“America, Donald Trump and I”, by chukwudi adepoju

As I write this, the world is gradually coming to terms with the fact that the new President of the United States of America is Donald J. Trump, ‘self-professed’ billionaire and political-outsider sworn in to office less than a week ago. How do I perceive the ascendency of Trump and the future of America under this most unpopular President in America, their America? This is my take. It is not going to be short.

First things first, I should state where I am coming from; the values that have shaped my thinking about what I am going to write about. You know what they say, “…we do not see the world as it is, but as we are!”

I am a middle-aged black man, a Christian of the fervent Pentecostal, Evangelical flavour. I believe in God, in Jesus Christ and in the Holy Spirit. I grew up the son of a church elder, who later became a Pastor. My mum is a Deaconess. But do not think that makes me ignorant about things outside the Bible and the stories of Abraham, David, and Goliath. By age 10, I could reel off the list of all American Presidents from George Washington to Ronald Reagan. Even now, I can tell you (with no effort at all) the names of all America’s Presidents in the last 120 years, and in the correct order of course. With an advanced degree in International Politics and a keen interest in international affairs spanning more than three decades, I am well grounded in the arguments in that field, especially in International Political Economy.

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“Baa! He’s in EVERY verse”

If, like me, you grew up in a Christian home….ok let me rephrase.

If, like me, you actually like the fact that you grew up in a Christian home,

then you must be familiar with Psalms 23.

Familiar with it for decades, as I have been.

I can recite Psalms 23 in my sleep, in two languages.

But as I heard someone read this song today,

It suddenly dawned on me

That the Shepherd is in every verse


1 The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord

I’ve been a really slow sheep

To not notice He does not sleep

But ‘cos in wahala, he’s in my verse

That beats being a stray, though in First Class.

Chukwudi Adepoju is @adechuks on twitter.

The Parable of The Straw! pt.1

The year was 2001. Lagos, Nigeria.

I had just completed my National Youth Service Corps assignment. I had enjoyed the year tremendously. Not only because I got to work with Nigeria’s very first internet service provider, ensuring I had an unfettered access to the internet, an access that less than 1% of Nigerians had at that time; but I had also been able to complete my MCSE (Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer) Certification exams earlier that year. There were six different modules to go through, and although thousands of people had to re-take at least one module, I had gone through them in a breeze. Of course, I received tremendous help from family, especially from my very loving parents (who were both retired), and from my big brother “Bros Dee”, who paid for a number of the exams. I will forever be grateful for their sacrifice.

But on this fateful day in August 2001, I was unhappy and I did not know why.

I was on a lunch break from my internet service support duties and having a quick lunch at “Mr Biggs” on Akin Adesola Street in Victoria Island. It no longer stands on that street today, but back then in 2001, Mr Biggs on Akin Adesola was thriving. My office was in Eagle House, just about three buildings away.

For no reason in particular, I was not in a very good mood. It was not the food, as I’ve never been the picky eater. I literally follow Apostle Paul’s injunction that whatever is placed before you, ask no questions, receive it with thanksgiving and eat on. While some people have highly developed tongues to know what food lacks what spice, I have never been in that prison.

So, it was not the food.

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“I’m a Port Harcourt Boy!” and the neglect of the Niger Delta

Song ref: Duncan Mighty’s Port Harcourt First Son (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EFDFtSfccWM)

If you know someone whose heart doesn’t beat for his own patch of earth, pity him. If you know anyone that can’t sing with pride his own version of this extremely likeable song “I’m a Port Harcourt Boy eh, e ji kelele eh!” by Duncan Mighty, I have a feeling the person has not started living yet.

And this indescribable love for your own city is not a new thing.

The writer of Psalm 87 gushes about his own love for Jerusalem. In another Psalm, David says “If I forget you, Jerusalem, let my right hand forget how to play musical instruments”, and that is saying a lot. Jay Z and Alicia Keys tell us in “Empire State of Mind”, that in their New York, the streets will make you feel brand new, “the lights will inspire you!” You need to hear MI talk about Jos! Aladuke will tell you about her Ilorin, Elemure will tell you about Ekiti, the Lisabi sisters told us there was nowhere like their Abeokuta, and you don’t even want to get me started about the one and only “Osogbo oroki”.

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“What’s God got to do with it?” by Chukwudi Adepoju.

“What’s God got to do with it? Everything, my brother. Everything!”

“What’s God got to do with it? Absolutely nothing, my guy. This is business!”

Reuters-Nigeria-Christians-church-service-memorial-photog-Afolabi-Sotunde When the Western press says that Nigeria has a Muslim North, and a Christian South, we vehemently protest it, letting them know that the lines are not that clean-drawn between the North and the South; and that we indeed have huge populations in the North that are definitely Christian and lots of Muslims in the Southern part as well. I even volunteer the info that my own Dad, who lived all his life in the supposedly (only) “Christian South” was himself a Muslim for most of his youth. What we do not contest though, is that Nigerians love to be either one or the other. It is the rule that we belong to either of the two faiths. God lives in Nigeria, you know. It is a very rare Nigerian indeed that does not have God in his conversations on a daily basis.

 Our cars carry the bumper stickers, and our homes have the necessary paraphernalia. Our politicians talk about God at every opportunity. We are not the sort of people that believe our God should be kept at home. By my side, by my side…I have a very big God o.. He’s always by my side… We know the song, don’t we?

 And yet the presence, and at the same time, the unbelievable absence of God in the life of the Nigerian is one of the most impossible dichotomies you could ever encounter anywhere in the world. I explain.

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Not racist! Only ‘Tribalist’! In defence of an unusual name.

My Kenyan friend put it quite succinctly a few days ago as we talked about the politics of Africa in general, and of Kenya in particular – “In Kenya, we’re not racist, you know… We’re ‘tribalist’!”

This assertion is certainly true for most of us in Africa, and it is so subtle that you may not even know that you yourself are biased, in a way. We have an interesting way of making up our minds about someone from our own country, once we hear what tribe affiliation his or her ancestors held. Or even worse, when the only thing we see is the person’s name.

Believe me when I tell you… our prejudices run deep. I am Chukwudi Adepoju; I should know. From the unbelievable reactions I have received in all these decades, especially in Nigeria, I should know.
With both of my parents being of the Yoruba ethnic group, bearing the name Chukwudi (and bearing sounds like an appropriate word here, seeing that the name can be a bit ‘heavy’ sometimes) has led to really “interesting” conversations all through my life.

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How they plan to ‘Islamise’ us all!

The year 2015 draws near, an all-important election year for Nigeria.

I have heard the rumours, that if our brothers from Northern Nigeria win the February 2015 general elections, they will make us all muslims within four years. But if I may say so myself, that is very slow thinking. The real people that plan to islamise us are not waiting till 2015. They want to do it now. They want to islamise us RIGHT NOW.

Contrary to what you would expect, these people are not interested in islamising us exactly; not really. What they plan to do is to terrorise us, destabilise us, decimate us, and somehow, it all got lost in translation. So for the purpose of disambiguation, I will once in a while, call it their original intention, which is to “destabilise us”.

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Their Teacher, My Father! by Ayobami Oke.

The roundish woman, with tribal marks, flashing a winning smile during a traditional wedding ceremony I attended last week was the focus of all eyes. Well she ought to be as she was the lively Master of Ceremony.

The guests had already had their full of good food and drinks so the distraction of hunger was already check-mated. If you are not looking at the Master of Ceremony and you are too full to look at the empty plates of food, what then are you looking at?

With a flourish, she raised her hands and opened her mouth letting out sonorous music. And like it was pre arranged, a large number of women and men stood up to dance to the home made anthem:

‘A d’omo re ko ni’
‘A ran’mo re l’oko’
‘Eni ba f’oju di t’isa’
‘A ran’mo re l’oko’

He will teach his child all by himself
He will send his child a farming
He who thinks little of a teacher
He will send his child a farming!

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“Writers Sought!”

“Writers Sought!” the small advert said

For what exactly, was left undeclared

Is it for menus, love letters, or bankable checks?

Or twitter, or tattoos, or good old phone texts


“Writers Sought!” was what it did say

And where exactly? Do tell us, I pray

Prison or Facebook, where there are big walls;

Restrooms or park benches, or in dining halls


“Writers Sought!” was all it proclaimed

But did not quite say, what drove them away

Is the pay that poor that they must be sought?

Or are your sights so poor? Because I see lots


Of hand writing, phone writing, but hardly right things

Song writing, blog-writing, or just commenting

Real ranting, twit-fighting, govern-ment-bashing

Too busy for miserly “Writers Sought!” things


© Chukwudi Adepoju 1st May 2014.


“Dear Dad,”

                                                                                                                                                                   Chukwudi Adepoju
12th May 2014.

My dear Dad,

I have written this letter in my head a number of times; making mental notes of things I need to tell you when I eventually write, so this is me, writing the first one. I hope you get it though. Wait! What’s the post code of Heaven?

Can you believe it’s been 2,854 days already since you passed away from this earth, and went to be with the Heavenly Father? It means that in a little over 3 months, it will be eight years since I last heard your voice, not counting the numerous times I hear you in my head, of course! How time flies!

A lot has happened since 20 July 2006, the day that my cheeky lil’ sister told me in her own way,

Elder Buraimoh Adepoju and Chukwudi. Aug 1982
Elder Buraimoh Adepoju and Chukwudi. Aug 1982

“Your daughter’s grandfather has passed on o..”,

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