By December 2002, my elder brother in
Nigeria had started going to China to import
used spare parts. He was doing very well in
Nigeria. He had acquired B transit visa which
allowed him to venture out of the airport in
Germany because he used Lufthansa, the
German flag carrier to travel to China.
On one of his business trips to China, he had
requested that we meet in Frankfurt where
his flight would land before returning to
That very morning, I traveled to Frankfurt
for the first time. My Ausweiss was not
supposed or allowed to reach there but since
we didn’t buy train tickets with our IDs, I
traveled to Frankfurt anyway.
I took with me, some items I had collected
from my customers when they didn’t have
cash to pay for weeds. The items included hot
drinks, many used phones, wrist watches and
Frankfurt was an 8 hour journey from
Berlin. I got to Frankfurt that evening and
went to a hotel near the airport. He had
booked the hotel from China because his
connecting flight would be the following
I got to the hotel and waited for him. I sat at
the hotel bar drinking whiskey and smoking
Marlboro Menthol. The hotel was mostly
patronized by travelers on transit in
Frankfurt international airport. Many
travelers were there; Americans, Asians,
Africans etc. I mixed up and became just
*unknown to people at the hotel was that I
had no traveling papers. I was just an asylum
seeker but I exhibited enough confidence
I spent over two hours before he arrived
from Ghuanzuo China with his friend. We went
up to the room he had booked and I
unpacked my bag. I gave him the hot drinks
and watches. I told him how to distribute the
watches to my friends in Nigeria. I gave him
pictures and used phones. Above all, I gave
him 7000 Euro to buy two plots of land for
me at Awada Onitsha where we lived. That
was my first investment.
He was more than happy.
I smoked Marlboro in his presence and he
said nothing. I never smoked in his presence
before although he knew I did smoked.
We spent almost the whole night chatting with
his friend until we got tired. It was almost
5:30am when I announced that I was going
back to my HEIM. I gave 200 euro to his
friend who was a businessman. He laughed
and took it. When I asked why he laughed, my
brother said it was because he was worth
over 100 million Naira. The man took my 200
and promised to give it back to me with
interest when next we meet.
I left Frankfurt and traveled back to Berlin
where I connected another train down to
Brandenburg an der Havel, my golden city..
BY January 2003, I had become popular
among weed smokers in the whole of the
Brandenburg city. Many smokers had
collected my phone number. They now call me
just like others before they come to the HEIM.
Sometimes, I would go to their houses to sell
to them. It was dangerous initially but when
you get to know them, you relax. Some of
them were small dealers who sold to their
friends. They would buy large quantities from
me and sell to their friends in schools and
night clubs. The supplies I made to them gave
me much more money and less risk.
Due to the small competition among the
dealers, our operations had started to
attract the police. We believe the police knew
what we were doing but since it was
contained right there in our HEIM, they didn’t
have much reason to invade us. It was just
marijuana. They were much more interested
in class ‘A’ drugs such as Cocaine and
heroine. Fortunately for us, we didn’t deal on
The German government were debating
whether to legalize marijuana like Holland had
done. The opposing side had been winning the
debates. Our dear business was on the line.
We discussed it in the HEIM as well. We voted
against legalizing it because it would mean
that they can buy the stuff in every corner
of every street. It was better for us the way
it was. Not that our vote mattered or counted
One afternoon, we were outside selling our
stuff as usual. The Police showed up.
They came from Potsdam, the capital city of
Brandenburg. We saw their car, though not
an official police car but we knew that weed
smokers usually doesn’t drive such flashy
Everybody evaporated to upstairs as usual
except Johnson and me. We had came down
stairs with a Soccer ball. Our goods were
buried on the ground as usual and covered
with dry leaves.
As soon as they alighted from their vehicle
and came to us, Johnson and I continued
tossing our ball as if we had not seen them.
*Another Jay Jay Okocha had surfaced in
Brandenburg. Only a matter of time before
Bayern Munich come calling*
One of them, the female cop came to us and
asked if we knew the people who sold drugs
there. We denied ever having the Knowledge
of drugs in the first place.
*How could we know, we were just two
innocent Africans, who had suffered hunger
They went into the nearby bush and searched
for our drugs but couldn’t find anything. We
both joined them to search for drugs. We
concentrated our search directly opposite the
Area we buried our weeds.
*Johnson and i, the good people of the HEIM
were interested in helping the police find the
drugs, Ironical. Dont be fooled*
When they were going back to their car, I
stopped one of them and asked for his phone
number. I told him that I would call him first if
I ever see or hear anybody talking about
drugs. He cast a go-to-hell eyes on me and
left without saying anything.
Johnson and I continued selling our goods
while others remained upstairs. They had
seen when the cops questioned us. But we
were saved by the soccer ball. Africans will
Somehow, we had a feeling that the cops
would come again sooner or later. We
became more careful on our routine deals.
I on my side had started diverting most of
my customers to different venues. I started
a zigzag kind of business. I would sell at
point A, then direct the next caller to point B.
Point C hosts me and the next caller. Then I
would try point B again. It was fun but more
dangerous than selling at our original spot.
The danger in it was that sometimes, I had to
sell it close to the local residence areas, one
or two elderly people who loved peeping from
their windows must have been seeing me.
*It landed me in police net one day but we will
get to that in due time*
Sometimes, new faces would come to buy
weeds from us. We hardly sell to them
unless you were ready to take the risk.
We identified the Police by the universal style
of shaving their beards everyday and calm
way of approach. A drug addict hardly used
gentle and calm approach to anything. We
couldn’t generalize though but we were right
most of the times. Drug business was and
still is a game of risk and luck.
By February 2003, Efuah was seven months
pregnant. The pictures she sent to me
showed her stomach. The doctors had told
her she was going to deliver a baby girl. We
talked all the time on the phone. She was
ready and looking forward to delivery.
Agnes’ stomach had bulged out. She came to
HEIM for her february allowances. I invited
her in her room and asked how she was
doing. She told me that John had not found
work and that she was still staying with her
aunt in Berlin. John the Bighead lived also in
Berlin but was squatting with a friend, so she
couldn’t move in with him. Her situation was
pathetic or maybe she made it look so,
ofcourse I knew the only thing I could offer
her was financial protection.
I asked her what I could do to help. She said
she only needed some money. According to
her, the 200 euro the Germans were paying
us wasn’t enough to maintain her and the
pregnancy. John Bighead in the other hand
wasn’t helping out. He had no money and no
job and wouldn’t join drug business.
I took her to the city center and bought her
two nice cloths. I also bought her electric
hand hair drier and a new phone. Then I see
her off to the train station. I bought her ticket
back to Berlin and gave her another 200
euro. She cried.
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