There Shall Be A performance
Madness! Folly! Those probably were your spontaneous thoughts when you first sighted this seemingly weird title. You are not alone in such disposition towards Nigeria: ‘Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?’ But, please, hear me out.
Just before dawn several years ago, on the 1st of October, Nigeria’s independence anniversary day, which happened to be my late father’s birthday also. Very unusual of the old man, he summoned an emergency family meeting at dawn. He sat down calmly, but the environment was strange. Everyone was wondering what could have made him to call a meeting at such an odd hour. Suddenly, the old man wore a solemn look as he lifted up his head and stared at everyone in the large living room. Before anyone could ask what must have been responsible for the unrehearsed drama that was playing itself out this morning, something even more dramatic happened. Papa smiled affectionately and spoke with assuring confidence, “There is a Paradise Named Nigeria!”
Everywhere became silent. Graveyard silence! Until Iyabo, the baby of the house who was just Five years old started whispering to Joseph, my senior brother: ‘Papa has gone crazy!’ She spoke softly, with fear punctuating her whispers. Silence reigned again. But Iyabo wouldn’t keep quiet still. ‘Please, is Daddy on drug?’ She whispered again, this time around talking to no one in particular.
‘Honestly, I am confused’, my brother spoke aloud.
‘There is a paradise named Nigeria’, Papa announced again, more affirmatively, thereby, causing more stares than before.
It was Mama, his wife of Forty four years that had the gut to probe into what was on his mind, and she did it harshly. “You yourself know that anyone that hears your statement about Nigeria that is at the verge of becoming a failed state will of certainty think you are either mad or on marijuana, if not cocaine, yet, you made the statement and went dumb.”
Rather than replying her harshly, he said softly: ‘You are very correct my wife, but I am about to pass across to you one of the most startling revelations I ever had before I say my final goodbye’!
We were all shocked to our bones. You will hear the sound, should a needle fall to the ground. Papa continued: