When Major General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd.) said a few weeks ago that, ‘he would retaliate in a language that would be understood by those who are trying to overwhelm, to undermine and to threaten the state of Nigeria’, that was immediately seen as a sign of a declaration of war against the population of south east, as the President talked about war in the context of the 1967–70 civil war, little did we know that he meant it.
Nigerians were ushered into the second half of the year with the news of an invasion of Sunday Igboho’s residence in Soka, Ibadan. The DSS would later confirm that its operatives stormed the home of the leader of the Yoruba separatist group, in a bid to effect his arrest. At the scheduled Lagos gathering by Mr Igboho and his followers clamoring for an independent Yoruba nation, this invasion left at least two people dead.
The inimical action by the DSS came as a rude shock since the Constitution ensures that all Nigerians have the freedom to express their views and even to hold demonstrations, provided that no violence exists. And as far as we know, neither Sunday’s Igboho gatherings could be considered to be violent nor were they implied illegal in carrying out a campaign for the Yoruba Nation.
Igboho performed multiple roles in the states of Oyo and Osun acting as an enforcer of transport union and as a political thug. In the recent past, he grew increasingly popular in the South West when his followers chased Fulani leaders from certain villages in the states of Oyo and Ogun. The Fulani leaders were accused of harboring criminal herder who kidnapped, killed and attacked farmers and rural inhabitants in the states.
While many things were wrong under former President, Goodluck Jonathan, we have to say that in the 2015 general elections in Nigeria, there was great tolerance of opposition, and unusual mass massacres and extrajudicial/political detentions. Indeed, democratic rights and freedoms blossomed so much that the opposition and its propagandists used their time to slander the president.
These privileges are the genuine achievements of democracy, not roads and infrastructure.
What is worrying now is that Major General Muhammadu Buhari’s (rtd.) leadership has just been able to provide Nigerians with: APC apologists in the House of Reps chambers, profligate presidential upkeep budgets, inflation, a $1-N500 (Black market) exchange rate, a ruinous clamp down on free-speech, extrajudicial arrests, select anti-corruption war, among others.
“When government fears the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.”Thomas Jefferson
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Echatah Patrick, has over 3 years of experience working in Content curating, communication, journalism and child development.