Who You Eep?

Olamide, a popular Nigerian hip-hop artiste.

Olamide, a popular Nigerian hip-hop artiste

“There’s someone that’s praying to God for help today and you know what? You’re the God that he’s praying to. He just doesn’t know it. Everybody holds the solution to another person’s problem.”

Olamide, the talented Nigerian hip-hop artiste, recently ran an online musical competition. He recorded an incomplete track titled ‘Who You Eep‘. This title is a Nigerian pidgin English rendition of the statement ‘Who have you helped?’ He dropped two verses and four hooks and between the third and fourth hooks, he left sixteen bars empty for a third verse that would be dropped by any up-and-coming rapper that was bold enough to take up the challenge. So the contestants were to complete the song by dropping their own third verses on it and emailing the songs to a panel of judges who would pick the winner. The winner would be rewarded with an audacious contract with the YBNL boss — free recording of the artiste’s track, free featuring of superstar Olamide on the track (yes, in Nigeria, superstars take a fee to feature on up-and-coming artiste’s songs), and free recording of the musical video. In the context of the entertainment industry, this is a whole lot and it has the capacity to catapult the said artiste into limelight forever (provided the artiste himself is talented enough).

This is Olamide’s idea of helping other people achieve their dreams in life. You may question his motive for doing this but at least, that’s what he has done. And that’s the crux of this writeup. So I’m echoing Olamide and asking you the same question: who you eep? If your answer is no, then I’ll ask further: who you go epp? (Who will you help?) In the article titled 6 Things You Should Use Your Money For Instead of Church: Part 1, I spoke about you helping out the less privileged folks around you. There’s someone that’s praying to God for help today and you know what? You’re the God that he’s praying to. He just doesn’t know it. Everybody holds the solution to another person’s problem. This world would be a far better place if we all chose to help someone today.

Some people have never helped anybody before. Never. They make their money and ‘chop’ it alone. They occupy positions where they can help people but they use those positions to oppress people. Some people will only help other people at a price — employ a young lady only after they’ve bedded her, help someone sign a letter only after they’ve collected a fee, promote a staffer only after he has agreed to join their church/religion, etc. I’ve seen all sorts. Some people simply derive pleasure in seeing others suffer. It’s like as far as they’re concerned, their own privileged status increases in worth when others around them remain unpriviledged.

Some other people think they can’t help anybody until they achieve a particular level in life. Fingers are not equal but no matter anybody’s level in life, there’s someone you can help. A NASU member is a lowly member of the University community but he can help a student. A gateman can help an innocent passer-by. Sometimes a lower person can help a higher person. Help doesn’t have to be top-bottom: it can be bottom-up too. Such is life. I’ve seen high and mighty people who were immensely helped by the low and powerless. Sometimes helping someone is not just about signing a $10 million check in their name or getting them to a high position in a multinational firm. Helping someone lift a luggage, smiling to brighten someone’s day, choosing not to be an ar***h*le when someone doesn’t need you to be one, helping someone think through a problem, honoring an agreement, etc, can be ways of helping someone. The magnitude of the help doesn’t matter: it’s the attitude that matters.

I don’t need to scare you with hell fire or entice you with eternal heavenly bliss. If you need either of this to help someone, you’re an immoral cu*t and you should be ashamed of yourself. I don’t believe in Karma. So I won’t scare you with that too. And your helping hand may never be rewarded. So don’t do it because you’re expecting a compensation whether from the person or some other person unconnected with this in the future. I’m just appealing to your rational sense that you should turn a new leaf today. If you turn down this advice, it means you lack a rational sense. And when you want to complain about why this world is evil, remember that you’re one of the reasons.

In closing, let me borrow the swagger of Olamide Badooo Sneh and ask: who you eep?

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