Happy Birthday General Babangida

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Loud Whispers   with Joseph Edgar

Although I was not invited, I will still go against advice to send birthday greetings to the great genius himself. I hear he marked his 75th birthday recently and had prayers and a small party for all his close friends except Obasanjo – who is still bearing a grudge for not being allowed to go back to Aso Rock in search of a Key holder he forgot after spending eight years there. General Babangida remains one of the most enigmatic of all Nigerian leaders. He’s a leader with a difference and the man who introduced wide gap-toothed smile into national discourse. I wish him many more fruitful years in retirement and I also pray that he lives long enough to see the naira drop below N100 to the dollar. God bless you sir. See you soon.

D’Banj and Tiwa Savage: In love?
I was blessed to listen in on a meeting that had nothing to do with me last week. I had gone somewhere in Ikeja to meet a friend when I stumbled on the versatile actor Ayo Badmus in a script conference. Me, I just bent down, crawled under my table and went in as close as I could get to listen well to the gist. I am sure Ayo will kill me after he reads this because the whole thing was supposed to be a well-kept secret. But where will he see me to kill? So here goes the gist. It is a movie; an epic with Hollywood interest. It is centred on 14th century Lagos and would really take an incisive look at the deep culture and proud stance of the people of Lagos against colonialists.

A love story will be superimposed on the historical story. As I was listening, I heard them mention D’Banj playing alongside Tiwa Savage. These two names were bandied around other great names but it appeared that they might settle for D’Banj and Tiwa. The issue of getting them came up and they set up a committee headed by Stage Director, William Benson, who directed my play, ‘Loud Whispers,’ last year. He, it was, who mandated to reach out to the two stars with a firm resolution to get them to agree to the movie roles.

At this point, my cover was blown and they all screamed that I should not leak the story. I promised them that I would not tell a soul and asked for food and drink as a ‘bribe’. I swore not to tell a soul and that not even torture from Boko Haram would make me tell a single soul what I had just heard. Well, I have kept my side of the bargain. I have not told a soul, I have only just written about it. So people can trust me with their secrets.

Usain Bolt and the sweeties
The world watched this man do superhuman things on the track. We all marvelled and remained excited at his dexterity on the tracks. But what we did not know was the fact that he remained also very robust in other areas of human endeavour. Ever since his conquest on the tracks, he has taken his talents to under the bed sheets as exciting photos from Rio, Brazil, have shown. I only just hope that he does not finish the ‘work’ with the speed at which he finishes his races. In fact, I am thinking that it is as a result of his below 10-second finish that the lady, in frustration, took his picture and splashed it all over social media. The second lady too must have been too angry as she too came out to expose the speed-star. You see anyone who is good on the tracks can never be good in bed – ask any full-bodied man. Usain is a superhero on the tracks and a super-dud in bed. Kai, a sub-10 seconds finish in bed is enough to get him splashed all over the media in ‘disgrace.’

How not to Name Your Pet
The young man who went and gave his pet dog a very sensitive name would by now be regretting his actions. I marvel at such effrontery. Why would he of all names decided to choose that particular name for his dog which I am even sure has rabies. When I was growing up, we had so many beautiful names for our dogs. Names like Bingo, Jack and Scooby, were the most popular. But no, our man had to choose this particular name especially in this time of high tension and hunger in the land. Well, he is cooling off in the gaol awaking bail for what has come to be a national comedy of errors. Seriously, for whatever reasons, I feel the man should have shown some respect and named his dog after his village head if he loved the dog so much. That way if anybody was offended, it would be his kinsmen and not others from other tribes.

My grouse however lies with an outspoken member of the opposition party, the PDP, if we can still call it that, who also just came out from the prison. He has tried to link this young man’s travails to the Number One citizen –claiming that his suffering is as a result of our leaders’ impatience with opposition. Nothing to my mind’s eye can be further from the truth as what we have read so far is that another citizen it was who made the report, stating the possibility of raising civil strife by this action. Our penchant for linking things to the top, especially something as mundane as this really does not show the true spirit of nation-building. Criticisms should be based on facts. Thank you.

CBN: Please forgive
I am sincerely begging o. Kindly forgive those nine banks you kicked out of the foreign exchange market. Already, the naira has suffered another major backlash as a result. The TSA policy has really hit the banks, making them lose a lot of revenues, which in turn has led to downsizing of staff. Today, bank workers and indeed the whole economy are suffering as a result of the banks’ inability to perform their statutory services. This is another blow and I really beg that the apex regulatory body should show some mercy as it seeks to enforce its new policy. The banks will collapse oh and the people of Nigeria will continue to be the worse for it. Abeg, fine them or look for something less draconian – the rain is falling everywhere