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Posted by on Wednesday December 17, 2014 at 12:19:48:

One of the things we Nigerians love watching is when two people are fighting in public. It normally happens mostly on the street and among people who have one disagreement or another.

Nigerian men like watching 2 women fighting and women like watching 2 men fighting just to see how it goes and who wins in the end. Most public or street fights in Nigeria tends to attract a lot of viewers but it mostly gets stopped by the same people so that it doesn't result in the death of anyone. The thrill Nigerians get when they see 2 or more persons fighting tends to make it a bit hard to decide whether to stop the fight ot just watch them for entertainment.

I happened to be in a commercial tricycle(Keke) at one time and was being taken to my destination by the driver along with other passengers who were mostly women. I noticed that the Keke driver was basically an aggressive Nigerian who loves to listen to loud music as he mostly played it loud irrespective of the fact that we the passenger's could be getting deaf slowly. I had to be the one to tell the driver to reduce the volume to a safer level and he complied.

Funny enough, it was a Sunday and was just going home after church service and the Keke driver was also playing church music in Igbo. I got to know that the guy was an Igbo person given that he was playing Igbo gospel music. Anyway, I was just going home after spending about 2 hrs at church worshipping God on his holy day.

We came to a narrow road near another church and there seemed to be a some traffic but we later discovered that it was just some guy that parked a jeep on the middle of the road without allowing others to pass. The Keke driver was so infuriated that he blared his horn and kept shouting at the top of his voice for the guy to clear off the road since he didn't seem to be going anywhere. The guy seemed to be waiting for his family members also who were just returning from church and they were a Yoruba family comprising of 2 young but big boys with their mother and in a black jeep.

You know, it's a frequent thing that some drivers do in Lagos whereby they just park their car in the middle of the road despite the fact that the street is a public place and that others too have a right to the road. After a few minutes of shouting and horning by the Keke driver, the jeep driver decided to shift to the right so that he would pass. As the Keke driver passed by the jeep, he started raining curses on the jeep driver with the latter also returning same. The Keke driver was a matured man but he had a smaller body than the jeep driver who was younger but just bigger since he seemed like one from a more comfortable home.

I was not really that bothered by the situation and was really more concerned that I've spent enough time on the road and was more focused on getting home. Besides, I was a bit more tolerant of both parties in the argument since this is how car drivers in Nigeria generally behave and one has to at least have some love for his neighbour and fear for God if he really doesn't want to have a nervous breakdown in Nigeria. If you were to argue with every driver in Nigeria because of their bad driving habits, you might end up sleeping on the road.

Seeing that no good will come out of this, I at first advised the Keke driver to forgive them and just keep going since he was running a commercial service and had customers to service. He was unwilling to to listen to my plea or that of other passengers and was rather more infuriated that the Jeep driver had the courage to rain back insults at him.

The next thing that came to my mind was just to keep quiet and simply allow the 2 drivers to fight round one. There is a Nigeria proverb that says "It is only a stubborn fly that follows a dead body to the grave". So, since I've already given my advise as a Christian and brother and he refuses, it's best to just allow things happen so that experience will teach him. Besides, I thought to myself that after a round one fight, they will probably know who is stronger between them and then the terms of negotiation will change.

The keke driver parked his tricycle in front of the black jeep, blocking it and racing forward to attack the jeep driver who also came out to defended himself. Unknown to the keke driver, the jeep driver equally has another brother in the car who equally came out and they both rushed the Keke driver who was a bit confused as to who he was fighting. It was a bit of a laughable scenario as the jeep driver and his brother manhandled the Keke driver who was already on the floor within 5 minutes of gra-gra(struggling).

I noticed that the Keke driver had more muscles but he was still smaller in size and just about 5ft 5 compared to the 2 brothers who were about 6 ft each even though they mostly mostly fat. I even heard their mother in the jeep urging his 2 sons to deal mercilessly with the Keke driver who was just rolling in the ground for a few minutes and that was just round 1. The crowd which had gathered in the street temporarily stopped the fight because they pitied the Keke driver who had already lost round one to the 2 Yoruba brothers.

I asked myself; "Did this family not just come back from church?" "Are they not even still parked in front of their church?". I even wondered if the Keke driver was also just playing Christian music just for fun. It seemed that both parties were just Christians on record but outside the church, they did as they liked.

We all advised both parties to stop the fight and the 2 brothers seemed to agree but the Keke driver felt like a wounded lion and still wanted to draw blood but we kept telling him to forgive because it was a Sunday and he calls himself a Christian.

The bottom line was that he couldn't even fight the 2 brothers in a fair fight and he is more likely to get arrested if he used weapons to injure either of them in public. But the Keke driver remained unforgiving despite the number of times we begged him to stop. Since I noticed that he was an Igbo person, I even spoke Igbo to him but he was still unwilling to forgive. This shows that some Nigerians would always want to revenge no matter how much you beg them. When he picked up a huge stone, people temporarily left him for fear of getting injured.

The Keke driver who seems to be unwilling to concede defeat after being left by the 2 brothers stood up again and this time, he took a stone and wanted to throw it at either of them but they ran away and he was also stopped by the crowd. Yea, Nigerians love to watch a street fight but they don't like allowing it to degenerate into a bloody affair and are more likely to stop it.

The Keke driver was strongly advised again to stop his violent behaviour or he could be arrested. He later cooled down but vowed to come back to fight the boys afterwards. After wasting about 30 minutes of our time as passengers, he later decided to take us to our destination which was meant to have been just a 5 minutes trip.

We weren't blaming him for stopping on the road to fight since he was blocked by others but he should have at least exercised some tolerance as a commercial operator offering public service.

Street fights are common in Nigeria and at times, people just like watching it as a form of entertainment. At times, it's the best way to allow experience teach people that they don't really gain anything from fighting and that they could have earned more money or made less enemies if they just forgave other people irrespective of whether they are right or wrong.

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