Chief, The Leader, to his people disparagingly referred to merely as CTL, continued reading from a magazine.
“Chinese Emperor Sun Tzu, summoned his aide, a general, and complained: ‘I told you before; and I am telling you again, that they [his harem] have disobeyed my order to march. Now what do I do’?
“Your Imperial Highness, with all due humility, will you please accord me the authority to effect that?”
The emperor curiously peered at his general, slightly aroused by the bold request the general was making and not entirely sure of what to make of it. Presently, he replied, reclining back on his sumptuous throne.
“Very well, you’re Imperial Majesty.” The general said this while bowing lower; and he withdrew from the imperial chamber, moving backwards as he affected his exit.
The general was in doubt of what would befall him if he failed to carry out this assignment.
CTL, too, leaned back on his ample chair. He was in the office of his provincial palace, south east of his State. He reflected at the exercise of the power the Chinese Emperor wielded centuries ago in a faraway country. But this is Africa, he mused; and the solution to the problem the Chinese emperor had faced could be adjusted and applied here, too.
CTL read on: “The general assembled together his troop detail, and went to that part of the imperial household, where the harem resided. By deceit of playing music on some wind instruments, he too, ordered the harem to march. He was not at all surprised when the Most Precious Queen, spat at him in disdain. She was so-called, because she was the most favorite wife in the Emperor’s harem.
“The eneral calmly wiped off the spittle from his face. Then, equally calmly, he ordered one of his officers, with the nod of his head. The officer slid out his shining sword from the scabbard, and with a smooth motion of the hand, sliced off the woman’s head from her body.
“Then the general again ordered the rest of the harem to march. In a daze, they obediently sprung up to the music…”
CTL put down the magazine and tapped the bell at his side to summon for attention. His Special Close Assistant immediately materialized.
“Get me the Provincial Peoples Representative,” he ordered.
The PPR came. “Have you organized my latest catch to go with me to that function in the North?” he asked.
“Yes, Your Most honored Leadership. Everything is ready. I shall fly over in the MI helicopter, ad get everything ready for you, most honored Leadership,” the PPR assured him.
“Have my military assistant come in,” he ordered the PPR.
When the Colonel came in, CTL wanted to find out about his wife’s Programme and movements for the next few days. The colonel left to telephone various assistants of PW – the Prime Wife – as she was generally called; and then he returned to report to CTL.
“Her Immaculate Ladyship is expected to join you in the North at the function, Your Most Honored Leadership,” he reported to CTL.
CTL did not want this. It was bound to cause some flap with the latest catch. This had to be prevented at all costs. The only way to do this was by deterring PW from arriving in the North at whatever pretext.
As the Colonel stood rapt in attention, CTL sank deeper into his seat, lolled his head sideways and upwards, and fixed his eyes at the white ceiling, at nothing in particular. After a considerable time ruminating his predicament, CTL ordered the Colonel to have his Operations Aide, a Brigadier General, to come in.
To be continued ………