The Nigerians – Chapter 1

An enjoyable drama-based fiction that casts a spotlight on the riveting lives of Nigerians.

We Are Nigerians

A part of Lekki was illuminated from iridescent light emanating from a lounge. A highlife band was playing when Mope walked into Amora’s bar and all heads turned to meet her poise, uttering effusive greetings. She stood for a deliberate second to return the greetings with her most fetching smile. On her head sat Autogele, on her nose sat a pair of fancy-styled prescribed glasses, and her shoulders carried a long Ankara dress that barely hid her pair of sneakers. She strutted over to the bar, swaying her hips, exuding an attempt at seduction, failing utterly. She never cared. With 50 years in her portfolio, she had mastered the art of not giving a damn about what anyone thought about her or her style.

She headed straight for Mitchell, the tall, dark and handsome, bartender. A lady was flirting with him, touching his arm and fluttering her lashes. ‘He doesn’t want you dear.’ Mope said. ‘You should save yourself the trouble and move on.’

The lady threw Mope one good look and hissed. ‘Why don’t you mind your own business, old hag?’

‘You shouldn’t have said that,’ Mitchell said calmly.

Mope smiled. ‘Yes, you shouldn’t,’ she said and dealt a stinging slap to the unfortunate cheek of the other lady.

It was loud and the band fell quiet as if on cue. The lady held her cheek for a stunned moment and made to attack Mope when two strong arms lifted her like a bag of chips and carried her out of the lounge while she struggled in futility.

There was silence for a brief moment as all eyes watched Mope.

‘Thank you, Thank you,’ Mope said. ‘Carry on with your entertainment.’ Melody recommenced in obedience.

She turned to Mitchell. ‘How do I look?’

‘Stunning as always,’ he said. ‘Never met a lady who could match the style of Madam Mopelola Amora Adetokunbo.’

Omo dada,’ Mope said. ‘This is why I employed you, besides your good-for-business looks.’ She remembered the lady that received her slap. ‘The silly lady must be new here. And now she has gotten this old shoulder all tensed. Please get in touch with that masseuse of yours. I’ll need a good back healing. He knows how to hit all the right spots,’ she winked.

‘I’ll reach out to him. He’ll be in your office ASAP.’

‘I know I can always count on you,’ she said. ‘When will you settle down, Mitchell? Muscles will wear off and flab will take over one day.’

‘Don’t worry Madam Mo,’ He grinned. ‘Good things come to those who wait.’

‘So, wait and stop leading these stupid girls on,’ Mope said. ‘My hands are getting sore from slapping silly smirks off silly sissies.’

‘Haba, I am not the culprit here. They enjoy being led on. Body no be firewood.  You know how it is,’ He winked at her.

‘You are a goat,’ she said laughing. ‘a big he-goat. Attend to our customers, jare.’ With that she strutted off to her office.


Ping – {Hello Baby. I have had a long day}

Ping – {I know just what will make you feel better}

Ping – {You always do baby}

Ping – {Pick up that Afro lotion I sent you}

Ping – {Afro lotion, check}

Ping – {You know what happens next, right?}

Ping – {Yes I do baby}

Ping – {Imagine me in a bikini}

The door swung open, startling Kenneth and taking his attention off his phone. How did he forget to bolt the lock?

It was Dare, his neighbor. ‘You should learn to knock,’ Kenneth said.

Dare smiled with a lolly in his mouth. ‘You should learn to lock your door, Ken.’ He noticed the laptop. ‘Who are you conning this time?’

‘No one important. What’s up?’

‘I have told you to do Yahoo Plus. Save yourself the delay. Hit jackpot sharp sharp. Who doesn’t like sharp sharp.’

‘Someone who isn’t lazy. This business is about getting into the minds of people and manipulating them to achieve one’s goals. It is an art and I won’t soil it with your mystical Yahoo Plus. See Dare, I have a customer waiting. Abeg, no spoil business for me. What do you want?’

‘No be fight. Please can I get some cornflakes? Your guy dey H.’

Kenneth laughed. ‘With all your sharp sharp jackpots?’

Dare took the lollipop out of his mouth. ‘Don’t insult me.’

Kenneth smiled. ‘You’ll find some in the cupboard in the kitchen.’

Dare smiled. ‘Correct guy’

Ping – {Are you there, baby?}

Ping – {Yeah, data network is a bitch in Nigeria. Where were we?}


Abass woke with a dreadful headache. Last night had been a madhouse. He had noticed for some months that earnings from tax levied on Okada drivers had been dwindling when in fact there had been a steady increase in the number of bikes registered to ply mapped routes. After investigation, it became clear that four of the touts who handled collections were pocketing ridiculous amounts of money. He had reported this to Laguro, the head of the touts. Upon Laguro’s instruction, all four deviants had been picked up and publicly thrashed last night with Koboko – the soldier’s whip – till their backs were sufficiently bloody. They were given 1 month to repay.

His phone rang. It was Laguro.

‘Abass, how are you?’

‘Good morning Oga mi,’ he said and noticed his voice was still groggy. He cleared his throat before speaking again. ‘How was your night?’

‘Fine fine. The Chairman would like to see you this morning. Informed him your contribution led to us to catch those thieves. He was very happy, indeed. I think he has big plans for you. I’ll text you his address.’

The local government chairman wanting to see him was a huge deal. ‘Thank you Oga mi! You are a good boss!’

‘You are the closest thing I have to a son. I know you will make me proud.’


Saheed Yayi had been the local government chairman in Surulere for seven years now. His house in Bode Thomas revealed the glory of a man who had immensely benefited from the milk and honey that constantly trickled down from top government. The other fringe benefits associated with managing a densely populated city in Lagos Metropolis also contributed to his affluent lifestyle.

A dark-skinned police officer with a bulging belly opened the gate the moment Abass knocked. They knew each other.

‘Star boy! How are you,’ the policeman named Kanke hailed in a northern accent.

‘Officer Kanke. How are you?’

‘Always fine my friend. Chairman takes good care of me.’

‘I can see that,’ Abass said, nodding appreciatively. ‘He has asked for me.’

‘I know. He is waiting.’

‘Thanks,’ Abass said before heading to the main building.


Another security officer opened the main door for him and led him to the living room where the chairman was waiting for him.

‘Abass, my boy!’ Saheed greeted affably and offered a handshake. He was a stout man with broad shoulders and a shining bald head.

‘Good morning Sir,’ Abass greeted, taking his hand.

‘You came in just in time. Come let’s have breakfast.’

‘Thank you, Sir.’ Abass’ belly grumbled in delight as he followed Saheed to the dining room.

The table was decorated with plates of fruits, yam slices, egg sauce, and grilled chicken thighs. The delightful aroma from the coffee pot outshone the others.

‘Please eat,’ Saheed said, gesturing him to a seat.

‘Thank you, Sir.’

After a minute into the meal, Saheed spoke: ‘Laguro speaks highly of you. I have also been watching you. You have consistently impressed me. You are methodical, charismatic, ambitious, decisive, and most importantly, loyal. The makings of someone who could do very well for himself are clear, with the right support of course.’

‘Thank you, Sir.’ Abass wondered where he was going with this.

‘You have a university degree, right?’

‘Yes Sir.’

Saheed nodded his head. ‘I fired my PA last night. He had been feeding information to opposition. We can’t have that. Trust is important in politics. Do you agree?’

‘Absolutely Sir.’ Abass heart was beating. The food before him had lost its appeal. He could taste the change that was on its way.

Saheed kept quiet till the chicken in his mouth was no more. ‘You will be my PA from tomorrow. I expect you will put in nothing short of your best.’

‘I will Sir. Thank you, Sir.’ Abass stood up, grinning. He was only 25 and he was now the PA to a powerful politician. He was surprised at the card Fate had generously dealt him. ‘I won’t disappoint you!’


Iskilu maneuvered the commercial motorcycle between the tricycles popularly know as Keke Napep and the cars. The feeling was always invigorating. Traffic had nothing on him. The lady behind him clutched to him like they were lovers. He knew it was more out of fear that anything else, but he didn’t care. Her body was warm against his back and it made him feel powerful.

She paid him N100 after getting off the motorcycle. He was surprised that she did not scowl like some other customers. ‘Thank you, Madam,’ he said.

His friends, Muhammed and Karim, had retired for the day when he rolled his bike into No. 27 Bayero Street Aguda, Surulere. They were all having a chat and eating white rice and stew in the compound. Greetings were exchanged in Hausa. A tenant emerged from the backyard as Iskilu parked his motorcycle.

‘Good evening Sir,’ he greeted.

‘Evening Iskilu,’ the tenant responded. ‘How work?’

‘Fine Sir,’ Iskilu responded. There was a gentleman’s agreement between the commercial motorcyclists and the tenants of the house. They could sleep and park their motorcycles in the compound in return for doubling as security at night. This arrangement was common in the street.

‘Have you heard the news?’ Muhammed asked in Hausa as Iskilu sat on a pavement.

‘Heard what?’ Iskilu asked in Hausa too.

‘They are taking the bikes off the street,’ Muhammed said.

‘Forget that one,’ Iskilu said. ‘They have been on this matter for years but have never done it. Relax yourself. This is just one of those times. It will pass.’

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