The evil that men do lives after them;
The good is oft interred with their bones.
–Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare
It all looked as if God had stopped being God.
It looked as if Gen. Sani Abacha and the gang had become gods determining who must live and who must die. Including Al-Mustapha, and the-then DMI boss, Frank Omenka, Joe Garba and Muhammed Abacha and many others, and not excluding the man with a fulanic protruded nose and big abnormal earlobes like elephant’s ears (Identity intensionally withheld). It seemed we’d reached the end of history.
Sergeant Barnabas Jabila aka Sergeant Roger, was a sharp-shooter, who was saddled with the responsibility of terminating the opposition and all the apparent enemies of the Abacha regime.
He, Roger, must carry out the death warrants hanged on the targeted that were convicted by the almighty Al-Mustapha, the CSO of Abacha.
The Sergeant Roger’s handgun was perfectly awesome.., it was indeed a god’s hand-made with a fine delicate trigger, and its barrel had a radiant finish of quality stainless chrome steel with excellent smooth discharge of silent hot bullets. Sergeant Jabila Roger never missed a shot or missed his target.
Kudirat Abiola was cornered and killed by the Roger’s trigger, so also Pa Alfred Rewane was.
Alhaja Suliyat Adedeji didn’t escape it too, she was shot in the genital inside her own house in Ibadan here, she was shot too in the chest and left her to bleed to her death in minutes.
Alex Ibru was maimed, he was lucky to lose an eye to their bullets, AGF Olu Onagoruwa’s son was ambushed and killed too. The late Ijebu-man, Abraham Adesanya, narrowly escaped several gunshots of Sergeant Barnabas Roger, and so hundred of others, known and unknown, each received their fair or unfair share of Abacha’s cruelty.
(I was not a kid then, I’ve left secondary school, so I indeed witnessed what I am talking about.)
The likes of Professor Wole Soyinka, the white-fluffy-haired man that authored so many books including “The Lion And The Jewel” and “The Trial Of Brother Jero”……, plus the likes of the veteran Gen. Alani Akinriade and hundreds of others known as NADECO took their covers in the faraway exiles.
Those who were bold and ready to die, spoke and received their bullets and their wagging-wailing mouths were shut forever and ever.
Those who feared being killed, just bowed their heads in shame to lick their festered sores like condemned poor leashed dogs, they remained quiet and cringed as they watched and moaned in silence but not without grumbling in silence at times.
Coups d’etat were staged. See…, to hang those dogs, you need to make justification for it, even if it’s obviously silly or flimsy. Those dogs must be labeled and dubbed some bad names in the eyes of the people………, and that was what the phantom coups d’etat were meant to do.
Helpless Obj, hopeless Diya, powerless Adisa Abdulkarem and others were caught in the web of the ‘Clear Case of Setup’, some of them were sentenced to death by firing squad and others bagged short, long or life imprisonment.
The sky was dark and there was not a rain as angry sun scotched our skulls. Fela arrested, Falana was molested, Gani was bullied. Upon us the darkness crept and descended.
People of Inks were hunted down, their pens were seized, their media houses were shut, they were victimised, some were shot at, some were killed in cold blood, others were maimed.
TELL and NEWSWATCH took the center stage, their mightier pens against their guns fought many dirty wars. Pen., they say is mightier than the sword. But Abacha’s proved otherwise. The battle was long and seemed unending.
Ogoni Nine were hanged in cold blood, against all the worldwide pleading for clemency. We’re all indeed in big trouble.
The likes of Arisekola Alao, Adedibu, Jakande, the late Ooni and etc., and even many among those that the people hero-worship today like angels of democracy, betrayed MKO’s June 12, they betrayed the Yoruba’s course during the Abacha inglorious reign, for reason they said MKO too betrayed Awolowo in the past.
Gen. Sani Abacha was painted as hero by the enemies of our June 12, as he ran Nigeria in isolation. He had planned and prepared to be democratically elected president for life as all the five fake political parties endorsed him;
Who The Cap Fits,
Let Him Wear It…,
They all sang Bob Marley for no one but the man called Abacha.
Arthur Nzeribe and Daniel Kanu (The convener of Youth Earnestly Ask For Abacha Rally) were going up and down for Abacha. Even Onyeka Nnwenu sang praises of him. The Biafran war-lord, the late Ojukwu, went abroad doing the re-angelization of Abacha regime on the world’s stage.
Prof. Soyinka was fighting for MKO and while Chinua Achebe, Prof Chukwumerije and other Igbo academics were fighting on the side of Abacha. They were busy going up and down canonising no one but Gen. Sani Abacha in Aso-Ebi adorned with different colours and different photos of Abacha.
Chief MKO Abiola was languishing in the dark-cold jail for standing firm and sticking to his stolen mandate. At that time, it seemed God did not exist anymore.
But at the twelfth hour, God showed up in His unquestionable majesty and silenced them all.
Abacha died unannounced. And later, to settle the scores, MKO was killed like a sacrificial lamb of God.
Some said MKO was killed for his long time sins for betraying Obafemi Awolowo. Some said he was killed by the god of Nemesis.
Some said MKO died because he’d sworn by the holy Koran to abstain from politics.., the vow they said he reneged by promising us Hope ’93.
Some even said MKO paid the ultimate price for romancing the military for too long.
The similar scenario is playing out, but men will always be human and God Himself only shall have the final say.
©️Oladele Idowu Joseph
June 17th, 2019