Celebrated Nigerian author and award-winning writer, Chimamamda Adichie on February 28, 2023 wrote a profound letter, urging the United States (US) to support the current demand by Nigerians for transparency in the nation’s electoral process.
She concluded the missive with a dirge, which is currently making waves in the nation’s social media space.
“INEC blames technical issues for the delay. How, Nigerians wonder, can a well-funded electoral body that had four years to prepare for an important presidential election make such a significant blunder? It is reasonable, then, that many voters have assumed purposeful intent, that election workers were instructed not to upload results so that they could later be secretly manipulated.
“Nigerians want a functioning democracy, and they are starting on the path to it but might be derailed unless the international community pays attention now. To pay real attention to Nigeria is to signal that Africa matters, as the United States has always maintained. The Biden administration needs to stand behind the Nigerian people now and make a firm commitment to support election transparency.”
Adichie ended her epistle with a seven-stanza dirge that further underscored her lamentation over the alleged widespread irregularities that marred Nigeria’s presidential polls.
As a cerebral writer, Chimamamda combined a superlative descriptive diction and imagery to accentuate her sorrowful message.
Words such as dead, mourning, sorrow, graveyard among others, leave the reader, in no doubt, about the sad inner crevices of the poet’s mind.
Her disappointment is further buttressed by the ample use of antithesis, such as “The Peace Of The Graveyard,” “Only The Dead Are Celebrating” and “life and Death.”
She also deploys repetition, another metaphorical tool to emphasise the urgency of the motif and to capture the reader’s attention.
The repetition of words such as “none,” “death,” “living,” “no” and “there,” were effectively deployed for a compelling delivery of her somber theme.
To further authenticate, the elegy, the poet interweaves a vivid setting in the plot with names of places, as Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba, Ogun, Delta and FCT.
The reference to “Taxi Drivers, Okada Riders, To Market Women, Corporate Executives, Housewives and Preachers,” equally portrays a deep connection between the minstrel and the people affected by the unfortunate political circumstances of the country
The line “Who Voted For TINUBU? NOBODY!” is undoubtedly the high point of this ode.
The naming of this notable Nigerian political figure, Adichie spotlights his involvement in the political crises in the country. This equally shows her courage and disdain for the nation’s corrupt political elite.
This powerful literary piece is another classical work from the stable of Nigeria’s highly celebrated author, Chimamamda Adichie.