How Merry Will This Christmas Be?

Muhammadu Buhari

Eddy Odivwri


Hurray, Christmas is just 19 days away. I cannot wait for the glitz and glamour of the season.

Which glitz and glamour? Have you forgotten Buhari is still in office?


What does that mean? Is President Buhari against a merry Christmas for Nigerians?

It means you don’t understand this government and their lingo of Next Level.

I really don’t. Please tell me.

How do you expect to have a jolly Christmas when rice and chicken –the two staple food items of Christmas, have suddenly become scarce commodities? What kind of Christmas would you have in the absence of rice, chicken and turkey?


But Nigeria is already heading to self-sufficiency in rice production

Why are you talking like Lai Mohammed? Which self-sufficiency? Where are the so-called Nigerian rice? Where are they? Answer me! Do we see them? What about their cost? Can ordinary Nigerians afford them? How do you expect a worker still earning minimum wage of N18,000 to buy a 50kg bag of rice at N28,000? Is that realistic? He has to save money for two months before he can buy a bag of rice? And you call it Merry Christmas?

What about even the taste? Have you not heard the Nigerian rice is strong and almost insipid?


Look, this is not the time for big grammar. What is insipid? And who says people must buy rice in 50kg bags? There are smaller baglets and measures for selling rice. We must discipline our taste buds to conform with what we grow at home. We cannot keep indulging ourselves and splurging on with foreign materials, if we really want our economy to pick up and become independent. We cannot be—

(cuts in) Away with these arcane preachments of the oppressors. We cannot suddenly wake up and say we want to be independent when there is no sufficient preparation for it. How many tons of chicken do local farmers produce in Nigeria? How many tons do Nigerians consume per day? How does government intend to bridge the gap? Can’t you see there is planning deficiency? Have you not heard many eateries no longer serve chicken? Is government not inadvertently shutting those businesses? Is this border closure gambit not cutting one’s nose to spite the face? Can’t you see it?

Can you imagine the inflation it has all triggered in Nigeria? And these are people who are still paid N18,000 minimum wage. Don’t you see it as wickedness and criminal indifference on the part of government?


My friend, there is no gain without pain. We must endure the temporary pain now so we can heave a long sigh of relief subsequently.

We must look inward. It is the sign of maturity for any nation worth its name.

And do you know how the border closure has boosted the Nigerian economy? Do you know how much the Nigeria Customs remits everyday now? It is humongous and incredible. We are bound to—

(cuts in ) …we are bound to do what? You still speak the language of the oppressors. What is the benefit of the huge revenue to the ordinary man on the street who is gasping for breath?   Does the increased revenue translate to better roads, functional schools, stable electricity supply or better healthcare? Is it not just more money for grabs by the privileged few in power? Please don’t push these vexatious bunkums as if we are neophytes.

It is not for us to quarrel. All we collectively want is a better and stronger Nigeria.

There are alternatives to chicken and turkey. There are fishes, snails, cow meat, pork,  goat meat etc. There is nothing canonical about Christmas and Chicken.  We will survive.

See your mouth like canonical