It was the dry season in the northern part of Nigeria as dignitaries and different people gathered from far and near to grace the occasion as I became 67th king in the Wazobia kingdom. I have been looking forward to this day because past kings have been working on the same thing and I always looked forward on implementing a new policy but do not know how to carry it out. Who will I talk to about it when my father is just a palm-wine tapper not even a popular palm-wine tapper but a poor one precisely, my mother sells snuff at the side of the house and as for me, a student in a government school that do put on worn-out uniform and walk on bare foot to school till I managed to round-off S.S.S.3. Even at home, I wear torn cloth, walk on bare foot and go with my age group and poor societal class in my community to set traps in the bush so we can catch smaller animals and farm. But with the help of the small radio that you need to hit several times before working, I know what is happening around the nation, things are not going well.
All started six decade and six years we started having kings in the great kingdom, though the kingdom has been in existence for a long time but there was no records of kings for about a century. The great king Obaserikigwe died after a brief illness and this brought conflicts to all the different regions in the great kingdom as they all had three candidates each contesting to be the king. These people were influential, rich and of high societal class, they can buy anything they want with money and they stay in big cities on like us that stay in the village. I always carry the radio about, even to the farm listening to the progress because its nine months already that we had no king ruling over us. Three people had been dropped already and its remaining six left. Three more people will still be drop and one out of the last three will be crowned but no one knows how soon. All activities in the kingdom were done in an orderly manner by everyone but you still notice that we are sheep’s without shepherd.
As it got to the eleventh month, everyone was becoming anxious; a dog signal is now like that of a goat and that of a hen like a dog. Humans became wild like lion and things drafted were contrary to one another. It was very difficult choosing now since it was just three people left. Each of them wants to be king and they all engaged in several acts just to get there. Only the chief priest can make the final decision by seeking the gods for their choice but he himself was confused since the god’s was silent about it and did not reveal anything to him. I believe they would have tried to bribe him too to favour them, it’s not a surprise effort, and it’s nothing new but a regular practice. Guess the chief priest was afraid to go for the highest bidder because he did not want the gods to strike him dead, an abominable act if he tries it, a taboo.
Exactly one year after the departure of Obaserikigwe, on one of my hunting expenditure, I saw the chief priest, some chiefs and other dignitaries coming towards the direction we were standing. I was afraid if the sacrifice they carried this time was told to be brought here instead of the evil forests, apart from those involved, no other person is suppose to have eye contact with the sacrifice. What will befall us! I lament as they came closer. A white tiny rope was brought out when they got to where we were standing, I was the last person among my friends and I that was touch with the rope. They prostrated and shouted long live the king as I was been carry shoulder high to the palace, the gods has choose me. I was smiling because now I can implement things that are right and eliminate the wrong ones. These people know the right things but corruption and self centeredness made them deprived us from our right. What a pity!
Idiot, stand up, fool, stupid boy, instead of him to let us hunt and think of how we will break the yoke of poverty, he is sleeping like an animal, unreasonable being. I was hearing this from afar, I was not bothered since I was carried shoulders high to the palace, but felt sorry for whoever is concerned and when I put my plans in place, he will no longer be insulted but be in school at his age. A thrice neat slap sends me screaming and shouting; why will you do this to a king? Do you want to use me as sacrifice to appease the gods and you came to deceive me saying the gods have chosen me? These questions I kept asking as I sprang up to my feet and opened my eyes. My friends stared at me, looked at each other and started laughing. So you have been dreaming about what you will never perceive the aroma they said mockingly. I was dumbfounded and throw earth at them to see if they were still humans. So it was a dream!!! I said at last as I sluggishly struggled with the words and tapped my feet on the ground. We have set the traps and prepared for home they said. Why were you sleeping here, under this fig tree when we’ve been looking for you round the bush they asked? I responded not because I was not in the mood. They noticed it, helped me pick my radio that was still on as we walked quietly home.
About five kilometers remaining for us to get to the village when we saw people approaching our direction, it was sunset already. As they came closer, we discovered it was the chief priest, some chiefs and dignitaries with a robe in hand. We were all frightened and stood still. They walked up to us and ask every one of us to touch the robe, I was the last person. Long live the king they said and prostrated as I was about taking off my hands. I was carried shoulders high with some of my friends going with me and others to inform my parents of their fortune. Is this another dream? I asked myself using my hand to wipe my face. I heard from the radio; breaking news as I saw the media approaching to interview me. Now I was able to remember everything happening around me, it seems I had lost my memory after the dream. We were looking for a king in my kingdom, and the gods have chosen me. How come I asked? Common me! I was never among those contesting for the position, but it has happened this same way some previous years I concluded, though still surprised and my friends amazed. I was putting on the same shirt, same short and as usual bare foot just exactly as it was in the dream. Neither more hunting nor farming, it was hard to believe it’s real. Now I can put my policy in place and make the Wazobia kingdom a better place, eradicating all levels of poverty. What a fate without a faith! Today marked exactly a year the late king departed and it made me the 67th king in the 67th kingdom in the world. Now I’m experiencing a reality of a dream I had just for a moment.
DEDICATED TO MY DAD ON HIS 67TH BIRTHDAY BY: MIRACLE MIMI