(An Easter Combo)

Unholy ghosts!!! It is profoundly ironic that on the same day that Jesus Christ resurrected, Nigeria should be dealing with so many ghosts. Without any doubt, the Boko Haram sect has become the greatest threat to the corporate existence of Nigeria since the Civil War. The organization, as expected of all guerrilla outfits, is shadowy and shrouded in mystery. Whatever its provenance, whether secular or theocratic in inspiration, no insurgent group worth its salt goes about brandishing the names of its core leadership.

The government has repeatedly made it known that it does not negotiate with ghosts. Since ghosts are hardly visible entities, this is an eminently sensible position to take. You cannot sit down to talk or negotiate with an unperson, somebody who is simply not there. Yet at the last count, these ghosts have killed almost half a million Nigerians in the last three years and still counting.

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The trauma of a ghost country is compounded by its inability to trace or account for its own ghosts. Something will have to be done to bring the government of ghosts and the ghost of government together before we all become ghosts.

The entire country is swamped by ghosts. Ghosts have laid a siege to the country. At the moment, four principal types of ghosts can be identified. There are arms-bearing ghosts, otherwise known as the Boko Haram insurgents. These are the ghosts that have been killing other people. They have struck fear and trepidation into the heart of the people. The entire land is flowing with blood and tears.

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The second group of ghosts are the economic ghosts. These are the ghost workers who cost government billions every month. Among the ghost workers are the miracle workers of the temporal ministries who facilitate the ghost workers. There are also the ghost barons who help with phantom subsidies and of course the pension thieves who vanish into thin air like ghosts.

The third group are the political ghosts. These are the ghosts of pensioners who have died waiting for their pensions and politicians who have been killed in strange and suspicious circumstances. The particular group of ghosts are notorious for not resting in peace or allowing others to rest in peace. Then there are the holy ghosts and spiritual merchants who spiritually launder the loot.

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The last group are the ghostwriters. These are the literary ghosts, writers, journalists, historians and columnists, who help others to prepare or settle accounts, particularly where and when disputes arise in the other groups over the allocation of resources, or the allocation of economic, military and political casualties. A columnist who chooses to wear the cloak of anonymity is for example a ghost writer

In view of this plethora of ghosts in the land, snooper brings to you this morning a short excerpt from the novel, Bulletin From the Land of Living Ghosts published eleven years ago in 2002. It shows once again how fiction can anticipate reality.



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