TUESDAY TRENDS – BUILD ME A STATUE
I am scared that by next Valentine’s Day, ladies will stop expecting flowers and chocolates from their “Baes”, instead, they will be expecting a million-dollar statue as a sign of love from guys. While the richer guys will be going for diamond and golden effigies, the not so rich ones will be buying bronze and copper statues. The rest of us will have to settle for ceramic, plastic, clay and wooden carvings.
If this my fear does come to pass, I know who I will be holding responsible; Rochas Okorocha.
Where do I even begin? How do I explain this to my teenage children in fifteen years time? How many Ghanaians are laughing at us right now? I bet even South Africans don’t know how to react to this situation.
When Nebuchadnezzar was building Idols in Babylon, at least he believed he was doing it to please a god, who does Rochas’s statue please? Zuma? South Africans? Indigenes of Imo State? Igbos? Nigerians? Donald Trump? Kim Jong Un? Amadioha? God?
520 million naira! How much is the annual budget of Imo State? How much does the state currently owe its workers? How many contractors have demobilized from worksite cos of lack of funds? What is Rochas’s biggest edifice since he became Governor of the state? Where is the State assembly that approved funding for this ludicrous statue? What happened to the bailout fund received by the state from the Paris Club Refund? Can’t the APC just ask him to demolish the statue already?
I hope he has put a world-class security apparatus in place, cos I’ll hate to wake up and find that Nigeria’s most expensive statue has gone missing or taken an “unauthorized walk”. I hope the foundation of this statue is so deep that it doesn’t get washed away by flood. I hope this statue is magical and drops manna every morning and candy every evening. Is it too much to dream that the presence of this statue will boost tourism activities in the state as the world come to marvel at the folly of this Maverick Government?
Somewhere in my mind, there is a valid explanation for this statue we will hopefully come to love. Maybe, just maybe Jacob Zuma was desperate about getting rid of the money he is being probed for in South Africa; Rochas Okorocha, not being one to pass up on a revenue-generating opportunity for his state asks Zuma to bury his haulage under a statue, for which he will also fund the construction, while Imo State gets to collect rent for housing the monstrosity of a statue while also getting a cut of the bounty underneath.
Nigeria’s corruption and political thieving elite might just inadvertently help us create a cottage industry we can export to the rest of the world.