Sometime in the first century AD, Pontius Pilate asked this question ‘what is truth?’ But his impatience got the better of him. Thus humankind lost the opportunity to hear the answer to that ever pertinent question. Allow me to give him and you, my dear reader, a reply;
The truth in this context is this: I, the writer, and you too will die one day. Guess what? That day might be today! Face it squarely. Everyone and everything is out to get you. Don’t believe me? Take a look at the pros.
– Stray bullet from a trigger happy or drunk policeman
– Being run over by a danfo or a danforised version of a private car and driver
– Your likely presence, these days, at the scene of a bomb blast. Or if you get the honours, a hug from a suicide bomber
– Etc, etc. Plus, not counting the many long term death causes that will someday, probably today, turn to short term – pollution, GMO foods, and so on.
Yesterday, my friend was in a hurry to get to work. Don’t worry, she is not dead. Not yet. The only available Keke had a turbaned young man at the helm. Worse, he was reciting some thing under his breath. You know now? Nobody wanted to go with him. Why? Because they haven’t accepted the truth; nobody except my friend. How stupid and imprudent of her. NA ONLY HER WAKA COME? Inside, she spent about five long and excruciating minutes dying and undying for fear of the ‘bomb on the driver’. Of course she didn’t get to her destination.
An open secret; she stopped at the next major bus-stop for fear of a harmless young Muslim reciting his tasbih. Nigerians, NA SO WE GO DEY? How long will we continue to live half-dead in fear? CHAI! It has come to this. Everyone suspects almost everyone else. Name them – your Keke driver, yam seller, fellow worker, the man or woman sitting beside you in the bus or that one standing next to you on the queue. Suspicion here, suspicion there. Dread here, dread there; fear here, fear there. Fear, fearer, fearest!
When our leaders find time between embezzling public funds and giving dinners, they make laws; give directives, etchetera, etcheteram. The military nko? They are in their various duty posts, some more scared for their lives than the others but as usual, ALL CORRECT SIR sir! The different vigilante groups – bless you sirs and madams, bloody civilians. You are doing your own bit, putting in the MUCH you can.
How about you, my faithful reader, and I?
Let me whisper another secret to you. Just between the two of us. If that powerful dibia from your village visits you at the dead of the night and tells you that you are going to die the next day. The oracle has spoken! What shall you hurry to put in place? What wrongs will you right? What rights will you make righter? Behold the dibia in me. I tell you as I chant it to myself: you will die one day and that day may just be today!