Monday, December 24, 2012

Hitting Budapest Reloaded


Hitting Budapest Reloaded.
We are on our way back from Budapest. Back from posing for photos and saying cheese a million times although we didn’t eat a pinch of it, back from insulting the photographer woman because she even threw away the thing we wanted to eat, back from stealing and eating guavas and having a shit or rather, shits. Back from stumbling upon a dead woman dangling from a rope. And we stole her new pair of shoes. No, we took her shoes instead because it’s not ‘stealing’ stealing; she’s dead! It’s different from stealing guavas. We sold them and bought bread which we are eating on our way back to Paradise. I’m thinking about how her ghost will haunt us at night and kill all of us. God please forgive us, don’t let her ghost haunt us, it was Bastard’s idea not mine. “You, Big head what are you thinking about?” Bastard asks as if reading my thoughts. He is chewing the bread with such gusto and opening his mouth annoyingly wide like a dinosaur with every bite and chew like he’d never eaten delicious bread before. “Nothing,” I say, biting my own piece with relish, it tastes good, crispy and crunchy. One day, I will punch this bastard called Bastard to death. Why is he calling me big head?

We walk pass Mother of Bones who smiles at us. She’s always smiling at us, in fact she smiles at anything. Her teeth are brownish yellow and scanty like trees in the Savannah of northern Cameroon. Needless to say, they are very ugly, probably due to her obsessive, excessive tobacco chewing. Godknows waves at her and asks, “Caring Mother, how are you?” like she wants to flatter her so she’ll not talk about our absence. She grins harder exposing the horrible dental formula and I look away as we walk pass silently sneaking into Paradise. And then for a split second, we hear a commanding hoarse voice, “Hey, all of you come here!” We freeze dead in our tracks. We can tell by the man’s dangerous voice that we are all going to run. All of a sudden, Stina squints and screams, “Run!” When Stina speaks, we listen because she never speaks at all; only when it is necessary. And my friends take off in diverse directions like houseflies take off from excrement when someone throws a small stone at it. But I cannot run because I recognize the voice instantly –my father’s. Even if I run, I would still come back home. He’s standing upright and holding a cane in his right hand with that look on his face like a slave master who is about to whip a stubborn slave. His eyes are fiery red like someone who has just smoked a million kilos of cannabis and marijuana put together; a human dragon! Things are about to get pretty ugly. “ELISABETH! Where were you?” he screams. “I, I,I,..” I’m stuttering and my body is already shivering like the tail of a rattle snake. I cannot explain anything, I’m too, too scared. I give him that look of guilt; that look of a disgraced wife who’d just been caught after betraying her faithful husband by committing adultery. I give him that look a teenage girl gives her mother when she’s just lost her virginity in that first sweet sex. I give him that look Eve gave God when she was asked why she’d eaten the forbidden fruit. And then like Eve, I take the blame off me, “It, it, was, was, Bastard’s idea. He’s the one who told us to go to Budapest and steal guavas and steal, no, take a dead woman’s shoes and sell it to, to, to buy bread and….” “WHAT! You stole a dead woman’s shoes!!!!!!” “No, we took, not, not steal and…” “Are you…” twash, the first one falls on my back with a swishing noise penetrating the flesh and sends me straight to the ground with a “doop” sound. I fall onto bare earth and I’m rolling in the dust like a maniac and scratching my back from all angles like the discrete directions my friends had taken to evaporate. The piece of bread falls from my fingers and three fowls are furiously pecking at it. One grips it with its beak and scurries away. The others also take off after her. Twash, Ouch! Ouch! The second one unearths a scream; a tortured scream from my vocal cord that passes through my larynx to my pharynx to my boucal cavity and even my nasal cavity into the atmosphere in a vociferous reverberation that almost deafens every Paradise resident and blows off the rooftops of the shanty shacks. I am thinking how the punishment is going to exceed my crime by any logical logic. Twash, the third one is whistling piercingly on my stomach like flails of fire from my dragon father. The flails are falling on my flesh and my father is cursing and insulting and whipping and I’m weeping and he’s whipping and I’m weeping and the cane is whistling and I’m rolling and tossing and turning and wincing and wailing like it’s the end of the world and I would kill my father dead if I ever survive this kind of military drone attack because madness has infected and crisscrossed two wires in his brain and those two oppositely charged wires weren’t supposed to come into contact and………(Wait, hold up, let’s fast forward.)

2011: I’m all grown now, sitting at a dinner table in Oxford. I’ve been in London for week, meeting publishers, editors, doing readings, press interviews and tonight is a big night when the Caine prize winner will be announced. But I’m nervous and restless. I’m quite contented with the nomination but also want to win this thing! Who doesn’t? The announcer takes the cue. My heart is beating like a jackhammer. “And the winning short story is…“Hitting Budapest” by Noviolet Bulawayo from Zimbabwe. It is a story with moral weight and power about stealing guavas.” Everybody at the table is clapping and clapping as I receive my prize and pose next to the sculpture of Sir Michael Caine for photos like I’d done in Budapest in front of the photographer woman who had eaten the thing. Many miles away in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe in a place called Paradise, my guava stealing friends who are all married with children now are also clapping and celebrating together in Bastard’s house. Their kids are also clapping although they don’t know what they are clapping for, or even what their parents are celebrating about. Bastard skips with a bottle in his hands. “You’ve done it Elisabeth! We are all very proud of you, you brought our story to the worldwide stage, yes. Here’s your champagne, I’m popping it, poof.” And they are drinking and drinking and all of a sudden, Stina asks, speaking for the first time, “Where are our children?” They look around and their kids have all disappeared. Mother of Bones, who is still alive; an amazing 200-year-old creeps in on all fours like a baby. Her great great grand children have names like Collar bone, Rib cage, Cranium, Tibia and the most stubborn one is vertebral Column. She says, “they have all gone to Budapest to steal guavas with my progeny of bones. Chipo, your daughter Hippo-potamus Calculus, whom you were pregnant with when you used to steal guavas walloped Bastard’s son, Drunkard, the head of Horror on his head but he went with them anyway. Godknows, your daughter, Devil Ignorant asked me -Caring mother how are you? And I said fine and smiled at them more than I did with you people. But I don’t know why they were all looking away from my face as they disappeared.” Sbho squints sideways at Chipo and asks her in laughter, “dear, ring any bells?” “Sure.” “So what do we do with them? Whip them?” Sbho asks again. “No,” Chipo and Stina unanimously respond. “Yes,” Bastard says. “No.” “I say yes.” “Okay, wait a minute, everybody listen to me,” Bastard orders. He stills acts like he’s the boss, like he’s the president of Paradise. “We will wallop them on the head and whip them hard because it is the cane that inspired Elisabeth’s winning of the Caine, period.”

Friday, December 21, 2012

A letter from the Rambler


A Letter from the Rambler.
Dear Pip old chap. Man, have you heard the latest in America? That a bold twenty year old shot and killed twenty six people including his mother with four bullets lodged in her brain and even twenty children, six year olds in cold blood. I cannot describe that kind of act. Not even Shakespeare, Charles Dickens nor Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie can find the right words to describe that kind of thing. But the truth is, it is not the first time such a thing is happening in America and certainly won’t be the last. Every year you always hear such stories about a psychotic or psychopathic kid who gets up one morning and snaps and starts spraying bullets on everybody like a drunk spraying pee from his uncontrollable penis of showers straight from a bladder which contains a lake of alcoholic urine. And the Americans are always quick to give us the explanation, “This kid is known to have a long history of depression, delusions, isolation, trauma, paranoia, claustrophobia, insomnia, amnesia, non compos mentis, delirium tremens…” Arrrgh, my ear, my ear, Pip old chap! Those names give me chronic migraine headaches. And they feed us with all those jaw breaking scientific names of all those their jaw breaking mental conditions that can make us Africans develop deafness. Word Pip, all those their explanations of mental ineptitude why madness has crisscrossed two wires in their kids’ brains are all a bunch of fallacies intended to cover up the real reason why their kids have gone gaga with AK 47s and AR15s just like Lady Gaga has gone gaga with monstrous clothing.
Has the American media ever pondered why Sub Saharan children like us never suffer from those their non compos mentises or Delirium tremenses and why we never do such things? One word –cane. In my country Cameroon, we call it “mulongor.” From the moment we are born, whenever we do something wrong we are immediately sent to it first with a knuckle knock on our foreheads, “kock”. Next …twash, the first stroke falls on our backs with a swishing noise penetrating the flesh and sends us straight to the ground with a “doop” sound. We fall onto bare earth and we are rolling in the dust like maniacs and scratching our backs from all angles. Twash, Ouch! Aye! Aye! The second one unearths a scream; a tortured scream from our vocal cords that passes through our larynxes to our pharynxes to our boucal cavities and even our nasal cavities into the atmosphere in a vociferous reverberation that almost deafens anybody around us. Twash, the third one is whistling piercingly on our palms like flails of fire falling on our flesh and our fathers are cursing and insulting and whipping and we are weeping and they are whipping and we are weeping and wailing like it’s the end of the world. Yes. Then when we do something wrong again, we go through that dreaded whipping lifecycle again. That’s why we grow up to be sane adults with a sound moral fibre who do not spray bullets on people. I’m not saying we grow up to be perfect though. But even the stubborn African child knows he does not have to plunge bullets into his mother’s forehead! And into the cranium of a six year old! or six year olds for God’s sake!
But the Americans, what do they do? They do not only spare the rod but also spoil the rod. When their children do something wrong, they only scold them or sometimes don’t even scold them. Worst of all, when the American kids are whipped, they pick up the phone in fury and call 911 (using their parents’ phones in the process. Do those calls also add to the bills?) The police officer will come and say, “Sir, we will incarcerate you for spanking this kid.” And the parent is locked up and the children are happy. And when it happens again, the parent is locked up again and they are even happier. When the locking up keeps recurring the happiness keeps increasing and increasing and there may be a time when the police will delay the arrival and the kid will get very very angry and think he is the police. Since America is a place where anybody can own guns, the kid will pick up his AK47 or AR15 and think he is doing good police work and shoot the father dead for spanking him and laugh happily like a hyena hehehehe. He will move out of the house and since his brain is gun possessed due to the excessive shooting of aliens in Playstation (like this one in Connecticut), the obsessive listening to gunshots in 50 cent’s gangsta rap music or watching movies like “The Matrix” one thousand times, he will go around shooting six year old chaps and 100 year old chaps believing he’s Keanu Reeves or 50 cent or even a US soldier shooting in Konengal valley; Pakistan before shooting himself dead. And the American media will start feeding us blatant lies of mental names like Delirium tremens and non compos mentis so we should believe them. Pip, not me, I cannot believe them because all that is infamous rubbish. Those illnesses don’t exist. It’s all fictitious like a John Grisham novel.
The Americans were part of the early evangelists who spread Christianity in Africa in the 1880’s. In the Holy Bible which they brought to us it is clearly stated, “Spare the rod and spoil the child.” Our parents took the advice of the Holy book and we are not shooting our mothers along with six year olds. Ironically, the Americans did not take the rich advice of God’s wisdom and look at what is happening to them. They have not only spared the rod but they have also spoilt the rod and by their own doing doubly and even triply spoilt the child. Pip old chap, I don’t want to keep running my mouth else those Americans will send a military drone to bomb my head off planet earth. Rather, they may send one of those their remote controlled, delirium tremens “never-miss-the-target” sniper kids to Cameroon with a bazooka. No, God forbid, Papa God. Those kids are more ruthless than fighter jets like B2 bombers. They are even deadlier than atomic bombs. The hole one of them will excavate on my small tummy with that bazooka will be as deep as that valley in America called the Grand Canyon. It may even split me into two halves. And split twenty six of my relatives into fifty two halves. Americans, I’m sorry, I didn’t say anything. Look, Pip, don’t quote me anywhere, I was only rambling.
Yours truly,
The rambler.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Yes, he won


Part Three: American Politics in Humour (Inspired by the cartoon Tom and Jerry)
Title: Yes, he won, the first black president in a white house.

Jerry: Ouch!!!!! Tom, you just kicked me into the air and onto the wall!
Tom: Hahahaha, yes, I did.
Jerry: That’s strange, you had a rare chance to catch me, but you instead kicked me off.
Tom: That’s because I’m happy, Lilliput, very happy
Jerry: Why?
Tom: Don’t pretend you didn’t hear, Obama won the second term, didn’t I say so? I told you he will win.
Jerry: Obama rigged the election.
Tom: Hahaha, do you think the US is an African country? This is the place of democracy, he won, admit it, you never run short of something to say.
Jerry: Okay, right, but Romney won something else.
Tom: What is that?
Jerry: He won the debate season.
Tom: Shut up, Obama won the last two debates in grand style, with knock out punches like Muhammed Ali.
Jerry: And by winning the first debate Romney won the debate season.
Tom: Nonsense, if you cannot do simple addition, the debate score read 2 -1 in favour of Obama. What do you mean by Romney won the debate season?
Jerry: Before the debates, Obama was ahead in the polls by about five points and Romney wasn’t even a formidable rival but the Governor governed the first debate by coming up with probably the best debate performance in US history that rattled Obama and took him by surprise. Romney won it by 62% and Obama developed political fever. Obama looked detached, and unaware of the American situation. Romney caught up with the president in the polls after that feat and they were neck on neck.
Tom: I must admit, it was a great Romney performance. But Obama didn’t lose.
Jerry: Haha, that’s funny, then who lost, Romney?
Tom: Look, Romney won. The debate moderator lost. The president was absent. The questions bored him, he probably wanted to go back quickly to the white house and meet his pretty wife Michelle and the kids and the Oval Office and the presidential work. For the past four years, he has not been doing any debates or arguments with anybody, he has been presidential. He has not been used to somebody shouting stuff in his face. For the record, the past four presidents who have won second terms have all lost the first debate.
Jerry: Did you see the way Romney was lecturing him during the debate? Obama’s head was down, constantly writing notes from the tutorials delivered by Lecturer Romney who was even professorial, using his experience of managing his 250 million dollar wealth to teach Obama how to handle his ailing economy and Obama was keenly listening, learning, writing, noting and soon he will be implementing. Did you read the tweets from Americans on twitter? “Mr. President put your head up.”
Tom: You don’t even know what the genius was doing. He was scheming, computing, calculating Lilliput Romney like Lilliput Jerry. He let him talk so as to figure out his weaknesses and finish him off in the next debate.
Jerry: But Romney became the boss after that, he caught up with him in the polls, went ahead in the popular vote, attached himself to Americans, won many hearts and became a formidable contestant that’s why I said he won the debate season.
Tom: Back off Jerry, debate 2, the president upped his game and came back harder at Romney after realizing the man’s weaknesses. He won it in grand style. Say something, say something.
Jerry: But Romney still had the appeal from the first one, people still took him seriously after the loss. That’s why it was just a slight victory for Obama. But it was  really aggressive, Obama kept arguing and attacking Romney. Since the debate had a town hall format, they were walking around facing each other and interrupting each other and scowling at each other such that, you felt they would start trading punches and kicks like Jet Li against each other and even fire a bullet in order to grab the presidential ballot.
Tom: But Obama won right? If he hadn’t, then his chapter would have been closed after the second debate, no second term, but God forbid, he won. And when Romney realized he had lost, he started politicking, didn’t present any credible agenda. He started changing positions like a fowl that is about to lay eggs. At one time he even imitated the 2008 campaign of the president and started talking about change and how he would change America, funny. He lost originality like a fake Chinese product.
Jerry: But Romney still had the appeal going into the third debate!
Tom: Don’t even mention that one Lilliput, the president finished him off big time before the elections came up. He blew Romney off the ground.
Jerry: You’ve forgotten something that blew before the election.
Tom: What is that?
Jerry: Hurricane Sandy of course. It had other plans.
Tom: Ah, that one. The president handled it like a pro. But I must admit that if he had mishandled it, he may have lost that election. Why do you mention it?
Jerry: About 90 people died in that storm, the president let them die, he killed them.
Tom: No way, let me quote him, “If they tell you to evacuate, do it.” The president was pretty much involved and instructed the people to follow instructions from their state weather forecasters. Those who didn’t follow simple instructions, paid the price for stubbornness. Unlike your George Bush who handled hurricane Katrina in fiasco style. He was very uninvolved, and even flew in his jet over New Orleans, saw people clinging to roof tops, trees and drowning but did not nothing because they were blacks, racist.
Jerry: That’s a lie, Katrina was a hurricane, this one was just a super storm, that’s why many more people died in 2004.
Tom: Racist Bush, racist.
Jerry: He’s not! But Tall Tom, sometimes I wonder why these hurricanes have names of people and different people for that matter and yes, women. Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Sandy, maybe the next one will be Hurricane Michelle Obama or superstorm Hilary Clinton. Why don’t they use masculine names? They only use Sandys. What about Hurricane Randy, Hurricane Andy, Hurricane Gandhi, Hurricane Bandit, that one would steal from people. Hurricane Bin Laden? That one! Hmmmm, that one will sweep all Americans away, blow them into a cave in Pakistan, close the cave and bomb it. Nice hurricane, that one.
Tom: Idiot, only a dull man will reason along those lines. I know what you are doing, now that we’ve reached the point of the elections, you want to divert my attention off it. Talk about November 6th Lilliput. Yes, he won, he beat Romney, didn’t I tell you? Jay-Z’s 2003 song “I got 99 probems but a bitch aint one.” Jay-Z’s 2012 rehook “I got 99 problems but a Mitt aint one.” Romney wasn’t a problem. For you and all the Obama hating media who said all this mumbo jumbo, “neck on neck, very tight race, closest race in modern US history, too close to call.” It was knee on neck, easy victory, open race, not even as close as 2000 or 2004, too easy to call, he won after 5 hours of vote counting. He won 8 out of 9 battle ground states. Florida was confused but decided to follow the president’s path after 4 days of vote counting. Didn’t you know he scores political goals like Lionel Messi? And he left Romney messy? The son of the Kenyan is too tough. You people underestimated him. Don’t you remember he won landslide in 2008? He did it again, the son of the Kenyan, against another white guy.
Jerry: Buck Ofama…Go Ba’ra’ack to Hawai.
Tom: Jealous of him? Do you know who first announced the win to the world? Uh Lilliput?
Jerry: Fox news, em, CNN?
Tom: Nope
Jerry: ESPN?
Tom: That’s an American sports channel, idiot.
Jerry: But you just mentioned Obama scoring political goals like Messi and leaving Romney messy, that’s a sports metaphor about American politics which could have been disseminated by ESPN.
Tom: It was just a figure of speech, answer me, do you know who first announced the news to the world?
Jerry: EWTN?
Tom: Vatican Catholic church channel.
Jerry: But every time your president wins anything you start by thanking God! Okay, if it’s not CNN, not ESPN, not EWTN. It’s MTN.
Tom: You fool, you are just rhyming.
Jerry: BBC?
Tom: Damn wrong again, Lilliput
Jerry: Bin Laden?
Tom: Dead, your dullness is regenerating again.
Jerry: His grandmother in Kogelo, Kenya whom he has abandoned?
Tom: Shut up the hell up, scallywag. It was the president himself in a tweet which went, “Four more years, thank you America.” You see, that’s confidence, he announced it to his 15 million Twitter followers just about two hours after vote counting, when no media outlet had done so yet –confidence. He knew he was going to win dude, I told you, I told you.
Jerry: Are tweets not text messages provided by the services of mobile telephone companies like MTN??? Okay, between you and I who emerged the dullest on the announcement thing, who’s the maddest?
Tom: (scratches head) Damn, this guy beat me. No, It’s luck, you got the answer by joking. I give you the benefit of doubt.
Tom: Just like Obama won by luck, sheer dumb luck!
Tom: Ah, okay, he didn’t rig again uh, now it’s luck? Do you think it was the American lottery? It was hard work, Lilliput, toil, he was jetting to four states each day and campaigning hard in the last days of the election. Oh, and then he gave a rousing but humble speech only reminiscent of the key note speech he delivered in the 2004 Dem convention. He gave us the Barack we know, the Barack we remember, that soaring rhetoric which reached the skies and called Americans to unite and work together. Yes, yes, he won.
Jerry: When Republicans and some Independents were pissed off that their candidate lost, your Obama was busy showing off oratory skills and pissing off people the more. What will he do in his second term apart from delivering speeches? He’s just a speech maker, that’s all, let him fix the US economy.
Tom: He will fix it, in fact he is doing it already. The US economy is far better at this point than the past four years when he took it from Bush who shattered it. You will see, he stuck to his 2008 promises, he will still stick to his 2012 promises. He will leave power with approval ratings and popularity above that of Clinton and even J.F.K, Yes. Ouch! This rogue has beaten my tail. (Tom jumps and starts chasing Jerry around, then stops.) You may run, you may run, but, yes he won.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Cameroon's president clocks thirty years in power

President Paul Biya: Cameroon’s 'lion man'


It is 30 years since Paul Biya, dubbed Cameroon's "lion man", came to power - making him one of Africa's longest-serving leaders.
He may have adopted his nickname late in his political career - after the country's football team, the Indomitable Lions, reached the quarter-final of the 1990 World Cup - but the 79 year old has employed the tactics of lion from the start.
Born in a village deep in the equatorial forest of southern Cameroon, the Catholic missionaries who educated him in a nearby seminary hoped he would become a priest.
But Mr Biya chose instead to study law and political science at the University of Paris, returning to work in the civil service.
The short, courteous technocrat rose through the ranks, taking up senior positions and winning the confidence of Ahmadou Ahidjo who had been head of state since independence in 1960.
He was a loyal prime minister for seven years, until 1982 - when in a surprise move Mr Ahidjo resigned from office and named Mr Biya president.
Mr Ahidjo held on to the chairmanship of the ruling party, thinking it was a more powerful position than that of president.
But this was when Mr Biya pounced - purging Ahidjo loyalists and eventually forcing the independence leader into exile.
He then proved himself a survivor - foiling two attempted coups, one in 1983 and another a year later.
Mr Ahidjo was fingered as the culprit and a military tribunal sentenced him to death in absentia.
He later died in Senegal, and his former protege would not allow his body to be brought back to Cameroon for burial.

Paul Biya: Serial election victor
  • 1992, wins with 40% of the vote
  • 1997, wins with 93% of the vote - boycotted by opposition
  • 2004, wins with 75% of the vote
  • 2011, wins with 78% of the vote
Royal air
Mr Biya has displayed the same ruthlessness over the years with allies who have shown presidential ambition.
One of his doctors is in jail for corruption, a former interior minister has just started a 25-year sentence on similar charges; a former prime minister is currently on trial and two others have gone into exile.
However, he maintains a somewhat royal air, distancing himself from the cabinet - some ministers are appointed and sacked years later without ever meeting the president.
On the international front, he has also shown stamina - forcing Cameroon's more powerful neighbour Nigeria to hand over the prized Bakassi Peninsula.
The two countries have clashed several times over the oil-rich territory and Mr Biya decided to go to the International Court of Justice to decide the case.
 Mr Biya has said he wants to be remembered for bringing democracy to Cameroon.
He finally gave in to pressure to end the one-party system and in 1992 held and won the country's first multiparty elections with only 40% of the vote - amid allegations of fraud. His main rival John Fru Ndi was widely believed to have won - but a Supreme Court judge said his hands "were tied" and declared Mr Biya victorious.
The president has since gone on to consolidate his hold on power, winning three subsequent presidential polls and never gaining less than 75% of the vote.
His critics say the president and his allies have ensured that Cameroonians have little real choice, with his party always assured of victory well in advance of every election.
And corruption is an issue that has dogged Mr Biya during his time in office.
He has now set up an anti-corruption commission, but it is said to permeate all levels of society and has hampered the country's development, with Cameroon winning the title as the most corrupt country in the world twice in the 1990s
Perhaps one of the keys to his political longevity is his second wife Chantal, 38 years his junior, who he married in 1994.
Famed for her mane of orange hair, her outgoing nature and charity work have ensured her much media coverage.
She is often referred to in the press as Cameroon's "Queen of Hearts", more than making up for the husband's aloof nature.
The first couple, who have three children together, even had a lion and lioness named after them at the Mvog Beti zoo in the capital, Yaounde.
They have also become known for their lavish lifestyle in Cameroon - one of Africa's main importers of French champagne - and abroad.
'Absentee landlord'
Their holiday in southern France three years ago was the subject of articles in the Cameroonian and French press which alleged Mr Biya was spending $40,000 a day on 43 hotel rooms. Officials at the time defended the president's right to spend the money allotted to him the way he wished.
Because of his lengthy absences - sometimes two or three months at a time - he is known by his critics as the "absentee landlord".
When the Paul Biya lion died at Mvog Beti zoo in 2007, many said it was bad omen for the president.
Not long afterwards there were rumours that he had died in a Swiss clinic.
When he returned home after what had been a 43-day absence, he boasted on state television that those wishing him dead must wait for another 20 years.
And since then, journalists have learnt not to speculate or joke about his health.
The late veteran reporter Pius Njawe spent a year in prison for suggesting the president was suffering from a heart problem when he appeared to faint while watching a football match 14 years ago.
Having changed the constitution in 2008 to remove presidential term limits, Mr Biya seems quite content to remain at the helm for some time to come.
The army is well paid and loyal. It crushed the 2008 food riots, one of the biggest threats the president has ever faced.
Even a march planned by the main opposition Social Democratic Front to protest at Mr Biya's three decades in power was dispersed by riot police before it could begin - to ensure nothing dampens the celebrations.

Africa's longest-serving leaders
  • 33 years: Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo - Equatorial Guinea, took power in a coup in August 1979
  • 33 years: Jose Eduardo dos Santos - Angola, took over after death of the country's first president in September 1979
  • 32 years: Robert Mugabe - Zimbabwe, won the country's independence elections in April 1980
  • 30 years: Paul Biya - Cameroon, took over after resignation of the country's first president in November 1982
  • 26 years: Yoweri Museveni - Uganda, became president after his rebel group took power in January 1986

Saturday, October 13, 2012

The First Black President of America?


Part Two: AMERICAN POLITICS IN HUMOUR (Inspired by the cartoon, “Tom and Jerry”)
NB: Forget Obama is the US president. Take yourself back to June 2008 when you still had doubts whether a black guy could really win a US presidential election in November 2008.
Title: The first Black President of America?
Tom: (Watching TV and celebrating) Praise the lord, he has done it.
Jerry: Who just did what?
Tom: Can’t you see the images, Barack Obama just clinched the Democratic nomination. Praise the lord. Ah, it skipped my mind, you’re even too short, Lilliputian from Gulliver’s Travels’ island of Lilliput.
Jerry: (Jumping up and down) Wait, wait, Tall Tom, isn’t that a black man on the screen? That your Obama, isn’t he black?
Tom: Yes, he’s black, what’s wrong with that?
Jerry: Hahahahahihiheheehe hu huhu, you like dreaming like Joseph in the Bible. No chance.
Tom: But Joseph’s dreams came to pass. They were realistic dreams. Why are you saying no chance?
Jerry: Don’t make me laugh, where in the history books did you ever read about a black slave ruling America in it’s 200 year history hahahahahahik kiuihiiih
Tom: But it can happen! Nelson Mandela became president of South Africa after apartheid ended.
Jerry: That was in black Africa dude, a black man! ruling America! Hahahihihikuikuikuihuhu
 Tom: You this mouse, I will chase you, catch you and eat you up.
Jerry: My hole is just over there dude. We can start all over again just like every time.
Tom: Technically, he’s not all black, he has a white mother from Kansas and an Indonesian step father.
Jerry: Forget it, I know him, I was pretending, he has a black Kenyan father, he’s black, no chance. A black man can never govern America, no way, no road. That road is inexistent -from the plantations to the White house? Its too far, too impossible, it’s like taking a rocket aiming to reach heaven. No matter how good your probability in math is. Look at black Jesse Jackson, didn’t he lose the US presidential election?
Tom: But he was third! This guy has even better credentials, Harvard educated, very good policies, didn’t support the war in Iraq, intelligent, young, eloquent, very charismatic, he transcends racial barriers…
Jerry: No, you got it all wrong; too black, too too black wife, too black kids, two black kids, too young, too inexperienced, too Osama like name meaning too looking like a terrorist, too anti American, too anti american pastor Jeremiah Wright, (God damn America!), too moslem, too Allaaaaah Kuba, too Antichrist, too pro Abortionist, too tall, too cute for president, too media darling, too Hollywood like, too fit for action movies, too distant, too Hawai and Indonesian raised, too African, too…
Tom: Stop, stoppp!!!, you talk too much, too short thing, too black ugly thing, too hating a man who has got your colour, too short like an eternal Lilliput, fool. Do you know who he defeated? White Hilary Clinton, the wife of a too loved American president, Bill too Clinton. Even with him on her side, the Bill two Clintons lost the bid. What do you say to that too uh?
Jerry: Frankly, too bad, too too bad.
Tom: For who?
Jerry: Hilary too unlike Bill of course. Damn, she underestimated him too much and didn’t work too hard.
Tom: Maybe she didn’t work too hard because she was depressed Bill had two ‘wives’ like a small African chief and was banging “too hard” on Monica Lewinski instead. hahaha
Jerry: Shut up, too immoral cat, too fool, but….yes, yes, John McCain will beat him.
Tom: (smiles) My turn now. John Mc Cain is too old, too God damn old to be God damn president, that dude is 72 years too old, you too short thing. Obama –young and too energetic, too 46, John McCain supported the failed war in Iraq too much, too supported a useless war, too supported George Bush’s horrible policies, too willing to continue the insane policies of George Bush. Americans will throw him into the bush, the forest.
Jerry: Wow, I just remembered, it’s great McCain is a former Vietnam soldier, that’s the height of American patriotism unlike your un-American, anti American Obama. His Americanism will make him win.
Tom: Another knock out punch on that your point, the past two defeated presidential hopefuls, John Kerry in 2004 and Al Gore in 2000 were former Vietnam soldiers. Americans consider your proposed policies first before patriotism and fighting in Vietnam bullshit. He’s doesn’t have any good policies, supported George Bush in the failed war in Iraq, promised to keep them there if elected president. But Obama never supported that war-he was right. Has promised to pull troops out of Iraq –he’s still right and “Yes, we can” yes, he can deliver the “change we can believe in” he’s willing to bring change –reform the whole American system and talk, dialogue with our enemies instead of spraying bullets on them. Can McCain beat that political message “No, he can’t.” say something Lilliput.
Jerry: Ah, I’m sick and tired of this black guy called Barack Osama…Buck Ofama…Go back to Hawai…Go Barack to Hawai…Obama Bin Lying…change madness…No he can’t, bullshit.
Tom: You see, George Bush plunged America into recession, took America to a useless war in Iraq, handling of domestic policy-horrible, foreign policy –horrible, what’s his presidential rating? Oh yeah, 24%. McCain supported him the whole time and you want to tell me he will win in November and make a good president? Hahahaha
Jerry: Osama will lose the election.
Tom: Console yourself, he’s leading McCain in the polls by five points.
Jerry: He’s going to be another victim of the Bradley effect?
Tom: Bradley what?
Jerry: Bradley effect. There was once a black guy called Tom Bradley who campaigned for a seat in congress. He was eloquent with good policies, people liked him more than his white opponent. He was clearly leading in the polls right up till election day. But when results were released, Bradley lost, probably because he was black. It became known as the Bradley effect. Obama will be another victim.
Tom: I don’t think so. Look, race will not be an issue in this election. In the wake of the 20th century, Dr W.E.B Dubois said the problem of that century would be one of the colour line referring to racism and it was true. In the wake of the 21st century, Kenyan Professor Ali Mazrui said the problem of our century will be that of the culture line. America’s enemies are fast becoming people with a different culture not race. Look at it objectively, an Arab can rise high in the US provided he is Christian. Proof –A Christian Arab emerged third in the 2000 presidential elections; Ralph Nader. If Nader was a moslem -forget it. Obama’s enemies have used his father’s moslem faith to glue that to him to make him look like someone with a different culture, people are using his Hawai/Indonesia upbringing, anti American and anti Christ tags to make him look anti Americulturised. They seldom use his race. Obama fights all those culture stereotypes far more than the race stereotype. He even embraces his race well as he plainly said in one interview “I am too black.” He considers himself a black man not even a biracial man. He’s an intelligent man who knows that the race thing is just neglible now. But if you fumble with culture, dare embrace the moslem faith –you’re dead. So do you now see that the Bradley effect will be an old concept to this election?
Jerry: Whatever, Buck Ofama
Tom: Hahahaha I have beaten you, concede defeat eternal Lilliput
Jerry: Go Barack to Hawai
FIVE MONTHS LATER. Tom is watching the November elections. CNN’s Wolf Blitzer announces, “Breaking news from CNN, Barack Obama has just been elected the president of the United States…..”
Tom: (skips from chair and is running around happily) Hahahahaha Eternal Lilliput, where is this eternal Lilliput, oh he’s disappeared into his mouse hole. I told you, I told you, he will win it, first black president of the US, it has happened, he won clearly, it was not even a close race, yes, from the plantations to the white house, a historic moment, Martin Luther king is smiling from the grave, his dream has come true, like that of Joseph, come out of that hole, Lilliputttttttttt.
Jerry: Go away, my eyes were not meant to see devils like you. Go away, Obama rigged the election.
Tom: Hahahaha, do you think the United states is Cameroon or Nigeria or Kenya where elections were rigged. When will you ever concede defeat? Uh?
Jerry: That your Obama is a lucky boy, if he had contested for this election in Kenya, he would have been arrested, whipped on his buttocks, locked up just like Raila Odinga won the 2007 elections in Kenya but instead of becoming president became the punching bag of the Kenyan ‘president’ Moi Kibaki and later convinced to become Kibaki’s prime minister for post election violence to end. He’s a lucky boy, a black Kenyan ruling the strongest and richest nation in the world. Incredible. He could not have won in his poor ancestral nation.
Tom: Yes he is, yes he won, yes he can, yes we can.
The end. But there will still be posts about our debative cat and mouse on other topics too. Please don’t ask me why I am writing this now. In 2008 I didn’t even know the meaning of the word blog and I didn’t have access to a computer.
NB: I’m not dissing anybody, this is all jokes folks, all fabrications with the intention of rekindling interest in that historic election. A majority of all what is said here is false. I’m out, Nkiacha Atemnkeng.