Saturday 24 April 2021



I was thinking this morning..... about celebration. Yesterday, I was at the 50th birthday celebration of a friend and wife of a colleague. We all gathered to welcome her to the 5th Floor with pump and pageantry. Where I sat admiring the aso-ebi ladies and gentlemen, I remembered my early years in Warri when we celebrated birthdays, sorry, 'bydays.' The celebration was on a different level. While I was too young to remember my first birthday groove, I can remember a thing or two of my 10th in 1980 with the aid of that black and white 'pishure.' There was no cake, just a big bowl of rice with bottled Coca-Cola and Fanta standing guard on both sides. We gather behind the table and a click of the pinhole camera signals the beginning of wackies. Chai! Dat na celebration.

Three days earlier, I saw myself attending the 5th Year Remembrance Thanksgiving Service of my late uncle. Yes, it was a sombre mood through the service, but immediately after, we gathered to wine and dine. The beautifully decorated venue and dressed guests was not because we are happy he died but because he lived a good life that blessed so many. As I dug into the local delta delicacy, owo and starch and washed it down with sparkling grape juice, I nodded my head and said, this too is celebration.

On my way to the birthday celebration, there were others going for a different celebration, this time the joining in holy matrimony. Having waited so long for a life partner, when 'he that eventually findeth' goes all out to splash cash as much as they do colours, dancing azonto across the hall, please do not beef him. That too na celebration.

There are other celebrations like graduation, ordination, house warming etc., but one celebration that is strange and Nicodemously being introduced to society is 'Divorce Celebration.' Imagine my shock when I saw the invite put out by the Ghanaian couple identified as Nana Sekyere and Evelyne Korateng inviting people to celebrate with them following their divorce. When I thought that was foreign, last weekend photos emerged of a Nigerian lady, Dr Ikea Bello who threw a mini party to celebrate her divorce with a customized cake after parting ways with her husband. In the pictures, the latest divorcee in town is seen rocking a red dress. She also got herself a customized cake with the inscriptions, “I do, I did, I’m done. Divorced at last.”

While some will shout abomination, a deep thinker reflecting on how abuse and violence are rocking many marriages with some not getting out alive, they will grace such occasions, lift up their glasses to a toast and say 'this too na celebration.' Irrespective of what you are celebrating, enjoy, but keep in mind the words of Revelation 19:9 that says 'Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.' For that shall be the mother of all celebration.

Stay hopeful. God's got your back.

Happy Sunday.

......Just the thoughts of a certain Wey Mey

Saturday 17 April 2021



I was thinking this morning.... about Nigeria and our home grown problems which we refer to as wahala. Like every nation of the world, Nigeria faces challenges that are unique to us, similar to our uniquely Nigerian slangs. One of such slangs that has gained ascendancy in the last few months is the 'wahala be like...' slang

The last two weeks has been a mentally difficult period for Nigerians. Why So? The Yorubas will say 'wahala o ti poju.' After a relatively peaceful Easter celebrations, we woke up on Monday 5th April with the news of gunmen attacking a prison facility and police command centre in the city of Owerri, Imo state, destroying part of the prison walls with explosives and freeing 1,844 inmates. How quickly things turn from good to bad. As I wondered, I recalled the first of the 'wahala be like..' slang that says 'wahala be like noodles, two minutes e don ready.'

I was still praying for peace in Nigeria, when on Tuesday 6th April, Nigerian activist, Aisha Yesufu was reported to have said that she is okay and ready to seek visas to visit Kano, Lagos, and Enugu States. This was in response to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s comment that should Nigeria break up, one would need a visa to come to Kano. Yes, most of us are fed up with the state of affairs in Nigeria, but not enough to fuel the break up agenda because 'wahala be like Uganda, e de easy to enter but difficult to comot.'

With wahala everywhere, the IGP has his plate full. On the 7th of April, he was in Imo state trying to find a solution to the frequent attacks on police stations, when he was sacked. I can imagine his shock thinking 'but my 3 months tenure extension is not over.' Yea right, but such is life because 'wahala be like bicycle, e no hard to start but difficult to stop.'

With high unemployment rates, inflation and ongoing insecurity, the wahala rain continued to pour. The last thing Nigeria needed was a strike. But that was exactly what happened on Thursday 8th April as the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) went on strike to protest poor working conditions and pay. The jaw-jawing was on when members of the Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) embarked on an indefinite nationwide strike. As the Minister was asking 'what's going on here? I responded 'wahala be like okro soup....e dey draw.'

Surely, that must be all the wahala we can have in a single week. So I thought until I listened to Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State, raising the alarm over Nigeria’s financial trouble and how the Federal government had to print about N60 billion to augment allocation shared to states in March. I shouted in disbelief 'what's going on in this country? I was still shouting when the March 2021 inflation rate was released to have risen to 18.17% and food inflation jumped to 22.95%, the highest in 4 years. How can the government just print money like campaign flyers and not expect Inflation?' Chai! I was about to say 'wahala dey o' but instead I said 'wahala be like naira, it is never in short supply to politicians.

Wahala here, wahala there, wahala everywhere. It doesn't matter how the wahala be, you will come out better because Psalms 34:19 says 'Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all.'

Stay hopeful. God's got your back.

Happy Sunday.

......Just the thoughts of a certain Wey Mey

Saturday 10 April 2021



I was thinking this morning.... Having spent the better part of my adult life with friends from Igbo, Yoruba and Hausa/Fulani extraction, I am aware that like us Deltans, these tribes also have challenges with pronouncing some letters and words. While the Igbos have L and R factors, the Hausa/Fulanis are challenged with pronouncing 'F' and 'P' words. The Yorubas, on the other hand can't pronounce words with 'H' as the H will be silent. In order to compensate for the 'H' challenge, you hear many educated yorubas, force 'H' into words that don't have it. For instance, they pronounce 'air', (H)air while Hair will be pronounced 'air.'

Against this background, I was worried for my cousin, named Henry when I first saw a newly-painted road sign in Maldon, Essex UK. The sign says "NO Enry." I had initially thought it was written by a yoruba man who had spelt the name 'Henry' the way he pronounces it and left out the letter 'H'. 'What has Henry done?' I imagined. I was still musing when I saw the social media rave about the sign. Apparently, the council staff that painted the words wanted to spell ENTRY but missed out the letter 'T'. While so many people teased and suggested the staff were 'on a T break', one man echoed my sentiment exactly when he joked: "Poor Enry, I feel for 'im".

As my small frame shook with mirth from the sign and comments, I imagined how a minor error could have grave implications. The 'NO ENTRY' sign was meant to stop everyone from taking that route, but someone's error that left out a letter changed the narrative and meant only those called '(H)enry' are barred. Poor Henry! When this happens, I can imagine Henry telling the sign writer, 'If na you dem send, tell dem say you no see me.' 🙂

If your name is Henry and you are denied access because of the 'NO ENRY' sign, do not just turn back and say 'hard luck.' Ask why, as it may just be a simple error because someone is on 'T' break. So many have lost out of their blessings because they are too fearful to ask 'why so?' Do not be afraid to challenge the status quo.

However, when you do challenge the person and the process, please do not attack his person because the man may just be having a bad day. Like the sign writer in Maldon, he made a harmless mistake and had nothing against Henry.

If you feel like Henry, disadvantaged or marginalised for no reason, denied from making progress, do not resign to fate, like Isaiah 41:21 admonishes 'Pesent your case, says the LORD. "Set forth your arguments," says Jacob's King.' If you get no answer from man, ask God in prayers.

Stay hopeful. God's got your back.

Happy Sunday.

......Just the thoughts of a certain Wey Mey

Saturday 3 April 2021



I was thinking this morning.... For someone that has lived in Lagos for over 10 years, enduring the traffic is no longer a biggie. I have even developed the habit of picking up life lessons as I drive. Driving from the Island to the Mainland recently, I was on the left lane, in-bound Ikoyi, on Falomo bridge on a light traffic when a Toyota Avensis dangerously swerved into my lane. I stepped on the brakes, narrowly avoiding a collision. I checked to see if the driver was sorry but 'the guy no send' as he drove ahead leaving me behind. I activated my Warri bad boy mode and decided to do James Bond driving to stay ahead of this driver. I swerved to the right lane as the traffic on the left lane came to a stop. I succeeded for a bit and got ahead of the stubborn driver. As I left him behind, I felt a sense of fulfilment but suddenly the right lane stopped moving and I watched the Toyota Avensis drive past me before I could change lane again. He zoomed out of sight while I struggled to change lane. When I finally changed lane like everyone else, I discovered that a LATSMA official had stopped a vehicle on the right lane that made me lose my self-imposed Formula 9 race. As I reflected later on, I saw my error, repented from engaging in an unsafe act and learnt that life is like Lagos traffic: Just mind your lane and you will get to your destination in peace.

Imagine how so many people are provoked by the inappropriate behaviours of others to leave their lane. This can happen between married couples, siblings, brethren or even strangers like in my case. Only recently, a Ghanaian woman reportedly driving at top speed to catch her “cheating” husband, lost control of the vehicle and was fatally injured. Sad! She died cheaply. Women, do not allow your unfaithful husbands provoke you to unhealthy competition about who is smarter. Life is like Lagos traffic: katikati will do you no good. Just mind your lane and you will get to your destination in peace.

Men nko? Do not allow your nagging wife provoke you to unsafe behaviour. You will just die of high BP. Forget all the Warri threat of 'I go change am for you.' It doesn't work. Life is like Lagos traffic, you can change lane all you want but make no appreciable progress. Just stay on your lane and you will get to your destination in peace.

Don't be in an unhealthy competition with anyone, because like Lagos traffic, you can never tell when the traffic will stop on your lane. Also, don't feel bad when it seems the other lane is moving and yours is not. Relax, in good time, your lane will move and you probably will catch up with the other driver you think had gone ahead. And if you don't? Fret not, you both are headed for different destinations. He might be going farther. Mind your lane and you will get to your destination in peace.

Ecclesiastes 7:9 'Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.'

Stay hopeful. God's got your back.

Happy Easter.

......Just the thoughts of a certain Wey Mey