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Do Better with Douglas: It Is Now a Crime to Be Poor In Lagos & Other Short Stories

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Douglas, a patriotic Nigerian has taken the week off his civil service work to celebrate the safe return of President Buhari to us. I mean, why not? While he has been away he has had more time to follow the news and in case you missed anything this week, this is the authoritative, imagined round-up you need.


MMM Continues to Help Economy Boost, Reduces Inflation
Recently, Nigerians have had cause to rejoice, as the National Bureau of Statistics has announced that the country’s inflation rate has dropped to 17.78%. Unconfirmed reports say the drop in inflation is due to the economy-boosting activities of award-winning organisations such as MMM and Twinkas. It is being said that these Ponzi schemes are part of the economic change Buhari promised – though like with all his other activities, he has been taking his time to reveal.

Lie Mohammed, it is alleged, reckons that the schemes will boost wealth generation for all of us. With the excess money circulating, there will be enough funds to fix electricity shortages, pay every Nigerian a weekly allowance, buy Nigerian Senators new cars and also pay for Buhari’s next medical trip to whatever he country he likes. He may also throw in a proper vacation. I would personally suggest an Asian country.
Amongst other things, the food there is cheap. Maybe President Buhari will be able to add some weight.

Mauritania Votes to Abolish Senate… Setting a Very Bad Example for Nigeria
Lawmakers in Mauritania’s Lower House of Parliament have recently voted to abolish its upper house, the Senate. The vote will now move up to the Senate itself. The ruling government has a majority in both Chambers so this means the lawmakers will be voting on the abolition of their own office. This is likely voting against sitting allowances, official cars, housing, travel allowances, constituency allocation, and so on. Nigerian Senators have expressed their shock and dissatisfaction at this troubling development. They claim that Nigerians are fans of copying foreign things and hope this will not be one of them. They also stressed that Senate is very important to Nigeria’s survival. I completely agree!
Who else will inaugurate boreholes, occupy high tables and vote against uncultural things like the Gender Equality Act? Who else will provide political insight and commentary on Twitter and bring citizens ‘closer’ to government like Ben Murray-Bruce? Who else will hold entrepreneurship competitions with state money like Bukola Saraki? We must not go down this very dark road like Mauritania.

Nigerians Fight Corruption with Twitter |Twitter CEO To Be Arrested By Nigerian Police
Are you driving around Lagos without a drivers’ licence? Are your papers outdated? Do you have no cash to spare to donate to the ministry of VIO and FRSC officials? HURRAY! All your prayers have now been answered.

A Good Samaritan Nigerian has recently opened a Twitter account (@VIOSightings) that collects and solicits pictures and information on where VIO and FRSC checkpoints are situated across the country, round the clock. Of course by across the country, I really mean Lagos and Abuja. With the hashtag #VIOSighting you can know in real time what street, area or express to avoid a VIO checkpoint.
Ethnic and civil society leaders across the country have expressed their support for this account. Nigerians are for the first time coming together across ethnic and gender divides to act singularly. There is no question of whether a Yoruba or Igbo should be allowed to be caught. There is no question of whether it’s a woman driving her husband’s car or if she owns her own car.
The Nigerian Police has, however, attacked the account and has put Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey, on its Most Wanted List. I will report more as the story unfolds.

It Is Now a Crime to Be Poor in Lagos | All Residents Take Note
If you are poor in Lagos, you are breaking the law. Your houses will be demolished. You will be arrested by the police.
Governor Ambode revealed this new development Friday, 17th March, when military police and a couple of bulldozers were sent in to demolish the waterfront community of Otodo Gbame, a fishing settlement outside Lekki. There had been a court order prohibiting demolitions but the government pointed out that this is an anomaly. The forgetful judge, Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo did not remember that Gov. Ambode is above a court judgment.

According to an insider, this is how the government feels: Poor people are simply not part of the mega city plan. We are trying to build a beautiful city here. Poor people… They do not look like everyone else. They don’t dress well. Their children can’t speak proper English. Bloody hell, they don’t even eat three times a day so they will not even look nice in any promotional pictures. Plus the land they are living on is going to waste. That could be a nice golf course. Or a resort! The money Lagos could make. Our leader, Bola Ahmed Tinubu will be very happy with us.

All Lagosians are now advised to work very hard and do all they can to live above the poverty level so as not to commit this crime like the Otodo Gbame residents.

A word is enough for the middle-class and the rich.

Photo Credit: Atholpady |

Douglas is a civil servant but this was not the plan. He convinced his parents to invest their elusive pensions in a private university education. He made sacrifices too. He tucked in every day, wore ties, ate tofu, attended church four times a week, listened to sermons probably drafted on private jets. He even graduated top of his class. At the end of it all the return was supposed to be a great job, regular salaries, workplace oppression by bosses who could actually write a sentence in proper English. But now he is a civil servant. Since the universe didn't keep to its end of its bargain, he won't either. He resumes work at the Secretariat at 11AM, on excellent days. Closes 3.30PM sharp. In between watching Africa Magic And gossiping with Folake in the next office, he writes things like this. You may also find him causing trouble on Twitter at: Tweets by dobetterdouglas

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