© 2018 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
50 days in hell: We must not forget Deji Adeyanju
ONE thing is certain; tyranny will always have cheerleaders. When Adolf Hitler was asphyxiating Jews in death chambers, there were people who cheered him on. When General Sani Abacha was drawing blood from all who opposed him, there were people who kissed his bloody dagger, and even worked for him to become “eternal” president.
Deji Adeyanju has been in the fiery pits of hell for 50 days now. Anyone who has been to a Nigerian prison knows that it is not fit for swine. This man, a lone voice of opposition, is languishing in prison for only daring to look in the eye of the cliques of doom.
Initially, he was arrested and arraigned on farcical charges at a magistrate court. He spent a week in Keffi prisons and was released. Unfazed, he resumed his activism, but the government rustled up extinct charges, of which he was discharged and acquitted, and hounded him into Kano prisons. And there he has been.
His case was up for bail-hearing on Wednesday, but the government threw spanners into the wheel. The regime crocheted another charge bordering on conspiracy and attempt to commit culpable homicide; all in a desperate bid to keep him in the gulag and fork his tongue.
I can say, there is a deliberate attempt to exploit the weaknesses of the judiciary to keep him locked up.
Deji is not without flaws. I may not agree to his approach to activism, but he is the most consistent voice of opposition today. Really, the “social media activism space” is not the same without him.
And with the regime’s impassioned interest in keeping him shut out of the public, I have come to realise that Deji is the third most feared Nigerian after Dasuki and El-Zakzaky. Tyranny fears dissent, courage and “opinion”.
Deji is a victim of state terrorism; a prisoner of conscience. It is not surprising that some persons are endorsing this state-sponsored assault on a citizen. There will always be enablers of dictatorship, as I said earlier. But I know those who are against this inequity are more than those who are for it, or who are indifferent about it.
It is true the saying, if a regime wants you, they will get you. But it is also true that no regime lasts forever. Nigerians survived Abacha, they will survive President Buhari.
We must not forget Deji. We must not let tyranny win.
Fredrick is a public commentator, he tweets @FredrickNwabufo.