Dear President Buhari,
Soooooo, I just felt like I should tell you a story about a domestic aide I once hired. At some point in my life when I was genuinely tired of those domestic helps who would need quantum supervision to get a simple task done, I sought assistance in recruiting someone who would be able to work without supervision and keep my house running like a well-oiled clock.
1 – Adult female, at least 21 years old.
2 – Quick learner (after showing one girl how to wash toilet, I came upon her one day with her hand deep down in the toilet bowl, scrubbing away with a kitchen sponge – Sack! Sack! Sack! *throws up a little in my throat in remembrance of that incident*).
3 – Speaks, reads and writes good English (One nanny’s homework assisting efforts were reported by a visibly agitated small madam who asked me how many versions of English were in the market. “A – Apu. B – Bol. C – Cump. D – Dur…”. It was unbelievable, she had really wanted to help and yet I didn’t know if this was deliberate mischief, she had her own dictionary, or she had just developed a new language she wanted my daughter to learn – Sack! Sack! Sack! Odeshi).
4 – Basic sense of hygiene (*sigh*, I should write a domestic aides chronicles soon, right? So I ask this girl who had been smelling one kain when last she brushed and she happily told me “Aunty, am never brush o. No be me. Am never brush my mouth since I enter your house.” This was going on two months. No, I didn’t sack her. She learnt to brush her teeth at least twice a day and stayed at least two years before pulling the usual Christmas disappearance trick).
Anyways my “able” and “capable” Presido, the point was that I seriously and genuinely believed that I had been working with incompetent hands up till then and I needed someone capable who could basically run the home to my specifications, largely unsupervised.
Enter Helen (may or may not be her real name).
For a couple of months, I enjoyed the bliss of knowing that my home was run by a capable hand. Little to no supervision was needed and she took on her job like a professional. In fact, so professional was she that I didn’t notice when the coup plotting commenced until it was almost executed to perfection.
It began small by small with:
- “oh sorry, I didn’t hear when you said I should do this, so I did that. I am sorry, please forgive me”
- “oh no, I forgot that you said it should be done like this, so I did it like that. It will not happen again”
- “I was actually confused while I was doing it o, I was like was it this way she said she liked it or that way? Then I just said let me do it like this. Please overlook this one instance”.
And because me being me, I took these for genuine mistakes and seriously craved some form of order, I kept forgiving, forgetting and overlooking until pretty soon, her tone and responses changed.
“Helen, I thought I said you should boil rice? Why are we eating yam instead?”
“Because I thought yam is better.”
“Helen, why did you put these clothes here instead of there?”
“Because that place I put them is better.”
“Helen, I asked you to do like dis, why did you do it like dat”?
“Because doing it like that is better for me”.
Shuuuuu! This was irrespective of what my specific instructions were, Helen was doing it her own way whether I liked it or not afterall I had said it to her hearing once or twice that I thought she was efficient.
Me and my personal preferences there!
She was in charge. She was efficient like I had also admitted. I can go and chop shit if I didn’t like it.
Na wa o. One day I came back from work and found some men carrying stuff in and out of my compound and doing some “work” which I do not recall asking for or authorizing.
“Helen, who are these people?”
“They are the people who came to do work at the backyard.”
“I don’t know, they said my madam said they should come and do some work so I felt it was necessary and I allowed them to come in and do the work.?
“Why didn’t you call to clarify from me”?
“Was it necessary? They said they were here to work and the backyard needed the work so I allowed them since I felt it was in order?”
Okay na. I called the men and after a lot of interrogation, it turned out they were doing the right work in the wrong location. The person who called for the work was two or three houses down the road, but my madam couldn’t even see where she had gone wrong, letting unknown men into the house in my absence and IN SPITE OF MY INSTRUCTIONS TO THE CONTRARY. She kept arguing that she had used her discretion as she deemed fit, and I might as well calm down and let them finish the work since as far as she was concerned, the backyard needed it.
Soooooooo, as the President and Commander in Chief of the (un)Armed Forces of the Nuclear Republic of Viola, I did what any right thinking oga at the top would have done – sack, sack, sack!
No time to check time!
Why am I telling you this story my competent presido? Because I am hearing with one ear that you told oga police to do laika dis, and he went and did laika dat, and you are coming to come and wail and complain to us that he did not do laika dis laika dat.
Oga Presido, your enemies are watching o. Your enemies are beginning to consider crowning you the Chief Wailer of Nigeria because you don nearly wail pass Bob Marley sef.
Remember you promised to “lead from the front.” Maybe that is not a good position to lead from because you cannot then see those behind you and know whether they are following instructions or not o.
- “I was not aware”
- “They are not Fulani herdsmen.”
- “My administration is “trying its best.”
- “I told IGP to go to Birnin Kebbi and he went to Koton Karfe.”
Shebi you can cluelessness o.
If I were you, I will just resign now and return to Daura and attempt to find a solution to my perpetually barren 150 cows. Because verily verily I say unto you, a man who cannot add even a single premature calf to 150 cows in almost ten years, cannot run a hamlet.
How much more a country as complex and diverse as Nigeria.