Wole Soyinka is inaugurated the "Clapback King of Africa, Forever".
So here’s a quick backstory. Wole, the ‘Prolific’, ‘Inventive’, ‘Prodigious’, and ‘Not-enough-adjectives-to-quantify-his-greatness’, Soyinka, recently promised to destroy his US green card, should Donald Trump, now President-Elect, win the 2016-US elections. Many Nigerians took to social media to offer their take on Soyinka’s civil protest, with some questioning the authenticity of his claims. What ensued was a litany of spoken perfection as Soyinka hit back at his critics in the most perfect way, solidifying Soyinka's service to the art of crafting witty and time-executed insults at one's legion of enemies. So much so that Afrolens has inaugurated Sir Wole Soyinka the "Clapback King of Africa, Forever". In addition to this title, we're also sharing some of our favourite verbiage from Soyinka's lips as he thrashes his literary inferiors silly enough to try him.
1. In response to the critics who demanded to see video footage of Soyinka destroying his green-card, Soyinka had this to say:
“I’m going to hold a private wake on inauguration day; Not to mourn the decision of Americans in the choice of president, but to mourn the death of Nigeria's common sense,”
Soyinka continuing to describe his befuddlement at all the hoopla surrounding his personal decision to leave the US, and observes;
“Why do you (Nigerians) wail more than the bereaved? I’m addressing these illiterates who feel they want to make themselves heard.”
"Barbarians have taken over this community using the anonymity, most of the time, of the Internet to sit somewhere and start writing rubbish, questioning the right of people like me to express ourselves.
2. On his name for his US green-card;
"I call my green card Jimmy Carter’s card because he got it for me and, as a matter of fact, I did not ask for it."
3. His response to the news of Nigerian President’s Buhari’s congratulatory message to the new President-Elect of Gambia;
“President Buhari is congratulating the president-elect of Gambia, that lunatic who makes his citizens undergo hallucinogenic tests to prove that they are not witches on his farm. Please help me beg President Buhari, I didn’t say he shouldn’t congratulate Trump because there is no way one can avoid Trump, but you can avoid petty little dictators like Jammeh of Gambia, who is the opposite of everything one would expect of the true African leader for his or her citizens. Please President Buhari, restrict yourself to those you absolutely have to congratulate.”
4. His even more genius response to the news that it was Adama Barrow, a political novice who had in fact won the Gambian elections with current President Yahya Jammeh, accepting his defeat.
"I totally misheard the comment and thought that ex-President Jammeh had again succeeded in manipulating the votes to remain on the continent’s ‘sit-tight’ roll of dis-honour.”
And if that’s not enough, Soyinka continues his verbal offensive of Jammeh with:
"It turns out that I had obtained the wrong picture. The torturer and notorious administrator of hallucinogenic broths to citizens had been dethroned. I therefore take back my criticism of Nigeria’s message of congratulations.”
5. And finally in one of his longest-standing feuds with Nigerian Ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo, Soyinka had this to say, after Mr. Obasanjo shared his dismal view of Soyinka's worthiness as a public intellectual. Poor Obasanjo, whom Soyinka casually refers to as a "an overgrown child of circumstance", was not ready for Soyinka's scathing rebuttal:
I had fully attuned myself to the fact that our Owu retiree soldier and prolific author is an infliction that those of us who share the same era and nation space must learn to endure. However, it does appear to me that there is no end to this individual’s capacity for infantile mischief, and for needless, mind-boggling provocations, such as his recent ‘literary’ intrusion on my peace.”
Sir Wole Soyinka, thank you for your mind, your letters, your words, and your lessons on how to shut the mouth-breathers of Earth down in less than a paragraph.