- BY ADEMOLA ORUNBON•
“When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty”—Thomas Jefferson
In political science, a revolution (Latin: revolution, “a turn around”) is a fundamental power and political organisation, which occurs when the population reverts against the government, typically due to, perceived oppression (political, social, economic) or political incompetence. In book (V) of the politics, the Ancient Greek Philosopher, Aristotle (384-322BC) described two types of political revolution. (1) Complete change from one constitution to another, and (2), Modification of an existing constitution.
Revelation has occurred through human history and very widely in terms of methods, duration and motivating ideology. Their result include major changes in culture, economic and socio-political institutions, usually in response to perceived overwhelming autocracy or plutocracy. Revolution is not about breaking down of laws and orders but for the creation of reasonable opportunities for growth and development. After 20 years we started on the path of civil rule, we have now arrived at the point where democracy and its much-hyped instruments of “checks and balances”have been rigged against us.
Scholarly debates about what does and does not constitute a revolution centre on several issues. Early studies of revolutions primarily analysed events in European history from a psychological perspective, but more modern examinations include global events and incorporate perspectives from several social sciences, including sociology and political science. Several generations of Scholarly thought on revolutions have generated many competing theories and contributed much to current understanding of this complex phenomenon.
Now, a government that apportions high grades to itself on its supposed achievements should also retain self-composure when a revolution is mentioned. They should be confident that people are satisfied enough with their lot under their administration and would laugh at the purveyors of revolution. Yet, the government was so jittery it brought out more armed forces to fight protesters than they do with herdsmen. Their panic and desperation to declare “democratic victory” over an unfolding reality is telling. They fear the arousing power of assemblies to destabilise the alternative reality they have made official narratives.
The scuttled and crippled of the #RevolutionNow protests last week by government security agents against the government ineptitude by deploying all the armed forces to the states of the federation was totally undemocratic and uncivilised, it was also a declaration of such repressive behaviour a “democratic victory”. The irony of that assertion hits one hard. No thanks to alternative facts such as this one, Nigeria these days sometimes feel like being fed up and trapped inside an Orwellian reality. Moreover, if the government confidence enough according to reports being fed us on the pages of newspapers, then one should not let them get away with their delusions that Nigerians ignored the protests because they believe in the promise of the present administration.
It is the belief of many that democracy should guarantee people good life. A stable democracy piloted by visionary leaders who possess the intellectual clouts to see issues at their broader and more complex perspectives should ensure a strong, stable, vibrant, virile economy with an enabling peaceful and stable political environment. Under a condition like this, the citizens can benefit maximally and fullest from democracy – good living condition, employment generations, security of lives and property and even equal opportunities for self-actualization.
It must be the quest for a society where every individual can pursue his or her own aspirations using his or her God given potentials to the fullest that made many Nigerians take the battle for democracy with seriousness it deserved. But our democracy had been bastardised through bad leadership and non-challant of our leaders who tend to upturn our constitution for their selfishness and achieve their aims and aspirations. Where is in our constitution that deprive the people of gathering and freedom of speech. Our constitution entrenched people freedom of speech and belonging to any political party of our choice. The our leaders now endorsed a draconian legislature through “hate speech” in order to silent people from expressing their grievances and register their objectives or against their government of slavery.
Instead of Nigerians to forget or jettison the hardship being experienced during the military eras, but till date the consequences of our democracy incursion, hunger, diseases and ignorance became the lot of Nigerians. Life became a thing to endure rather than enjoy. Or how else could we called the brutality of journalists at the #RevolutionNow protest, a fourth estate of the realms, now became a punching bag before the police and other security agents. Imagine, Victor Ogungbenro, a SaharaReporters videographer, being tear-gassed directly in the eyes and assaulted even after hitting the deck. This kind of executive and police rascality has no place in a democracy.
Imagine, dragging of journalists on bare floor by police, is totally uncivilised, undemocratic and against the rule of the laws, Mr. Victor Ogungbenro of SaharaReporters, videographer was tear-gassed directly in the eyes and assaulted even after hitting the deck. All this kind of executive and police rascality has no place in a democracy, journalists need to accord with respect and enough regards by the security agents, especially as the fourth estate of the realms.
A responsible government and police must know how to separate protesters from Journalists, even though protesters do not deserve that kind of treatment from our security agents. It is here in Nigeria that our security will molest, brutalise, maim and kill innocent citizens with any apprehension, in advanced country like U.S, U.K and others, when you were arrested unlawfully or approached unjustly, they will be pleading every now and then. Even, they wanted to arrest you, they will still pacifying you, all because they don’t wanted to violate your right and your fundamental human right. But, here in Nigeria the reverse is the case.
There are some Journalists in the custody of DSS, among them is the Ibrahim Dan-Halilu, a former political Editor of Daily Trust newspaper, he too was picked up and whisked away by DSS around 2am for allegedly supporting the activities of #RevolutionNow in a Facebook post. Dan-Halilu happened to a former staunch supporter and loyalist of President Muhammadu Buhari before the 2015 general elections, there is nothing bad in pulling out of any government seemed to be anti-peoples’ policies and doctrines. But, once you stop being loyal to the present administration, you become a wanted for DSS and police will be hunting for you. What Dan-Halilu posted on his Facebook’s timeline doesn’t warranty of arresting him, how much more of detaining him for just no concrete and cogent reason.
Most of our leaders in this country too called for revolution in 2014, when most of the were not then at corridors of other, now that they have founded themselves in that shoe especially with the government of incessant killings of innocent souls, kidnapping of poor and rich in the society, they now keep mum, enduring as if the heat does not affect them at all. When they came into power in 2015, this government claimed they would solve three major problems of insecurity, economy and corruption. And on the three, this government has awarded itself some inordinately high scores. Even when Nigerians say and feel otherwise, they insist they have done enough to justify the faith reposed in them. After Nigeria was also declared the poverty capital of the world, they came up with a counter-narrative of having lifted five million Nigerians out of extreme poverty. They said they have empowered 12 million rice farmers, revolutionised rice farming to the point that rice factories in Thailand are shutting down because they lost Nigeria’s customers, while many Nigerians as at today wallowing in extreme poverty. Even electricity generation was said to have “notionally” hit 7,000 MW, lies that far from the truth.
It is perturbed to be seeing our government dialogue with killer herdsmen and bandits right inside government house, while a common man that fighting for their rights will be chasing and maiming by our security agents, what a country are we living in. When I see our DSS and other security agents brutalising fellow Nigerians, I usually shed tears, is DSS even meant to be arrested and prosecuted, it is no with capital one. They are meant to gather information, especially ones that deals with security and feed the President in order to take proactive measures against the breaches of laws and orders in the country. They are now became an agent of political witch-hunting for our politicians. When we were so young, we seldom and hardly see the DSS moving around the street, take less of arresting and harassing people in the country.
- Orunbon, a journalist and public affairs analyst, wrote in from Abeokuta, 08034493944 and 08029301122