Sat. Apr 10th, 2021

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EndSARS: Reinstigating An Overriding Standard Against The Hobbesian State By Tunde Akingbondere

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Over the months, I have been extremely bothered, especially with the level we operate as a slum country, armed with less or no preparation for the future that is almost besieging us. This obvious blemish has not disappeared at the full glare of most humongous write-ups from potential window dressers called writers, they have subjected intellection to the crevices of poor and monstrous tunes. These tunes have in their wacky sounds masqueraded in the annals of heroic history and under the guise of most glaring reality, only few intellectuals have refused to be confused by all these coverups. They knew darkness obtains and that darkness has never been a topic in history.

Most interesting is this core responsibility of mine and which I think should be a chore of an average Nigerian. I have taken it upon myself to routinely explore into a country that had been hellbent about stifling the belief of its citizens in itself, apart from denying its subsets of most basic needs is also hoarding from them their freedom of expression as enshrined in section 36 of the 1999 constitution of Nigeria.

A time it was in Nigeria, when the youths have in their daring and recalcitrant spirit trooped out, they have at some point garbed themselves in the long robe of silence, lived like dead bodies and whose Nunc Dimittis had been sung. Most disheartening was the obvious abuse of this generation of young people, whose unbeatable potentials have been unduly misdirected to suit some corrupt tendencies of the state via the venal politicians, notorious for enslaving the people with their own commonwealth.

The thing was misinterpreted when it started, it was deemed to be one of those revolutionary moves and whose musketeers are probably going to fade away while the revolution remains. “How many people Soldier go kill” dominated every clime as stars, it reverberated in the starved mouths of stressed out comrades, who formed not just physical barricades but subtly revolutionary ones. They establish intellectual engagements with the firmament, warring agents of the state called police, and whose duplication called SARS fired the alchemy of an earthquaking protest.

This was said to have been the most popular demonstration in recent time, not even when it was subscribed to by forces within and outside the state. Chicken Republic reportedly sponsored the feeding of Abuja protesters, this move was followed by Reno Omokri, an Adviser to the government of Goodluck Jonathan. He supplied dozens of chicken. I began to see a reinvigorated protest at this point, not until it was suddenly hijacked by hoodlums who deliberately masqueraded as peaceful protesters. How do we get the hoodlums?

The whole thing suspended at dagger point, most especially with the mobilization of terrifyingly armed soldiers and to barricaded Lekki Toll gate, this systematic tactic of not just suspending but putting the idea of peaceful demonstrations to rest resonated into copious opinions dispensed via gallons of ink in different climes. A few intellectuals have fully justified the action, they without fear capitalized on the security of lives and properties, being one of the paramount objectives of the state.

So many others objected to the wickedness, they in the course of stressing this pontificated with the lapses, issues with Nigeria. An average Nigerian has never been safe in the scorching hands of full blown bandits, their welfare had been lagging in the careless state, salvaged by soiled and tardy hands. These were enough reasons to occupy Nigeria against deliberate killings by the government.

Muhammadu Buhari’s voice was the toast of all at this time, youths have expected him to assume the role of a father, even if he had never been one. They expected him to bring them very close with his soothing words, not when he had once mentored with his actions and words. He was said to have called for a revolution in 2015, or had at several times massaged his selfish ego with the cloak of a peaceful protest when he could have spoken via the exhaustion of the gun’s barrel. Funny! Buhari goofed with his widely acclaimed speech for failure. He never surprised so many people with this, he has always been heatless.

To silence what was narrowly interpreted as uprising, state governors met and resolved to constitute panels to deal with cases of police brutality in their respective states. The constituted panels were then believed to have mustered the necessary in courage, not when they were expected to bring respite to those brutalized families. They failed unexpectedly with their responsibilities and had been submerged in sentiments, bribery, corruption, including so many other ills #Endsars came to fight.

Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo was said to have enticed and bribed the elected representatives of the youths in the Oyo Panel on police brutality, he successfully compromised these young people with the moneybag he brandishes hence, there were so many infractions and that rendered the said panel persona non grata before the people.

Lagos, apart from being the ground on which the soul of so many noble and courageous Nigerians were massacred had, also played host to a far more greater infraction. The said infraction flagged off the reopening of same venue and on which the bloody Lekki massacre was consummated. The reopening was never supported by a reasonable percentage of the panel, not when the clearly inevitable reaction of the people had been earlier preempted by these people of deeper thoughts. The courageous reaction had triggered a serious mobilization on the path of the oppressors, who crawl after every living thing that passes through Lekki today, including the flies.

The state has not just gravitated towards the “State of Nature” described by Thomas Hobbes but has just pitched a confluence with the nasty, brutish and short state. There is this tendency that there won’t be laws in no distant time, for the egocentric leaders would become law unto themselves and to over 250 million others. The more reason why they couldn’t tolerate a higher standard devised against their excesses as Endsars. They arrested at will today and utilized the instrumentality of the state for illegal vendetta.

This has proven to be a higher standard against Nigeria, and precisely the Hobbesian “State of Nature.”

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