded.

Our apprentices; they have been corrupted.

Since the doctors; our young seek to imitate,

our hopes, we now must desiccate.
Though we are sick, our soul cannot die.

We will roam the streets giving “the lie”.

” Our doctors stole our vaccine! ”

This we’ll say till we go to the Holy place, most serene.
                              ISIBOR KELVIN NNAMDI



     With sweet hymns and melodies, we are captivated. Soothing voices resound verses known only to cherubs. We are under the aegis of tranquily; a mayberry. We are not all calm. He chatters aggressively, the young man in the rear; in an alien language. He sweats as he recounts stanzas in ancient languages I simply don’t understand. Chances are, he doesn’t either. His spirit is talking and the omniscient hears. We are done after seconds; thousands and thousands of seconds. We take to our seats and the mouthpiece, our master chef arrives to take the stage, to serve the most high’s dish. What would we eat today. Success! He yells. Today’s meal is success. A sumptuous delicacy, which he serves rightly. Soon, the audience burst out with orgasmic affirmations. “… He had great success, because the Lord was with him” (Sam 18:14), says the speaker. Candidly, I am captivated too. My excitement would soon be cut short. “Alas! It is”. I see something that shakes me. Literally, he shakes me; my nemesis. He shakes me; he shakes my friends. More surprisedly, they smile we all smile. Like one big coterie, we all exchanged pleasantries.

     The speaker moves to the next phase of the successful meal. I am happy; then I am too angry to be. I am nauseated by this second plate. He serves a bad dish this time. Thankfully, one man’s poison is another’s food. The  second ambit of this breakfast is poison to no one but me. Everyone smiles. Why am I angry? Yes! He says it again; the very thing that riles me. He doles on the chief, immeasurable encomiums. The eulogies are so much that ‘oga chief defiles nature; he blushes – an act meant only for the fair. Oga chief is alleged to be a corrupt politician. Contextually ‘alleged’, as far as politics is concerned in sub-saharan Africa means ‘very’. This second ambit emphasizes how giving leads to success. After listening to his sermons, the salivating audience assist the holy pedagogue, by way of ovations; a sign of gratitude to Oga chiefs ‘alleged’ generosity. Obiora is clapping. He ushers Oga to a dignifying seat. He would regret this; I would make him regret this. De die in diem, Obiora, an archetypal hall 4 boy precides over unprofitable discussions where he vilifies politicians, especially Oga chief. I would exprobate him but for his naïveté. In truth, Oga chief was giving crums from the loaves he stole. 

     Vickie seats beside Prof, who had given her a ‘D’isturbance in a six credit load course, because of her callous refusal to test his mattress. She however, shows no sign of hesitation to assist when his cap falls beneath the pew. He smiles. I am shocked he can smile. Madame walks through the isle, to the special seat reserved for people like her. She slips and falls, leaving my senses with nothing but a strong feeling of excitement. This antiquated heifer, removed ‘E’legance from my G.P because I wasn’t very respectful. Serves her right! Subsequently, she would wear truthful heels that say 51 not 26. Once again I am shocked. Speedsters everywhere, struggling to saved the damsel in distress. The flash who saved her is non other than Desmond, who was less respectful than me. O! The things she had done to his result!. Apparently this Holy House hoards a lot of sycophants today.
     Lachryma Papaveris! This dried poppy, is what the Trier born revolutionary, saw fit to call our exercise, saying; “Die Religion…is das opium des volkes”. He was at least half right. Walking into this sessions to reiterate beliefs; various religions has a way of inebriating the weak and strong alike. As Marx rightly put, we forget our sorrows and do nothing for few minutes, thousands and thousands of minutes, as if opiated. These long lapses aid the evil in their vocations, for the good are now silent. “We have used the Bible as if it were a mere special constables hand book, an opium dose for keeping beast of burden overloaded while they were being overloaded, a mere book to keep the poor in order”, opined Charles Kingsley, a canon of the church of England. We  were not meant to serve them; you and I. We should not feign happiness amidst internal blights. We should fight for our rights. They are good; feelings. Though sometimes perveted by the accuser, they were crafted, prima facie by the omnipotent to serve a noble purpose. Let’s not totally lock them up.

     Cynics don’t get me wrong. Marx was just half right. Good religion is good. It is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of the heartless world; the soul of soulless conditions. It could be the opium of the people. If practised right, it could serve as an armour; much more useful than an opium. Religion is wonderful much more if you are christianed.

                    ISIBOR KELVIN NNAMDI