As I sat in the office, I chewed my pen again, knowing the outcome of a useless day like this. The protesters would make some useless noise like the wailer they are and they would return home tired. The next day, they return to their normal way of life.
I tuned off the radio in my office, switched off my phone data, and even proceeded to switch of the phone, but I stopped myself. I had been trying to reach my girlfriend since morning. Normally, we make plans on what to the previous day but I wasn’t able to charge the battery of my phone. Who Could?
President Buhari is someone I hate to think about. I never voted him. I never voted. Yet, I suspected things would go wrong. From onset, I knew he would be a lie just like his ‘laiing’ information minister. How would things not go wrong? President Buhari was announced as the winner of the election on April 1st. Nobody saw anythong wrong in that. But I did. I always do. And I told them, but none listened. He was another prank on Nigerians.
My phone rang. It was her. ‘ Ann, where have you been-‘
But she cut me short. ‘ Baby… Police is harassing me..’
‘ They said I stood with tuface’.
‘ Why are you standing with him?’
‘ I’m not standing anywhere … They are trying to take me away..but some guys are.. come down here’.
‘ Where are you?’ I said as I rose from my chair, having dropped all I held with me. ‘ Where’s here’.
‘ At Ikeja…Near your office’.
She was just near my place of work. I dropped my car, which I had picked in a haste.
‘ I will be there.. Ah… ‘ I screamed as I put off my suit.
Then I remembered Ann wouldn’t support that. These guys are in serious trouble. One, for touching my girlfriend. Two, for harassing her. I rushed there and I saw a lot of policemen stationed at the back of the protesters who kept moving peacefully. I wasn’t scared. I strive in such situation. Who wouldn’t? If you were born and raised in Oshodi?
It took me a great effort not to run immediately I got out of the company. The moment I got there, I became confused. Instead of Ann arguing with the police it was some thugs.
‘ How you go dey touch am?’
‘If you touch am, I go shoot you’, a policeman said.
‘ S.O leave am for me. God wan do am’.
I hurried towards Ann and made sure I spoke audibly, ‘who touched you?’
Ann turned the moment she felt my touch. ‘ No.. No.. It’s over’.
She pushed me. Police and The Thugs were still arguing. Her oval eyes penetrated into my soul. I remembered why she was insistent on my not fighting. We had been dating for three years now. She became a Christian last three months and I just did last Sunday. I changed because she change, in a lot of ways, from a lot of things. I loved the change I saw in her. Normally, she would have broken a bottle on the Policeman’s head. She had done more than that. For example, fighting a soldier without fear.
‘ Just tell me Ann… What would a Christian do here?’
‘ Jesus said we should turn the other cheek’.
‘ Are you for real?’
‘ Chuks.. nor do this. Let’s go’.
After about five minutes of restraining me, and for the fact the police were focused on the hoodlums, I agreed with her.
‘ Who are those guys arguing with the police?’
‘ They stopped the police from harassing me’.
By this time, the police and the hoodlums had moved away from each. Maybe because none of the protesters cared.
I beckoned to the hoodlums and told them I really appreciated their effort. I told Ann to borrow me three thousand naira, which I gave them. They hailed. Some jeered at the police. And I went my way, holding firmly to my girlfriend.
Later in the night, when the street was dry, when I was tired of work, I drove off. There was no girl to return home to. After Ann became converted she stopped sleeping over at my place. Then I saw some policemen and one of the thugs exchanging envelope. I looked away. As a street boys, I’ve learnt you don’t stare. There, I understood that the evidence the Nigerian police claimed they had was never there. They would have created an evidence through that fight. If I wasn’t a Christian, I would have started a riot like the 2012 riot which happened during protest against fuel subsidy.