MARUFH Bello’s Kabana Republic: The Land of Hurricane, no doubt, is a story about the happenings in Nigeria. Bello uses his creative prowess to highlight the challenges facing the youth in the country, while revealing the extent some will go in order to make a meaning out of life.
Just recently, Bello presented the book to the public, with attendees commending his foresight on how he was able to fictionalise the challenges facing the country, while proffering solutions to such problems.
In his opening remarks, the chairman on the occasion, High Chief (Senator) Lekan Balogun, who also represented the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji, admitted that after reading the book, he had no doubt that it is the story of Nigeria that the author is telling.
“I am deeply impressed with this literary work, as the author, through literature, has been able to bring attention to what is happening in the country; it is not that this is the first fiction about the country, but the author has added his voice, and I hope our leaders will also learn from it.
“In the book, the author discusses those issues that are wrong with the Nigerian state, from the high unemployment rate, to the favouritism that goes on in government quarters, among other ills.
“It is unfortunate that we have not made much progress all these years, when in fact, those countries that we got independence at the same period have gone on to become so much developed.
“The truth is that all is not well with our country, and this is what the author is trying to point out with his book, Kabana Republic: The Land of Hurricane; while this is definitely not the first book published detailing the precarious state our country is in, our leaders owe the citizens a duty to work hard towards addressing those problems highlighted in the book by the author,” Senator Balogun said.
In his review, Edmund Obilo described Kabana Republic as a country in conflict with itself; a land of suffering and dependency, suffering and myriads of underdevelopment.
Obilo explained that the novel centres around a young man, Ladi, who completes his youth service but finds it hard securing paid employment.
The reviewer highlighted the struggle Ladi goes through to become a graduate, only to find himself struggling to get a job.
“Ladi joins politics, but he is schemed out, and while his struggles continue, he, alongside other disgruntled youths, decide to take up arms against the state, which leads them to kidnap the Governor General. Their action is their way of saying: ‘enough is enough’ to the leaders of the state who have made it impossible for youths to enjoy opportunities that will better their lives.
“In the end, the youth are arrested, including Ladi, but providence smiles on them when the Governor General intervenes in their situation, admitting that the leadership has failed the youth. However, while it is a happy ending for Ladi, millions of Nigerian youths are still struggling with the issues addressed by the author in Kabana Republic.
“In fact, Kabana Republic is a story of Nigeria, and it is written in simple, fluid and thought-provoking style which the reader will enjoy. The book is also an addition to Nigeria’s collection of revolutionary literature,” Obilo said.
In his comments on the occasion, the author, Bello, said he was spurred to pen the fiction to highlight the ills in the Nigerian society.
“Kabana Republic is a satirical fiction about the plight of an African graduate and the prevailing situations in his fatherland. Parody, rhyme, assonance, alliteration, rhetorical questions, proverbs, wise sayings, etc. are used as techniques to bring to the fore the overall goal of the work and its very essence.
“Kabana Republic is a piece spiced with varied languages and tinted with the two other elements of the English literature genres, namely poetry and drama. It, in itself, is a prose.
“The main preoccupation (central theme) of Kabana Republic is exposition of how bad socio-political and economic organisation of a state’s affairs can negatively impact on the life achievements, comfort of every citizen, particularly a graduate, comparing him with his contemporaries in other worlds.
“Many other writers in years past have written about the situation of the country, and coming up with mine now reveals that nothing has changed over the years.
“I, therefore, hope that our leaders will focus on the challenges facing this country, while working hard towards solving them, so as to make the country conducive for all and sundry.
“This book is, therefore, a veritable tool to re-orientate our people via homes, schools, religious houses (churches and mosques), private and government establishments so as to have a mindset that would be useful for a national development. It is in the light of this that I would like to appeal to parents, teachers, political leaders, captains of industries, religious leaders and examinations bodies, to accept this book as an inevitable/indispensable tool in the crusade of re-building our nation and Africa as a whole, especially in this era of “Change Begins With Me” of the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration,” the author said.