On August 14th 2020, I published an article “What’s Your Tipping Point?” I don’t remember now what it was that set me off, but at the time there had been news every other day about something or the other to make you angry about the state of the country. I put my anger into words and asked fellow Nigerians what it would take for us to be angry enough to come together and take to the streets to demand better with one voice. Read here.
Shortly after that article, I put out a call to Nigerians to join me for an Independence Day Virtual Protest. Please View here.
It was going to be the 60th anniversary of our independence from colonial rule, but 60 years after, the country was in such a bad state of rot, and there was NOTHING to celebrate.
It was a call to Nigerians to make videos/draft posts about our current state in Nigeria with recommendations if we had any and post across our social media platforms with the hashtags #WeAreTired and #WeCanBeBetter on October, 1st 2020
In my video, I spoke about our civic responsibility of being interested in politics and governance and how our country is run. Click here to watch.
This does not mean that we all should become politicians; there are several ways to be involved. I highlighted a few in my article here
It is unclear why #EndSARS was the last straw, but for the first time, young Nigerians have come together putting aside religious and ethnic biases to speak with one voice.
It has been a long time coming; we have a range of problems from insecurity to unemployment to poverty to bad governance; the list is endless! Every sector in Nigeria needs an overhauling.
Regardless of the number of NGOs and CSOs in a country, they can never replace a government with strong systems and institutions.
It is a joy to see that we have finally gotten to that point where we are stepping out to demand better.
What to Do
Sustain your anger. This movement has gained a lot of traction because our voices have been united and loud. The importance of this collective anger and unity cannot be overemphasized. We cannot afford to relent.
- On social media, keep posting with the hashtags #EndSARS, #EndPoliceBrutalityInNigeria
- On the streets; maintain peace, it is highly important to keep the protests peaceful regardless of whatever opposition they throw at us.
- When you’re leaving protest grounds, clean up after yourself. Dispose of waste properly; there are provisions for trash bags across different locations.
- Keep educating people around you, help them understand the cause we’re fighting for. Share the website that has a compilation of stories about SARS and police brutality in general.
- Share the verified/trusted link to donate money for food, medical and legal assistance etc.
This is a marathon and not a sprint. The fight for good governance cannot start and end in a day.
After we successfully tackle the law enforcement institution, we will find that there are several other fights to be a part of. We are on the right track.
- Get involved: as young people, now more than ever is the time to get involved. Find ways to educate yourselves. Know who your leaders and representatives are so that you can hold them accountable.
- Get your personal voter’s card (PVC) if you don’t have one yet. There have been calls in the past few days to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to make voter registration an ongoing process; as opposed to a few months to the elections. You can lend your voices on social media for this cause too; but in the case that it drags, when the time comes, do not despair, make sure to get your PVC.
- When election season comes, please go out and vote! The criteria for electing leaders should be competence and track record, not religion or tribe.
We are coming for every other system and institution that has hitherto not served the best interests of the Nigerian people.
Nigeria will be better in our own time✊🏾