EVENTIDE IN ABIDJAN.(Part One)

The rising sun from the east part of Abidjan seemed annoyed with the dawn of the morning.  It was as though it had been pleased with the activities that ensued in that night.

In the still of the night, much had happened. The most tradgedic being the killing of the bald-headed Prophet with his only son who was left of him with his wife. Mr. Aguba, as he was popularly known, had just made it clear to his congregation the other day that, “Thou shall not fear death, even Christ did lay down his life for us… ” He had preached this with so much certainty that the all-believing Christians looked to the time they shall meet their death.  This man had won the hearts of his believers to an extent that nothing could be heard in the plains except for his words that brought them hope.

Hence the people applauded, “We shall see him in the set of sun as the Son of Man shall come! ” All wasn’t lost at all for them. So anyone who would mourn over the death of him was cast to hell and termed as a non-believer.

Many had trust in him as one who had had encounters with Nyame and even seen Him face to face. He also revealed to them in his long sermons,”Nyame revealed to me that on one eventide, Boko Haram shall be swallowed from the face of the earth. Rumor had it that this mighty man of  valor had beat and chased his wife away after he found out that he was cheating on him. Yet the women who missed not in the gossip of that place mentioned always in low tones that, she was escaping the ritual. As it was the custom of Abidjan,  women had their clit cut so to please Nyame, their god. “She was a coward, she escaped to Anyama so to avoid being cut. ”

But even amidst their joy of soon meeting Mr.Aguba on the shores of the Jordan River, their hearts harbored bitterness. Their only hope had just been murdered by their enemies, Boko Haram. The bone of contention had always been disputes over the territorial boundary which Boko Haram claimed was theirs. To them, it was as clear as day that Nyame, the creator of all things had blessed them with most fertile planes.

And again, just the other eventide, when they were all asleep, Samanfo’s house had been raided and later burnt down to ashes. Samanfo, one of the fanatics of Aguba’s teachings  had overheard of the attacks and so fled to Abidjan town.  This time they were so filled with rage as chills of frozen blood ran down their spine. They sought comfort in the words of the gone prophet, “Thou shall defeat thy enemies! ” And so with one spirit as though they had as well met Nyame, they gathered under the Palm tress that now served as their Tabernacle after their hall had been brought down to ashes with their foes.

Plans were underway on how to finish their adversary and avenge the death of Aguba. Women lingered behind to prepare soup for their husbands as children were sent to play in the far fields so not to experience the sharpening on machetes, knives and arrows.

“Tonight is the night.! ”

“Though they slay us, we shall not fear them! ”

They chanted across the plains even as the men sharpened their weapons in readiness for the revenge that night. Knives were sharpened, pangas made to look as new and machetes fetched from every household. Tonight was the night they had been waiting for. Their backfriends must come to learn that they weren’t asleep.  The believers of Abidjan burnt with rage as they awaited the set of sun.

It was a few hours after midday yet the sun seemed as though not in support of the plans for that evening. Today it shone exceedingly more brighter as if it were it’s first day to exercise that skill. It looked so delighted in hitting the Abidjan plains, drying their unhealthy crops and their seasonal river. Perhaps it was doing this in mockery.  But this or nothing would stop them from defeating their enemies. And so to have Nyame’s hand in this, they resorted to performing a ritual so as to please him. They needed him to grant them victory over their foes. So announcements were made across the plain to all their women to show up for the ritual. Both the young and the old altogether were made to stand in queues and prove their allegiance to their land. The ritual. The cutting  removal of the clitoral hood and leaving a small hole for the passage of urine and menstrual fluid. With bright faces they faced the cut. No one was to cry as this only meant that you were not with your people in their predicament.  If you dared to cry then you would be pronounced as cursed and a reject and at times beaten and chased away with your husband. No one wanted this. Young girls had been tought on issues partaining loyalty in such rituals as they were promised of heaven. And so with joyous faces, they faced the knives thay would kill their enemies that night.

Hence, in correspondence with this activity, the gods seemed to have been pleased with them. The sun now was slowly losing it’s power. It no longer shone as bright. The western winds blew across the plain making whispers which could only be heard by Samanfo who now took Aguba’s place.  Could it be that Nyame was( impressed with the shed blood? It was about to rain. This only happened the Nyame was promising them victory.
Soon the cattle started arriving home from the fields, hen quacked as they led their chicks to their shed. Both goats and sheep as though in a competition made their way to their shed. They all seemed to be aware of what was to  ensue in that night. Flowers returned to their cover in the petals. Just yesterday they had suffered pain when the corpses of Mr. Aguba was being pulled to a place of hiding with his killers. As if they prayed for tonight, they seemed so dull as they drooped.

And so as the broad sun was sinking down its tranquility, believers charged so much as they chanted, “They will all die tonight! ” In readiness, they sat as they watched the sun fall behind the horizon, painting the sky shades of red and pink. And they thanked Nyame that the time had finally come to avenge their foes…

(To be continued)

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