THE TOURIST EPISODE 3
There is a time for everything,
Time to cry, time to work,
Time to complain about things
That we cannot change,
And time to kill, if it accomplishes the aim.
“The 4th death in a week,” the police officer said to his partner. “Gunshot to the head.”
“Abeg no reason am,” the partner replied as he stood up and tightened his belt.
They had been eating in one of the restaurants in the police barracks when Detective Adeleke brought up the topic. His partner, Anadi was not ready to listen. He wished he was far away from Aba where these things were taking place.
“Something has to be done. Someone has to tell these murderers that…”
“Ade, leave that thing. We go make arrests soon. Na there Haruna’s boys go.”
“Who’s he arresting?”
“The murderers wey dey there. Pesin must talk. No dey let this kain thing worry you.”
“But they would be arresting the wrong people.”
“See, I dey inside station, I no get strength to dey argue with you. You suppose become lawyer, but you refuse.”
Anadi hurried towards the exit of the restaurant before Ade could say anymore word. He was tired of his partner, he made him wonder sometimes if the fellow was born in Nigeria. Here, murder cases were straightforward. Just arrest a lot of people and they would tell you who the murderer is. Even if they don’t, you still release them after they part with something. The police does not get to lose out in this. Whatever way the case goes, they win something and they smile to the bank.
Ade watched Anadi leave. He was not puzzled. He was not new to the Nigerian way of ‘investigating’ crimes, but he was always trying to superimpose his views, his ideals. Was that not how it was done? If you wanted something to be a particular way, you had to start making it that way first and ask like it was the only way. He understood Anadi’s frustrations with him.
He did not need the job. He had inherited enough from his late father to be comfortable in fighting crime without extorting money from civilians. Nobody knew that but him.
Sometimes he wondered what he was doing here. Getting a ticket out of the country was easy for him. He had been born in Canada and was Canadian by birth, but he stayed here, doing little more than stirring the ocean with a little twig that could break once the bigger waves came, or maybe become stronger. He hoped it would be the latter.
The chief in Cameroon Barracks always annoyed him. He moved about with his barrel of a stomach leading the way before his head brought up the rear. The man was synonymous with bribery and would arrest eye witnesses so they could pay before he would leave them. It made Ade helpless. What was the use? He could not stop the man. Maybe all he needed was a little help from Karma if she existed. Ade doubted it though. If Karma existed, the leaders of the country he had vowed to help save should have become soot by now, but there they were, moving about with excorts, living the big life.
He stared at the thick egusi soup in front of himand was surprised he still had appetite. In fact, he was still hungry. He dived into the remaining fufu and prepared to call the salesgirl for extra.
“Oga kpata kpata,” Anadi hailed the DPO as he strode into his office.
“Anadi,” the DPO replied grudgingly.
It was easy to see he was annoyed at Anadi’s intrusion into his office but found it hard to tell him off because he was being hailed. He felt Anadi was here to ask for more cut from their business.
“Oga, how is it going?” Anadi asked.
For someone who was not yet an oga, Anadi had too much confidence and ambition. His ambition was a thing the man lunging in his office hated with great intensity. Anadi’s ambition meant that he was not safe. Anadi could do anything to pave a smoother way for himself so he could get enough space to cut into the national cake that was fast diminishing.
“Anadi, what do you want?” DPO asked, frowning.
“Ah-ahn, oga, I say make I greet you. That one dey bad?”
“Okay then, Good morning, make you dey go.”
“Haba, oga. Why the hurry? You be my friend…”
“Who be your friend?”
“Anadi, you are dismissed.”
Anadi stiffened and his poise became more formal.
“Oga, that guy I have as a partner is a drawback for business.”
“Wetin you mean?” DPO asked, leaning forward. His big stomach hit against the underside of his desk, stopping him, there was only so much leaning forward he could do.
“Last week, he no dey collect money from bus wey in check.”
“Why are you just telling me this now?”
DPO was clearly irritated.
“Anytime wey I come, you no go dey for office. You go leave am open waka come.”
DPO’s eyebrows came together. He was always inside the office, he just did not want to see Anadi, the officer had a way of begging and manipulating people, besides he brings in the biggest earnings. He would increase the crook’s percentage if he had managed to talk to him.
“I see. I will…”
The door swirled open then. DPO froze, Anadi froze. Nobody came in before the door slammed shut. For a while, they kept staring at the shut door, wild imaginations and creative horrifying thoughts racing through their minds. None of them made a move to get their guns.
“DPO…policeman, move back.”
The voice belonged to a little boy, a teen who had suddenly appeared at the other end of the office. He had a gun in his hands, pointed at the DPO.
“Who…who…you be? How you take enter here? Wetin…” Anadi mumbled.
The aggression in the boy’s voice forced Anadi to halt. The boy’s eyes were mad like he could pull the trigger. Something in his eyes told Anadi that he had done this before. He remembered Ade then. Could this be the mysterious murderer they had been looking for?
From outside, two gunshots rang inside the DPO’s room. Most of the police officers fled for dear life. When the office was opened later by the mad police officer, Ade, the DPO, and his partner were lying dead, blood pooling around them. The note beside them read:
This is for those who are killing our country and countrymen with bribery and corruption. I’m karma and I’m coming for you.
Written by Ogechukwu Emmanuel Samuel