There have been solely two problems with public discourse then: the mysterious and devastating Abulado explosionand the predictable and predicted dethronement (second time round) of the saintly and loquacious Sanusi.ASUU was on strike andI had on a regular basis and peace of thoughts togo and ship a paper atthe 2020 Laity Week programme at Ijebuode on 16/3/20.I got here again from the lecture and continued with my regular routines: studying, writing, listening to Channels TV and all that.Coro wassomething occurring far awaybut right here, life was regular, with the one exception being the every day briefing by the stressedbut articulate and educated Minister of Well being and by the Presidential Activity Drive on Coro (by the best way, the PTF-Coro is chaired by a lawyer and political civil servant! The place are theexperts?).However the BOOKhas warned that it’s when every little thing seems regular that calamity strikes (1 Thess,5:3).
Then, SUDDENLY, simply SUDDENLY, every little thing modified and in all places turned charged! The authorities,a high official of which declared that Coro was brought on by corruption, and, which had been appearing in anI dont give a rattling method jumped upon 17/3/20 as one rudely woken from a deep slumberwith a bucket of chilly water or anyone stung in the holy of holies by a vicious ant. Certainly, they behaved just like the folks of Nineveh did after Jonah had instructed them: quickly, Nineveh could be destroyedSince then orders, insurance policies and directions have beenflying round each on the centre and in the peripheries. The complete political, coverage, socioeconomic andmedia panorama turned bothcoviduous and coronalised and since them, nothing has ever been the identical.
The hitherto irregular has turn out to be regular as in accordance to Buno & Kerber (2009), steady change turned thenew regular. We’re getting used to the inevitability and instability and Nigeria has turn out to be, like organisations in the turbulent setting, awork in progress (Burnes, 2009), with every little thing being tinkered with constantly. Sadly, given chaotic, per second and uncoordinated method in which these orders are flying round we seem to have actedand proceed to act in a panic temper.
The authorities saved altering directions in an amoebic vogue butthis is the step rep by the weekend (22/3/20): all schoolsprimary, secondary after which tertiary closed; NYSC orientationcamps closed, visa on rival suspended, entries from 13 nations after which 15disallowed (we had declared that there was no want to accomplish that a few hours earlier), Three worldwide airports after which all of them closed, rail transport suspended, social and non secular gatherings have been restricted to 50, 20 after which suspended all collectively; thebudget acquired a haircut of N1.5trn (from capital, recurrent or debt servicing provisions?); oil-value benchmark lowered to $30 and the Naira devalued, (sorry adjusted, to N380/$). TheSenate closedits public gallery and earlier than then, earnestly begged PMB to tackle the nation. Overseas tripswere suspended for all public officers however I’m positive that no person will order themto chorus from international medical test-ups and holidays; they’ve all immediately turn out to be patriotic as a result of beneath thisCOVIDIOUS setting, house is one of the best.LASG has ordered 70 p.c of its workforce to keep at homebut overreached itself when it requested danfo drivers to restrict themselves to solely 60 p.c of their capability (6 as a substitute of 10 passengers per journey).
Different developments adopted. Mydear OOU has despatched all of the employees on obligatory 2-week go away, in the primary occasion. Anambra State Governmentbanned weddings, funerals, ofala festivals upped the ante byplacing Lagosiansin the identical class with returnees from Italyor Spain so that ought to the son of man journey to IgboUkwu now, I ought to self-quarantine! I by no means knew the state has such an superior capability.
The federal authorities despatched all its employees house and suspended the FEC weekly contract dishing out meeting was and continues to be, an period of unprecedented uncertainty and unpredictability. Even through the warfare, the federal government didn’t situation this avalanche of directives, directives that have been altering each second, inside so brief a interval.Like the standard Igbo man, we didn’t run till the rain has totally overwhelmed us or we ran run when the pursuer is only one meter away.
It waswhen I attended morning mass on Saturday, 21/3/20 that it dawned on me that we have been in actual bother.We have been all sanitised on the gate and the sitting association was very queer, with folks sitting almosta kilometre aside. Even for the reception of the holy communion, folks have been pressured to give severe gaps. It was then that I requested, how can I keep social distance from my spouse once we slept in the identical mattress, drove in the identical automobile and held our palms as wewere transferring into the church? Even the offertory was cancelled as a result of cashhad excessive covidiousity!
Some extant insurance policies have been triggered off: Sunday would begin on Saturday night; there could be normal confession/absolutionand then, these above 65, beneath 18 pregnant and nursing moms have been granted sabbatical from Mass. In fact, all actions have been suspended. 6 plenty have been had that Saturday night and 12 have been scheduled for Sunday. Nevertheless, earlier than we went to mattress, all plenty have been cancelled as a result of the brink was lowered to 20; folks have been suggested to obtain communion spiritually and to ship any choices on-line. There was confusion, anxiousness and palpable fearand folks have been operating helter-skelter, shopping for each the issues they wanted and those they didn’t want.
On Sunday,22/3/20, there was no Plenty in the Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos and for the primary timein my Three rating+ years on earth, I used to be indoors from morning to night time, apart from the 3km stroll I had in the morning. Andas I did so, I noticed that every one the Catholic church buildings alongside my route have been on lock-down and the roads have been free! But it was beneath this setting that COZA companies held whereas Evangelist Copeland (anyone known as him scamevengelist) instructed his followers to carry on tithing even when they misplaced their jobs inthe pandemic, as a result of God was/is their supply. And Nigerians,even in their alarm and panic, nonetheless had the peace of thoughts to see the factor jokiously. They designed a specialsuspended quarantine centre, observed homes that was extra crowded than a church , observed the bizarre type of social distancing at Onitsha Predominant Market and noticed these doing hand-washing enterprise in Igboland whereas one Edo boy launched a tune: Coro, we no need you right here.
As I write this, the tremendous powers have turn out to be powerless and the world financial system is on a curler-coaster. My compatriots who would fairly rush out to Dubai to purchase golden soya and Milan for platinum ice-cream are all at house becauseit is sort of a dying sentencevisit abroad. Trump was rattled; theStrong Girl of Europe, Merkel is on Quarantine; Senator Paul has fallen and Damniel Goldman is a sufferer; the Canadian first Household has been infiltrated,AbaKyari has caught it, Bauchi State Governor is on self-isowhile Atikus son is down.Nowhere is protected; no person is protected and the life we knew a few days agois receding into our reminiscences. It’s unhappy certainly.
As our folks would say throughout Biafran Battle of Independence, Awusa abatago Awka (the federal forces have come into Awka); agwo no nakilika (the snake is on the thatched roof) and certainly, the come has come to turn out to be and there’s FIRE in the mountain. However our president is non-pulsed and the movement by his Senate, begging him to tackle we the folks didn’t transfer him. Hewho had time for the Egungun pageant, (the place he was forcefully embraced by one in all his admirers) and to intervene in the self-inflicted fires in APC, doesn’t really feel it’s vital to tackle us as a result of doing so, in accordance to Shehu Garba, it’s mere showmanship and drama,.
Abule Ado explosion, our tears and a president missing in motion
On Sunday, 15/3/20, asLagosians have been on their method to varied church buildings, there was a deafening, floor-shaking sound adopted by tick smoke someplace round FESTAC. There was panic as folks instantly remembered the Ikeja bomb blasts of 2002. The solely distinction was thiswas a one-off affair. By the point I obtained to Our Girls Seat of Knowledge, Okota, some elements of the ceilings had caved in and I used to be instructed it was brought on by the mysterious blast. Once we completed with the Mass and different associated issues, we had a clear image of what occurred.
The explosion was at Abulado, a settlement adjoining to FESTAC however its affect was far reaching. Buildingsat Festac, BBA Complicated, and environment have been affected. By official data, 21 lives have been misplaced in the inferno, lots of have been injured, 1000’s have been homelessand homes (as many as 300) weredestroyed and Billions of Naira price of property broken.And the controversies began: was it a bomb blast, a pipeline explosion or gasoline cylinder-associated accident; does the land belong to Lagos or to Federal Authorities (FHA); are the residents unlawful occupants or are their homes licensed by the federal government and whether or not the residents have been there beforeor after the pipeline.
These controversies nonetheless rage, 10 complete days after the catastrophe! the governor of Lagos visited, stated all the appropriate issues and kickstarted a N2bn fund with a donation of N250m. By the best way Bethlehem Collage was price greater than N2bn in historic (not alternative) costing. After which, the next day, he was on the Rock, exhibiting our president arduous-copy footage of the calamitous catastrophe. Arduous copies, not video photographs or gentle copies by way of laptops ortablets and Buharis folks coated the image-watching session and positioned it on-line! Our presidentdid not deem it vital to go to; he was content material to watch footage of thehorrendous disasterand they proudly shared the photographs. The governor even thanked the president for granting him viewers! I dont perceive this situation of governors thanking the president at each alternative.
The different day, whereas commenting on the inexplicable anddo-your-worst exclusion of South East from the failed $22bn mortgage,the South East Governors, who ought to be fuming in anger thanked the president for his good works in the SE.Anyway, in the judgement of the president and the presidency, thepicture-watchingshow has taken the place of visiting and commiserating with the folks. That’s physique language in motion. Unhappy certainly; our president is missing in motion.And as anyone had requested, who did this to us? Are cursed or are we the trigger?