Commiserations filtered in from every corner of the country. From President Muhammadu Buhari, to ex-President, Dr Goodluck Jonathan, to Ben Murray Bruce, to Femi Fani Kayode, to Governor Obaseki, the death of a human being touched their impregnable souls. The death of the son of a rock quacked some rocky hearts to displace some amount of humanity. They fell in love with the dead man whose dad has all their features. The Governor, Obaseki, of Edo State, exercising a level of sycophancy on steroids, got some persons pissed when he said the death is a big loss to Nigeria. The corpse was not a property of Mr and Mrs Nobody. It was the body of Jide Tinubu, the son of Bola Ahmed Tinubu, BAT, the unofficial and official leader of the All Progressive Congress, APC.
The death of anyone diminishes me because I am involved in mankind, said one great man. Thoroughbreds know that it is the old shoot that gives way for the young shoot and the tear drops that follow a reversal fertilize the ground with blood and not nutrients. The death of a child strikes sharp spears into the hearts of the parents or guardians that watched him grow. It saps and breaks the continuity of humanity’s lineage. So, the commiserations that came Asiwaju’s place that day was positively received. It was a show of humanism that has disappeared within this very space. While some masses joined in sympathizing with the man, others mocked the dead man thinking they were only exposing the sins of his father. But that’s not the point of this message.
For the past fifty-seven years we have seen different show of shame in the name of trying to keep the ‘peace’ in this country. On December 12-14 of 2015, their was a massacre of Shia Muslims who blocked the passageway of the Chief of Army Staff. They threatened his convoy with fire and brimstone, when they only held sticks and stones and were corrected with over 300 deaths. In 2016, an evangelist, Mrs Eunice, was killed by some Muslim youths who claimed she disturbed them with her early morning sermon. In 2014, over 15 people who enrolled for a job in the Nigerian Immigration Service, NIS, were stampeded to death. In January, this year, a Nigerian military aircraft ‘mistakenly‘ bombed an Internally Displaced Person’s camp, killing over 200. In 1999, their was a massacre in Beyalsa State, Odi precisely, backed by the government that killed over 2000 persons.
Are you wondering where I am driving at? If you are in this country or know what is happening in this country and at this point you can’t tell where I am driving at, you are part of the problem. George Orwell was under a clairvoyant spirit when he wrote the book Animal Farm. He was actually painting a picture of a country somewhere in West Africa. While the horse, Boxer, worked so his limbs were weakened, none of love, care or respect, towards him, was seen in the pigs, Napoleon, and his minister of lies, Squealer. They are not touched by the weakness of the horse. They don’t care he’s working with an illness. They only care about the result he is giving. This is very much like today’s Nigeria. The poor commit their health for the wealth of the rich and not even their dead body warrants respect. Worse still, the poor don’t stick together.
How was it easy for leaders like ex-President Goodluck Jonathan to sympathize with the family of Tinubu but kept quiet when over 300 Shi’a Muslims were killed for simply blocking the road? How was it easy for Governor Rochas Okorocha to sympathise with the family of Tinubu but has found it hard to do same for the family of Mr Isaiah Ibeanusi, whose ten year old son, Somtochukwu Ibeanusi, the forces he sent to supervise the demolition of Eke-Ukwu market murdered? How easy is it for President Buhari to sympathise with the family of Bola Tinubu but find it difficult to sympathise with the family of the IPOB members killed by members of the Nigerian military, for simply protesting with stones and sticks? How do you feel so grieved for the death of one man but express nothing when a thousand men are butchered in cold blood? Do you remember what the religious books said about Satan?
Who is going to commiserate with Mr and Mrs Nobody who lost their only son to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, who played legislative, judicial and executive roles? Who is going to commiserate with Mr Nobody whose blind son was dragged in gutters before one drunk officer accidentally emptied one round into his scalp? He even accused the dead boy of arm robbery and escaped justice. Who is going to commiserate with Mrs Nobody who lost her sight from the beating she got for telling a soldier not to touch her in those places? Who is going to sympathise with that child who lost his parents to a religious war? Who will commiserate with the family of Mrs Bridget murdered in cold blood? Who will stand up and treat all lives equally? Who will show that the government cannot be more powerful than the people?
When the rich politician dies, their is always a crowd ready to welcome his body. When their is a plane crash in this country, a three-day mourning is declared and gloomy songs serenade our television and radio and everyone talks about it with a sense of grief. Today, Boko Haram strikes and kill tens and hundreds but we are not moved or even play gloomy songs. Bodies are shattered and splattered and we only scroll down our news feed for something better. But when we heard their was an attack in France, we change our profile pictures to the French National Flag. When we heard that a foreign musician died, we spread the news, typing R.I.P everywhere. We keep ignoring the nobody’s and want the somebody’s to have peace. We keep ignoring the nobody’s even as nobody’s and want to experience peace.
Get the point. The point is not that the family(Tinubu’s) of the dead didn’t deserve any commiseration but that the family of every dead and ill-treated Nigerian deserves it. The family of Nigerians killed by their security outfits deserve commiserations, justice and well wishes from everyone and not just the family of the rich or connected. All Nigerian lives matter. If the President cannot sympathise with the families of Shia Muslims killed by military men, he has no reason being President because he is subhuman. If the ex-President didn’t commiserate with the family of those killed in the NIS massacre, he was never worthy to be our President in the first place. If the Governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha, didn’t commiserate with the family of the ten year old boy killed by the men he sent to supervise a demolition, he is not worthy to rule even himself. Ladies and gentlemen, be honest, will Satan respond differently?
And by commiserate’ here, I mean it in that full sense shared when in love. That support that almost drifts to the spiritual connection among people genuinely in love. From wishes to visitation to the sowing of seeds into the life of the persons affected. Sowing seeds of stability, of love, of togetherness and sanity. That’s what I mean here. I am not talking about simply handwritten wishes on social media or internet but that sort of sympathy that gives strength to the broken and heals the weak. I am not talking about simply uttering wingless words of motivation with uprooted taproots. I am talking about showing Boxer the same love shown to Squealer and Napoleon. I want to see it shown to the masses of this country. I want to see the families of Mr and Mrs Nobody shown care and reverence. The part in Animal Farm where it says ‘but some animals are ‘more equal’ than others’ should be scrapped in this farm. Why is this place even a farm in the first place?