Welcome to Dubai

Posted by By at 4 December, at 08 : 47 AM Print

Welcome to Dubai
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Welcome to Dubai

 

My Books on Amazon

  1. Africa: it shall be well: https://tinyurl.com/sn64ocd
  2. Africa: Destroyed by the gods: https://tinyurl.com/vglfk7w
  3. 18 African Fables & Moonlight Stories: https://tinyurl.com/s7qrp4p

Try and get your copy. And, please, help me share the links.

Kind regards,

Femi Akomolafe

 

Each generation must, out of relative obscurity, discover its mission, fulfill it, or betray it.” – Frantz Fanon

 

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Hey, Femi, it has been a long, long while.

Yes, o, my brother. How are you keeping?

I am good. I am good. Thank you. How are things at your end?

Doing my best to keep out of trouble, as usual.

That is good. That’s good. What have you been up to?

Oh, this and that. Doing my best to keep my  head above water, and also provide garri for the family.

That is good. That’s good. How come you went AWOL, just like that?

Just like what?

Hey, please don’t start with me again. I asked you a simple question and you are turning it into a fight.

I am not turning anything into a fight if I asked you to clarify the question you asked me.

You! I merely wanted to know why you just stopped writing and commenting.

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Is that your answer? You know what, I don’t always agree with you on issues and, if the truth be told, I disagree with most of your takes on things, but I do admire your tenacity. You keep on going for so many months, so many years. And then, suddenly, you stopped writing. Just like that. What happened?

Nothing happened.

Why did you stop writing, then?

Writers need to take a break now and then. It is necessary to sit back for a while and just observe the flow of things. It is good for the soul.

I won’t know about that; I don’t write. But I think you did us all a big disservice when you failed to say something positive about the massive infrastructural development going on all over the country…..

What?

Don’t tell me that you have not been traveling around the country to see the unprecedented pace of development.

Huh, huh!

I know that you like to criticize a lot, but there is nothing wrong with giving praises when it is well deserved. When was the last time you traveled to Accra?

I went there last week Thursday.

And did you pass through the Kwame Nkrumah Circle?

As a matter of fact, I did.

And?

And what?

And what you asked me. Didn’t you notice any change? Did you not see the sheer architectural splendor of the new carriageway? Were you not wowed by the glistening Water Fountain? Did the impressive flyover fail to amaze you? Tell me.

 

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Hmmmmmmm.

C’mon, my friend. There should be no hmmmmmmmmmmmmm here. Try to give praise to the visionary leadership that brought us to par with the likes of Dubai, New York and Paris.

What?

What, what?

Are you for real?

What type of question is that? What type of human being are you if you are not excited by the beauty of the new Kwame Nkrumah Circle. I know that you enjoy bashing governments, but on this occasion, try to be objective and charitable. Give praise where it is due. At least, the beautiful fountain plus its simmering light is worthy of praises.

It is sad.

What is sad, my friend?

It is sad that you feel that way. You, of all people, should know that I have never been motivated by malice. I give praise when I think that they are well-deserved, but…

My friend, there should be no but…

If only you will calm yourself down. It is difficult to explain myself to you if you remain in such an agitated and excited state.

Sorry, Ok, continue.

It is quite sad when we have people like you, educated and well-traveled guys like you, getting excited because our government borrowed money, gave it to a Brazilian company to build a flyover for us…

And what exactly is wrong with that?

There you go again, impatient to allow me to explain myself.

I know where you are going?

Blessed are those with the uncanny abilities to read minds. You asked me a question, but you are not willing to allow me to explain. What is the point?

What is the point of what?

What is the point of your asking me a question if you are not interested in my answer?

Ok, Sorry. Continue.

You see, it is said that a people deserved the type of government they have. I saw the huge excitement, the massive jubilation. I saw the dancing and the celebrations when the president went to commission the new flyover with pomp and pageantry. I listened to all the high rhetoric of officials. I said to myself that we, as a people, have a long, long way to go. It is pathetic that almost six decades after we begin to self-govern ourselves, we see nothing wrong in Brazilian Engineers building our roads with loans contracted from foreign sources. To me, we should be in deep mourning. This certainly could not have been the type of future our founding parents envisaged when they fought for our liberation from colonial rule. Rather than for us to jump up and down like mindless, little children in celebration of the construction of a mere flyover, we should have used the occasion for deep, sober reflection. And as to the inane comparison with Dubai, this is just insane. Just few meters away from our new glistening flyover are massive inhuman ghettos where many of our citizens still eke out miserable existence (forget about living). I talk here about the Sahara slum. A more serious people would be ashamed to showcase an unplanned ghetto like Accra as their capital, but so low is our self-esteem that a flyover built by foreign Engineers is enough to send us into a dizzying spell. What exactly do we expect to happen when next the rains come and deluge our fanciful Circle? Do you know what is so tragic about our current situation, my good friend?

Pray, tell me, Kamerade.

It was the Poet Yeats who told us that: “The best lack all conviction while the worst are full of passionate intensity”. You have been to Dubai on several times. I also know for a fact that you have traveled to the US and several European countries. In which of those places did you see people fetch water with Kufuor Gallons?

Hmmmmm…

My friend, please admit it. There are few places outside of our continent where people do not feel a sense of shame to be seen carrying water on their heads the way their ancestors did thousands of years ago. In which of the places you visited did you see people struggle to get electricity, or where people defecate in open spaces or where people continue to live happily in ghettos as though it is most natural thing in the world/

But…

Sorry to interrupt you, my friend. Let’s stop excusing our misrulers in Africa. We no longer have any business supporting those that make us live in poverty in this age and time. I saw you reading a Frantz Fanon book the other day, do you know my favourite Fanon quotation?

Tell me.

Each generation must, out of relative obscurity, discover its mission, fulfill it, or betray it.” – Frantz Fanon

 

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