“Good morning ma”.
“Good morning my dear, how can I help you?”
“Ma, I came to enquire about a vaccine”.
“Okay, Sit down and wait for my supervisor”. I was in a general hospital and came to inquire if I could get the last dose of a vaccine I had started at home. I looked around the antenatal ward. It looked old and there were so many posters on the wall about vaccines and antibiotics.
“Is it a drug or injection?. The lady I met in the ward asked.
“An injection, ma”. I replied guessing she would be one of the cleaners and turned back to reading of the posters.
Few minutes later, “Is it hepatitis vaccine?”
“Hmm, Okay o”. she said and I brought out my phone to check for messages.
“Have been to OPD?”
“No, ma” I replied again. Noticing she was probably just fishing for conversation, I added, I started the vaccine at home and I’m to complete the last dose today, that’s why I came”.
She looked at me sadly and said “Where did you start the vaccine?”
“I don’t think you would get that vaccine here o”.
“Ha! Why Ma?”
“Hmm, you know this our state, we never get anything good, all the good things are sent to the surrounding states first before they get here”.
“Really?”. I asked smiling.
“Yes O, you know our governor, that man is not a good person at all. Since January, he has not paid salaries. How does he expect us to feed our our families?” She said bitterly.
“See”, she went on counting with her fingers, “January, Febuary, March, April and this is May, nothing. If someone does not have anything doing on the side, how are we going to survive, ehn?”.
Wondering how the issue of my vaccine got to her salarynot being paid, I encouraged her by saying “Eyah, that’s not fair o”
“My daughter, it is bad o, but thank God, the incoming government has decided to close all borders so that no governor would travel out till handover”.
Not knowing if that was true or not, I added a “Really” to make her know I’m paying attention.
“Yes O, after eating all our money, they want to run, e nr go better for any of them, thieves!”
“I heard one of the governors sef has paid all the salaries of his state” She continued after a pause. “But I know our own will never pay, that is why this state will never get better, have you ever seen a tap in this place?”
“No, ma”. I replied since that was obviously what she wanted me to say.
“Ehen na, they are all spoilt and have not been repaired, now we only manage boreholes and wells”
While i was busy wondering if there were any difference between boreholes and taps, she continued, “Everything is just going bad o and worse every day, and it’s just because of this our government”.
Finally her supervisor came in and the talkative lady stepped out.
Five minutes later, I was done. I came out and saw the lady again
“Did you get the vaccine, my daughter”
“You see, what I told you, don’t mind this government jor”