YOUR (POSTDATED) EXCELLENCY, THAT OWAMBE IS UNNECESSARY

Your Excellency

Your (postdated) Excellency,

To be sure that there is no ambiguity as to whom this letter is addressed to, let me be very specific. This letter is addressed to you:
1. The president-elect and his vice.
2. Governors-elect and their deputies
3. Senators-elect of the federal republic
4. House of Representatives members-elect
5. State houses of assembly members-elect

I am tempted to include your spouses, siblings, friends and associates but I think I will not succumb to this temptation at this point in time so as not to take the shine off your recently acquired “special” status.

I am aware that this advice is unsolicited. Afterall, you have a retinue of advisers or hangers-on who will naturally tell you not to mind me. But know that I am a Nigerian and I’m determined to add my voice to those voices of reason that are gradually becoming scarce like those famed “essential commodities” of yore. And I know that it is within my inalienable rights to speak to you.

In typical Nigerian fashion, many of you may have been feted at carnival-like celebratory parties or are still at the planning such lavish parties popularly referred to as owambe after emerging victorious at the just-concluded general elections. Those who have not had or are not planning parties have had or are planning “thanks-giving” in one place of worship or the other. I have even heard with my two ears that one of you is planning a trip to the holy land to “properly” thank God for the election victory. And some of you doing this include serving governors whose states are owing workers salaries.

Well, as an individual, you have every right to throw an owambe, have a “thanks-giving” or go to the holy land in commemoration of your victory. But before you do that, let me ask you a few questions.
 Did you go out to vote on the days of the elections?
 Do you know on average how long people stayed on queues across the country just to be accredited and to eventually vote?
 Are you aware that ordinary Nigerians remained at the polling units to ensure that their votes counted?
 Do you know how many Nigerians lost their lives during the general elections?
 Do you know why Nigerians made these sacrifices?
 Do you really understand the expectations of the people?

I ask you these questions for you to realize that it took the sacrifices of many Nigerians to get you elected. It took hours under the sun and in the rain. It took plenty of determination. It took sweat. In some instances, it took blood.

My take on the glass-clicking and the chest-thumping across the land is that you, perhaps, do yet understand that there was something different about the March 28 and April 11 elections nor that the expectations of the people are clear. If you did, you would not be partying. You would by now be busy fine-tuning your plan of action to deliver the dividends of democracy to those that voted you into office. If there is anything that Nigerians demonstrated in the last election it is that they have lost patience with poor performance by elected officials. I am convinced that this will underscore the mood of the Nigerian public even as you settle down to run the course of the mandate you have been given.

There is no time for frivolities. We just want you to get down to serious work. Once you have delivered on your campaign promises, we will throw the party for you by way of a re-election.

Therefore, Dear (postdated) Excellency, that owambe is not necessary.

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