ABUJA — Nigeria’s 91.8 million poor people, the world’s highest, have sought a breakaway from their miserable condition. They have called for being kept in SSS detention like Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, the embattled leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), also known as Shi’ite.
“I have been about four years in prison now, [in] a house fully furnished,” El-Zakzaky had said with gusto. “In fact, our next neighbour was the senate president; a large house. I was free to move about. Similarly, when they moved me to Kaduna I was in the best area – government reserved area.
“It is a house fully furnished with large bedrooms and I was free. I have never been in detention with police there; in fact, the soldiers used to stay outside at the gate. That is what they have been doing. When we came here we were put in prison.”
More so, according to the nation’s former minister of information, Lai Muhammad, the country monthly coughs out N3.5 million to feed El-Zakzaky’s mouth alone.
By contrast, these luxuries are far from the reach of nearly half of those who call Nigeria home. These massive number of people are, therefore, looking for means to better their lots.
Making the call on Wednesday, Ciroma Adekunle who briefed pressmen in Abuja on behalf of everyone who live below a dollar per day said they have seen that the president’s promise to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty is unrealistic.
“Instead,” Adekunle demanded, “we want the president, through the State Security Services, to acquire a court order to put us in their custody. We have seen that being in SSS detention guarantees food security, life security and all other luxury of life which is the fundamental responsibility of every responsible government, including freedom.
“We all saw how El-Zakzaky was flown to India for medical treatment. We also will like to be given similar treatment. Since our healthcare centres are the number one patient that needs treatment, it will be good feeling to see all of us flown abroad for treatment whenever we are sick.
“Meanwhile, we are all sick. Among us you will find the world’s highest number of people suffering from a disease or the other. Just name it,” he paused, trying to shield a cough forcing its way out of his throat. He then continued by saying, “For this, we are calling on the federal government to grant our wish since living in SSS detention guarantees better life than living as destitute outside.”
Our correspondent who watched the address on INEC server asked to know for how long the detention should be. Adekunle retorted: “Until we can wake up every morning and say, ‘God bless Nigeria’”
Research has shown that the only people who are not among these group of poor people are those who have held one political office or the other, and those who “hustle”, legitimately or otherwise, and their hustle has “yielded” (or clicked in local parlance).
Nigeria is the world’s headquarter of poverty, many research further tell us, because only gluttons who are skilled scavenging resources for many all to themselves have been allowed to govern the land since independence.
Caveat: This is a work of satire. Names or anything that has semblance with them, persons, wise or otherwise, offices, high or low, authorities, constituted or unconstituted, are as a result mixture of the author’s imagination and inspiration from Above, and any semblance of actual persons, far or near, organizations or body is the handiwork of Mr Coincidence. You have been told. Don’t say you haven’t!