After #EndSARS, no government will ever ignore Nigerians again – Perspectives by Fredrick Nwabufo

Although we are headquartered in Washington D.C. USA, our reporters and editors are working around the globe to cover what you care about. We invite you to donate to our fundraiser to help us keep our quality news free and available to all.  

Power has returned to its rightful repository – the people. Our liberators did not come from the north, the south or the east and west of Nigeria. They emerged from the ruins of the country; they broke free from the noxious culture of silence and shattered the substructure of generational complicity and conspiracy. They are the youth of Nigeria; the deliverer of the colony of slaves – from the fowler’s snare and deadly pestilence.

The #EndSARS protests did not only end a ferocious unit of the police and constrained the capricious hands of the government into making pledges of initiating reforms in the force; it also galvanised Nigerians, particularly the young, across religions and ethnic groups to put the government to task. Government should be in the service of the people and not the other way around. Really, there is no mortar that can crush a people forged into a fist; when the people kill fear, the government becomes afraid.

#EndSARS could be the beginning of the end of all Nigeria’s maladies. Citizens – of all ages — have realised their voice counts. They have seen the government tremble in trepidation of a united assemblage of people. Just like Xerxes, the god-king, bled from the spear of King Leonidas, they have seen the very intransigent regime bleed. Nigerians have been unplugged from the matrix by a legion of young resistance. It may never be the same again. Power has returned to the people. The government should be afraid.

[read_more id="2" more="Read full article" less="Read less"]

The youth have pointed us to a path out of darkness, state repression and oppression. They have given us hope in the possibility of a new country where possibilities are not impossible.  They have seized the baton on the relay race to a contemporary Nigeria. It could be a dawn of new beginnings.

I have seen arguments on the need to be cautiously optimistic about the fruits of the recent agitation. Some say the old order of things could return as soon as the #EndSARS protests peter out. Well, I do not want to be cautiously optimistic. I am very optimistic about the far-reaching and indelible impact of this movement. It may never be the same.  A new precedent has been set upon which other exemplars will follow.

I do not think there has been anything of this magnitude in our recent history. When any government becomes insouciant about the plight of citizens, the #EndSARS protest will be an aide-memoire – to remind that government of citizens’ wrath. No sane government will want to be on the testy side of the people.

Again, the protest could be the beginning of the end of all Nigeria’s maladies. Yes, I am pushing it. I know. From #EndSARS, the demand has dovetailed to #RECONSTRUCTNIGERIA and #ENDBADGOVERNANCE. #EndSARS was just the needed spark to stir a whirlpool of changes in the system.

Deji Adeyanju agrees. He told me SARS is only but a metaphor of the general societal malaise.

Hear him: ‘’You know SARS is a metaphor …SARS is just one end of all the societal ills….

It’s not really the main issue; yes it’s one of the issues, one of the challenges we’re having as a country and as a people, however, it has become the single, the common rallying point for every other thing we are passing through. So, as many of us have been saying. We have been praying for that thing that will create a spark. So, the EndSARS campaign is that spark that we have all been waiting for. That is my view. I believe that this is the spark; the right spark that we have been waiting for and we are extremely glad that it ignited.’’

Also, Aisha Yesufu, a passionate advocate of good governance, says #EndSARS can be a catalyst to the struggle for a better future for the country.

Here is what she told me: ‘’Like I stated a few days before, I said EndSARS can be the catalyst to fight for a better future and ensure the culture of bad governance, lack of accountability, lack of transparency is once and for all taken away.  We are at a tipping point and I hope we are able to tilt towards the good part.  What I think is that this government doesn’t understand that this protest is not like any other protest. This is a protest for survival. There has been a culture of silence over the years; over the decades, people have been in pain, people have been oppressed and suppressed; people have gone through so much pain and have kept it in, and now it’s bubbling to the surface.’’

‘’I think Nigerians have been pushed to the wall, most especially the Nigerian youths. They’re trying to fight back; they are not interested in discussing, and the more they are killed, the more they are coming out because they’re saying, ‘it’s better you kill us here in public and the whole world is seeing you kill us than the one where you’re killing and wasting us one after the other under the cover of darkness where nobody is seeing it and nobody can now talk’. and I think if we don’t handle this with care, especially if the government doesn’t handle this with care, when they think they will do what they normally do before which is to first of all intimidate people, harass them, send in police, send in the military, send in thugs, stop the protest and all of that, and think it will work? It’s most likely would not because this cause is different; they are fighting for a right to live and nothing else, and we need to understand that particular bit of it.’’

Really, Nigerians are on a fight for survival, and nothing else matters. By the time this night is over, I believe a dawn of healthy government-citizen relationship will set in. It is a fight to the finish. The government should fear the people.

Fredrick Nwabufo is a writer and journalist

Twitter @FredrickNwabufo

[/read_more]

Opinion contributor
Opinion contributor
This opinion was received by Today News Africa in Washington, District of Columbia. The views expressed here are those of the writer(s) and not ours. You can send your own article to todaynewsafrica@gmail.com

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Trending Now

Rights group urges AU to denounce crackdown on Cameroon’s opposition

Human Rights Watch on Monday urged the African Union (AU), the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR), the Economic...

Mauritania should free activists held on charges of blasphemy and insulting Islam: HRW

Mauritania’s government should drop charges of blasphemy and insulting Islam against eight political activists and release the five held in pretrial detention...

South Africa’s minister of health Zweli Mkhize contracts COVID-19

South Africa's minister of health Dr. Zweli Mkhize has contracted COVID-19, the presidency confirmed in a statement on Monday.

Mass convictions for homosexuality in Algeria as police raid alleged ‘gay wedding’

An Algerian court on September 3, 2020 sentenced 2 men to prison terms and 42 others to suspended terms after mass arrests at...

South Africa launches $6 billion COVID-19 employment stimulus

South Africa has launched a $6 billion (R100 billion) COVID-19 employment stimulus to be implemented over the next three years.

MOST POPULAR

Damning report finds detainees in Iran were sexually abused and given electric shocks in gruesome post-protest crackdown

Iran’s police, intelligence and security forces, and prison officials have committed, with the complicity of judges and prosecutors, a catalogue of...

Africa shocked U.S. under Trump has worst coronavirus response in the world

President Donald Trump has "failed in his basic duty to protect Americans", world's renowned journalist Bob Woodward told Fox News Sunday...

EXCLUSIVE: IMF economist details how COVID-19 economic turmoil in Asia will affect Sub-Saharan Africa

The COVID-19 pandemic is battering economies in Asia with a contraction expected for the first time in many decades. The economic...

IMF’s Georgieva says second round of support coming to Africa but Oxfam argues debt cancelation the only way out of COVID-19 turmoil

The Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Ms. Kristalina Georgieva said on Wednesday that the Washington DC-based institution is...

Ethiopia charges prominent opposition figure Jawar Mohammed with terrorism

As human rights organizations continue to warn that Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is turning Ethiopia into a dictatorship, his administration on...

Criminals disguised as EndSARS protesters free prisoners in Benin

Suspected criminals disguised as EndSARS protesters and freed prison inmates at the correctional center in Benin, Edo state.Some of the video clips obtained by PRNigeria, show how the suspects, mostly young men, in their large numbers invaded the Oko Prison located on Benin-Sapele road, before setting the inmates free.Some of the inmates were seen...

[/read_more]

[read_more id="2" more="Read full article" less="Read less"]

Share
Tweet
WhatsApp
Reddit
Share