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Opinion: Hate Speech Redefined by Tola Adeniyi



By Tola Adeniyi

I wouldn’t know where the bogus concept of hate speech came from or who brought up the idea to the floor of the National Assembly but I know for certain what purpose it was meant to serve. Having messed up the sensibilities and sensitivities of the Nigerian citizenry by incessant and unrelenting  butchering of Nigerians  in a fashion bordering on ethnic cleansing across the country the handlers of the cabal that is hell bent on conquering and subduing all the ethnic nationalities and re-colonize Nigeria in their own image believe the Nigerian masses should have their mouths permanently padlocked so that nobody should ever say a word about the gory atrocities being daily perpetrated.

The only objective the so-called Hate speech legislation being remotely sponsored by the Presidency is to further strengthen the growing dictatorship and cruel tyranny of the Buhari administration. The Military Constitution which was forced down our throats by the Abdul Salami Abubakar Junta already has built-in mechanisms for unprecedented dictatorship and over centralization of the government at the centre which will now go for the kill in the hands of an unrepentant dictator of power hungry Buhari.

What does Hate Speech really connote? Is to direct Nigerians to live in self denial? Is it meant to teach Nigerians to call a spade by another name? Is it to call a blackboard white when actually it is visibly black? This kind of arm twisting will not work in Nigeria of 193 million highly informed and incorrigibly vocal citizens. Nigerians may have been traumatized to the marrow, impoverished to the bones, and seriously humiliated and oppressed by the negligible minority wielding excessive power over them; they are not ever likely give up their freedom of expression. Fela Anikulapo Kuti, Africa’s greatest music machine who sang ‘the padlock of my mouth is not in your hand’ would turn in his grave if he found that his kinsmen and women in Nigeria ever yielded to a draconian legislation that would turn them into slaves in their own land.

Let’s face it. How do you describe a gang of Stone Age barbarians who plundered your farmland, destroyed your crops, fed your tubers of yam and cassava to animals, raped your wives and daughters, massacred innocent babies and shot your husbands to death? The simple word for such animals in human skin is Terrorists! It does not matter if such marauding drug-addicted lunatics are your next door neighbours or aliens from the moon or from the pit of hell fire.

There is no other word for nepotism but nepotism. And as said in popular advertisement, ‘if it is not Panadol, it is not panadol.’ Simplicita! My English teachers from Reverend S T Sheyin in the Secondary School, to Agbaje the father of Barrister Bamidele Agbaje at the HSC, to my Professors of English at the University of Ibadan the likes of Professors Whitehall, Izevbaye, Ogunba and the greatest of them Emeritus Professor Ayo Banjo did not tell me there was another word for a rotten egg if the egg was rotten. No amount of deodorant or perfume can cover the stench of a fart from decaying anus.

The Naira chewing members of the National Assembly who may be contemplating approval for the Hate Speech agenda know in their hearts that majority of them are dead rotten by the mere size of their undisguised irresponsibility and greed.

President Muhammadu Aleko Buhari cannot cover up his proven ineptitude, gratuitous nepotism, gross insensitivity, his alliance with the third most deadly terrorist group in the world, his nonchalant attitude to serious national challenges, his confessed ignorance of what goes on in government under his watch and the charges of monumental corruption in his government by a so-called Hate Speech contrivance.

This Buhari government has failed woefully. And what it  is now doing is akin to what a thoroughly beaten boxer seeking cover and protection from the Referee does. If you are beaten, you are beaten. Just raise up your hands in submission and quit the stage. The hate Speech escape route is not going to fly.

There are so many laws in the land to adjudicate on matters bordering on slander and even libel. Anybody or any organization that feels slandered should go to court. Even if the government or any of its organs and operatives feels slandered, such agencies should seek redress in court. Nigerians are not prepared to tolerate any Decree 4 of 1984 being brought back through the back door. Nigerians no longer have sacrificial lambs like Tunde Thompson, Emeka Irabor or Diete Spiff’s Amachree! That era is long gone with the unsmiling generals Buhari and Idiagbon.

And imagine the audacity of the proponents of the Hate Speech nonsense! They are seeking death penalty for offenders of Hate speech and yet they are blind to the taunting, touting and menacing   AK47 marauders who are killing Nigerians with notorious glee. What the heck some people think Nigeria is? If some people are comfortable living in the Stone Age, do they think every other person belongs in the Stone Age?

Yes. Nigeria needs death penalty for a tribe of people: those who have stolen our patrimony. Let a more serious minded nationalistic government emerge that would give Nigerian looters the Chinese and South Korean treatment. Nigerians would welcome a national as opposed to a village leader who would Rawlingsitize and sanitize the bleeding country. Nigerians are not opposed to death penalty. Death penalty still obtains in some states even in the United States. Let all those terrorizing fellow Nigerians with guns and machetes be lined up and given public execution.

Death Penalty should not be for a harmless farmer who calls a thief a thief, or who calls the rapist of his daughter a rapist. If a Yoruba man goes to Sokoto to rape the wife of a Sultan he should be described for what and who he is. Such a person is a Yoruba rapist! He cannot be anonymous and should not be allowed to hide under anonymity. The Ijaw self determination groups do not hide their identity. And when they blow up pipelines they own up and the Press describes them by their identity. If the Fulani terrorist militia men are killing people in Taraba, they deserve to be described as Fulani terrorists. That is not hate. It is simple use of words.

A non-performing government cannot legislate against criticisms. If you are bad, you are bad. You cannot force people to create a new word for your badness. Bad is bad. If you are a murderer you are a murderer. If you are Igbo, you are Igbo. This is the universal Age of Aquarius. The world no longer tolerates sweeping matters under the carpet. This is why the Creator gave this Age the Computer and the Internet. This is why the creator allowed the Google, Face book, Instagram, Whatsapp and other forms of instant messaging and information dissemination to happen.

Come to think of it? How do you enforce the so-called Hate speech nonsense in a global village which the world has turned into? How does anybody prevent pseudo names and anonymous writings and postings? Are we asking for another radio Kudirat? How do you stop an Australia-based critic from posting commentaries on Nigeria?  Did the proponents of Hate Speech ever go to school? Are they aware of the Age we live in? And these are people making laws for the country!!!

Perish the thought on hate Speech, or find a new definition.

By Chief Tola Adeniyi, former Chairman/Managing Director of Daily Times Conglomerate.

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Man Dragged Off Plane for Allegedly Opposing Tinubu’s Inauguration




By Eric Elezuo

Airport security operatives on Friday evening dragged a yet-to-be-identified man off an Abuja to Lagos flight.

In his middle ages, the lone protester was said to have allegedly announced that the President-elect, Bola Tinubu, must never be sworn in as President on May 29.

In the one minute 29 seconds video that has gone viral, it took the efforts of no fewer than six airport security officers to evacuate him after having held up the aircraft for more than an hour, as the 6pm flight was yet to take off as at 7pm.

In the short video, the man was dragged from his seat, and could be heard shouting, as he was being carried off the aisle, “Obidients you’re here. They are doing this to me. Obidients you’re here, I am naked. Obidients you’re here, I am going naked.” The video did not show where he allegedly made the anti-inauguration comments.

However, no one could come near as officials of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria and Ibom Air surrounded him with one of them saying “you want to hijack the plane” as they roughly evacuated him.

Earlier, the Department of State Services had released a statement signed by the spokesperson for the service, Peter Afunanya, saying it has identified some unnamed key players planning an interim government in the country.

The action of the DSS has received kudos and knocks from the Nigerian public.

In their remarks, the 36 state governors under the aegis of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum Friday requested the DSS to as a matter of urgency to arrest and prosecute those involved in the so called plot while warning the Service against issuing statements without arrest, noting that such could lead to heating up the polity.

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I Resisted Offers to Step Down, Won over 40% of Total Votes Cast – Jandor




By Eric Elezuo

The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Lagos State, Dr. Abdul-Azeez Olajide Adediran, popularly known as Jandor, has narrated how he turned down offers from the powers that be to truncate his governorship ambition in the state. The PDP stalwart also claimed that amid all the unfavorable conditions that trailed his ambition from every corner, especially his party, he won over 40 per cent of the total votes cast in the election.

Jandor made this revelation while giving account of how he fared in the just concluded March 18, 2023 governorship election, which the incumbent governor and flag bearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Babajide Sanwo-Olu won, in a statement he personally signed.

While appreciating all and sundry including members of his immediate family, his running mate, Funke Akindele and Lagosians, he took a swipe at his party for abandoning in the heat of the campaign without contributing a dime, stressing that fees meant for agents are still to be released till date. He also knocked members of the party, who defected to the APC at the last minute, noting that the defection proved that there were moles in the party, and the action was necessary as the moles of yesteryears in the Lagos PDP have been unveiled.

He blamed the ruling party for the outcome of the election, citing high volume of violence and intimidation that characterised the polls. He however maintained that he is still consulting, and will soon intimate followers of the next course of action.

Read the detailed account below:

I cannot start any kind of address to my fellow Lagosians about the just concluded Lagos governorship elections without first collecting data on everything that characterized the March 18th election in Lagos State.

I must, at this point, express how overwhelmed I am with gratitude for every single person who supported the PDP in Lagos and my candidacy for governor.

From 245 wards, thousands of people joined our rallies, shared our campaign manifesto, defended our mandate, and came out in their numbers to vote.

My special appreciation goes to my wife and kids, whose understanding and sacrifice saw me this far on this project.

My party, the PDP, alongside all party members, I thank you for entrusting me with the flag of the party.

May I also use this opportunity to appreciate my running mate, Olufunke Akindele who left certainty for this uncertainty, thereby putting the love of our dear state and her people, over and above her comfort zone to join this race with me.

We ran a campaign no one has ever undertaken in the history of Lagos State politics, by visiting places that politicians, including those in power, have never been.

I am happy to report that days leading to our election, we resisted all offers from the powers that be, to back down for crumbs, and when that failed, they swooped on to covet PDP Leaders and followers, who can’t persevere for a better tomorrow, just to destabilize our ranks days to the election, part of which you would have heard the Lagos State Deputy Governor owning up to on a national Television.

They needed that to happen to be able to justify their election day shenanigans, and truly…it’s the excuse they gave today for PDP performance on election day.

I am very comforted by the show of solidarity we saw at the polls and the seriousness with which ordinary citizens approached the 2023 elections. Even when the ruling government, frightened by our collective resolve and the possibility of them being exposed to not holding the will of the people, resorted to violence and intimidation, you all stood strong and protected your vote.

Unfortunately, the ruling party refused to honour the will of the people, but our fight is proof that things have changed for the better and I am humbled to have contributed to that change.

I have refrained from putting out a personal statement after my press conference on Monday the 20th of March 2023. This is because I felt it was the best course of action in light of everything that happened during and after the elections, to be able to give a proper account of what transpired against the narrative of the defection of some people from the PDP to APC, which to us, was official unveiling ceremony of moles of yesteryears in Lagos PDP.

This same mole went as far as discouraging the unsuspecting National body of our party not to send down any support for the Lagos Guber election, unfortunately, our party fell for it, and not a single kobo was availed us to undertake that election.

Even the obligation of the party on Agent fees hasn’t been settled up till now.

We ran it all by ourselves and I am proud of everyone who played one role or the other to ensure a hitch-free exercise on March 18th, despite all the principalities that worked against us.

We sincerely hope the party harkens to our calls on this and help resolve this as soon as possible.

Despite all this, my team and I have spent time putting together all the necessary information that characterized the elections, and raw data collected indicated we have over 40% of the total votes cast during the March 18th election in Lagos State. Very soon, this will come open in public space.

As I mentioned during my Press Conference, the election is a process and not an event. At the end of my consultations, I will make public our position on the next process.

I thank you all once again for your support and will keep you all updated as we continue to work toward a Lagos that works for all…

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PDP Reverses Anyim, Fayose, Others Suspension




The National Working Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party on Thursday reviewed and reverses the suspensions of some of its chieftains.

The members whose suspension was lifted include former Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose; former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Anyim Pius Anyim; Prof. Dennis Ityavyar, Dr. Aslam Aliyu, and H.E Ibrahim Shema.

This was contained in a statement signed by the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Hon. Debo Ologunagba.

He said the decision was taken at its NWC meeting on Thursday where members extensively discussed recent developments in the party.

“This decision is without prejudice to the powers of the NWC to take necessary disciplinary action against any member of the Party at any time pursuant to the provisions of the Constitution of the PDP (as amended in 2017).

“The NWC charges all leaders, critical stakeholders and teeming members of our Party across the country to be guided by the provisions of the PDP Constitution (as amended in 2017) as well as the new spirit and necessity of reconciliation, unity and harmony in our Party at this critical time.

“The PDP must remain focused as we continue to take every necessary action to recover the stolen mandate freely given by Nigerians to our Party and Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar, on Saturday February 25, 2023, at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal,” the statement read.

It added, “The NWC recognized the imperativeness of a total reconciliation among Party leaders and critical stakeholders for a more cohesive Party in the overall interest of our teeming members and Nigerians in general.

“Consequent upon the above, the NWC reverses the referral of the Governor of Benue State, His Excellency, Dr. Samuel Ortom to the National Disciplinary Committee.”

The PUNCH had on March 23, 2023, reported that the main opposition party suspended Fayose, Anyim, Prof Ityavyar and Aslam Aliyu.

The suspension, which takes effect last Thursday, was arrived at after an extensive review of the affairs of the party, pursuant to the provisions of the PDP Constitution (as amended in 2017).

The PDP also referred Ortom to the National Disciplinary Committee over his reported involvement in anti-party activities.

The Punch

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