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The newspaper stand: Asaba accord on front burner | Prophet who claims Obi is messiah

The newspaper stand: Asaba accord on front burner | Prophet who claims Obi is messiah
February 07
11:23 2023

Do you know a fierce preacher? Not the ones in the usual extravagant ties and suits, but one such as Okon, in a faded green round-neck, bathroom slippers and a pentecostal charisma like the ones you see preaching in motor parks.

“God has come to our rescue,” he stretched his two hands in the air, making him taller than everyone at the newspaper stand located in the Ojodu/Berger area of Lagos.

This was on Friday when the hardship caused by fuel and especially cash scarcity was beginning to bite harder, but Nigerians still emerged from this unexplainable torture to once again deliberate the affairs of their nation at the newspaper stand.

But this preacher, not of doom, still saw a ray of transformation in a Nigeria led by Peter Obi, the presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP). He could see the messiah in him, and he was ready to preach it.


“Obi ke ke re n ke, Obi ke re n ke,” Okon sings like a preacher waiting for the musical accompaniment of the church choir. He added some weird dance moves, but most people just looked on, while some even laughed, but he was serious.

“Without Obi, everybody will go where they come from. We are coming to the throne that belongs to us. We don’t want Atiku and Tinubu again. How do you manage in this economy? We are coming. Obi is coming,” he screamed at the top of his voice with gesticulations – hands up, legs moving simultaneously like a drunkard.

Like an inspired church member, a man in a colourful Ankara shouted from the side to have his opinion tabled beside the numerous ones that were being deliberated. He had something to say about the unwritten law of power shift in the country.


He asked rather ridiculously that if President Muhammadu Buhari rules for 8 years, is it appropriate to have another president that comes from his tribe – being a northerner? 

The dark and corpulent man added that “power must come to the south.”

“Is it only northerners that own Nigeria? If the presidency doesn’t come back to the south, it means that the north owns the country. They will rule Nigeria for good eight years and one of them will come again. What happens then? If Obi doesn’t win, I prefer Tinubu to win,” he vehemently stated.

“The southerners also need to fight for power. Tribalism is a problem in Nigeria,” a resounding voice hammered him.


“They are contesting. That is why you should vote for Obi,” Okon, the preacher, responded to the resounding voice – it was from a tall man, with a tough demeanour.

“Okowa carried all the governors to Asaba the other time; overnight, he changed his mind. He insisted that power must come to the south, but now he is vying to be the next vice president to a northerner,” Okon continued by expatiating his thought on the idea of power rotation and the agreement of southern leaders to ensure that the next president comes from the region.

For those who are lost, on July 5, governors from the southern part of Nigeria met in Asaba, the capital of Delta, and agreed that the next president of Nigeria should be a southerner.

The agreement, including other resolutions made at the meeting, has since then been described as the “Asaba accord”.


A rotund man, who was following Okon as they moved around the table said in a disappointing tone: “He (Okowa) is a betrayer. He is from my place. They had that Asaba accord and he just changed it.”

As the conversation continued by the edge of the stand, a visibly angry man, who couldn’t hold his repulsiveness about the hardship caused by the fuel and cash scarcity, bursted out in frustration 


“Nigerians are too patient. You can’t try this in South-Africa or Egypt, or Ghana not far away from here. They will tell you there is a war.  People are just tired,” he moved wearily away from the stand with extreme anger and frustration stuck in his eyes.



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