KOLA ABIOLA SPEAKS
If you have not read this before now, you are on a long thing. I am bringing this to you uncensored and very straight to the point. Yes, it’s still about the UNILAG name change, the most controversial issue of the day. Very interesting, read on…………
Two civilian presidents, Olusegun Obasanjo and Umaru Musa Yaradua, had not deemed it fit to honour Abiola by naming a national monument after him. May 29, Ebele changed University of Lagos to MAULAG. But since then, all hell have been let loose, with the students, senate and other stakeholders on warpath. What does Kola have to say?
Kola Abiola: MKO was a national figure. After his death, Habib Bank of which i was a director, wanted to name the office in Lagos after him. I told them, dont belittle the man. He was a national figure, not a southwest person alone. In Ogun state alone, the stadium, the polytechnic had been named after him. Eventually the bank named the Abuja headquarters after him, instead of the one in lagos.
Irrespective of the statement that had been issued by the family, i believe the renaming of the University of Lagos after Abiola was done just to keep people quiet and happy by an administration that was searching for things to point at as achievement after one year in office. The president should first have sent a bill to the national assembly before changing the name, he didn’t do so. I don’t want an honour for my dad, if it wouldn’t be done right. It was a slap on the face of my father for the objective intended.
Southwest Governors have named June 12, Democracy day. But we should not mix apple with oranges. Abiola was not a regional leader. Let the Federal Government not wake up and look for things to pacify people with, after one year in office. No consultation with the family, the National Assembly or the University itself. If we want to do anything, let’s do it right.
I rest my case. This is just a nice message to the FG to stop fooling us. We are not 14 million mumus[ to borrow Lagbaja’s title for his new released album]
ABUJA BY ROAD
Several times, i had dreamt about the Federal Capital. I visited the place a lot in my dreams. I actually went by air in my dreams; i didn’t travel by road at all. I never envisioned that i was to go by road eventually. I thought the street of Abuja was paved in gold, decked with majestic splendour since it is the seat of government. I was not too disappointed except that there were no gold on the street. Rather, i saw the displayed arrogance of the rich and mighty. The seeming ignorance of mortals who have forgotten that death would come knocking one day, who have built for themselves treasures on earth. I could only wonder and imagine the billions of naira sunk into edifices called houses. Yet they don’t live there, they come home twice or once a year. The mai-guard is king in the rich man’s villa for he has a comfortable apartment built en-suite like the one you would struggle to get in Lagos as a married person. You see them outside the gate in the evening taking in fresh air and enjoying their solitude.
This is where the wealth of black people, our collective wealth by the sweltering sweat of our effort has been sunk. I am not just raving for nothing. You need to get to Asokoro and prove me wrong. You need to see giant buildings built by wealthy Nigerians who don’t even live in Nigeria. Majority of the houses are empty. Our collective heritage belongs to only a few who care less whether others live or not. Settlers dwell in Asokoro extension where there is no electricity [no transformer at all]. The structures in Asokoro extension depict life in a typical rural settlement yet it is a stone throw to the abode of the rich and mighty. It reminds me of the story of Lazarus and the rich man.
Abuja is a place to be, a place to live but standard of living is hell for a commoner. It is a place where all ethnic groups are ably represented most especially the hausa extraction. They live happily doing menial jobs.
I took off from Lagos 8am because the car [ a white ford explorer] didn’t pick me on time as agreed when i booked. We travelled all day and got there around 6pm. The car didn’t accelerate as much as i wanted and there were unnecessary stopovers too. Trust Nigerian women, they had to buy groundnut, egg, pear, snail, ogbono seed and what have you. I was just vexing in my spirit as they even bought akara and bread, orange, water at Ile Ife and Bread at Iwo road, Ibadan. One woman said Ibadan bread was the best and they unanimously agreed. They caused traffic jam at Iwo road buying bread. Still, they bought smaller bread with akara when we got to Ife * exasperated sigh*.
The journey was smooth after all passing through FUTA in Akure – Owena- Lokoja- Abaji- Gwagwalada- Lugbe- Jabi, final stop. It was an interesting one. Do i need to talk about the fair skinned girl who was travelling with a lot of load and told me she was in US last week to buy clothes and came to Lagos to buy the rest. She gave me her card. Imagine, what type of clothe [ladies wears and shoes] did she not find in US that she came to buy in Lagos again. She think say i be SM, senior mumu. She went to Eko Idumota to pack cheap clothes to sell in abj at exorbitant price or Yaba and she was telling me to come patronise her in FCT.
Or the fat man that joined women to be buying unnecessary stuffs at every stop over, most especially food. He bought chicken, orange, akara etc that even the women were making jest of him. He ate everything without batting an eyelid.
21:00hrs, June 29 2012.
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