Insecurity: Seek Help, Stop Improvising With Human Lives – Soyinka Tells FG

Wole Soyinka

Renowned scholar and elder statesman, Wole Soyinka, has advised the Federal Government to seek help in the face of rising insecurity across the country.

He stated, “To this government we repeat the public cry: Seek Help. Stop improvising with human lives. Youth–that is, the future – should not serve as ritual offering on the altar of a failing state.’’

Soyinka, who was reacting to incessant abductions and the killing of three students of Greenfield University, Kaduna, by bandits on Friday, said that Nigeria “is at war, yet we continue to pretend that these are mere birth-pangs of a glorious entity.”

The Nobel Laureate said this on Saturday in a statement titled, “The endless martyrdom of youth.’’

“One’s greatest fear, with this latest feat of cowardly savagery is that the nation must brace itself for a Beslan scenario, yet strive to avoid Nigeria becoming Africa’s Cherchnya. Those who have been proven weak and incapable must learn to swallow their vain pride and seek help. Again, this is no new counselling, but of course the dog that will get lost no longer heeds the hunter’s whistle. I envy no one the task ahead, terminating the toxic harvest of past derelictions. Blame laying is for later.

“More than the heart is broken however, more than millions of individual hearts that still lay claim to bonds in a common humanity. The already overstretched sinews of moral restraint have been snapped off the casing of nation being, and nothing is left but the collective wails of impotence. Not for the first time, what many hoped was a Natural Law of Limitations has been contemptuously, defiantly breached,’’ he added.

Soyinka reminded all about the Chibok and Dapchi kidnap cases that started the recent series students’ abductions, saying, “We need to remind ourselves of hideous precedents. We must remember Chibok. And Dapchi. And numerous antecedents and after, unpublicised, or soon relegated to the sump of collective amnesia. The wages of impunity never diminish, on the contrary, they distend.

He added, “Right now is the question of–what needs to be done, and done urgently. We keep avoiding the inevitable, but that very unthinkable now hammers brutishly on our gates, the blood ransom arrogantly insatiable. This nation is at war, yet we continue to pretend that these are mere birth-pangs of a glorious entity. They are death throes. Vultures and undertakers hover patiently but with full confidence.

“The dogs of war stopped merely baying years ago. Again and again, they have sunk their fangs into the jugular of this nation. The plague called COVID has met its match on the earth of some nation space once known as Nigeria.’’

He further stated that ‘‘the country’s youths so routinely sacrificed, burdened with uncertainty and traumatised beyond youth’s capacity to cope.’’

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