We all heard the famous speech by President Muhammadu Buhari following the shooting at Lekki.
The agitation for a Presidential address was hot especially after Nigerian youths felt that the government ought to apologise for mishandling a peaceful protest that devolved into wanton destruction of public property and warehouses after the shooting.
So there was agitation for Buhari to address the nation. There were talks, expectations that the government would apologize for ordering the Army to open fire on protesters. Some expected that the President would say something like; “We will take decisive actions against rogue soldiers who opened fire on our children who were peacefully exercising their human right…… It has since come to our knowledge that there were rogue soldiers among the troops that were sent to peacefully disperse the protesters. An enquiry has been set up, and we swear by Sango the god of retributive justice; that we will fish them out and summarily deal with.”
But no word came from Aso Rock, not even 24 hours after the shooting. Aso Rock was silent!
Say something, “Baba, say something to your children…” Social media huffed and puffed! There were videos and photos of the carnage that followed after the shooting. Nigerians wanted Buhari to address the nation. The youth wanted Baba to say something to mitigate the exploding discontent.
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The silence was deafening.
But maybe Baba was angry. Not at the soldiers but at the youths, for insisting on a protest he thought had been fully sorted when their reps went to Abuja and the 5 for 5 agreement was reached.
Yet, the youth insisted, they had no leader, so who agreed the 5 for 5 with the government?
Anyway, Buhari must have asked questions: “So what do you people want me to say? They said they have no leaders, so who am I going to address?”
They must have responded, “Haba Baba, you have to say something to them. Address, them, just talk to your children…” those around him may have urged.
“I won’t. See all the destruction, businesses grounded to a halt. No, this is too much, I will maintain a dignified silence! Haba, ma naa! Because they won’t back down? Because they are stubborn children!”
But they pleaded some more because they had been watching the different versions of truth flying online… Finally, Baba gave in.
Buhari roused himself and we all prepped for the address…
At 7.02 pm, 24th of October, 20202, the President came on and said this much…
“@@#$%&*))%#@@#$#$%^&*(^%$$##@@…fem on Lekki shooting….” and he was done in 14 minutes!
Many Nigerians are yet to recover from the speech!
It was as long and loaded as it was short.
To put it all in one sentence, it said; “What an elder sees sitting, the youth cannot see even with zoom lens or drones. I have said this before and will not repeat myself again. I will keep Fem on the Lekki shooting. You Nigerian youth will tell me who is giving you power. I don’t understand why Nigerian youths are para-ing for me… Now get out of my sight!”