With Nigerians buying $1 at ₦680 in 2022, we knew it was time to bring Dollar in for questioning. Turns out Dollar is a Beyoncé fan on a quest for world domination.
[Dollar has agreed to meet with Zikoko under terms of sworn secrecy. After three days of journeying, our blindfold is taken off and lights come on in an undisclosed location.]
[Dollar arrives surrounded by his guards.]
Zikoko: Was all of this really necessary?
Dollar: When you’re big, you’re big.
Zikoko: Can we at least get a seat? It took us days to get here.
[Dollar snaps his fingers and one of the guards brings a chair.]
Zikoko: Thanks. So what’s been going on with you? The people want to know why you’ve been so scarce.
Dollar: Beyoncé already said it. I’m way too sexy for this world.
Zikoko: By world, do you mean just Nigeria?
Dollar: Is that why you’re here? I thought you wanted this interview to get to know me.
Zikoko: You’ve risen more times than Jesus Christ this year. What we want to know is, why?
Dollar: I’ve told Nigeria that the situation with Naira is out of my control. And I’ve begged her to stop sending me emails and calling me at odd hours. I don’t appreciate her constant interruptions on my off-days.
Dollar: There are powers even greater than me in this world.
Zikoko: You mean Pounds?
Dollar: For my protection, I can’t name names. But I can tell you how it all started.
Zikoko: I’m listening.
Dollar: [clears throat] You were a child or possibly not even born when Naira and I met on a cold night in 1973.
Before then, Naira was almost on the same level as me because Queen Lizzie had Nigerians using pound shillings. Pounds was at the top of the world even in the 70s. And my guys didn’t really like that.
Zikoko: Jealousy is not a good colour on you.
Dollar: No, but power is. And Queen Lizzie got in the way of that. I was sick of her.
Maybe I’d respect Lizzie more if she was Queen Bey. Bey gets me.
Zikoko: Uhm… Can we stay on track?
Dollar: I’ve been around since 1792, that’s 230 years on earth, so you better watch your tone. Where was I?
Ah yes, Pounds.
My beef with Lizzie wasn’t important because I had to play nice. You know what they say, in the art of war, it’s best to keep your enemies close.
Zikoko: And the enemies here are…?
Dollar: My memory fails me. Where was I?
Ah yes, Lizzie my enemy.
Zikoko: Why does it feel like Nigeria was a pawn in your sick game of world domination?
Dollar: At least a pawn plays a game. You guys might as well have been the board. I didn’t have to lift a finger.
Zikoko: Educate us
Dollar: When Queen Lizzie got kicked out in 1960, Nigeria decided she was better off taking charge of her financial affairs and officially issued the naira in 1973.
Naira was rolling with the big boys and trading at ₦1 for 10 UK Shillings and 90 Kobo to $1. But the cookie started crumbling. Without Lizzie ruling, Naira was playing a game of Russian roulette.
Zikoko: Oshey bendownselect Wes Anderson. Look D… Can I call you D? Feels like we’re buddies now.
Dollar: I might have bounded and gagged you before you got here, but you need to calm down. I won’t be referred to as a phallus.
Zikoko: Cool. So D, we’re the biggest suppliers of crude oil in West Africa. That has to count for something.
Dollar: Do you remember the parable of the 10 virgins waiting for their bridegroom? I am the five virgins that passed the test. Z!, I have reserves.
Zikoko: Maybe we should unpack why 12 virgins were waiting for one brideg—
Dollar: Look, you’re basically buying your oil back from countries with the infrastructure to refine it. And that means Nigeria has to buy everything with currencies like me. Word on the street is that you people are still importing toothpicks.
Do you get the full picture? I’m not the cause of Nigeria’s problems. You people are doing yourselves.
Zikoko: Wow. Do you have any advice for us?
Dollar: It’s simple, really. You’re owing the world $45.2 billion, I’m owing $28.4 trillion. But how many times have you seen the world come to drag me? When you act like the best, you’ll be regarded as the best.
Your celebrities understand this. Maybe they should lead the country.
Zikoko: Nawa. So the price of sardine will never go down?
Dollar: The only way is up.
Dollar: I’ll take my leave now. And please, no more calls for interviews except you’ve secured one with Bey and me. Or at least, recognise I’m way too sexy for this world.
[The blindfolds come on again and all we hear is D’s footsteps storming off.]