BY OLATUNDE OLAYINKA AYINDE

1. Know that Nigerians have defective personal and collective memories. They will always forgive you no matter how much you steal, how poorly you performed or how abominably you behave. Just ensure you go away for sometime and return in a different shirt. Too much is happening too fast in their lives to keep tab of everything.

2. Know that money is the only thing that our value system revolves around. Steal it well, spend it well, use it to oppress your opponents, divide it into tiny crumbs and throw it into the crowd, dazzle your supporters with it. There is a lot of poverty already on ground. They will never understand the meaning or the value of the billions you steal and the opportunity cost of the stolen funds, and they will not begrudge you for stealing it. What is real to them are the crumbs that get to their hands. They are too ravaged by poverty of thoughts and material poverty.

3. Lie liberally. Lie everyday. Lie without ceasing. Lie without shame or remorse. In the final analysis, it won’t be lies any more. It would just be your personal truth, also known as propaganda. It’s an acceptable political tool in Nigeria. Everybody does it. Even your pastor and your imam. As long as it brings political power and wealth. Make promises you never intend to keep.

4. Let God feature prominently in all your speeches and discourse. Hinge your mandate on him, tell Nigerians he sent you, tell them you will perform well by his Grace. Tell them he is the giver of power and all power belongs to him. That he has decided to give the power to you. Tell them that even though they vote for you, it is God who will solve their problems. Failure of your government is tantamount to failure of God (which is impossible. And God is on your side). Or failure of the devil. Whichever suits your purpose well.

5. Use all the leverages of ethnic and religious sentiments available to you. Form allies across all ethnic groups. Lie to each group individually. Set them against one another across ethnic and religious lines if need be, for your personal gain. Never mind that humans would die in the ensuing conflicts. They are not members of your family. They are just your tools. Your pawns to get you power and wealth. If you’re ever caught and told to face the law, appeal to ethnic and religious sentiments. Always act the victim. Shame is something you will never succumb to. You can’t afford to have it. It’s always a liability.

6. Ensure those you rule over never go to school. If they do go, ensure they never learn critical thinking. Ensure you continue to tell them regularly that you’re the best thing that ever happened to them after fried rice. Suppress their dissent with fear, intimidation, superstition, ignorance and poverty.

7. Develop fully your narcissistic and psychopathic sides. Never apologize for them. Never be remorseful for them.

8. The only thing worth pursuing is your happiness. Nothing else matters.

9. You are born to rule and other people are born to be ruled by you. Never forget that. Never apologize for it. Enforce that right by all means: lies, manipulation, bribery, violence, deceit, any means is fair. As long as it’s all about you.

10. Never forget to steal enough money for the next electoral cycle, for your retirement, for your great grand children and for your reign as godfather when the time comes for retirement. Humans are animals generally and you have decided to be the alpha animal. It’s not about morality. You just chose who you want to be. And Nigeria is the perfect place to be you.

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