A lot has happened in rapid succession, since last week when I wrote the first piece on the religious crisis in Kwara State, infamously stoked by the government in power purely for political expediency. Some new facts have also been made known to me, concerning the mutual agreement between the government of Kwara State and the owners of the mission schools in question. It was said that sometime in or about 1974, there was an agreement between all stakeholders, on limited involvement of government in the funding of the mission schools, without interfering in the day to day management thereof. In that agreement of 1974, it was stated that:
(b) The names of schools remain the same by proprietors.
(c) Religious orientation and practices in the schools remain generally undisturbed.
(d) The right to nominate Board of Governors with responsibility for the day to day management and welfare of the institution remain unchallenged. The Board of Governors will continue to function normally except in regard to staff matters which responsibility is now taken over by the State Schools Board.
(e) The total tone of the institution remains the responsibility of the Board of Governors as the main organ of the proprietors.”
It then becomes crystal clear, at least from item (d) above, that the purpose of government intervention in the mission schools was to assist in the payment of the salary of their teachers, while the issues of management of the schools and general policy formulation, reside in the Board of Governors.
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There should have been no issue about this at all except that the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has intervened in respect of policy formulation, orientation and religious practices.
The agreement was signed in 1974 whereas the Constitution came into force in 1999 and with its supremacy clause in section 1, the provisions of the Constitution must, of necessity, prevail over private or public agreements. In the same vein however, there is a need for the government to respect agreements, especially as a way of engendering public confidence in governance generally.
In this regard, the global concept of uniform in schools will be defeated where different religious establishments work tirelessly to incite their wards to adorn separate outfits.
To the extent that the provisions of Chapter Four of the Constitution are unique and equal, it is doubtful if the right to religious practices by non-stakeholders attending private schools can override the right to freedom of association and to own property. However, I verily believe that this is a balance that the Kwara State Government must work out and sustain.
I received some responses to the first piece and I have decided to share them, largely unedited, in the hope that those concerned would take note and adjust themselves accordingly.
“Kemi: Good morning sir, I think this problem was foreseeable. Government took over these schools because the churches were tired of running the schools without thoughts of future problems like this. Secondly sir, the churches ought to have given conditions to government before the control took effect. Now the only solution I see here is to return the schools while those who gave out their land to build the schools should seek compensation from the churches.”
“Ayemoro Adebayo: Kwara State governor should apply wisdom to resolve the issue without being biased, it is only in Nigeria you see people fighting over religion frequently. Can men fight for God? Many people are ignorantly putting themselves into bondage, in the name of religions. God didn’t create human beings to fight for Him but to serve Him, whoever that’s serving Him wholeheartedly will not plan to destroy others.”
“Adebayo Azeez: The fact that the schools are partly funded by government would not make the churches to allow what they don’t believe in the schools they established in their names.”
“Pius Isiekwene: Thank you sir, for your fine commentary. Probably as you were posting your article, yet-to-be-denied news spread that the gates of two of the affected schools were forcibly uprooted in the dead of the night and removed under a contrived 30-minute blackout reminiscent of the Lekki Toll Gate fiasco of October 20, 2020. I just wonder, as you do, what could have happened if these blood-thirsty aggressors had been the victims of this government-incited madness?
“Edafe Great Sakoko: Please sir, what is the position of the law today on this issue ? I do remember the Court of Appeal judgement in 2019. You are a rule of law advocate and I do expect you to support the enforcement of court judgements and not our emotions.”
“Ayeh Kootoh: The governor of Kwara State seems to be the governor of the adherents of his faith and of Ilorin rather than being neutral and be the governor of a multi- ethno-religious Kwara State. He should heed the advice of Hon Abdullahi and hand over the missionary founded schools (Islamic and Christian) to their original owners like Lagos State did during Tinubu’s tenure or maintain status quo and wait for Supreme Court to give their verdict on the ownership of the schools. Common sense seems not to be common here or is it the fear of the emir or the jihadists that’s affecting him?
“Hameed Awobifa: Ayeh Kootoh, are you aware the CAN has gone to appeal court of law on this matter and lost and now to Supreme Court? Why don’t they allow court to come out with the final decision?
“Ayeh Kootoh: Hammed Awobifa, apparently, you read my text in order to respond and not to understand. Read my text again. (The ownership of these missionary founded schools is in contention and it is awaiting adjudication by the Supreme Court and the dress code of these schools hasn’t been changed, so why can’t your Muslim brother governor wait for the Supreme Court pronouncement before asking Muslim girls to be wearing hijabs in Christian schools?). It seems you hate CAN so much and relish the rubbish being spewed out by Isaq Akinola of MURIC concerning this issue.”
“Hameed Awobifa: Ayeh Kootoh, honestly I expect such reaction like yours. But before you start vituperating over what I said I would rather recommend that you go and read the judgement very well. Oga, but let me quickly correct a notion which that court of appeal referred to that the plaintiff (former owner) willingly gave out the ownership to the state government as far back as 1974, which the government has been funding and controlling. So I wouldn’t have joined this issue if not raised by Big Sam Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, SAN.”
“Sanni Moses JP: The Kwara State government didn’t handle this issue well. I will advise the Kwara State government to learn from the way Osun State government handled a similar case too, during the administration of Rauf Aregbesola.”
“Hameed Awobifa: Sanni Moses JP, but CAN in both Lagos and Osun didn’t handle it this way. And more so those cases were also settled at the law court.”
“Ayeh Kootoh: Hammed Awobifa, you so much believe in these your courts because the justices and judges there are more of a particular religion. Let me shock you, Christian and Islamic organisations got their schools back without going to court in Lagos. Google is your friend if you doubt this fact.”
“Iyeme Victor: In all of this, the governor and his led government have been silent. It’s so sad and barbaric.”
“Hameed Awobifa: While I really appreciate your position taking your precious time to educate us readers, I am still confused whether you do this as a pastor or a legal luminary because I know you well to be very objective in your dealings considering the appeal court judgement of 2019 on this same case. Are you now saying the court is wrong legally and we should go by way of our own way of dealing with the issue? I’m not and I will never be in support of any religious crisis because it’s always fueled by the elites in those groups.”
“Elizabeth Oyeniran: The fall of a man starts with a step, I hope it won’t be too late for the governor and his cabinet members to reverse their steps.”
“Olayode Fortune: Thank you for this eye opening. Your position herein is an indication that you took your time to do the findings about the prevalent issue in Kwara State. Truth be told, the governor made a mistake to have allowed himself to be deceived into making a pronouncement permitting the use of hijab in these schools. Sadly, the case has been at Supreme Court since 2019 and the status quo should have been maintained. Now for him to reverse his earlier pronouncement has become a thing of shame.
“On the other hand, there are too many people in his government who do not understand governance and are fundamentalists, the SSG and CPS are not helping the matter and this can be seen in the way they respond to questions from journalists and their press releases. They are just one sided – this in itself would do a lot of damage to any system.
“After a week of attacking and vandalising a church building, the government has not seen the need to make any comment and this has empowered the Muslim fundamentalists the more, such that yesterday, they went on rampage at Sabo-Oke area of the state, destroying and vandalising other churches’ properties. Should a reasonable government not acknowledge the reality on ground and make it known to all? But he keeps playing the ostrich. Let’s see how far this would take him and his government. Olayode Fortune, Ilorin, Nigeria.”
A major issue for concern as raised in some of the responses posted above is the revelation that the gates of some of the schools were uprooted and taken away allegedly by those campaigning for hijab. Should things go this way? Can any government, elected to protect lives and property, sit in the comfort of a government house while the house is on fire? This is tantamount to lording it over the owners and management of the schools, in unleashing the adversary upon them through inciting pronouncements and press releases and having done that, to sit by and allow them to be cowed and subjugated, through force and violence. The rule of law is meant to protect the weak and the meek and it is not proper, for any government, least of all one that boasts of no viable alternative, to halt the career of these young children through religious bickering, orchestrated purely for political gains.
Let the Kwara State government take a cue from the experiences of other states in the resolution of this issue, let the owners of the schools also embrace dialogue and let the agitators refrain from force and violence. As experience has shown the world over, nobody truly has a monopoly of any option; thus, the deliberate choice of peace and engagement should be the primary target of all concerned.
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Enforcing Traffic Rules In Lagos
By Hope O’Rukevbe Eghagha
Last week, officials of Lagos State government auctioned 134 vehicles that had been impounded from traffic offenders. It was a tough measure, indeed, insensitive considering the harsh economic climate that we live in. Some of those vehicles were bought on hire purchase. There was the example of a 49-year-old widow Dorothy Dike whose bus was auctioned. The tears in her eyes and the painful expression on her face broke the hearts of many. It was reported that her driver Osinachi Ndukwe, had spent three months in prison for the offence. Yet they were compelled to look on as their only source of livelihood ‘bought at the rate of N1.8million on hire purchase was auctioned for N450,000’. Law enforcement should carry a human face. What kind of law prescribes a jail term of 3 months and forfeiture of vehicle for driving against traffic? Inhuman and insensitive. Bad law. Wicked law. Callous.
I must admit that traffic in Lagos is a nightmare. For a first timer in the city driving in Lagos is hazardous. Often on the expressways within the city, the impression is that there are no rules. Mile Two to Oshodi. Mile to Badagry. Yaba to Ikorodu. Lekki Toll Gate to Epe. People just drive ‘anyhow’! A visiting American friend once said that driving on Ikorodu road was like ‘science fiction! Not a compliment. The average driver in Lagos is short-tempered, rude, aggressive, and hostile. The commercial bus drivers carry the trophy among drivers. They are filthy, uncouth, law breakers, and Lords of the Roads. Traffic officials often look the other way when most of them break the rules. They do not obey traffic lights. They stop sometimes in the middle of the road to pick up passengers. In fact, traffic control measures offend their sensibilities. They would rather there were no rules, that is, if they are conscious of existing rules! By the way, when does LASG plan to get rid of those yellow buses as it did the notorious ‘Molue?
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Of late, that is, since Okada drivers were wisely kicked off the major roads, Keke drivers have entered the space of mad drivers. Like the okada riders, they are death traps for both passengers and other drivers. Obviously, they do not know the rules. They are not regulated. They do not pass a driving test. I wonder if anyone issues driving licences to them. Perhaps they do. But are they required to pass the rigorous test that ought to guide drivers in Lagos? The impression is that anybody who knows how to press on the throttle and control the wheels can drive those dangerous toys in the country. I know they pay daily ‘tributes’ to officials of NURTW. In some areas, they are in cahoots with traffic managers and controllers- they get away with anything! I recall an experience in 1999 when a bike rider riding against traffic near Rutam House in Oshodi was accosted by traffic controllers and he declared that this was democracy and that he could ride his bike the way he liked!
Some drivers of private vehicles are like their commercial vehicle drivers’ counterparts. They respect no rules. They are ready to pour invectives on the next person an account of a minor brush while jostling for space across lanes! Indeed, it seems that to drive in Lagos, one must learn all the swear and insulting words in Yoruba! ‘Ori o da! ‘We re niyen’, ‘ode buruku, ‘omo ale’ ‘ori buruku’ are some routinely used. A senior colleague once declared that it was driving in Lagos that gave him hypertension. I got to know this in my early days in Lagos when I rode in his car from University of Lagos Campus in Akoka to Gbagada through Bariga! I can vividly remember how he got worked up as the yellow buses dominated the road with reckless abandon for the rules of engagement! Sadly, it still happens along that route and most other inner roads within the metropolis. I don’t envy the LASTMA officials in the city of Lagos. They deserve a good pay and ought to be on one-day-on-one-day off duty arrangements! Anyone who works every day on traffic control in Lagos will either lose their sanity should they decide to do the job effectively or die early!
Another downside to the traffic menace in Lagos is the number of deaths recorded in accidents. For example, the FRSC reported that ‘between January and August 2021, 101 persons died while 625 sustained different degrees of injuries in road crashes. The figures for 2022 are not available yet. I suspect it will be higher than the 2021 figures. I also believe that not all accidents are reported.
Against this background therefore, we understand why the Lagos State government has gone tough on driving infractions within the megacity by rolling out some harsh and inhuman rules. Anyone who drives without a licence would have their car impounded and possibly auctioned off later. If a person under 18 years is caught driving, they would pay a fine of N30,000 and go to jail for 3 years. If you drive without road worthiness, the vehicle will be impounded. The following offences attract impounding the vehicle – doing ‘kabu kabu’ without permit, disobeying LASTMA officer, smoking while driving, no car hire service permit, and driving on walkway or kerb!
I have established my familiarity with the insanity in driving Lagos. Yet, any law which goes for the object rather than the subject is inhuman. Make the law breaker pay huge fines or go to jail. But set the vehicle free once the fines are paid. If Lagos State government is serious about regulating traffic in the state, they should start with commercial buses. The general thinking is that party faithful own the buses and so most of these scoundrel drivers get away with murder. Some traffic officials are compromised. Some are arbitrary and overzealous. In some areas, traffic rules are not clear, that is, there are no signs to indicate the status of a road. I had been a victim of this absence of rule regime on Victoria Island. In some cases, yellow buses are allowed to drive against traffic. If a private vehicle driver follows that example, from nowhere state officials appear and arrest the driver. Indeed, some traffic officials mislead drivers into breaking the law and leave colleagues to arrest them while they look the other way.
Laws are meant for the regulation of behaviour in society. They are not meant to destroy lives. Security officials especially policemen and soldiers should desist from breaking traffic offences. They are not above the law. The outcry against impounding of vehicles should elicit an immediate response from the Executive and Legislative arms of government immediately by suspending that provision. The fines for driving or riding against traffic should be raised. There will still be offenders, yet their livelihood will not be tampered with. I urge the Lagos State government to recall the auctioned vehicle of Dorothy Dike. Her vehicle should be given back to her. Her driver broke the law. She did not. She should not suffer economic injury because her driver was foolish. If the world is abolishing the death penalty for homicide in favour of long jail terms, it is indicative of the new thinking. Harsh, inhumane laws are antithetical to societal growth and harmony.
Finally, there is a spirit of ‘hurry-now-else-you-will-miss-it’ that drives everyone in Lagos. Is this why FRSC used to send traffic offenders for mental evaluation? What accounts for this? Fear? Desire to get to one’s destination quickly before ‘wahala’ comes? Whatever it is, if we make all the rules without moderating the frenetic pace of life in Lagos, more people will pay fines and or go to jail.
Professor Eghagha can be reached on 08023220393 or email@example.com
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Counterterrorism, Technology, And Development In Africa
By Toyin Falola
Undoubtedly, Africa has a persistent issue with insecurity. Terrorist groups like Boko Haram and Al-Shabab have continued to endanger the security of people’s lives and property as well as the survival of democratic governance in Africa. Unsurprisingly, the threat of terrorism has put Africa’s collective development and growth in even greater jeopardy. Due to the fear of investing in countries affected by terrorism, economies have collapsed. As statehood in some of these impacted countries slowly deteriorates, political advancements have also been hampered. Lately, discussions have focused on how crucial it is for African governments to stop this threat and nip terrorism in the bud. Africa is experiencing a rise in terrorism, which in addition to other humanitarian disasters, has caused mass migration and the loss of lives and valuables.
One of the key factors contributing to the domination of insurgency is the frailty of political institutions in most African countries. The blunt truth is that terrorism grows when the government is unwilling to combat it. Take the case of Nigeria as an example, the government’s longstanding unwillingness to engage in tactical warfare with Boko Haram has blown the destructive activities of the terrorist group beyond proportion, creating fertile ground for other insurgents to rise, and daily, it becomes even more complex to eradicate them. Repeatedly, worries have been expressed about the predicament of African countries in the face of internal and international terrorist attacks, as well as concerning potential repercussions for African political states, most of which have been labelled as weak or failed states.
While different state actions have been carried out against terrorist groups, the lack of robust democratic institutions in Africa is a significant barrier to the success of counterinsurgency efforts across the continent. African nations have been unable to work together to combat insurgency due to acrimonious politics. A close examination of leadership structures in African nations reveals that most of them are unsuccessful. How would this lead to success against the rebels in nations where the state and the people are constantly at odds? Internal conflict hinders African democratization and fosters rebel domination in return. It is sadder that democratic leaders also take advantage of their nations’ security to run for political office. Regrettably, most African leaders now place fighting terrorism at the top of their list of political priorities just because it commands a lot of emotions that can sway elections in their favour and not because they genuinely want to tackle it. Most African states’ security structures are, in fact, relatively flimsy. In many nations, domestic conflict further expands security gaps and creates the conditions for the insurgency to flourish.
In debates about terrorism, technological progress is unavoidable. Terrorists in Africa are developing, thanks to technical advancements. Terrorism and counterterrorism rapidly assume a new shape in their operations and subject engagement due to the expanding global instrumentalization of technology. Although both countries and terrorist organizations are modernizing their operation methods, there is evidence that many terrorist organizations in Africa are rapidly creating technical solutions to enhance their lethal operations. The internet, especially, is one technical tool feared for its potential to significantly impact global security. Policymakers are concerned about how communication networks like the internet may be used to carry out terrorist activities. Internets, specialized websites and social media platforms are frequently used in conjunction with secured networks to set up chat rooms for talks and activity monitoring, produce disinformation that could incite panic and conduct recruitment in Africa. Today, terrorist organizations like Boko Haram, Al-Shabab, and others use untraceable video and audio recordings to broadcast attacks, demand ransom for hostages, and engage in other despicable activities.
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Terrorism in Africa has a detrimental effect on the socioeconomic and political developments of the region. However, it has been demonstrated that successful counterterrorism has benefited, or at the very least can improve, the socioeconomic and political environments on the continent. Like every other continent, Africa has experienced significant terrorist activity. The effects of terrorism, however, have affected Africa far more than other, more developed continents. Terrorism still exists on the continent of Africa despite the efforts of various African nations and regional and international organizations to combat it. The failure of the different counter-terrorist strategies launched to maintain long-lasting peace on the continent has exacerbated the continent’s underdevelopment. Despite security issues, Africa lags behind other continents in scientific, social, and political progress.
These reasons are why it has become paramount for African counterterrorism efforts to keep up with technological advancement. Due to the unique characteristics of each nation, the specific insurgent groups, and the nature of operations, counterterrorism battles in Africa assume diverse forms and employ varied techniques. Departments, institutions, and programs have been established in countries to address the crime afflicted by terrorism. In addition, several laws, regulations, and directives have been passed to guarantee the success of counterterrorism initiatives and tactics. Technology and new technologies are used to acquire additional intelligence and prepare for counter operations.
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Creating powerful political institutions is the first transition stage African nations must go through. A nation’s political structure has a significant role in determining its security architecture. Launching counterterrorism investigations and conflicts between the political class and those in important leadership positions with access to resources and intelligence that could jeopardize government efforts is the second transition stage. As a result, corruption and money laundering are curbed, closing doors to money that may be readily transferred to fund terrorists. Additionally, collaboration with the public is required to create a community policing operation. By acting as informants and providing the necessary information to security personnel, citizens would be involved in the security architecture of African states. African nations must also calm ethnic tensions that could lead to domestic conflict because internal weakness in a nation creates favourable conditions for insurgency growth. Insecurity in Africa stems from internal crises that aim to undermine people’s safety and the African state’s coherence. Therefore, individual African states must organize more effective counterterrorism policies.
For this to be accomplished, effective political leadership and corporate governance must be ingrained at the internal level of the African state. Each African state administration must understand that defeating terrorism requires teamwork and must demonstrate the capacity and willingness to achieve victory. This is because if internal conflicts are permitted to persist and damage the political structure, it will pave the way for external forces to invade. African nations must fortify political institutions in their particular domains to achieve a change in the security architecture. Also, African governments must work together with other nations to implement counterinsurgency strategies. The African Union and regional organizations like the ECOWAS must intervene to maintain Africa’s peace and security. African nations must cooperate on forward-thinking projects to reach a common goal.
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The trajectories of political and economic progress have been significantly impacted by security issues brought on by internal conflict, civil wars, and terrorist acts. In light of the continent’s security issues and other difficulties, and to address the problems that are slowly destroying the continent, African political leaders must use the opportunity to restructure the continent’s democratic system. The promises made by African leaders to develop counterterrorism technology development plans must also be reaffirmed. Establishing strong democratic and political institutions in each African state is crucial to transform Africa into a safe continent free from terrorist attacks and other types of danger. These institutions must be capable of using the military and diplomacy to combat terrorism.
Lastly, the effectiveness of the actions and policies put in place by the individual governments of African countries will significantly impact the future trajectories of counterterrorism and security in the continent. For African nations to effectively battle terrorism and firmly establish peace and security throughout the continent, better political institutions must be built, alliances with militarily stronger states must be formed, and counterterrorism policies and actions must be well coordinated. African nations must build strong political leadership and corporate governance in the battle against terrorism to overcome the insecurity dilemma brought about by terrorists in their continent. Only then can the fight against terrorism in Africa be won.
. Excerpt from a Keynote Address, International Conference on “Counterterrorism, Technology and Development in Africa”
September 22, 2022
Stellenbosch University and Obuda University.
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‘No Work, No Pay’: Oppressors’ Law
By Tony Afejuku
“No work, no pay” has since gained currency as never before in a kind of obviously puzzling manner that has befuddled me as drink befuddles a drinker it makes stupid but I am not a drinker of drinks that should make me stupid. I am a drinker and eater of ideas, thoughts, notions, concepts, curiosities and more and more remedies, and conditions and desires that make it hard and impossible for me to bow the knee. Nothing befuddles me. Yet I must utter this confession: the “No work, no pay” remark that has protruded from the protruding tongues of the men and officials of protruding stomachs in government and outside government seems to perplex me. The phrase or remark has been particularly popularized in a very, very bastardized manner since ASUU has declared its popular strike of more than seven months now as “total, comprehensive and indefinite.” Of course, some television pundits, newspapers’ reviewers and anchors who have lately made remarks that mark them as our oppressors’ megaphones have reminded us that “No work, no pay” is an “extant law” – whatever they mean or meant by that. ASUU has rightly and correctly countered the oppressors by saying and insisting that “No pay, no work” is its members’ fundamental human right. This countering remark of ASUU’s supreme lords titillates me immeasurably. But this for now is foreign to my declaration here. And my autobiography hopefully anchors here.
What, indeed, I am challenging and will always join ASUU and the Nigerian worker to challenge is the declaration of our oppressors that “No work, no pay” is part of our law – extant or not extant. I don’t need to be a labour law lawyer or labour law expert to descend on the “formulators” or “champions” of “ No work, no pay” which did not emanate from collective bargaining in a formal meeting between ASUU and FGN’s representatives. All the utterers of the remark in the endeavour to threaten and cage ASUU members to submission are nothing but boon-dogglers. But much more seriously they are members of the mediocre, unimaginative, materialistic class exploiting and humiliating the working class. In this country in particular many of them who, as a matter of fact in Marxist terms and thought are bourgeois, prefer to close their eyes and ignore the reality of the circumstances of the Nigerian working class. The “No work, no pay” remark they have uttered and declared as an “extant law” is the “law” of the bourgeoisie which this class enacts or promulgates to make the worker perpetual and forever victim of its onslaught. The bourgeoisie class consists of capitalists, manufacturers, bankers, and other employers of labour within and outside our central and states’ governments. What I am saying or have said is the unholy relationship between the worker and his/her bourgeois exploiter and oppressor is not new.
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What the many bourgeois in our central government in particular find strange is the tough and strange resistance that the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has mounted against them. In fact, for a long period of seven months plus ASUU members have defied the oppressors who have deprived them of their salaries of serfs and slaves in their feverishly and wickedly pale wisdom of “No work, no pay.” The bourgeois government is taken aback by ASUU’s rare power, courage and consciousness of resistance. Indeed, this rare power, courage and consciousness of resistance that welds the members of the union together in a manner that suggests that they were prescribed a seasoned doctor’s effective medicine, has inflicted their oppressors, each one of them, with an unusual and spectacular borborygmus. What a constraining rumbling of each one’s stomach of cavalier discomfiture!
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And clearly for ASUU, hunger has turned out to be a tonic that is or that has become more than a curative tonic. It has become milk of resistance. It has imbued each typical member of the union with an anger, a desire, a wish, a joylessness, an un-happiness, an intolerance, in short a longing not to bow the knee. If Jean-Paul Sartre (1905-1980), the “hugely influential French philosopher, novelist, and playwright” who in 1964 rejected the Nobel Prize in Literature was invoked and requested in his grave to say a word or two on the character of ASUU he would probably have said that “there’s gold not mud in your veins, pride not servitude.” My dear and very dear readers, ASUU, I must say is Nigeria’s King of Resistance. ASUU’s law promotes a supreme act of generosity towards every state and shade of colourful justice. ASUU’s reputation as a resister of fascism and the mind-set of the exploiter and oppressor has spread throughout the world. You better believe me!
It is important to stress time after time that ASUU is in the bad and black book of the ruling bourgeoisie because of the union’s quest for the absolute in terms of its purposes for our public universities. Primarily for this reason the lord-less lords of the manor have denied members of ASUU their richly and rightly deserved due. In fact, the hollow lord-less lords are determined to employ their possessed power of coercion which possesses them to turn our intellectuals into a class of classless workers to be continuously undermined. Through the payment of ASUU members “proletarian” wages regardless of their academic and intellectual worth, standing and solid degrees, the average politician in political power today wants our dons to understand that each one of them is now no more a don but a mere “worker” who is a “wage earner” to whom the ridiculous “law” of “No work, no pay”, must apply. All kinds of laughable excuses and reasons are being tendered to make this impossibility possible. Or am I building castles in Alor-land?
Even assumed liberal journalists, and newspapers’ reviewers (who clearly are conservatives), especially in the electronic media are seemingly accepting the situation. I can vividly remember and recall two or so in our television houses. This past Tuesday, one of them whom I have nicknamed “Let-us-be-realistic” on account of his repeated use of the phrase to make pointless points about lack of resources to meet ASUU’s legitimate demands, had a field-less field-day because no one was in his almighty studios to counter him. Did ASUU steal Nigeria’s oil which on a daily basis many officials in and outside government steal? And why must we be devoting our sole attention to petroleum-and-gas to generate and re-generate our economy that corruption that is corruption has disabled? Is ASUU responsible for this? And why can we not pay real interest in agriculture to sustain our economic, educational and medical growth and advancement, for instance? And the wastages of the tax-payers’ monies on frivolities, did ASUU cause or inspire them? Journalist-and-newspapers’-reviewer “Let-us-be-realistic” would prefer to ignore the criminal and uneconomic reality that ASUU did not create. Perhaps I should here relate the news to all those who care to know that your country my country our country, the giant of Africa, is not “ranked among the top 10 countries with the best educational system in the Dark Continent,” as Biodun Busari recently reported in Vanguard Online. Are you surprised? You better don’t be – as I deliberately spare you sumptuous details of the report. We have seen nothing yet. The useless “No work, no pay” policy of this government that is killing and crushing the dream and future that are our dream and future will eventually crush the mode of action of the grand-off-springs of this deceitful divide-and-rude and rule-and-divide government’s dramatis personae. They are too dumb to know this fully because they think it won’t happen. How eyeless they are in their pompousness! But why do I speak where no one has my kind of eyes? Why do I speak where no one has my kind of ears? O Thot! O Nietzsche! I invoke you dear, dear, dear Masters as I am losing my cool! May ASUU reject and decline the enemies of the masses and of our tax-payers’ doctrine of coerced submission to a situation and reality of wretchedness! Let this sentence be a reminder that you are the real and authentic King of Resistance in the land. To death you won’t starve – despite your current kingly pain. Hooray! Hooray! Hooray! Thunder!!!
Afejuku can be reached via 08055213059.
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