The Nigerian system is a hugely politically influenced one. It takes just the right amount of political connection to make certain things happen. The elite or those regarded as the upper class citizens who posses the minimum or above the minimum financial means and backing have access to things the ordinary Nigerian doesn’t have access to. Financial power gives political access and this in turn makes one’s life easier.
To get a job, win a contract, win a court case, win party favors, win elections, it has to do with money.
There is a Yoruba adage roughly translated as ‘money begat money.’ Simply, it means to make money, you need money. As more money becomes a reality as a result of the money you already have.
When court injunctions and summons are served, the poor becomes jittery because it is their loss. The justice system is not as just as it should be. But the rich, in the other hand jubilate, call their lawyers in anticipation to make a mockery of the Nigerian justice system. A reform is urgently necessary, but the beneficiaries of the broken system are the power brokers, it is impossible to change a system which currently favours or shield you.
Tony Brown walked into the living room clad in a traditional attire. From his dressing, one could tell he was heading out and seeing how he was flanked by the members of his private security, it has to be a serious outing. He was led to his waiting convoy by the head of his security team. He hopped into the back seat of a black Range Rover sport, and with a black space bus behind the SUV, a black colored Toyota Corolla led the way out of the compound into the streets.
The time was 2pm and Sunday afternoons and evenings are usually spent at the various clubs and association he is a member of.
Thirty minutes later, the entourage pulled into the premises of the Oriental Hotel and while the rest of his security remained outside, Tony walked in with the head of his security team, his Personal assistant and one heavily built bodyguard.
“Good afternoon sir.” A man in his fifties greeted as he rushed to join them in the elevator.
“The Law, are you just coming?” Tony asked the man.
“I was here as early as One O’clock. Immediately after church service, but seeing that you weren’t around then, I decided to wait outside in the car.”
From the way the two men conversed through the elevator ride, it was obvious that the man is Tony Brown’s lawyer.
“We really do not know the nature of the case they are bringing up against us. But I had my associates draw up a number of possibilities and after hours of deliberation, we narrowed if down to these three.” The man explained handing a file over to Tony who collected it and didn’t bother opening it.
“Is it winnable?” Tony asked.
“From my investigation about the agent, she looks like the serious type. And if she doesn’t have a case, she won’t come at us. Winning might be a little far fetched, but we can conveniently frustrate her effort. Drag out the case in court, the SEC will eventually pull out when they realize that going after us is not worth it.” The lawyer explained.
The elevator stopped on the tenth floor and the men walked into the lobby where Tony’s guest was waiting.
“Yes sir, you didn’t tell me this is who we are meeting?” The lawyer asked.
“I love keeping my cards to my chest.” Tony replied.
“Good afternoon Mr. Tony.” The Director General of the SEC greeted with a bow.
Tony stretched his hand for a handshake with the DG took respectfully.
“I hope I didn’t keep you waiting?” Tony asked.
As soon as the lights hit his face, he opened his eyes, squinting immediately as he tried to block the rays of the Sunday morning sun. He had been sleeping for what seemed like days, but it has only been hours. He probed the bed with his free hand in search of his phone, but he couldn’t feel it anywhere near the usual place. He could hear sounds from the kitchen, but he was too weak to even get up to go and check. The events of the previous night looked blank in his mind, he had no idea what happened.
He felt like he was intoxicated, but since it wasn’t in his usual way, he shut the thought of it from his mind.
Aside from the fact that he was never the drinking type, neither does he smoke. At least not since his days as a youth corp member. And coupled with the fact that, by this time of the day; whatever time of the day it was – it is impossible to find someone else in his apartment with him. His only regular visitor is Bunmi, his girlfriend and this particular weekend, he was sure she wasn’t spending it with him.
“You are up?” A familiar feminine voice asked.
He managed to turn on his side and looking down on him was his colleague at work, Rukayat.
“Rukayat, what are you….” He wanted to ask, but his voice trailed off, especially after he realized how offensive the question might sound.
“See you. After you got wasted last night. I told you not to smoke the weed with them, but you insisted.” Rukayat replied with a chuckle.
In minor details, the events of the previous day started coming to him. “I have headache.” He blurted out.
“Do you have painkillers?” She asked.
“Somewhere on my reading table.” He replied.
Rukayat digged out the tablet and got him water from the kitchen to enable him swallow the drug.
“Here’s your phone.” She handed him his phone.
“Thanks.” He muttered as he unlocked the device with his prints, only to meet five missed calls. All from Bunmi.
As if on cue, his phone started ringing. “Hello.” He answered calmly.
“Where did you drop your phone since?” She asked, angrily.
“I was sleeping and the phone was in silent mode.” He replied.
“Always the same excuse.” She hissed. “I hope you are ready for church?” She asked.
The latest question threw him off his balance. Is today Sunday? He asked no one in particular.
“I am not, but I’ll meet up with you.” He answered.
“You can’t get out easy. I’m five minutes away from your place, be ready.” With this the line went dead.
Collins faced Rukayat who had an askance look on her face.
“You need to leave.” He announced.
To be continued