The present political debate in Iseyin has created a dilemma of choice between the existing ‘evils’ and the ‘angels’ we don’t know what they would turn out to be with time.
But of important notice is that for days, the ambience has changed. The thing is still changing as more fighters keep coming in a multitude of anger —individuals taking camp for the usual tough journey in search of an heir to the House of Representative stool.
And at first, it started with those Soyinka described as ‘social media millipedes.’
Then, those who eat from crumbles of bread falling off master’s table joined the congregation (after all, those who take morsels from Monday’s mini hut will always praise it as a mansion).
Then the acclaimed intellectuals and political analysts, who boasted to have successfully taken a sojourn through the political book of life, also joined the train of tongues.
Gradually, those who know many with nothing to prove it also joined. Justification here and there. Bystanders keep on watching. Who doesn’t want to enjoy the prologue preceding the 2019 political stage play?
Interestingly, as the D-day draws closer, elders and chorus singers also joined. The game is becoming clearly turbulent and stupidly intolerable.
The hallelujah boys (unreserved apologia to Honourable Patrick, no Senator Obahiagbon), in what seems to be a rub-hitting jibe at their perceived antagonists, began: “O Sùpò o jèrè. O lèpò o jèrè. ”
The supporters of fine boy Shina, the newly found darling bride of gunfnor’s apple-polishers and loyalists, started their own chorus of curses: ” Shínà ayò ko wolé. Padà ko sonù.”
One wonders why the table suddenly turned. A dog wagging its tail, now barking, needs to be carefully checked.
They all said it is Shina or no other person. Who doesn’t want to be associated with the one with possible magic wand (magic in its real sense and anything we can think of)?
And then the argument started: some said the big lion of Bourdillon, the Jagaban; the one Hausa people in their flurry of encomium call shugaban kowa (leader of all), imposed him on some now aggrieved candidates.
Big banter here and there. A game that doesn’t know the elderly ones and owlets trying to register their voices.
The issue becomes who has the biggest mouth should shout it louder. And pronto, loyalists who have thing to prove started dive deep into the book of candidates’ achievements.
They said the serving honourable has sponsored a beautiful magazine detailing who and who takes a cut from the constituency fund.
But the best place to get the full gist is at a nearby beer parlour where yours sincerely does take three bottles of beer daily to send some stupid stress to grave.
“Good evening oga” I greeted the tribal marked lanky man with a protruded belly.
“How are you, my boy? How is work? ”
“I haven’t got one sir (corpses don’t hide from people that will bathe them). Four years after NYSC, we’re still here jobless. ”
“Jobless?” He asked in surprise. “Yes sir. It is only through His grace I got a part-time teaching job at one of our secondary schools.”
“Go and meet Supo. Don’t you have his number? He’ll get you one. More than 100 youth like you have benefited from his massive employment and empowerment programmes.”
“Sir, you mean the okada and grinding machines empowerment?”
“Who is telling you that? Our workaholic honourable has provided jobs for people in police, navy, army and others. It’s only in armed robber force I don’t think he’ll encourage youth like you.”
“How true is that sir? They said those appointments are given to his Ibadan kin and kith. They said he’s not even from Iseyin.”
Now stopped sipping his beers.
“Fabrication! Pure lies from people who want to pull him down. He’s the best honourable we’ve had so far.”
“But some people are saying he doesn’t perform. That he was just there like an effigy. I think people are now trooping in for the self-styled king of African nightclub. Our people love celebrities. They’re waiting for the man to bring in A-list artistes in 2019.”
“Arrant nonsense. Balderdash (now overtly enraged). Is that what our people want? We’re talking about a man who has sufficiently done well for the town.”
“But sir, some say Supo is excessively arrogant. He attacked the gunfnor as if attacking a lawmaker colleague. He doesn’t respect the grey hairs.”
“Yes he did, but we need to ask what the gunfnor did to them also. Serubawon wanted to become an emperor which our man vehemently rejected.”
“But they are also saying Shina has also been doing well even without being an honourable.”
“Can you tell me what he’s done? ”
“Football competition across Oke-Ogun. He brought Small Doctor, top monarchs, superstars.”
“Is that one an achievement? Football at this age? Our people need tangible projects.”
A young man who has been eavesdropping our conversation also burst in a guttural voice of an ancient masquerade.
“Awa ti Shina Peller re. Omo ologo. The guy is spending. He’s bought cars for monarchs and top people in Iseyin.”
“How does that concern us?” The lanky man cut in as I left the argument for them, watching.
“Shina has money. He has name. He knows Davido and Burna Boy. He knows the Ibadan boy who owns Nairabet. He has nothing to do with constituency money.”
“And they told you Supo was a beggar before becoming our honourable?”
“How many functioning boreholes did Supo provide?”
“How many people has Shina helped?”
“Well, we need new names. Someone like the Quilox boss.”
“My friend, the lucifer we know is better than one angel lurking somewhere. We are talking about an honourable who has competed twice before winning. He’s no more a new thing to us.
” Shina is also a sun and son of the soil. We need him now. And he is doing well. We need new name.”
“Which name? Someone people said he got his money from fraud, cocaine dealing and 419 packaging, well what’s my own?
“O sùpò o jèrè ni my friend. ”
“Shina lo se baba mi!”
They both shouted into the air as I left the place, dancing my thoughts into the fast beckoning hours of 2019.
Rahaman Abiola is a content and political editor at NAIJ.com (Legit.ng). He writes from Lagos.