L-R Olamitayo, wife, Mrs Nike Monica Okudaye, professional Textile Artist and the author

The author and Pa Tunji Oyelana, renowned Nigerian folklore musician

The author and Gbenga Adeyinka, Grand Comedian of the Federal Republic

The Author With Marcus Sorour, General Manager, Waggener Edstrom Communications, South Africa

The Author With Jahman Anikulapo, Program Chair, Committee for Relevant Arts (CORA)

15 Jun 2017

French RSVP vs Nigerian RSVP


Image result for RSVP

Mambo vipi,

I bring you greetings from Kenya, by asking, ‘what’s up?’ in Swahili language.  So, the first half of the year is coming to a close. It has been mixed feelings across different circles. Our heart goes to those who lost their lives and properties in the inferno of yesterday in London.

Today, I will want to touch on parties typically called ‘Owanbe’, a word postulated by the Late General Robert Adeyinka Adebayo, former Governor of Western Region Nigeria. Every party has a stipulated budget, this primarily determines the provision to be made for the guests. We all have the good intentions when planning our parties so as not to fail our guests. Let us consider, RSVP in France and in Nigeria.

The acronym RSVP in French means Répondez s'il vous plaît meaning "Please respond", it is required by the party planner to confirmation if the person would honour the invitation. Also, some people use it in the context of "Regrets only", or a popular modern variation that implies "if you do not reply, that will be taken as an acceptance."

Interestingly, the comic definition of RSVP to Nigerians is “Rice and Stew Very Plenty”. I doff my cap for the person who created this, however, it has impacted negatively on planning a party. No one would mention it that he did not respond to ‘RSVP” to confirm availability. Also, people whose name are not listed on RSVP take offense as if they are not important in the organization of the party.

What’s the crux of the gist? When an invitation is not responded to, it leads to two basic situations- surplus provision or insufficient provision. Planning for an event is as important as the confirmation gotten from the guests.

Equally, when we are taking up other cultures, we should import it rightly into our environment so that we can give the desired result. Things should be placed in proper perspective if we want results akin to that of the originating culture.

Would you respond rightly to invitations henceforth?

Cheers!



Olutayo

24 Apr 2017

OFFICER vs OFFICE

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Hi,

It has been a while that I came this way. Thank God for keeping us till day. I hope you had a wonderful Easter celebration- the holiday afforded me the opportunity to visit different families I have not seen in recent times.  It was a fulfilling experience.

As norm, I will want to start with a little story about a retired man. The man rose to become a C-Suite Executive in his hale days. He flew first class but since he retired, he became a staunch flyer of the economy class whenever he travelled. Let's discuss Officer vs Office.

An officer is someone paid to occupy an office because of his expertise and value addition to an organization. Many times, he is also enhanced through the office. He has opportunities to travel at the company's expense and attend training in ivy - league institutions. An officer could win awards and gain recognition from different quarters. There are a lot of peeks associated with being a resourceful officer.

The office is the position available to any qualified person for a certain time. Time in this context could a fixed duration for those elected and till retirement for career officer. In colloquial terms in Nigeria, "soldier go, soldier come; barracks remain". 

The use of an office could either make or mar the occupant years after. In fact, his children might partake of the good legacies, or otherwise, of their parents while in office. It is wise to make judicious use of one's office to benefit humanity in general.

What will be said about you and I when we have relinquish our various offices. The ball is in our court, let's play it right.

Have a blessed week.

Cheers!

Olutayo

3 Mar 2017

LAWS vs ACQUIESCE

M kana mon,

I have come to you today in the similitude of a Gokana man, one of the languages in Rivers State, Nigeria meaning "I salute You", while you will respond with "E zira" meaning "We return your salute."

In Nigeria, there has always been endless complaints about non-adherence to laws that should guide us in our daily lives as citizens. Earlier this year, an Associate Professor in the United States, Saheed Aderinto shared a memo stating that "a permit was required to slaughter domestic animals (even on religious festivals) in Nigeria. Source: West African Pilot, February 13, 1943." Is this 74 year old law effective in Nigeria? Let’s discuss Laws vs Acquiesce.

Laws according to the dictionary are the body of rules and standards issued by the legislative body, or to be applied by courts and similar authorities. Of a fact, all religious bodies have laws that guide their members.

Acquiesce means to accept or consent by silence. It is an agreement to abide by the laws governing a body either an association, state, country. Acquiesce hold sway on anyone within the geographical territory.  Unfortunately, ignorance is not an excuse in the court of law. 


We all know these words but we do not make them work. Laws would continually be on paper while we all act contrarily. The dis-functionality of the society can be resolved by adhering to the laws of the land.

Laws should help us to live a meaningful life and help us avoid regrettable tales. If religious tenets are adhered to, the world would be a better place.

Would we take to these laws (instructions) so that we do not suffer grave consequences?

Enjoy the rest of the day.

Cheers!

Olutayo 

13 Feb 2017

JUDGING vs CORRECTING

Hi,

It has been a while that I dropped by with some words on this platform.  It is always a privilege that I do not take for granted sharing some insights with you from time to time. Hope all is well with you and your loved ones? The second month of the year will soon wind up, are we on the right desired path for this year? 

In my generation today, I have discovered that there are many ways of avoiding correction and an apt phrase drawn from the scripture is always used.  Exodus  2:14a "And he said, Who made thee a prince and a judge over us?". Let's brood on the topic- Judging vs Correcting 

Judging someone is by administering a verdict. From a practical standpoint, a judge comes up with his own binding view after listening to all the parties involved. Many times, a judgement can only be appealed at a higher court. However, nowadays it is a rebuttal of an advisory process. 

Correcting someone is a way of advising the person to see issues from another viewpoint from where he is standing. In the process of correcting, the person with a superior stance needs a lifestyle that justifies the correction, the person that is being corrected has the opportunity to weigh the advise and come up with a healthy and balanced opinion.

Those who come up with that phrase, "Who made you a judge over me" technically shut others up in order to keep indulging in the wrong lifestyle while those who are willing to take corrections will view it from a persuasive stance which will redefine his or her attitude to life.

At all times, remember this, "in criticizing to correct someone, you should focus more on killing the issue, rather than discreetly killing the personality." When the personality is killed that's judging when the person when the issue is discussed that's correcting.

Let's not mistake correctional intentions as a judgmental process. 

Have a great week ahead.

Cheers!

Olutayo 

4 Jan 2017

YOUR TERRITORY vs OTHERS TERRITORIES

E ku ayo odun o!

I have come to you as a Yorùbá man greeting you with all pleasure now that we are in the New Year. May the year unfold with great goodies for us. Amen.

There are many Nigerians in the gaol in different parts of the world not necessarily because they have committed a heinous crime but for their acts of lawlessness. Today, we would be considering this in a very poignant way: Your territory vs Others Territories.

Your territory is your domain where you have a full understanding of the place. This include the language, the culture, the people and the law enforcement agents. For example, law enforcement agents in Nigeria can easily be bribed while this is not applicable in some other nations. In the same vein, it can be as small as your room.

Others territories can be likened to a strange land. A country that is not of one's birth neither is the person conversant with the way of life in that community. Others territory must be carefully examined before claiming to have a deep understanding of the place.

A Yorùbá saying goes thus "ile ti ookun re o toju eni su, a ki rin oru e" meaning the path were you are not conversant with must not be walked in the dark. 

The crux of today's discussion is that you must be careful to carry the right attitude in and out of your territories. Different things happen in different cities and you do not necessarily have to carry the experience of your home territory into other territories for they might not be governed by different extreme rules. Be observant and act accordingly to the rule in other territories. What is acceptable in your territory might be a crime in others territories.

When you are in Rome, behave like the Romans.

Enjoy 2017

Cheers!


Olutayo


16 Dec 2016

INTERNALLY DISPLACED vs EXTERNALLY DISPLACED.

Abokina,

In Hausa language, the lingua Franca of Northern Nigeria, it means my friend.  It is already turning white in some parts of the world and it is currently hazy here. I wish you a beautiful Christmas in advance.  

As a country, we have been battling Boko Haram in the last few years and it has led  to the death of many people both civilian and military. Our hearts are with their families and we pray that they will be eternally consoled. Let's dig deep as we discuss internally displaced and externally displaced in various lights. Both displacement can be summed up in a Yorùbá proverb "eniti o so ile nu ti so apo iya ko" meaning he who has lost his identity has keep a bag of torture.

The internally displaced people are those that have been sacked from their homelands and they are refugees in their fatherland. Unfortunately, the reports are more disheartening because they are malnourished and the funds that should be used in catering for them is being embezzled in their country of birth. The government keeps paying lips service to optimally caring for them. 

Another set of internally displaced people are those who are neither accepted in the city they reside and their country home. This is evident in documents such as state of origin, local government identification letter, Federal Character and others in Nigeria. All of these have reduced the opportunities available to people and this has led to brain drain.

The externally displaced people are those have lost their sense of their own identity based on some external influences despite being in close proximity to their culture and language. I strongly believe that regardless of the level of foreign civilisation, if your own culture is not promoted, it will die a natural death. 

Some years ago, we were having Generation X and now, we are having Generation Z. People are getting lost even in their homeland. There are many families resident in the cities who neither know their country home nor are told about the place. The question, "who will build and promote your country home?"

Either you are internally or externally displaced, you can rewrite your history; you can create a new order. If you are internally displaced, brace up to rebuild your home community; if you are internally displaced, work towards improving your language & country home with your expertise if you are externally displaced.

Whatever you do differently will engrave your name on the roll call of honour one day.

Have a nice transition into 2017.

Cheers

Olutayo

9 Dec 2016

FIRST HUSBAND vs SUBSEQUENT HUSBANDS

E káasan,

That’s the greetings of a Yoruba person which means ‘Good afternoon’. It has been some weeks that I last came this way but it is all for good! The tap is still gushing but the demand of this time makes it seems like it is seizing from my end. I am sure the wind of the yuletide is blowing all around you; either it White Christmas or Hazy Christmas; May we all do it in good health.

There is a Yorùbá proverb, ‘ti obinrin o ba dan ile oko meji wo; ko ni mo eyi to san’ which means, if a woman never attempts two matrimonial homes; she will not know the most pleasant of both homes. We would want to consider this saying in the light of the first husband and subsequent husbands. However, this can be applied to all areas of life including our career.

The first husband is usually the stage of exposition from being naïve. The first husband has a lot of role to play in one’s life as it determines how wild and insatiable one would be in later years. The experience also determines if the person will want to hang on or find an exit route out of the union. For example, if the first company that one works with pays well; gives a lot of allowances and encourages growth; many people would not bother to seek for employment elsewhere until the statutory retirement age.

Subsequent husbands, from the second husband upward, usually, are tasked on many sides especially when there was a very damaging experience from the first union. This could have maligned the ability of the person to trust and stay loyal. As such, the husband strives to convince beyond all reasonable doubt that he can care and sustain the person. Unfortunately, the person coming into the union would be very sceptical and would have developed either a cantankerous, violent or defensive mind-set.

In all, some people will never go beyond the first marriage; some will prefer the second marriage; some will appreciate the first marriage while they are in the second marriage and some will regret both marriages.

I would plead with everyone, wherever you find yourself; please be the best so that we can create valuable experiences for others and not marred experiences. For those who are yet to make a choice, kindly examine your choice, if it will lead you to the Promised Land or an impediment to your progress.

Have a great weekend ahead.

Cheers!


Olutayo

8 Nov 2016

PATCH PATCH vs FOLLOW COME!



Mwanmin,

There is no ethnic tribe where there is no word "friend" and that's "Mwanmin" in Kulere language of Plateau State, Nigeria. It is always a pleasure to have you as an audience for Versus Series

Today, we have the voice of two people in a dialogue. An Igbo man who sells spare parts who gives the owner of the car the option of either buying a "follow come" part while the vehicle owner for financial reasons insist that he wants him to "patch-patch".

"Patch-patch" is a phenomenon in which a similar part of another manufacturer or model is used on a different vehicle. Those who do patch-patch, usually and unfortunately, are at risk manage times because it could malfunction anywhere. People who commute in commercial buses around Lagos, would have noticed some vehicle part of another vehicle entirely in some buses. Patched parts cannot function optimally like the original part; the destruction could be compounded and it may lead to fatality.

Follow come is the ordinary part made by the manufacturer for a particular model of a car or any other device. The part has less complications if it will be fixed onto another car of the same model. The "follow come" part usually gives the right feel and produces the right result effortlessly. It, equally, does not complicate the issues.

The right result is achievable through the right tools. A disjointed combination cannot produce optimal result.

Have a nice week.

Cheers!

Olutayo


3 Nov 2016

PARALYSIS VS ELLIPSIS



Kowure,

This is my special morning greetings to you in Kulere language of Bokkos local government area of Plateau State, Nigeria. It is another good time to share with you. Hope you are earnestly looking forward to the end of the year- the most expensive and fun - filled time of the year?

Today, I will tell you the story of my friend who had an entrepreneurial drive; he went to his uncle to discuss his intentions. His uncle, gave him ten reasons why he should hold on to his career as his boss would reward his loyalty down the line. What should he do? However, as a convinced young man, he moved on with faith. Let's think together on Paralysis versus Ellipsis.

19 Oct 2016

ETHICAL WORDS vs CONTRADICTORY ACTIONS

Nafmin,

I travelled down from Bokkos Local Government area of Plateau State, Nigeria and I just said ‘My people’ in Kulere language. Hope your week has been great thus far?

In this pervasive world where we live. There are many clergymen that had been accused of committing heinous crimes against humanity most especially their congregation. This has caused people of other faiths to speak ill about them, their ministries and their faith. 

In another vein, people who have written against a political administration, they get baited and eventually get entangled in some administrative mess at a later time usually mar their reputation for life. Let’s think together about ethical words and contradictory actions.

Ethical words are sayings that condemns a particular act; educate and encourage people to stick to the right lifestyle or admonish them to desist from doing what is totally wrong. Those who are usually guilty of this are influential people in the society ranging from religious leaders, celebrities, writers and other vocal people.

Contradictory actions are secret deeds that are against the ethical words that have been preached. Interestingly, people hardly forget these ethical words that have been said in the past; as such, one’s words becomes a trap that catches one. 

Contradictory actions have made people to lose their respect and voice because their lives does not match their words. Brands have cancelled brand endorsement of celebrities for such things. Some people have committed suicide in other to cover up the shame of behaving contrary to their saying.

It is honourable to make ‘our yes, yes and our nay, nay’. It is a simple maxim that reflects integrity.

Cheers!


Olutayo

14 Oct 2016

UNSUNG vs SAMSUNG

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Matan Mwanmin,

How has been the month so far? I have not come to you recently but I am glad to sharing my thoughts with you today. I have come to you saying ‘Hello’ in Kulere language of Bokkos local government of Plateau State, Nigeria.

Many of us have the mind-set of becoming entrepreneurs later in life. However, we are either not prepared for the challenges ahead as such, we chicken out over time seeking solace in paid employment. As such, the age long quote has not lost its relevance, ‘If you don’t build your dream, someone will hire you to build theirs.’ Our dreams would either be unsung or sung.

An unsung business is the business that has a lot of intricacies that is jealously guided by the person who owned or discovered the idea. Such businesses are highly specialised and people are not taught how to do it not to talk of modernising the vision. In another vein, an unsung business is a business where the entrepreneur does not have the tenacity to wait till he break-even or breakthrough.

A sung business is Samsung. This is a business that started in 1938 in South Korea as a Grocery store. By 1940, it switched to the production of noodles, by 1950, it started Sugar Production, and by 1954, the company went into woollen mill cum started selling insurance and security. In 1960, they started producing TV, in 1980, the company went into production of telephone switch board. Samsung died in 1987 and the company broke into four independent businesses- departmental stores, chemicals & logistics, paper & telecoms and electronics. In 1990, it delved into real estate, in 1993, the company was restructured and they went into production of memory chips. In 1995, they switched to liquid-crystal displays and they have been the world’s largest manufacturer of flat screen TV. In 2010, Samsung focussed on the production of smartphones. In 2016, they have outsold iPhone. Samsung has undergone many metamorphoses but they retained their brand name.

This is a journey of tenacity. One of the things that we lack around use here is the ability to bequeath your business unto your children who should modernise it with their level of exposure and education. I am not saying that children should be forced into a particular line of career but parents should know how to make children- buy into, invest in and develop their businesses.

Before you become sung, you would have sworn to maintain your dream and vision. There would be time for modification of your idea, restructuring of the dream and many more. 

Keep building your dreams regardless of the hurdles. 

Have a great weekend.

Cheers!


Olutayo

21 Sep 2016

JUNGLE JUSTICE vs ANALYTICAL JUDGMENT

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Muli Bwanji,

It’s been wet in the city of Lagos in the last few hours, those on my social media would have seen the video on flash flood around Idi-Iroko; Ikorodu road.  I have come to greet you in Bemba language of Zambia which means ‘Hello’.

As human, we have disagreement with our friends and families from time to time. Some people would want to mediate but they do not take time to listen to both parties before arriving at conclusions. Yoruba sages in their wisdom described this in a proverb that says, ‘agbo eje apa kan da agba osika ni’ transliterated as a judge who hears from a party and gives a verdict has committed a dastard act.

Jungle Justice is a situation in which a person is judged with a bias and also taking laws into their hands. The person narrating and the person judging are the perpetrators of jungle justice. People who grew up in Nigeria can remember the days when petty thieves are caught in the neighbourhood and people take laws into their hands by burning them with tyres. Jungle justice leads to name calling amongst others. The deadliest forms of jungle justice is gossip; the extent the words would travel cannot be determined.

Analytical Judgment is when people are objective in their conclusion. They take time to ask questions; invite the two parties for reconciliations; they allot blames, correct both parties and resolve the entire crisis. This set of people are honourable and forthright. People with such mind-set are usually incorruptible. 

People that carry out analytical judgement can be attacked for being confrontation but they would surely be vindicated for being upright. Those who are known for carrying out jungle justice are put to shame when they are apprehended.

Analytical Judges are needed at all spheres of life, would you join the train?

Enjoy the rest of the week.

Cheers!

Olu


For more articles on Versus Series, kindly visit www.versusseries.blogspot.com; call 07062021341 or send an email to peodavies@gmail.com

14 Sep 2016

ILÉSANMÍ vs JOYÈ

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E ku ayo odun o!

As a Yorùbá man, we are renowned for having greetings for all occasions and situations.  Well, our Muslim friends are in the mood of celebration and we wish them the best of the season.

Today, I would be discussing a very simplex (simple but complex) issue here. There are certain people who are given a position or a title and others keep asking, "does he merit the position?" We would analyse this from a cultural standpoint today using the proverb, "Ilésanmí dùnjoyè lo" meaning being a homely person is better than being a titled person.

Ilésanmí is a state of being without a title but playing a background role to the accomplish the organizational goal, it could also mean that the person is under tutelage. Also Ilésanmí can be the state of being willing to be the kingmaker. Lastly, the person might have previously occupied a position and have got fagged and is willing to relinquish the office.

Joyè is the time of being crowned, installed into a particular office, or taking a particular leadership position. There is a saying in Yorùbá, ewo ni ka fi'yan joye awodi, koma  le gbe adie meaning the person endowned with the title of a hawk must be able to pick a cock. This signifies that there are responsibilities attached to every office.

However, life must be delicately balanced. There is nobody that does not come into places of responsibility. Some graduates into leadership roles, others inherit it, some are naturally attain it while some earn it. At some point, one would be either the Baálé (head of a family); Baálè (head of a community) or Òtùnba (a titled chief) and many more.

The implication is that we should all know that at some point in life, we would change roles and we must stand out in all these capacities.

Have a great week ahead.

Cheers!


Olu

18 Aug 2016

FOREWARNING vs RESCUING

Muli Shani,

It is such a great opportunity coming your way again this week. Hope you have been making the best of this month? It's way more than half, what have we achieved so far? I am saying "hi" in Bemba language of Zambia.

I will be starting this edition with the post proverbial of a saying in Yorùbá language. *A forewarned crippled man does not die in the war; howbeit, the wise one.  Let's go on with the topic of today, Forewarning vs Rescuing.

10 Aug 2016

FRIVOLITY vs NECESSITY


Mai Shamwari,

I am excited coming your way again today after some weeks break. I have been on recess but I am not depressed. Life has different folds of challenges and I hope we are on top of all the pebbles thrown at us. I am saying ‘My People’ in Shona language of Zimbabwe.

There is a story of a young professional who is excelling in his career. He had a lot of people who report to him ranging from drivers to his colleagues. He had luxurious cars; high quality phones and travel out of the country at will. Oddly, he had a need to change his apartment; he scouted for another apartment; he got another one apartment; he paid and the final process was that he should meet the landlord of the house. On the day of visiting the landlord, the person that can out to his amazement was his driver in the office. Let’s think together, at what point are our acquisition frivolities or necessities?