By: Atiku Buhari

PRELUDE
Gone are those days when the Coven of Elere could get the signature of their Deputy Priest (an Islamic Sheik) on the road, in the toilet (Surprised? Ask his followers to confirm this), after teaching and in the office. Now that the Coven of Elere got a new Deputy Priestess (a gentle woman who always wears anger every time, everywhere. It was said she is from the North but a Yoruba) I have met and discussed with her two times: when I had problem getting her signature to fast track my admittance into the second level of the age group.

(Sitting on the chair watching a play, Deputy Priestess asked who was knocking on the door)

“Who is that?” She asked.

“A student” I answered.

(Frowning at me like Sango…)

“Hahan! What do you want in my shrine?” she asked.

“I have a problem with my results, ma’am” I replied.

(Raising her hand as if to slap me)

“Miraye wonranwonran, ko osie kuro nibi, I have a meeting to attend” she asked me to walk out of her office and not to forget to jam the door.

(Standing and gossiping, many younglings crowded at the entrance to her office to get the anointed signature because the admittance exam was fast approaching. She opened the door).

“If you don’t pack yourself from this place, I’ll report everyone to the Chief Priest, Eyin Omo tio ni lakaye (you, who do not have brain), you’re just coming to sign your Admittance Letter, she laughed derisively and walked down to the Chief Priest Shrine.

The two times I encountered the Deputy Priestess, Mama Ewe (mother of children) that was how she behaved, wearing lion face and walking like an elephant. But, isn’t it disappointing to see this kind of person appointed as Deputy Priestess of the Coven of Elere – a fearsome woman whose name negates her action?

*******
When Sunday Mourning Crier had an interview with the Olori Odo of the Coven of Elere, a week ago, Mr Burukutu said one of his greatest success was that he helped students to plead with the Chief Priest and Deputy Priestess so that they gave more time and made the process of signing Admittance Letter easy for the students, especially the new intakes “We had good ears when it came to the problem revolving around signing Admittance Letter for the new intakes we had to plead with the Chief Priest and Deputy Priestess on their behalf to give them more time and even made the process easy for them”.

When the Olori Odo made that statement, what came to my mind was that he was high on something. I thought he had a problem with his eyes and thus could not see the difference between true and false and thus called anything false as truth. I wonder when Burukutu had helped younglings to talk to Deputy Priestess to sign their Admittance Letter.

I wonder when he met the Chief Priest concerning Admittance Letter. I wonder and wonder and wonder, how he reached that conclusion. As someone here would describe him, “Na liar Olori Ole we have”. 

*******
(Sitting with his legs crossed, the President beckons to a man in suit to enter the office.)
“Good morning, Olori Odo, I am Kritik from Sunday Mourning Crier, I am here to have an interview with you” The man said.
“Oh! Mr Kritik, how’re you doing sir? ”

“Fine”

(After engaging each other in handshaking, the interview commences) 

“Olori Odo, so far this administration began what achievement can you lay claim to?”

(He laughed vigorously before he answered.)

“This is very clear even to the blind that my administration has done something unforgettable. First, I organized rehearsal every week, especially for the Fresh Younglings. You remember last year when about 400 (or thereabouts) Younglings were banished from the College of Agbowo, so, in other to forestall this, my administration deem it fit to organize rehearsal every week. And their results that came out recently have attested to our performance. In fact, I personally taught them the gods’ Language. You know, this is a service to humanity.”

“Ok, Olori Odo, it seems you’re the messiah that will lead the Coven of Elere to a greater height. What of the other achievements?”

“My Social Prefect, Rato, has been a very hardworking man. You know, before he was elected as a Social Prefect he said he would make the coven lively. And as the saying goes, all work no play makes Jack a dull boy. We don’t come to school only to read, read and read. We’re here also to improve our social life. So, every Friday, he jokes with younglings at the quadrangle. That also is our achievement.

“But, Olori Odo, are you implying that because he jokes on Friday, he has performed his duty as a Social Prefect?”
“You this Criers, you like to criticise. If that’s not an achievement, then what is?” Burukutu said.

“Olori, don’t get angry. OK. Last semester, your Writing Prefect, Mr. Rijan was suspended for a couple of weeks because he wrote in an ancient language. Has he renounced his savage ways of writing in the ancient Language? You know, not all people understand the ancient language.”

“Haaa! Who told you that he writes in ancient language? Don’t listen to those FLC (Fine Liars’ Council) people. They are just rabble rouser. Rijan has been the best Labour Prefect that I would ever work with. In fact, to say this, if not because of him, my language would not have been so perfect like this. He teaches me Grammar every week. Imagine such a brilliant guy!”

“All right, in this semester what are your plans for the students?”

“We’re planning to have our hunting in some weeks’ time. We would take them all over Nigeria, especially Lagos and Abuja to see how beautiful Nigeria is. We will go to beach and lots. Also, we’re planning to issue Everlasting ID Charm. I’ve contacted them in London to make the work snappy so that we give them as soon as possible.”

“Ok. It was reported recently that the FLC (Fine Liars’ Council) planned to have a quiz competition that will allow some brilliant younglings to get home some cash for their parents. Besides, the CPS (Council of Prefect Secretaries) plans to organize a seminar on arts and tradition in collaboration with Institute of African Studies. Olori, students are complaining that you’ve been sleeping on a bicycle for so long and yet you’ve not learnt how to wake up from your slumber. How true is that?”

“Mr Kritic, don’t listen to those thieves. Since this administration begun they’ve been standing against our progress. Whenever we lay our good plans for them to see, they will sha find a way to burn down the plans with their malevolent hands of Slashing. They don’t want progress for us. But I know one thing, we shall overcome their evil acts. This Coven of Elere will be great again. We shall not relent. In a week, students will get to see the samples of things we have in stock for them. We shall tell the world that we’re the best administrators.”

“OK, nice to meet you, Mr Burukutu”

(Both Mr Kritic and the President, Mr Burukutu stood and shook hands with each other before they dispersed.)

The interview ended.

Like an itinerant preacher, stories journey, with no beginning nor a permanent bus stop. This is not the beginning, and this is not the end of this story.

ANY RESEMBLANCE TO ANYONE, DEAD, HALF-DEAD OR ALIVE, IS A MIRACLE. ALL INCIDENTS, YESTERDAY, THIS MORNING AND TOMORROW ARE STRICTLY FICTIONAL, AND PERHA
READERS’ DISCRETION IS STRONGLY ADVISED!