By Ireke A. Kalu Onuma
In a way, I think we live in Intresting times. I have been trying to make sense of some conversations around the state of the nation in recent times.
My feeling is that we have a looming anarchy facing us. For over 50 years we’ve been sacrificing the lives of our young men and women on the dark altars of the BAAL of cruelty, death and Criminal Injustice.
With so much wealth, we live poor. The highly educated youths, have neither jobs nor prospects. Their future mortgaged by a cabal intent on leaving no country behind for these young people.
And we have also succeeded within the same time frame to drive this potentially great country with many rich, exciting and different opportunities to a Failed State within that period.
Over the past few weeks, we’ve been under the emergency “rule” of the #EndSars Populace. Another dark symbol of this oppressive regime.
It’s emergent characteristic is that the rather “politically docile” and “naive” youths have begun asserting themselves. Reasons? The senseless and incessant killings of unarmed citizens and the insensitive silence and actions of the government.
Across the nation and beyond, the rage against the machinery of violence and enslavement has been raise a notch. This is good but not surprising.
The trending has reached its peak, now the real questions of sustainability, results, direction and endgame are beginning to occupy some thinking minds. The obvious is to sustain it. But what do you do when spontaneity and not thorough thoughts birthed this movement?
We have seen Lagos and partly Abuja and Port Harcourt affected. The economy per se hasn’t been affected. The oil and other sources of autocratic sustainability haven’t been scratched as yet. The traffic situation has been restricted to ceartin areas of Lagos.
And the visible protesters have remained largely the youths, sprinkles of artists and comedians but our elders, leaders and politicians have remained locked in their respective comfort zones.
Hardly has the blocking of the toll gates and major road arteries affected by and large the system and its numerous arms of oppression. The body language of the power center is as callous and indifferent as it were before the protests started. So we ask, what has changed in the last two weeks?
Nothing much. Awareness, isn’t the response we seek from the government. Justice at least for a start. A nation where human life means nothing and is worth less than the price of a bullet and cow, has a deep rooted problem. We are simply where we were, but with a few more blood shed thereafter.
The responsibility of the Nigerian government toward its citizens is Zilch. And they feel that they are not under any obligation to us, to protect or defend. When tyrannical tendencies become a norm, it humiliates both the victim and the tyrant. We are a Nation of humiliated people with no rights and roles.
The push must be streamlined. Condolence visits and TV Soundbites won’t and should not assuage this one. We must direct the rage against the system that has humiliated us for the past 60 years. The system that has thrown up these bizarre set of callous and incompetent rulers. Men and women who’ve out of our commonwealth have formed a clique of cruel overseers of our demise.
Now is the time for the rest of the country, business men and women, civil societies, community and opinion leaders, politicians and anyone with whom the future of this country means anything, to come out and give support to the youths and protesters.
The center has largely remained unruffled. Besides some lame statements, the President has as usual ignored us. The Governors, at least those we’ve heard from have largely been impressive. We have simply a deaf set of people who have added cold heartedness to their list of characteristics. This must change and sure will change sooner rather than later.
We must rescue ourselves from this death grip. The march must be to the core of their hearts. The demands should be thought through now. Rather than #EndSars as the minimum demand, it must now include a bouquet of serious demands.
#Endincompetence. #EndNepotism. #EndStatebrutality. #EndUnitaryNigeria. #EndIllegality. #End the failure across all spheres of our nation. It’s time to take back the hope upon which this nation was born. The present day prophets have overlooked the all-important factor of the serial Executive crimes that have become the flagship of succeeding and present government.
Time to account for these is now.
Ends are true begginings. Ends are often painful and difficult. But it produces new things and our triumph will be to end this Unitary System and birth a truly democratic, responsible, restructured and equitable country.
Enough of these bloodsheds. Enough of this human wasting. Enough of these inchoate and mindless brutality.
The road to freedom TODAY lies through the Streets of our cities! So also a looming anarchy glares at us all unblinking from that same street!
- Irèke A. Kalu Onuma wrote from Lagos