Next to music and the price of fuel, governance (and to a larger extent, politics) is one of the other things I care about. Much of it is down to learning to read by staring at Nigerian dailies.
Like music, politics is about individuals. Both mediums require us to choose (or vote) if we enjoy or subscribe to what they represent. Their fans enjoy their content – either as music or as speeches and policy decisions. And in both cases, their trajectories are determined by how they wield their influence and tangible power.
It perhaps explains why most militant artists have a political tinge to their music or even go as far as running for office. Nigeria’s Fela Kuti is a great example. More recently, Uganda’s Bebe Cool announced that he would be running for president in 2021.
Typically, Nigerian singers would rather praise a woman’s shoes than comment on their reality. Interestingly, SDC’s “Clone Wars IV: These Buhari Times”, Falz’s “Moral Instruction” and Burna Boy’s “African Giant” – three of this year’s best albums – are, in one form or the other, political in tone. You could say 2019 has been an exception in that regard. So it should come as no surprise that we – meaning me – have decided to insert the unique personalities of Nigerian musicians into the large scope of Nigerian politics.
God safe us all if anything here was to happen in real life.
- Burna Boy as Rivers State Governor:
A low-hanging fruit, I must admit, but the reasons are obvious. Burna Boy was a freedom fighter of sorts on his last album. Rivers State needs some serious government. The problem is, with Burna as governor, things in Rivers will get a lot more serious than everyone is prepared for. Burna will make known his anger at all the years of colonial rule and exploitation, so get ready to see hundreds of European and American expats walking to their embassies with all their possessions in Ghana-Must-Go bags, provided by the governor of course.
Burna will almost certainly lift stringent laws on membership of secret societies, (which he’s a fan of). All that hard work and the inevitable bad belle from other governors may get to him, so by the second year, Burna will probably announce his mum as Chief Of Staff. He’ll then become a recluse who shows up rarely, in his cloud of smoke while his mother does the day-to-day on his behalf. On the slightly brighter side, marijuana will most likely be legal in Rivers at this point. Take that however you will.
- 2face as Benue State Governor
INAUGURATION SONG: “Only Me”
In many ways, 2face is Nigeria’s Benue in human form; he’s had Nigerian music’s creative sauce for the better part of two decades now. His persona also sits midway between traditional and modern, much as Benue sits in Nigeria’s middle belt, between the North and South. The only difference is that nobody thinks 2face is rural, violent and desolate. 2face’s primary duty as Benue State’s governor would be PR and we know just how he’ll achieve it.
We can’t wait for the new governor to dip into his conscious music bag and make an entire album about sustainable farming and nature’s beauty (essentially, pro-Benue propaganda with Larry Gaaga and nice beats). As someone who’s remained relevant while many of his peers fell off, 2face could be the one to get Benue’s defunct parastatals working again. One thing you can be sure of is that the statehouse will be treated like a relaxation centre. 2face would also be the most laidback elected official alive, only surpassed by the next person on this list.
- Wizkid as Lagos State Governor:
INAUGURATION SONG: “Pakurumo”
If he ever becomes a governor, Wizkid would start by missing his own inauguration, due to visa and passport issues. When he eventually shows up, he’ll spend the first few months trying to decide who should be first lady. While he grapples with such important matters of state, Daddy Bolu will be reminded at some point that Lagos has real problems. His solution? Convert his Instagram account to the official LASG account. Then over the next few months, Wizkid’s team will tease snippets of a new album to distract us. By the time the album’s ready, Lagos will most likely be submerged. We must make sure this never happens.
- Olamide as Ogun State Governor
INAUGURATION SONG: “Oil and Gas”
Olamide is a rapper so in touch with the streets that his best album is titled “Street OT”. In the last few years, Olamide has become a praise singer of sorts and overtly campaigned for former Lagos governor, Akinwumi Ambode in the 2015 elections. You could say he’s more in touch with partisan politics than many of his peers. If Olamide was to run for governor of Ogun state, his election would likely be near flawless. The first sign that all is not well will come soon after. The new Commissioner for Education, DJ Enimoney will announce that ‘Street OT” will replace Civic Education in the state’s school curriculum.
It’s almost inevitable that Ogun state will deal with the fall-out of Lagos’ endless population growth. To make sure he has the right people in his state, Olamide’s commissioner for urban development, Lil’ Kesh will launch a programme giving tax exemptions to all ‘Yahoo Boys, No Laptop’ and Science Students, as Olamide’s primary consituents. At least, Ogun State will be an APC stronghold, something the men at the top would be very pleased with.
- Davido as Osun State Governor
INAUGURATION SONG: “Fia”
While he campaigned for his uncle, Senator Adeleke, Davido showed us glimpses of what he would look like as a governor. The last few weeks of the Adeleke campaign in Osun were dominated by Davido. The man turned his entire 30BG crew into an army of campaign
- Sani Danja as Katsina State Governor
INAUGURATION SONG: “Follow The Leader”
I just want him to make sure every resident of Katsina does the Tambola dance at least once a day, regardless of where they are. Going by his music videos and all those questionable Glo ads, I reckon he’d be glad to.
- Falz as Ekiti State Governor
INAUGURATION SONG: “Talk”
It seems almost inevitable that Falz will get into governance as an elected or appointed official. For years now, Falz has been the most socially vocal Nigerian rapper around. It remains to be seen if this can translate into actual good politics, especially in Ekiti, the state he hails from. It’s almost certain that Falz will spend the first few months trying to decipher the complex Ekiti accent that almost everyone speaks with. He might have help on that front, but his biggest challenge will be to bring the state up to speed with the rest of the world. Seeing as most of the population is split between indigent civil servants and undergraduates, the Falz thing to do would be converting monthly addresses into skits.
In these skits, Brother Taju will remind the people of Ekiti that Sunday evening pounded yam is not all that matters in the world. In all fairness, Falz would make a great governor. But as Segun Fayemi, Segun Oni and Peter Fayose will have anyone know, Ekiti is a hard hill to climb in more ways than one. We expect Falz will cover some ground until he realises nothing has changed. So he will call Lagos and ask if someone can cook him up a catchy beat for a song shaming prostitutes. All is well with his world again.
Did you enjoy this? You should sign up for our weekly pop culture newsletter, Poppin’. You’ll get to know what we’re up to before anyone else + insider gist, reviews, freebies and more. If it sounds like your deal, sign up here.