Psychiatric Poverty: The Notion of “sweet” Chicken legs (A year after)

A year has passed by, and the Facebook memory feature brought this article to fore. I wrote it a year ago to describe a sight that depicted how bad things were then with living standards in Nigeria. Sadly enough, a year has passed by, and a government-in-charge has looked on, as pressing economic woes have accentuated the poverty instead of getting it arrested…For a majority of Nigerians, things have gone worse, and almost every silver lining has become burnt brass…
Read the article below
….the chicken legs and moulds of chicken skin fat, graded for patronage

As I walked past the sight, I tried to convince myself that I was wrong and definitely didn’t see well. Curiously, I stepped back, and true to it, I saw two market women ‘marketing’ discardable chicken legs, I actually saw rightly.

I had thought, when did scaly, non-nutritive chicken legs become a graded commodity in this our polity? Ha! Jesu mi!
Right there, I got stuck gazing warily at yet another testament to the degree of poverty in Nigeria.

This is psychiatric.

Poverty has fully conquered the pockets of the masses, now, it has grown so malignant to ravage their hearts, and government does not seem pained enough.
For God’s sake, what is this if not dehumanization!

I tried to rationalize it by thinking that at worst, these chicken legs should have been freely given out to some people, rather than them being the economy of these women,  who may even probably be on the verge of having an umbrella body, ..“National Association of Chicken Legs’ Dealers”. I wouldn’t be alarmed, because that’s how psychiatric the poverty has been allowed to fester.

As I walked away, I kept thinking about what these people could have had in their thoughts as motivation. From the women who saw the prospect of ‘boom’ in selling these deprivative legs, to the ones who patronize them, and even the merchants who give them out to retailers with the mindset of trade, all I saw were copious traits of psychiatry.

That state of mind when they haplessly re-calibrate their expectations to see “something in nothing” and “essence in nonsense”…..that’s what poverty has wrought in my people’s hearts.

To make them believe one untrue appeal in dry chicken legs, to make those market women sit there in expectation of one infinitesimal profit, to make the buyer picture “sweet” chicken meat on their bowls of concussed jollof rice, to make the merchant expect a vague gain; all depicts the symptoms of a kind of poverty that pangs the heart beyond the pocket, and that which erodes the prospects of sanity.
Abi, what else would readily paint a delicacy and an economy out of these actually discardable chicken legs, if not poverty pangs…

Over the years, especially in this 16-year democracy of ours, we’ve been constantly fed with the figures that depict the sheer poverty rate in Nigeria...”an average person is said to live below 1 dollar per day…bla bla bla”… But, I believe that the situation has even degenerated further beyond the rhetoric of metrics. No right thinking countryman needs statistical figures to assess the palpable nature of poverty and its effects in at least 75% of Nigerians, who aren’t (maybe) politicians, pilferers, or *pastors.

That this degree of disheartening poverty exists in a country where some corruptly over-privileged few feel like blowing millions in a day, loosing billions unfazed and flippantly misappropriating trillions, shows how warped our idea of bliss is. To me, bliss isn’t when you just accrue goodness to yourself, rather, it is when you don’t even seem to have enough for yourself because you’ve had to disburse for the ones not as privileged as you are.

The Buhari government has its work cut out as regards poverty; it must just reduce. It is sad to know this new government is still grappling with the politics of appointments and selfish intentions, months into their election, all at the expense of people-oriented governance. #APC

Enough of platitudes oh, this government has a new platter to re-plan from, and it shouldn’t be conveniently Jega about it, if anything, it must be Orubebeic enough to stamp upon the progress of poverty across the land.
Food, employment and shelter, must become affordably basic.

And for them, I have the words of Charles Chaplin, who with great insight once said,  “You need Power, only when you want to do something harmful; otherwise, Love is enough to get everything done.”

Buhari, biko, take cue and get practically expeditious about making life truly livable for these citizens. Deliver these majority from this psychiatry.

Chicken legs…arrrgh!

PS: Dear “Cum-an-carry-me-out” lasses, please, kindly take note, “He is a wonderful man, the boy who ‘carries’ you out to devour fleshy chicken laps at Mr.Biggs, that man who didn’t chicken-out when you craved chicken; Respect him”

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  1. Well the pot will not be empty and the children will have something to gnaw on. Not that I find it good but that’s the stark reality. For a long time I have seen people buy what is called ‘ yadi” in Hausa which is the membrane covering meat which you see butchers stripping of meat. Very unfortunate.

  2. My dear friend let us pray that God deliver us from want in the midst of plenty. That God will destroy the power of the Goliath ravaging the land….G for greed,.O..for Occultism,….L for Lust,..I for Idolatory,A…for Adultary,T…for Tribalism,H…for Hatred.Check the Country you will find these as the cause of poverty.It is what made the people in power to steal fantastically the wealth that is meant for all.

  • Poverty I feel ashamed that any one in his senses CAN sell them chicken legs but that is the unfortunate situation there is so much poverty that now stinks and this as a result of greed and out right stealing by a few privileged bastard let’s wait and see whether Buhari can help change the situation

  • Chicken head and legs, is even good if affordable, there are many who can not afford to buy it at all. But make no mistake about it, we are all accountable for the rot of the Nation. How?; due to laziness( everyone wants easy money). Ignorance, ( supporting the thieves base on tribal sentiment). Greed( pursuing vanities). Hypocrisy( pretending to know God, but not doing his will). Finally, selfishnes( only me, and family to chop alone). Very unfortunate. God have mercy.

  • The situation had already deteriorated beyond compare when you wrote it. How then can you blame a govt barely one year in d saddle for d mess, created by a party that sat in govt for 16 years! Please let us be reasonable and allow this govt to work. Distractions will only worsen d already bad situation. By all means, let’s criticize. But let’s do it objectively, not with d aim of casting aspersions on a govt that is doing its very best to right d wrongs of d past. For instance, we all know corruption was ripe in d system, but did we realise d enormity of it? Is anyone giving d govt credit for successfully battling d menace of Boko Haram? A little credit here and there will encourage govt to do more pls.

  • Poverty may be endemic but there are folks who enjoy “discardable chicken legs.” The writer is a lil bit condescending. You don’t have tp be poor to enjoy discardable chicken legs. Makes good, crunchy condiment in pepper soup.

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