He never left anybody in doubt that he was coming on a tribal wicket.
Nigerian presidential contestants across board used to mouth their credentials as per being pan-Nigerian, detribalised and all that jazz.
This man was different as he hollered: “Emilokan!”
He claimed it was the turn of his tribe to rule, not minding that one of his tribesmen had ruled for eight years and yet another one was on his eight-year stint as the vice-president.
The Pyrates Confraternity turned his ambition into a joke of a song by gyrating thusly: “Hands dey shake, legs dey shake, Baba wey no well, he dey shout Emilokan!”
The man could not be deterred as he boasted that he has all his tribesmen and women in his pocket, that if he sleeps it means the entire tribe is sleeping.
He had the press at his beck and call, especially as he turned good old journalists into JEUNalists.
In the local lingo, “Jeun” means “eating”, which translates to the truism that all the journalists, sorry, jeunalists are eating off his hands.
Even more striking was the turning of erstwhile activists, Marxists, revolutionaries, civil rights campaigners and the sundry lot into tribal warriors.
It was a grim sight beholding all the radical phrasemongers going flat on their stomachs in submission to the man of the moment.
The danger inherent in this matter was raised for me when a wealthy friend of mine who happens to be a fellow tribesman of the Emilokan landlord said: “Nigeria will be in hot soup when she is ruled by a man whose name is forged, whose primary school is forged, whose university is forged, whose business is forged. Maybe Nigeria needs to live under bondage just as he has put all of us under total bondage in our clan.”
I told my great mentor that he was exaggerating matters but he stopped me short by stressing: “Any man who can forge all aspects of his life can forge the Nigerian presidency!”
The signs of wonders are manifesting in the fabrications that the badly misnamed Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is concocting in the name of collating and releasing the 2023 presidential election results.
The City Boy of Emilokan fame touts the immense structure he has in the ruling party which allows his chief tout to violently thunder that members of a particular tribe in Nigeria will be killed by him if they ever dare to vote in Lagos!
The police and army of Nigeria were present when this venom was issued, yet the gungho tout could not be arrested because he’s a sacred cow, or divine bull, that is untouchable.
Ballot boxes are snatched in the full view of law enforcement agents who cannot do zilch in the name of protecting democracy.
INEC is acting as though under command to announce spurious results that are totally against the votes and will of the people.
For instance, the electoral body held the presidential elections on February 25 but posted a result dated Fabruary 20! O Jesu!
While these oddities are going on presidential wannabe is hailed with many titles and names other than Emilokan, but as the Ghanaian novelist Ayi Kwei Armah wrote in Two Thousand Seasons: “Dishonest words are the food of rotten spirits.”
Anything can be justified on the altar of a life ambition, such as forging an ominous same-fate ticket in a fractious multi-faith country.
All the forgeries are aimed at getting the man to be announced as president-elect so that he can imperiously ask all his shortchanged opponents: Go to court!
Through the fabrication of Emilokan Tribal Democracy (ETD) via INEC, democracy in Nigeria has been pathetically imperiled almost upon death just as Aboliga the Frog depicted in Ayi Kwei Armah’s most famous novel, The Beautyful Ones Are Not Yet Born, thusly: “Aboliga the Frog one day brought us a book of freaks and oddities, and showed us his favorite among the weird lot. It was the picture of something the caption called an old manchild. It had been born with all the features of a human baby, but within seven years it had completed the cycle from babyhood to infancy to youth, to maturity and old age, and in its seventh year it had died a natural death. The picture Aboliga the Frog showed us was of the manchild in its gray old age, completely old in everything save the smallness of its size, a thing that deepened the element of the grotesque. The manchild looked more irretrievably old, far more thoroughly decayed, than any ordinary old man could ever have looked.”
A tear for Emilokan Tribal Democracy! Call it ETD, for short!