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A take on the IBB election cancellation saga.
It was all over the news. Everywhere people jubilated over the victory of Chief Gbenga in the elections. It was a truly national celebration, no one cared what tribe the Chief was from, or whose interests he represented. At the moment, he represented freedom from military rule and ,whatever else happened, the people of the Nation were certain that normalcy was not too far away.
On the table in front of the dictator was a half finished Merlot. The Dictator himself was calmly perusing the days papers, guaging the effects of his most recent, and by his own admission, most sublimely delivered display of power yet. He laughed gently as he read about the outrage people were expressing. ""Got you all, didnt I?"" he muttered, and picked up the bottle, guiding it towards his gap-toothed mouth.
Suddenly the door burst open and the Chief barreled in. ""Your Excellency, you promised!!""
""Gbenga"" he said, ""you startled me. Sit down""
""You said if I won, you would let me take over government. You gave your word!!""
""SIT DOWN!"" the Dictator banged the bottle on the table and the Chief started, and then sat down. His composure instantly regained, the Dictator smiled wily. ""Wine?""
""Gbenga, Gbenga, why do you want to throw away everything now that you are so close.""
Instantly, the barely restrained tirade began again. ""Throw away everything?? I didnt have to throw it away, you already snatched it from me! Why did you do it, why did you cancel the election?!""
The Dictator shook his head. ""I didn't take anything from you. You have to understand how these things work...""
The Chief almost stumbled over himself in protest. ""I..I, you specifically guaranteed..""
""Oh come on. My hands were tied. Many factions were threatening to pull the country apart. I had to do what I thought best for the nation."" The Dictator knew it was a poor lie but he had to pretend to care about Gbenga's feelings.
The Chief was clearly unconvinced. ""Your Excellency, you've been my friend for years. I know you. If there is a mountain in front of you, you can go through it.""
The Dictator shook his head. ""No, no, I cannot go through a mountain. The most I can do is to go around it.""
""Thats still acceptable,"" Chief Gbenga said, lightening up for the first time. ""What do you propose I do?""
""Well, you could contest again in a re-run election.""
""Anh, oti o anh mi le se ru e I cant do that. I spent millions sponsoring myself for the past one, and the people clearly gave me their mandate.""
""Well a lot of people believe the mandate doesnt belong to you so all I can do is either have a re-run or let the transitional government take over.""
Chief Gbenga was stunned. ""But..""
""Gbenga, I have matters of the state to attend to, you have to leave now."" The Dictator firmly dismissed him, picking the bottle of Merlot once again to his dry thick lips. He glanced up once to see Chief Gbenga adjusting his agbada and cursing in Yoruba.
As soon as the figure went out of sight, the Dictator straightened up. ""Fucking politicians, thinking I'd let them run over the country again with their power hungry hands"" he thought again.
He picked up the phone and dialled a quick number. ""Put me through to Brigadier Sani Abacha."" He waited a while, and then the Brigadier came to the phone.
"Brigadier, initiate the Interim National Government. Tell them to remove Alhaji and find one Yoruba man to head it so there Yoruba people will get off my back about Chief Gbenga."
"Yes Your Excellency Sir. Any other thing?"
"Yes,I'll make sure you'll be the only officer to stay with them. You will receive the defence portfolio. At exactly six months, strike with your boys and put those politicians out of the villa."
Brigadier Sani Abacha on the other end was gently smiling. This was a dream come true. ""Sir, what if some senior officers challenge me?
"Thats a good idea. Prepare a memo notifying my Chief of Defence staff that all officers from the rank of Brigadier upward are compulsorily retired, except you of course."
The Dictator laughed. "Then bring it over here to be signed."
Brigadier Abacha laughed. ""Thank you friend. I knew you would never fail me.""
The Dictator nodded. "Anytime, Sani, anytime. We run this place now."
Claim: Originally written by Nigerian Fiction Member 136 - El Divine ( Eleanya Eke Urum )
Nigerian Fiction Title 87