Nigerian Senate
(in its desperate ploy to carve out a lifetime pension bonanza for its top officers and sanctify their acts of corruption and other criminalities with an all-encompassing immunity)

A brave new bill is stirring
In the chamber of our Senate
Hear? A brave new law is stirring
In the belly of our Senate
Self-serving, repulsive, utterly senseless,
Another sick sign of a lawless state

A lifetime bonanza for the Senate King,
His paramount peers and other parasites
Yes, lifetime bonanza for the Senate King,
His paramount peers and other parasites
Maggots who fatten on our nation’s corpse
They vow it’s all part of their royal rights

Scoundrels, nation-wreckers, venal warriors
Spawns of Nigeria’s triumphant Kleptocracy
Agbaga!*, scoundrels, cut-throats, venal warriors
Criminal spawns of our triumphant Kleptocracy
They steal our votes, purloin our prospects
In their noble service to our ‘New Democracy’

Lifetime perks for the Senate King and his Chiefs
And from their serial criminalities, an absolute immunity
Haba, lifetime pay for the Senate King and his Chiefs
And from their serial criminalities, an absolute immunity
A super sanction-buster bestrides our sorry streets
The kabiyesi of crimes, the Grand Imuniti*

Beyond Shame, allergic to Honour,
Our lawless lawmakers and their countless crimes
Alas, beyond Shame, allergic to Honour
Our lawless lawmakers and their countless crimes
The nation wails beneath their yoke,
Reeling through the turmoil of these confounding times

Onward, brave legislators,
Indulge your greed, unhinge the Nation
I say, onward, brave legislators
Indulge your greed, kill the Nation
Forge the rules, immunify your crimes
It’s all so in tune with your lofty station

And WE THE PEOPLE are the absent factor
Bought, sold, disdainfully discarded
Again, I say, WE THE PEOPLE are the absent factor
Bought, sold, disdainfully discarded
Servile servants of mindless masters
We forgo our right to be well regarded

Agbaga: Alas; horror of horrors!
Kabiyesi: The-one-that-will-challenge-him-is-not-yet-born
Imuniti: Un-arrestability or beyond arrest. Yoruba pun on ‘immunity’.

Niyi Osundare is one of Africa’s foremost poets and a Distinguished Professor of the University of New Orleans (UNO), where he teaches in the English Department.