So I recently had an interview with President Goodluck Jonathan, and here are the five reasons he gave as to why he’s handing over on the May 28
But before I go into the interview, I have something important to tell you.
I do not attend burials as a matter of principle. I usually do not know what to say when I see mourners crying, and when I look at their faces, all scrunched-up and sad, I am filled with this overwhelming need to laugh. Seriously! It is a medical condition, and I’m still undergoing treatment for it. So for now, I don’t attend any burials (might not even attend mine).
I know I said ‘five reasons’, but I am sure you are used to the number and what it stands for by now.
So I met with President Goodluck Jonathan, at his Otuoke residence where he spends most of his time these days, ever since Nigerians showed him they are thankless people, despite the great blessings he brought during his administration. Blessings like Shoki and Orijin, to name but a few.
He was talking to his fishes when his bodyguards showed me to the backyard, teaching me two vital lessons: Nigeria can run herself (Nigeria has always been on autopilot; the only work the president has to do is condemn killings and bombings once in a while, and go home to relax). And secondly, six years of ruling Nigeria can take a toll on your mental faculties, as evidenced by the fact that the president was having a conversation with his fishes.
After exchanging greetings, during which I kept looking around hoping Madam Patience would join us, I asked him the question on the minds of most Nigerians.
Mister President, why May 28?
He looked at me and smiled, before saying, “My cook is making fresh fish pepper soup. You will like it.”
I nod, hoping he will go on to answer my question.
He did. “Very few people visit me these days. Did you hear the two trillion naira story? Do you have any idea how many zeros that number has? Liars all of them! Ok, you want to know why I chose May Twenty-Eighth?
“On May 28, 1923, the Attorney General of the United States ruled that it was legal for women to wear trousers anywhere. Did you know that? My wife never wears trousers, I wish she would sometimes.”
In that moment, I began casting my eyes about for an exit, just in case I needed one. “No, I didn’t know that, sir,” I reply.
“What do you reporters know? Just to report fake rumors!” He hissed, before continuing, “On May 28, 1992, at the 65th National Spelling Bee, Amanda Goad won by spelling ‘Lyceum.’ I doubt my wife knows the meaning of that word sef,” he adds in a conspiratorial whisper, glancing over his shoulder.
By this time, I’d closed my notepad and was willing to forego the fresh fish pepper soup.
Then he started cackling wildly. “You know how sometimes, you just do something, because you can, just because? Well that is why I will hand over on May 28, and not May 29, just to show all of them, that I am still the President of this country! And young man, you can stand up and get out! I will eat my fish pepper soup alone.”
So that is it. That was all I could get out of the President. This is Chika Jones reporting for a news station that is neither AIT nor NTA.
Written by Chika Jones, tweets @chika_jones