WHY I LOVE DAME PATIENCE JONATHAN
If she wasn’t the wife of the most powerful man in Nigeria today-Yes, like it or not, Goodluck Jonathan is currently the most powerful man in Nigeria, drunken or not, clueless or ‘clue’ful’. But imagine a different dimension, a counter reality where a certain Patience Faka is written off as an ‘Mgbeke’ (village girl). She’d probably be a semi-literate housewife, the type that stays home to cook, clean and wait for her kids to return home from school. Her children would probably enjoy the comical experience of having ‘mormy’ help them with home-work, especially when ‘mormy’ says, “U for ‘Umblerra’.”
In this other dimension, her husband would be a more educated civil servant who comes home from work, eats and watches the television all evening. Any domestic arguments between these two will probably end with the husband saying, “Sharraaap there, what do you know? Bush woman like you.”
Back to today’s reality, our ‘Mgbeke’ is not the house wife of a struggling civil servant; she is the first lady, wife of the President of Africa’s most populous country. Fortunately or unfortunately, not a few Nigerians feel that the first lady’s ‘village attributes’ apparently never left her. And now she ends up being mocked or taunted for almost any English sentence she utters-that’s the unfortunate part. The Fortunate part is that this woman, in spite of her oratory deficiencies highlighted by many, is not abashed, always ready to make her voice heard and she’s done pretty well at that.
Very few Nigerian women can match Dame Patience Jonathan’s ‘Women mobilizing skills’. During the run up to the April 2011 elections, she managed to engage the local women in many constituencies, and won them over to her husband’s side. These local women ended up being a very significant percentage of the voting electorate. Her husband ended up winning the elections in a near land slide victory-over 60% of votes cast. The performance of her husband thus far as President is another topic for another day.
For those of us that are Christians and derive inspiration from the holy Bible, there’s this line that says, “He who finds a wife, finds a good thing.” I ‘somehow’ understand this line to mean that when a man gets married, his wife becomes or should become a blessing to him. The wife plays the role of a help-mate, partner, lover, mother, sister and everything. In order words, the wife, the good wife is meant to walk with her husband and support him until he fulfils his destiny.
Many of Patience Jonathan’s critics, those who mock her for her sometimes awkward use of the English language are married too. But one thing sets Dame Patience Jonathan and her critics apart; she is the FIRST LADY while they or their wives are not. Her husband is the President while they or their husbands or wives are not - most will never be.
This village girl, stood by her more educated husband, campaigned for him and watched him rise from obscurity to become, deputy-Governor, Governor, acting-President and now President. Can anyone ever say that young ‘Bobo Jona’ did not find a good thing when he said, “I do” to Patience Faka, many years ago?
Lots of Nigerian men are or have been married too; they married sexy young women that speak English better than the Queen of England. Their wives have flat tummies, lovely figures, confident and certainly know how to pronounce ‘Umbrella”. But they have not become Presidents yet-some might, most will not. Doesn’t mean they are not or won’t be successful in other areas though.
Most yuppie-young Geez of my generation cannot be caught dead with a ‘Patience Jonathan-type’ girlfriend (We call them Razz), talk less of taking her to the altar. We’d rather go for the sweet sexy talker, Brazilian hair carrier and Blackberry pingers. Even though such fast women may end up leaving us heartbroken, pocket broken and any other ‘broken’ scenario you can think off.
Anyways, I heard the first Lady has not been doing too well lately-health wise and I sincerely wish her a speedy recovery from the bottom of my heart. I really do love her, I like the President too!
This post is dedicated her. Get well dear, Nothing do you!