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Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Nigerians should appease Awo in grave - Amsterdam based Ghanian

Nigeria, wake Awo from his grave —Nyarko, Amsterdam-based Ghanaian
 10.Sep.2014  DISQUS_COMMENTS   Wale Ojo-Lanre
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Wale Ojo Lanre, Associate Editor, Tourism in an encounter with a Ghanaian, Daniel Nyarko who  believed that Nigeria is in distress because they offended Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
Having crossed from Belgium to Holland, after a five-day intensive course at Hasselt University on Green Growth and Travelism (Travel and Tourism) there was the need to purchase a new SIM card as I learnt that the Lyca Sim card, which was obtained in Brussels might not be of service to me in Amsterdam where I wished to visit some tourism sites.
As Akogun Banji Ojo, a Nigerian friend who domiciles in Amsterdam and Europe, Coordinator, Oodua Progressive Union, (OPU) picked me at the Schipol International Airport, I stressed the urgent need for me to acquire a SIM card.
He informed that SIM card is free in Amsterdam unlike in Belgium where a SIM costs 7.5 Euros and assured I would get one at Albert Heijn, one of the Malls in Krainneist, a stone throw from his house.
A 15-minute drive from the airport got us to the Mall and we approached one of the shops, which showcased on its door bills and posters of different network providers which claim to be the best for Africa.
As we entered the shop which is obviously run by an African, (the Ghana community dominated Amsterdam), the man behind the counter saluted the OPU leader with a smile and said mockingly “Omo Nigeria, your country should be ruling Africa now, see what your people turned your country to and here you are eking out crumbs from foreign land.”
Akogun Ojo who is used to the man’s tantrums instead of responding asked for a free Lyca SIM card for a friend coming from Nigeria.
But I felt otherwise and before he could fetch the package, I asked Akogun who the man was, ‘Don’t mind him, he is just a run-away from Ghana).
Before Akogun could finish his statement, the man retorted, “Yes, I am a Ghanaian driven out of Africa by the ineptitude of our people, I mean the stupidity of our people and irresponsible leaders.
“See, in my own case, it was the CIA and the imperialists that killed our visionary late Kwame Nkrumah, but in your own case it was you people, bad Nigerians who frustrated Chief Obafemi Awolowo, an angel sent by God to deliver your country and the best statesman that ever rioe in your country and prevented him from ruling your country for good. Now, see you here making yanga. Can’t you see them in Ghana too, the irresponsible leaders, who claimed to have found oil but went to borrow huge money, spent it irresponsibly before exploiting or exploring the oil. Now, Ghana has spent money, which they have not started to earn. All of them are yeye.”
Sincerely, when he mentioned Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s name I was pinched to engage him as he spoke so glowingly about the founder of the newspaper where I also eke out a living, but being hungry, tired and pressed by nature, I asked Akogun not to engage him in any frivolities as we hurriedly got the packet of Lyca mobile without allowing him to fix and configure it properly for data service.
It was after satisfying my immediate physical need that. I inserted the SIM into my phone, made a few calls to Nigeria and switched to Google for some information only to discover that I have not configured the sim for this purpose.
Though a message for configuration was sent which I could not do successfully, hence my sense directed me to visit the Ghanaian’s shop at Albert Heijn for the configuration.
Then my journalistic instinct was stoked “engage him in a chat particularly the one related to Chief Awolowo. Are you not surprised that Awo’s names resonated here, not from a Nigerian but from a Ghanaian? Are you not surprised that what you people did not value is being adored by others even in a foreign land by a foreigner at least he is not a Nigerian. I seized this opportunity to get more out of him.”
Luckily, as I got there, he recognised me and kick-started the chat without knowing my ulterior motive.
“Omo Nigeria, ki lo de (Nigerian, what is the problem?)
I explained to him my predicament.
As he started configuring the sim, he continued his ranting about Nigerians, “You people missed your saviour in Awolowo, that man would have turned Nigeria to paradise. However, you denied him that power. I pity you.”
I then asked him “Who are you? Are you a Nigerian? “
“I am not. I am a Ghanaian. My name is Daniel Nyarko. I can never be a Nigerian where you prevented the emergence of a world leader which is Awolowo.”
“So what is your business with Nigeria and Chief Obafemi Awolowo?,” I asked him
“Haw! Nigeria is the biggest country in that part of the continent. It has everything in abundance. Nigeria was created to lead the black world, but being submerged and reduced to a lilliput by you people. I am an African and believe in Nigeria’s leadership role in that continent,” he retorted.
Did you ever live in Nigeria?
“I have never lived in Nigeria. I only transited in Nigeria, when I was coming here in the 80’s. Got no business in Nigeria,” came a sharp reply from him.”
“So what is your business with Chief Awolowo? Have you read his books or what?”
“I never met him or read any of his books, but I learnt about him when growing up in Ghana, his works and revolutionary legacies which I learnt are still unbeatable in Nigeria. With what I read of him, I have been monitoring Nigerian leaders since that time and I have not seen any who can match even his 20 per cent performance and vision,” he pointed out
“Look, my brother, Chief Awolowo was a messiah sent to you by God to build Nigeria into greatness, but you people rejected. See my PC, I sit down here and monitor events and read news about home. You people should go and wake up Chief Awolowo, beg him profusely and ask him to come and rule you again.
“It is then that the glory of God will shine in that country. If you cannot do this, kindly tell your country to appease him. You messed him up, lost him and deprived Africa a man of greatness. It is a pity.”
As we continued the chat, there was a deluge of customers asking for attention and sensing the pressure and dictates of the time, I bade him good-bye
“My brother, we see again. But tell your people at home that you people deprived us I mean Africa a global leader that would have been greater than George Washington.”
In addition, I left his shop ruminating on what a great name to leave behind!