I sighted Jide from a distance, but I could tell he saw me first judging by the way he sneakily took an abrupt left turn off the road. It was obvious proof that he was avoiding me. The last two times we met, his mouth couldn't stop babbling about his traditional marriage which was scheduled to hold in one week. Later on, when I asked how the marriage went, he said it had been postponed, and he couldn't meet up with the bride price.
"How can they request I pay 1.5 million Naira, minus the other expenses. That woman had better be up to the spec..." he had lamented bitterly before leaving.
"And they even turned deaf ears to my price bargain. How can she be so expensive!" he lamented even further from a distance. It all looked familiar - the scenario - it reminded me of my experience with a TV remote salesman two days ago, who refused to reduce the price of the remote which I ended up buying. Shortly after, it began giving issues. I hit it on the wall severally and exclaimed.
"After all the money I spent on you, you are misbehaving!"
Well, I imagined Jide doing that to his newly bought 'commodity,' sorry wife.
That's what it seems like anyway, the buying and selling. Maybe this sheds light on why most men feel a default high level of entitlement, expressed and enforced through domestic abuse. As subtle as the issue of bride price may be, I think it has a lot of mental effects in the long run. Gone are the days of a few tubers of yams, now it's a matter of paying millions in Nigeria. Dressed in a subtle robe, it is gradually earning a spot on the emerging market scheme in Nigeria.
So here you go feminists, another point to add to your manifestos.
By Chukwukere Nwovike
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org