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Opinion

Our Democracy is Young by Wale Adedayo

Our democracy is young. That remains my believe. Its institutions are either weak or subservient to interests different from Nigeria’s national one.

Unfortunately, majority of those sitting atop places where the national interest should be served are persons, who believe partisanship is best in situations like these. Thus, they will either be mute or work under the table to perpetuate partisan political interests above the national one.

But we must nurture this democracy to grow by not sitting on the fence due to partisan reasons. If what is happening today had been under a PDP Government, son of man is sure that many of those sitting on the fence would have openly taken to the streets.

Former President Goodluck Jonathan was not just called names, while in office, for partisan political reasons coloured with national interests. His wife, Patience, became the butt of jokes all over the place. 

Our leaders not only called for revolution, they organised protests and openly said many unprintable things about a sitting president. So, what has changed when others do less than what they did while in opposition? I’ve read some interesting posts on Facebook and elsewhere, with some supporters of the ruling party trying to justify the mess being made of the rule of law in Nigeria today.

A young friend even went Biblical, admonishing unnamed readers to “watch their tongues and what they say (or write).” In this kind of situation? I had wanted to comment on his post. But what would I gain by comparing my friend with deranged Boko Haram leaders, who twist the words of the Holy Qur’an and Hadith to justify their savagery? He naively believes the current agitation against misrule in Nigeria is about Omoyele Sowore. It is not, because it could be the turn of anyone tomorrow.

Besides, there have been several efforts to whitewash Buhari’s statements towards and after the 2011 general elections, when scores of Southerners were killed in cold blood up North, especially Kaduna State by the then opposition leader’s supporters. But the truth is that Buhari’s statements encouraged the killings. Clueless and timid Jonathan should have arrested and charged him in court at the time. He did not.

Sowore’s action and statements have not led to ANY death. No property destroyed. Contrast that with the ‘repentant Boko Haram members and Bandits’ being rehabilitated across the North today. They have killed thousands. And, the killings have not stopped. They have destroyed billions of naira worth of properties, and we are still counting. Yet, the same Government that wants Sowore silenced by ALL means continue to treat these animals as sacred cows!

I dare say that Judgment Day will soon be here for a number of our leaders, who are keeping quiet along with their boys for partisan political reasons. The same Buhari will hang you without anyone being out there to defend you. They are picking others and destroying the institutions of democracy, while you remain silent due to parochial reasons. 

Late Chief Hubert Ogunde’s song remains our watchword here, “… Awa ti se’leri f’Olorun awa, wipe a o s’otito o, bi o ti le koro!” Truth is bitter. But it remains our banner. We’ll say it to your face, anywhere, anytime and under any circumstance!

Wale Adedayo is the publisher of Uhuru Times and a former Chief Press Secretary of the Governor of Ogun State

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