In a way, one can say that Nigeria’s living literary deity, Wole Soyinka is a prophet. When I use the word ‘prophet’, I do not refer to those who are desperately committed to merchandizing the gift of divine revelation for the enrichment of their putrid pockets. Such people are fake prophets. They are ready to inflame their fatherland with distortions from the sanctuary of the devil provided their palms are greased to the detriment of millions of people.
To them, the spewing of privileged information disguised as prophecy is a task that must be done. Therefore, they go on to violate public space with assertions from their chaotic, moral delirium. So, when I use the word ‘prophet’, I certainly do not have any regard for greedy, political agents who masquerade as prophets, painting a pious façade but are inherently mean, a megaphone for politicians to perpetuate heinous protocols. In the ancient period, prophets were respected as the true mouthpiece of God, but unfortunately, there are very few prophets in the land while many are instruments in the spiky hands of the devil. Today, I want to first discuss prophecy in the mode that Nigeria’s Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka, is cast.
Prophecy is a message communicated to an individual through divine inspiration about future occurrences within a time frame. As literary disciples, we get our inspiration from the muse, that god of creativity that constantly accompanies people of letters. The muse could induce one to project into the future and be prophetic. The muse could also inspire one to engage with the reality of his environment which could have immediate consequences in the lives of people. It was in the former category that Wole Soyinka became a victim of the prophetic muse when he wrote the play “The Trial of Brother Jero”. While writing the play, little did Soyinka realize that after fifty-seven odd years, his prophecy about a certain character Brother Jero will become a reality. In the play, Brother Jero as a fake prophet practices his art in a beach where he calls his worshippers customers and relates with them in the same way.
In their private moments, many self-styled prophets and men of God will refer to their worshippers as customers. By writing the play, Soyinka was advertently warning Nigerians to beware of fake prophets. Did we heed the warning or have we outsourced our lives to spiritual merchants with guile and perfidy in their hearts just like Brother Jero? In Nigeria, many self-styled prophets have regrettably found themselves in the character created by Soyinka many years ago. They allow themselves to be used by a gang of political wolves in whose repertoire abounds mischief, subterfuge, and deceit.
Unfortunately, men do not learn from history. When some people began to toy with the gift of the spirit, when religious leaders began to frolic with politicians, to act out their script, they must realize the anger of the Almighty must surely come. Today, Imo State, that quiet, serene heart of Eastern Nigeria has been thrown into mourning by those who decided to play God without remembering the story of a military dictator in this country. Right now, it could be easy to shamefully desecrate the judiciary and upturn the will of Imolites in a brazen display of power, but we all remain men and the Almighty still retains ultimate powers. If Imolites indeed voted for Mr. Uzodinma and the APC, why were there no celebrations immediately the discredited Supreme Court announced the offending verdict? Why was the whole Imo State like a graveyard? If indeed Imolites voted for APC, why didn’t the party win a single vote in the state assembly? Mortar and pestle know that APC will NEVER win a kitchen election in Imo state, therefore to turn around and hand over the mandate to the APC candidate is a show of knavish convictions. In other climes, when a popular candidate is declared a winner, people rejoice and party into the night. In Imo State, it was a different scenario, that of bereavement and mourning.
I do not make any claims of being a prophet but going by what the muse tells me, Imo State is in deep problem. The only consideration for installing APC in Imo is 2023. Part of the game plan will also include further prophecy from fake prophets in exchange for sundry material patronage.
Emeka Ihedioha, cry no more. Nothing would have saved you from a gang of people innately committed to treachery even if you imported a legal team from heaven. Please pay attention to what I am about to tell you. This is not a prophecy but a submission enabled by the muse and proven through psycho-social experience. It may appear that you have lost, but in the future, you are going to thank God. I do not know the strength of your psychological capacity, but move on and cry no more. Many times, what people considered as tragedy turned out to be God’s way of orchestrating their affairs.
Many times, people have thanked God and celebrated an event they thought was a failure. You will remember this day and thank God that this mandate was stolen from you, mark my words. Personally, some of the things I considered as failure are the greatest testimonies in my life. Today, you are the most popular politician of the Igbo extraction. You have the sympathy of millions of good-natured, well-meaning Nigerians irrespective of ethnicity. You have become bigger than the Imo State Government house, so don’t belittle yourself any further with aspirations to inhabit a house and office that can’t accommodate your big political frame. Seven months period was your destined time in the State House, your assignment is completed, now you must move on to higher grounds. Will you become the next Vice-President of Nigeria? I don’t know. Will you become the first elected Igbo president in Nigeria? That I do not know either and the muse has not communicated such items to me. Keep the faith and keep well, as we say in Igbo, nkeiruka.
Presently, our country is caught in the vicious grip of a coterie of people bound by a sadistic resolve for selfish ends. Gradually, politics in Nigeria is gravitating towards a tragic dimension which the populace didn’t envisage five years ago. While the country bleeds with a debt profile of about 83 billion USD, the leadership is more interested in borrowing more money and aggregating forces towards 2023 without recourse to the agenda of the Almighty. While the public sector is submerged in decay, the government in power is more interested in ethnic patronage.
It is indeed a sad commentary for Nigeria because the Legislature is weak and the Judiciary is a composite joke. When I look back at history, I draw inspiration from the divine resolution that put an end to the inordinate ambition of a military dictator in 1998. I also remember that many people supported his ambition before the Almighty proved his suzerainty. God, not big brother, is watching.
Dr. Adiele teaches in the Department of English, Mountain Top University via [email protected]