Nkwo Sunday 14 February 2021:
The end is not in sight for the End Sars palaver that took place in Nigeria late last year, 2020.
Because as I write, another mass protest is looming and probably might commence on 14th of Febuary, on Valentine time day.
What started just as minor skirmishes at Lekki toll gate last year, snowballed and took on astronomical dimension that shook the very foundation of this country called Nigeria.
Sars itself literally means Special Anti Robbery Squad. It is a unit of the Nigerian Police force, created in 1992 and charged with the responsibility of tackling head-on the nefarious activities of dare-devil armed bandits in our various communities.
It started well though, but as time went on, human right abuses became its hallmark. It started engaging in debt collections, intimidation, torture and extra-judicial killings.
Consequently, citizens cried out and the government looked into their plight and promised reforms. But their efforts were cosmetics. This happened severally.
Love is in the air and contrariwise there are ominous signs that something unpalatable could happen in a couple of days.
For the government has vowed that it would not tolerate such motley crowd; and the organizers of the protest are equally saying that no jupiter would deter them from accomplishing their mission.
Consequently, the government is starring eyeball to eyeball with restive Nigerian youths. And political pundits don’t really know who would blink first.
The APC govt which we have in place now has a phobia for protest, even though itself was a product of protest. They are not mindful that we are in a democratic setting now. They are busy churning out edicts that outlaw protest.
What they would like is to gag the press, stiffle the opposition and stop the citizenry from expressing their displeasure when they are uncomfortable with certain policies.
Simply put, they want to lead the people by the nose. This govt of Mohammed Buhari, in sum, is anti-people!
On the other hand, we recorded very ugly incidents during the last protest. The country lost over 50 persons—and this included civilians, police personnels and soldiers; the wounded were uncountable.
Also, several properties worth billions of naira were either torched or destroyed. Not a few business men are now paupers as a result of that mass action.
Stories have it that the destructions at Lekki and that of Obigbo in Rivers State were monumental. But I want to dwell on the ones of which I was an eyewitness.
These hoodlums masquerading as protesters stormed the Idemmili North Local Government Headquarters and wrought collateral damage there.
I couldn’t believe my eyes after the events, when we were counting our losses. One police officer lost his life. And the Chinua Achebe library, where we usually source for information was razed down!
Also, burnt were shops that line the front of the Police station. And Hon. Ibezim’s campaign building was not left out.
We await the second missionary journey, and tomorrow being sunday, is the D-day.
Nevertheless, it was Ijele, the majestic masquerade, while fielding questions after an outing that said, he should be allowed first of all to return home successfully when asked if there would be a repeat performance!
We are not done with the first protest yet and another one is on the way. And the government is not helping matters. For the inquiry set up is been toyed with and at the end of the day, nothing concrete would come out of the excise.
The first protest was given a lot of publicity in the social media with the hashtag #EndSARS by Nigerian youths and our celebrities.
The protest transmogrified from displeasure of Police abuses to clamour for good governance. The mission statement of the organizers was really noble, if not for the way disgruntled elements cashed-in on that to cause untold havoc.
And why I said that the government is not helping matters is the way they are fanning the embers of discord by suspending the bank accounts of the celebrities that gave currency, vigour and vitality to that protest march.
And as the second affirmative action, so to say, is under way, many discordant tunes are being sung. Some are of the view that Igbos should distance themselves from any protest; that even though they are not in government, they suffered most in the last WE NO GO GREE.
The proponents of this viewpoint claim that their businesses were the target at Abuja, Lagos and some other big cities. They cited an example where an Igbo car dealer lost hundreds of cars to inferno ignited by demonstrators!
But to me, personally, all these vital examples does not suffice. They must never fail to join the bandwagon but they must be very alert.
They must be of good courage and form a bulwark when their colleagues for instance want to target Igbo businesses for no just cause. They should be able to stamp their feet, when Nnamdi Kanu, for instance, starts with his meddlesomeness, inciting them to commit arson. When this begins, kindly tell him to go to hell!
For he wants his prediction that Nigeria would hit the rocks to come to pass. But he is an anarchist, a saddist and a political green horn, who does not know how this world works!
Our people should also be very circumspect. For it beats me how our governor, Willie Obiano, should give employment to retired P C Nwafo. The diabolical police officer in charge of the notorious SARS Okuzu.
This alone speaks volumes. The media was awashed with dastardly acts of the the police in Lekki and Obigbo but these can not be used to compare to the magnitude of impunity committed by this vampire from Ebonyi State.
After wreaking carnage in Anambra for a pretty long time, our governor still had the effontery to engage him in his security architecture. Wonders shall never cease!
As I was saying Igbo people should not feel complacent.they must join the fray but they must be using their number six at each and everytime.
Their own media must be at work also, directing. And if they don’t have media, they must strive to have one. So that when their colleagues start a campaign of calumny against them, they would have a medium to counter them. This is very important.
And lest I forget, some Anambra people are making vacous claims that Mr. Nwafo was caught at far away Ghana and was beaten black and blue. That is not true. They are just using that to console themselves.
Finally, my candid advice is that our youths should not take laws into their hands. They should be mindful of what they do because no sin shall go unpunished.
Just look at the fate of the hooligan that killed a police man and severed his head. The beast is now on the run. And if I may ask, for how long would he be on the lam?
So let us not throw caution to the wind in whatever we do for there is justice here and justice in the hereafter!
Teacher of The Igbo Revolution