31 Oct 2020

#EndSARS Protests: The Cause And Effect

The Statute Of Liberty Of #EndSARS Protest
I used to own two ferocious dogs, a Doberman Pinscher, and a Rottweiler. These dogs were so brutal and confident that they could take on a Tiger. 

My dogs shared a name - BEAST, and they were trained to playout the meaning of their name. As such, I had 2 vicious dogs beckoning each time I mentioned – BEAST.

The dogs were Fed once a day as part of their training. They were locked up all day and only released in the evening. If they had privileges, they were practically taken away from them.

That type of training made them regularly angry. I didn’t even have absolute control over them except when I was feeding them. You might have come to my house in peace, but you weren’t guaranteed not to leave in pieces.

Now, sometime in 2006, a Mobile Policeman (MoPol) stopped my vehicle at a police checkpoint and wanted to know where I was going to. I told him that I was going to my village. I told him the name.

Where is that, he asked? Then I asked him if I could park my vehicle safely and have a proper conversation with him. He obliged me.

Next, I said to him, I suppose this checkpoint was set up to protect this community, including my village. But how would you respond to a distressed call from a village you haven’t heard of?

As the MoPol was now visibly distraught, I quickly shifted the blame to his superiors. Then he responded dejectedly to my astonishment.

The MoPol complained that he was transferred from Edo state to Abia state about 5 days ago. And that he doesn’t know any place in Umuahia and has nowhere to lay his head.

That he sleeps and sometimes takes his bath at the nearby petrol station. And that he goes inside the nearby bush for his toilet essentials.

His allowances haven’t been paid, which means that he had no money for his necessities, and no money to send to his family. He complained miserably that Nigerian Police personnel are treated like animals by the authorities.

Now, think of my dogs (Beasts), think of SARS and the rest of Nigerian Police. There’s no difference between them. Both were trained to be vicious, and to attack on little or no provocation.

Besides, I fed my dogs better than how they feed Police recruits at the Nigeria’s Police Colleges. Surely, a hungry policeman with AK47 in his hands is deadlier than an armed robber.

That’s the kind of Police the government says is your friend. Nigerian Police is brutal because the Nigerian government wanted them that way. Despite what the government may say, Nigerian Police was trained to be vicious.

If the government had wanted to train a friendly Police, they would have. But their intention was to create beasts in uniforms, which they will unleash on the people to perpetually hold them on check.

Well, young people have had enough of police brutality and other injustices handed down to them over the years. And thus, there is a protest going on in the country.

Even though the protest is hinged on #EndSARS and police brutality but it encompasses other injustices.

It is equally a protest against all forms of maltreatment from other Nigeria’s security personnel, such as the Military, Customs, Immigration, Road Safety, etc. In short, it is a protest against bad governance in Nigeria.

However, ending the operations of SARS would not change the mindset of the personnel of the Nigerian police force (NPF). Changing SARS to SWAT is a change of nomenclature, the personnel remain the NPF.

What we need is a fundamental change of the NPF. The Nigerian police is not professionally trained. The organisation is underfunded, and the workforce is underpaid.

Finally, the tigers have tested human blood and it tastes good to them. And that means humans are in trouble.

Likewise, the ‘lazy youths’ have tested protest, and it tastes good. They have realised that they can actually cause a change, Nigerian politicians ought to be worried.

#EndSARS - #EndBadGovernanceInNigeria.

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