Nigerian pastor, gospel minister and musician, Pastor Wale Adenuga, recently lent his voice on the issue of police brutality in light of the recent protests and demonstration.
In a recent wave of demonstrations and clamor on and offline by a majority of Nigerian youths protesting police brutality using the #ENDSARS trends.
Pastor Wale Adenuga decided to give a word to the ongoing agitation. He said on his Instagram :
Today’s burgeoning issue is #endsars
Anyone who moves around in Nigeria, via a bike, bus or in their own personal car would have been a victim of police harassment. Most end nicely sometimes with a handshake with a naira note in between both hands. Some end really bad. People injured in some cases and in others lives lost. People harassed because of how they look or work tools like smartphones or laptops they have in their possession.
Many years ago, while hosting a senior friend of mine in Nigeria, Bob Fitts, we were searched and harassed at Maryland round about. Guns pointed. Especially when they saw his American passport and some dollars. Up till now, Bob and I still relieve that experience and have a chuckle. Of course, we were scared that night.
But here’s the thing – the issues with the police are far more than ending SARS.
There’s a serious systemic issue. Over 5 years ago, I recall how a pastor friend of mine in Kaduna had his church donate 100 mattresses to the police college because new recruits were sleeping on the grass. Pray tell, when recruits who go through this kind of conditioning graduate and are handed a gun, how do you think they will behave?
When I was pastoring, my church was usually the first port of call for a newly assigned DPO because of our local assembly’s commitment to partnering with the local police authority in Aguda, Surulere. It was then I knew that these officers buy their uniforms and boots. I would have imagined that these things were budgeted for. But then, what do I know 🤷🏿♀️
Folks, think of the systemic corruption in our land. Think of the people without guns and how far they’ve plundered this land. Then now think of when people have guns. Draw your conclusions.
Grateful to everyone who has lifted up their voice in the last few days against police brutality. But trust me, we will still be on this same page months from now unless we reach deeper and sustain a demand for better governance and ensure that we put our best eleven forward and not settle for the #boosit (a la @cobhamsasuquo and @falzthebahdguy) of collecting bread, noodles, recharge cards and rice when it’s time vote.
On this note, it seems clear to all and sundry that Nigerian citizens are about fed up, and are bent on seeing change effected. Hopefully, the leaders will listen. God is with us. Amen!