The Day Snow Fell in Lagos

Adeola Aderounmu.

It started to snow at about 2am and it didn’t stop until 4am. Being a delicate (some say dangerous) city, no one was awake at that time except a few groups of people who must work overnight. Among these groups are the men in masks. In the believing minds of these masked men; they were sure that the God of the innocent people in bed was watching afterall. They could not withstand the cold and snowfall. So, for the first time in their tumultuous career, they retreated before it was too late for them. They would have frozen to death. The nurses at the various hospitals could not explain what was happening to the patients or to one another. Silence and panic ran simultaneously in their minds. The security guards on Marina road and elsewhere ran to get warmth and shelter.

 That night, for the first time in a thousand nights, Lagosians unconsciously found a reason to close their windows. It was cold inside though there was no electricity to power the blades of the fans and ACs. It was unusually cold, yet many people did not even think about looking out through the windows while closing them. Instead, more blankets were retrieved from the closets here and there.

It was midweek: traders and civil servants must set out as early as 5am. Danfo drivers and molue drivers must wake up, many of them only get about 4-5 hours of sleep everyday. It is hard to make ends meet. Alas! Practically no one could get out of their homes that day. The snow measured 15cm from level surface. That was a lot! Many were shocked and confused. Some went back to bed hoping to wake up from their nightmares later. But it was not to be. It was for real, snow came down in Lagos: this odd occurence defiles all geographical or meteorological explanations.

The homeless people could not escape this judgment that came to town unannounced.  Painfully, they froze to death, all of them. Even many people inside their houses were freezing but they stayed alive using all the blankets and warm clothes at their disposal. For the first time in their lives, Lagosians appreciated the warmth that the sun brings yet they have always tried to shield themselves from it. The sun will not come to Lagos at midnight.

Everyone was certain that this was going to be a work free day. Lagosians have always believed that they must hustle everyday. They bustle through life daily, like it is normal. They are convinced that is how life should be. Apart from the occasional strikes called by the Labour Unions or announcements to stay at home for predetermined elections, Lagosians never believed in holidays. Getting an annual leave is difficult and some jobs do not even have off days.

That morning (with many strapped in 5 to 6 clothes) confusion reigned supreme in Lagos. Everything and everyone stood still. The whole of Lagos has been taken over by snow and there was no one to stand up to it. Television and radio stations were running of course; people who worked on night shifts would have to continue for as long as possible. No one could drive and there were no danfos on the roads. Additionally, there are no winter tyres to carry on and no one was sure of where the roads started or ended. This has been difficult even without snow. Even the bold danfo and molue drivers could not dare the steering wheels. Firstly, there are no passengers and secondly their knowledge of the canyons and pot holes was sufficient that they would be heading for a suicide mission. Emergency services were virtually absent as all flights into and out of the airport were suspended.

People could still move around in their neighborhoods but such movements were very restricted and were only undertaken when necessary. No food canteens were opened so people were forced to cook in their homes and those who have not been in that habit swore loudly. It was easy to trade blames when nobody has been paying attention to the needs at home. Today, no one could play busy. Some children cried for food as desperation set it in some homes. On a day like this, everyone appreciated the importance of having dry/stored food at home. However, not everyone could sustain that wish.   

The midday sun that appeared was appreciated more than all the miracles in the churches and mosques since the 1980s when religion became a means to wealth and deceits. After 2 hours of intense sunlight, the unexpected snow was no match for the tropical heat. The ice melted and everywhere was wet but at least people heaved a sigh of relief. Lagosians are used to the resultant flood. There was no rapture and the world has not ended afterall. Gradually, life returned to normal but it was too late to start any hustling now. Millions of people including the area boys, the agberos, the under-age pure water hawkers and even the policemen at check points took that day off. Those on essential services went about their normal duties. Traffic was light (but clumsy due to the flood) and life was relatively easy on Lagos roads. The governor addressed the state around 6pm but many people didn’t care about the speech.

Instead, Lagosians gathered at various spots. The temperature was perfect resulting from a blend of the midnight snow and midday sunshine.  Smokers found good reasons to warm their internal organs. As they gather over drinks and under fumes from cigarettes, many elderly people worried and argued on theories that brought snow to Lagos. No one won the arguments but those who spoke loudest were people who have sojourned abroad especially those who have experienced snow. There was a particular man who was going around with a picture he had taken in 1975 when he visited the Soviet Union for a 2 weeks course and it had snowed on him then. He felt his time had come to explain more about his experiences then. He spoke about the trucks and tractors that are used to remove snow and that never had life stopped for a minute before in places where there is real winter. That man could have spoken forever but NEPA took light. People became discouraged and left the bar immediately. This is why the youth preferred the sports bar. It cost a little more to be there but they cannot sacrifice the champions’ league games for any kind of speech, be it from a governor or an excited pensioner.

Thy Glory O’ Nigeria! 

Fighting in the Lower House…eh eh!

Adeola Aderounmu.

Ole!, Ole! (Thief! Thief!).

This is what is going on in a house where people are supposed to be making laws and seeing to the welfare of the Nation.

Sometimes, I wonder….where are all the intelligent minds? Do we really have good products from our schools and Universities?

In Nigeria, politicians have no shame. They don’t quit in the face of scandal. They rough it through thick and thin. They must steal at all/any cost and get away with it.

In some other countries, politicians will commit suicide or resign when their shameful deeds become public knowlegde. Those who are prosecuted go to jail.

What would it take to bring a legitimate government to Nigeria?

What would it take to make a man or woman resign after stealing public funds?

What is the meaning of shame sef

With ridiculous shameless tropical gangsters in power…this is what we get-Madness in high places.

Yar’ Adua: Time does not take away illegality

Adeola Aderounmu.

After more than 100 days in office, what does one expect from a typical Nigerian?

“Leave him alone; let’s give him time to see how well he will perform”.

“Give him a chance, it’s God that put him there”.“Who do you want, is it Atiku?

Is he not better than Atiku and Kalu put together”?

“Is he not even doing better than the Baba that put him there”?

“Ok, is he not better than Alamieyeseigha”?

Nice comments and questions! But 10 wrongs do not make a right!

All the names listed above and thousands more on our political landscape in Nigeria represent the names of thieves and rogues.

Alamieyeseigha was given a royal welcome in Bayelsa State. Indeed, Nigerians remain the greatest enemies of Nigeria.

The time that has passed since the last charade called elections has neither heal the deep wounds that were created nor bestow any form of legitimacy on the fake government.Indeed, we have seen more expositions of how idiots have taken a firm grip on the Nigerian nation, entrapping it in the process.

Setting up an electoral reform committee is not a recipe to acquiring legitimacy. Obasanjo should be in chains now explaining his role in the scandalous election of 2007. Iwu should also be fished out. They committed serious crimes against Nigeria.

Sweeping dirt under the carpet can make the house look clean but the house will stink at the same time. And for as long as the house stinks, the occupants will be sick. A stinking house can also cause deaths! This is the situation we are in in Nigeria. 

We pretend like it is alright, it is under control but it is not! We are talking about the existence of 140 million people, not a few privileged people.

It is not alright to renovate a new house with 6 million dollars.

It is not alright for a servant leader and self righteous chemistry teacher to accept the result of a shameful election.

It is not alright to have David Mark as the senate leader. His past does not merit that. He stole, big time!

It is not alright because your dad, mum, brother, sister or cousin is a beneficiary of this stupid government.

It is not alright that the EFCC allowed all these thieves to go on plea bargaining.

It is not alright for petty thieves to rot in jail without trials while big time-pot bellies, pen robbers- politicians walk around as free men and (now women too). 

It is not alright to allow Patricia Etteh to stay one day longer as the 4th most powerful person in Nigeria.  It is ridiculous. More salt to an existing injury!

It is not alright because majorities are suffering.

What is alright is to do things the right way. Conduct credible elections (like in Sierra Leone).Prosecute and jail thieves called politicians, (stop plea bargaining).

What is alright is for Nigerians to sit down and discuss about their lives, how they want it to be 10, 20, 50 and 100 years from now and the legacies that they want to bequeath to their generations unborn. These were some of the steps taken by powerful nations of today. The foundations were laid many years ago.

The time has come for Nigeria and Nigerians to make the first bold step and lay the foundation. The alternative is everlasting poverty and misery! Manna stopped falling over 2000 years ago! 

Nigeria, may your glory come!

NFA: No Future Ambition

Adeola Aderounmu.

The victories of the Golden Eaglets at China in 1985, Japan in 1993 and Korea in 2007 boils down to the determination of the boys wearing the National Colours. The same is true of the lads that won Gold at Atlanta 1996 Olympics. Left to track records of the NFA, these achievements are mere impossibilities. Without dissecting the NFA in to-to, I think keen observers of Nigerian Football are sick and tired of this scalar quantity organisation.


Does anyone know the true story behind the on-going dilemma of the NFA and her inability to get the ball rolling for this season in Nigeria?


What kinds of people run Nigerian football or even our sports generally?


Where are the plans for Nigerian football?


How informed are our appointed or selected sports football administrators regarding the round leather game, its organisation and all that?


Are they seeking the development of the game or just earning a living and ripping where possible?


Of course there are more than 21 questions. Where are the answers?


In the ongoing women world cup, the Super Falcons of Nigeria were not one of the favorites to survive the group that they found themselves in (the Swedes are still crying when they arrived back home). However, that should not have been an excuse for them to be treated as slaves by the NFA which was exactly what happened to them!


The words of Maureen Mmadu below…….

…The NFA is deliberately doing this to the Super Falcons so as to frustrate some of us who cannot cope with their antics. As far back as 1999 when we took part in the Third edition of the World Cup in USA, the same NFA paid us $2,000 for our victory against Denmark. A draw in that competition fetched us $1,000 and our daily camp allowance was $100. Now, the same NFA is offering us $75 as daily camp allowance, $500 for draw and $1,000 for a win. Is that not madness? Are we going forward or backward? (source: The Guardian sept 19 2007)



·         Yes Maureen, that was madness and only mad people display madness.


·         Generally Nigerian football is going backward.



Let no one be deceived by the victory of the Eaglets in Korea. 95% of these boys will be nowhere to be found 2 years from now IF we follow the pattern that we know since 1985. The Phillip Osondus, the Christopher Nwosus, the Fatai Ateres and a host of others melted away. Dimeji Lawal did not reach his potentials as we all expected. So, in no way do the victories we enjoy at these youth level translate into the glory that is needed at the big stage. The senior world cup is the true measurement of football glory.



As we celebrate and bask in the euphoria of the success of our Eaglets, let the truth be told, there is something all Nigerians are hiding away from concerning these boys and one question that hunt my conscience is this one:


How old are these boys really? Luis Figo played in the Scotland ‘89 under 17 team for Portugal and he is still playing football to this day. Can we point to any Nigerian in that tournament that is still active today?


In 1991, Del Piero played for Italy as a homeboy and Sebastian Veron played for Argentina. Del Piero remains a Juve great till this moment in 2007.


Kanu and Oruma are stars of Japan 1993 but what about the rest of the team that won gold?


As far as football is concerned, if we had found a way to do things the right way since 1960, there is nothing that stops Nigerian ranking joint first with Brazil (or any other country occupying that position at any point in time) on FIFA’s scale. The real and true talents to achieve this lofty goal abound. It seems that corruption is the only thing that is organized in this country. That may explain why we have not been able to get to the root of it at individual and government levels.



Back to Maureen Mmadu…..

…..What it means is that each time we are participating in a competition, we have to force the NFA by quarrelling and fighting over money before we can get our rightful entitlement. I am not ready for that trouble anymore. The NFA is claiming that they reached an agreement with the players before departing for the World Cup. What a nonsense? What kind of agreement is that? How long shall they continue to cry of no funds. As I said earlier, I am true with the national team”.

I am saying it loud and clear that the Super Falcons need a foreign technical adviser now. That is the only thing that can bring sanity to the team. With a foreign technical adviser in the Super Falcons, I can reconsider my stand and return to the team, but anything short of that, count me out.

” Look at the male teams for instant, the NFA cannot try this rubbish with Berti Vogts. They are paying us peanuts and our coach won’t say anything. The same NFA spent so much money on the U-17 team (Golden Eaglets), in the recent junior World Cup in Korea. They paid the players so much money. That was a junior World Cup. We are playing in the senior World Cup for God’s sake. The Falcons have won so many championships for Nigeria. Five African Cup of Nations, five appearance in the World Cup, two All Africa Games gold medals and two Olympics Games appearances. We even made it to the quarter final of the World Cup in 1999. We deserved so level of respect from the NFA”, she noted.



I am not an advocate of foreign coaches but things do work better under them especially for the Super Eagles even if the best was a Cup of Nations’ victory. Still, I do not go for that concept. Maureen, you have my sympathy just as I sympathize with anyone who is into sports and wearing the National colours.  Indeed, it is a great honour but Nigerian sportsmen and women have never received the respect that they deserved. Else, how can one girl be receiving daily allowance of $75 trying to bring honour to her fatherland in far away Asia while another girl is renovating a new house in Abuja with over $6 mn?


How come the NFA had to borrow money from private individuals in China to pay the Super Falcons? Why was James Peters, the money carrier, still trapped in Nigeria when the Falcons were suffering and struggling in China? The problem with the NFA is again traceable to the problems of Nigeria. How many things are we doing right in Nigeria? We could not even conduct credible elections in the 21st century. For how long shall we put round pegs in square holes? To me personally, it all still looks like a madhouse, a place where corruption and sycophancy thrives no matter what!


I think it is time to start putting things right in the NFA glass or stone house.  Let Nigeria get indigenous sports professionals to run our Ministry of Sports. Let us put the best people into this branch of our existence and provide the optimal conditions for their perfomances. Let us make a road map that will ensure that a Lagos boy will put on the jersey of Stationary Stores and an Ibadan boy that of 3SC.


May the glory of Nigeria come, soon!

Statistics Made Easy by Okiro

Adeola Aderounmu.

Half truths and blatant lies have ruined this country beyond comprehensible imagination. According to Mike Okiro, here are some figures that make Nigeria one of the safest countries in the world.In 3 months;

  • 1 628 armed robbery suspects arrested
  • 785 armed robbers killed in gun duels
  • 62 Policemen died in the line of duty
  • 1 582 arms recovered
  • 6 514 ammunition recovered
  • 242 stolen vehicles recovered

Mr. Okiro stated that his mission for the Nigerian Police is to bequeath to the country a people’s police that is friendly in outlook, efficient in service delivery and nurtured by a well motivated and dedicated workforce. Nicely stated! Mr. Okiro, well done for reciting a famous line.

By Nigerian context, it is arguable the figures presented by Okiro are unreal. Sixty-two officially dead policemen (ignoring women) can mean 620 for anyone who knows the difference between official figures and eye-witness accounts of incidents in Nigeria.  Mr. Okiro cannot be blamed for the infamous reputation of the Nigerian Police; neither does the blame or buck for the wave of armed robbery stopped at his doorstep. The problem with the Nigerian Police is very well connected to the Nigerian factor. Simply, the way we do many things in Nigeria is wrong. Our priorities are not well defined or they are simply misplaced.

Instead of coming to the public to awash the image of the Nigerian Police, Mr. Okiro would have done a better job by keeping quiet and then working behind the scene to re-structure the police in such a way that the public will see a motivated and dedicated police force in action (and not in empty words). The Nigerian Police should be well equipped to meet the challenges posed by the increase in crime in the country and the sophistication of the robbers. The police should upgrade with immediate effect. By all or any standard, the target should be to make the Police the most sophisticated security outfit within Nigeria. This is the only way to transfer the fear in the mind of the police to the armed robbers.  

In order to help Okiro with his job, other aspects of our lives should be critically examined. Among others, the goal will include to create jobs and employment opportunities for the youth and graduates. In a system where thousands of people in the human resources category are jobless or misplaced, the fight against crime cannot be won. Until such a time that crime will be the pastime of the socially deficient or misfits only, these figures presented by Mike Okiro can only be expected to rise.

Finally, Mr. Okiro will have to employ a statistician in the office of the AIG. The figures presented by Mr. Okiro are very significant statistically and they cannot be used to classify Nigeria as one of the safest countries in the world. Indeed, it will take more than a day’s job to change the face of the Nigerian Police from the type that requires 20 naira as a proof of life.

May the Glory of Nigeria come, soon!