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Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

This Photo Series Is Calling Out the Rampant Corruption Among Nigeria's Political Elite

"No Place For Our Dreams," by photographer Ifebusola Shotunde, is an attempt to challenge the ills of Nigerian politics as the country's rescheduled election day draws near.

Nigerian youth continue to use creative mediums to express due critique to the political systems that claim to represent them.

Photographer Ifebusola Shotunde's new photo series seeks to do just that, utilizing photography and augmented reality to narrate a story that presents the adverse consequences of immoral acts on the people, by the political elite.

No Place For Our Dreams, inspired by Femi Kuti's album, No Place For My Dream, follows a political aspirant seeking a top position in government who connives with various levels of society all in the pursuit of power. Each character represents Nigeria's different demographics and is portrayed by young Nigerians aligned with Shotunde's belief that the masses hold the power to change Nigeria.

The series is a parody taking the all too common behavioral patterns seen in Nigerian politics to task, as Shotunde took the images to the streets of Lagos reminiscent of campaign posters in lieu of a traditional gallery exhibition.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

"My reason for going ahead with this project was to start a conversation on how we, as ordinary people, suffer from the incompetence of our so-called leaders," Shotunde says in a statement. "I decided to show the work on the streets because it gives a wider range of Nigerians a chance to see the work and discuss possible ways of making the country a better place, regardless of what 'they' throw at us. Ultimately, I want us to provoke conversation around the state of politics in Nigeria in attempt to bring about this change."

Ahead of Nigeria's rescheduled elections at the end of this week, take a look at Ifebusola Shotunde's No Place For Our Dreams along with its accompanying narrative below.


Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

The series starts from when a political aspirant seeks support from the Godfather.

After successfully receiving the blessing of the Godfather, a rally is held, endorsed by the Godfather, where he promises Lagosians everything they have always dreamed of, duping the people to like him and vote for him.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

In his desperate attempt to win over the people, he bribes a religious leader to support and endorse him when addressing his congregation.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

The aspirant's ambitions increase further still, and he generates a plan to cause chaos in the city, using a group of political thugs, in an attempt to undermine the incumbent government.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

Consequently, his political thugs abduct a university student.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

The student's only sibling is devastated by the abduction of his younger sister, and he begins printing and pasting posters of his sister around the city, declaring that she has gone missing.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

Meanwhile, the political thugs attend a matriculation ceremony at a university to scout for additional recruits. They successfully initiate a fresher who joins the cult.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

There is a cult clash on campus and as a result, the new recruit is gunned down by a rival cult member.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

The police (Federal SARS), who are also on the payroll of the political aspirant, create a roadblock and abduct a group of innocent young Nigerian males to be framed for the abduction of the student.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

Photo by Ifebusola Shotunde.

However, the police release the abducted child on the orders of the political aspirant, who emerges as the hero, claiming he ensured the police did everything in their power to rescue the missing person.

To keep up with Shotunde, follow him on Instagram here.

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Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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