Imasuen’s Fine Boys is a tale about university life in the nineties drawn from the experiences of Ewaen and his friends. The Nigerian universities of the time, were characterised by incessant strikes both from the academic and non-academic staff unions, which regularly disrupted the academic calendar.
The victim of one of many such strikes, Ewaen is only too glad when he eventually resumes his studies. Back at the university, Ewaen and a group of other boys quickly become friends and they indulge themselves in a number of activities different from their primary purpose. Though they can do quite as much as they like, there is an important decision they have to make early on. This is whether to join one of the many confraternities on campus and become ‘fine boys’ or whether they should be ‘ju men’ and not join. However this decision is not made so freely, as the ‘confra’ members always hold an intense campaign to get new members during each session and this campaign often times involves threats and a lot of cajoling.
Ewaen and most of his friends make the decision that they are not going to become ‘fine boys’ despite the constant harassment to blend them. Life for Ewaen and his friends continues on campus with the girl chasing, nightly inebriation, and lackadaisical attitude towards academic activities. Then one day a number of events outside their control happen to disturb this state of equilibrium. The first is a massive protest staged by students against the military administration in government. This results in the government decreeing that all universities be closed. In addition, the government lets policemen loose on the students, leading to extreme violence and massacre of students.
After a while the universities reopen and sanity returns. At this time Ewaen and his friends are in their third year. They join up with two ‘fine boys’ from different ‘confras’ staying together. None of them could have imagined the tragedy that would befall such a union.
Eghosa’s story aptly describes the state of the Nigerian universities in the eighties, nineties and even till now with the incessant strikes leading to irregular academic calendars and the violent cult activities associated with them.