Saturday, January 9, 2016


Somewhere in the distance, in the far end of the farm atop a rock, where the air was thin and farm managers often spent long parts of their day, White sat, pensive, observing the animals in the farm. As part of his plan to make sure the farm never returned to the dark, dull days of ex-farm manager Goodhead, White the wily wolf had initiated a process of identifying and punishing all the animals that colluded with Goodhead to plunder the farm. This was accelerated by the confessions of Goodhead’s former pet hyena, That’s Uki.

All of the animals who had eaten from Goodhead’s criminal largesse trembled each time White silently strolled past their quarters. Some followed him as he walked past, whispering that they would return what meat and yams they still had left from the plunder and asking if he would go easy on them if they did.

As White scanned the horizon, thinking of how best to transform the farm, the son of a pig who had been implicated by That’s Uki was struggling to climb the rock where White sat to make a case for his father who had been locked up by White.

“What do you want pig?” White shouted from the top of the hill.

“Just to see you White!”

“What for? State your business. I can hear you from here.”

And the piglet was afraid to say it out loud that he had come because of his locked-up father who used to hold the microphone when Goodhead was farm manager. So he said: “I just wanted to give you a gift. For good luck and health.”

And White retorted: “Leave it at the base of the rock with the stork. It will not go bad before I see it.”

And as the awkward stork collected the package, the piglet retreated from the rock, snout bowed.

One of the farm hands, a colorful parrot that was always at loggerheads with Goodhead named Mun Chi, was asked to fly all across the farm to make sure that the farm was safe and that birds and other flying creatures especially were able to fly to and from their destinations safely.

Mun Chi was one of the most outspoken against Goodhead. He was also in charge of a large stash of funds as he was once head of a union of flying creatures that included parrots, canaries, and jackdaws. Mun Chi got his name from his habit of eating the grains and groundnuts kept in his care. He used to be called Rot In Me as a child, because when asked what she was doing as she laid an egg, his mother joked: “I am spilling out the rot in me.”

Once, it was rumored, when Rot In Me was head of the parrots, the jackdaws had given the parrots precious stones to keep in trust. When they returned for it after a few years and it was gone. The leader of the jackdaws threatened to burn the feathers of Rot In Me for misappropriating their precious stones. Angered by this, Rot In Me said: “Do your worst! Mun chi! I say: We have eaten it! We have eaten your precious stones!”

This made the birds laugh so hard and so long that after that incident, Rot In Me was nicknamed Mun Chi.

Mun Chi now flew around the farm in his capacity as a newly appointed farm hand, in wings and feathers that were dyed white. He dyed them so well, that those who had never met him before believed he was born a white parrot.

The supporters of White hailed Mun Chi every time he flew past, affectionately calling him “White Junior”. And Mun Chi nodded, acknowledging their praises. They were so impressed by his feathers that no one mentioned the fact that, as Goodhead plundered the farm in general, Mun Chi plundered the parrots in particular, using some of the proceeds to support the take over of the farm by White. In fact, he plundered the parrots so much that some animals say, he was one of the few species leaders who contributed the most when White was trying to buy over the farm from Goodhead.

When asked if he did not feel any conflict working for White who was going after those who plundered the farm, Mun Chi declared righteously: “Therefore, if any animal, bird or mammal is in the spirit of White, it is a new creature, for old things have passed away and behold, new, white things have come.”

South of the farm, in the wetlands, the turtles were choosing their own leader. The incumbent leader of the turtles, who was installed by Goodhead, was so scared of losing the race, especially as every animal these days wanted something new and Goodhead was now unpopular across the farm. Every body wanted change. So he went round the wetlands telling turtles that although he was the incumbent and had ruled for many years, he had assessed his own leadership and found himself wanting.

“I cried when I looked inward,” he screamed, wiping tears.

“I cried because I asked myself why? Why am I treating my people like this? And I answered with the help of all the spirit gods: I told myself that things must change. Dear turtles, you will agree with me that a changed turtle is more fervent and zealous than a new turtle. I know your problems. I know mine. Choose me.  Let us change together.”

The main contender, a thuggish turtle named Gold, who had been turtle leader before, rallied all the idle thug turtles and tried to scare the turtles into choosing him. Right before the elections he dipped himself in white paint, wielding a white machete and telling the turtles what they needed was a new white turtle. (He had named himself Gold because the real name he wanted, Silver, had already been used by his sister.)

As White intensified his attempts at sanitizing the farm, Mun Chi patrolled the skies in his fake white feathers and new piety. Their supporters gazed above, squinting, and declared that both White and Mun Chi were righteous and good. The supporters told both of them that all the animals were happy and contented. “We stand by you,” they said, weeping. They said this even as they grumbled about the shortage of food. They said this even as it was impossible to take any food out of the farm.

And all the while the bodies of bats, recently killed by farm hand Dick-Tai continued to smell badly throughout the farm. And the supporters of White were so busy screaming praises they could not smell it. And White simply carried on, jumping over secret graves of dead bats, hands behind his back, silent.

Ps. As usual, no animals were harmed in the production of this story, especially not ones dipped in white paint. And any resemblance of these animal characters to persons, real or imagined is, I swear, a coincidence. 


  1. Cleverly twisted, witty enough and indirectly on point.

  2. If Buhari White or Rotimi Munchi reads this, That's Uki would mistakenly name you as someone who plundered the farm under Goodhead. And that's how you'd go to jail.


You fit vex, bet abeg no curse me. You hear?