Nigeria News

COZA, RUGA, Abbo And The New Sheriff In Town

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He bows his head in sobriety, pleading for the masses’ forgiveness over his misbehaviour.

Only time will tell if Senator Elisha Abbo is not shedding crocodile tears.

Millions of Nigerians condemned the indecorous action of the Senator who slapped a nursing mother at a sex toy shop in Abuja early this week.

This week the poor regulation of the social media in Nigeria has turned out to be of great advantage for the voiceless among us.

The voiceless cried out on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter to demand justice over the maltreatment and abuse they had received from the elitist class.

The wailers also find solace in social media, which has now become the albatross of the political elites. If the politicians have their ways, social media would have been banned in Nigeria.

The traditional tabloid and electronic media seem to have compromised the ethics of journalism. They aired more of the voices of the higher class and tuck stories of the less privileged as a brief inside the papers.

The last one week has three trending issues, which included the COZA Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo’s alleged rape saga; President Muhammadu Buhari’s herdsmen RUGA settlement and the latest Abbo’s slapping at Toy Shop.

The masses raised their voices against these three issues and won. To put it more succinctly, the social media won the battle for the masses, thus becoming the new sheriff in town.

Pastor Fatoyinbo stepped down and quickly went on a leave of absence. Abbo, after he had received serious public bashing quickly scribbled a letter of apology to the Senate, members of the public, his Peoples Democratic Party and his church.

Buhari also suspended the RUGA initiative to douse the rising tension in some parts of the country against the initiative.

While one is applauding the three major players on these issues, the real commendation goes to the Nigerian social media family whose criticism and education have helped a lot to change the policies of the government.

The event in the last week shows how powerful the masses have grown in knowing and fighting for justice since the country embraces democracy again over 20 years ago.

It is interesting that members of the public and the government do not need to wait for the judiciary and the legislature to help them interpret the law before condemning bad conduct in the religious, social and political space.

Of course, we will need to wait for the law to spell out punishment for every misconduct and crime, the public opinions goes a long way to define the minds of the populace on issues.

The masses, having got three straight wins in a week is a sign that
democracy is growing and could only be better if this will translate to political stability and economic prosperity.

But the public must not rest on its oars. The masses must be magnanimous in this fresh victory while also pushing for more of it to come.

The government has only dropped the RUGA idea as proclaimed by the Miyetti Allah, the umbrella body of the Cattle Breeder Association of Nigeria, it will go ahead with its National Livestock Transformation initiative.

Nigerians should be sensitive enough so that this laudable idea is not hijacked by the nomadic herdsmen, now that their RUGA plot had been suspended.

Again, Abbo’s somber letter of apology should be accepted but the offense should not be swept under the carpet.

The Senate has set up an investigative committee to look into Abbo’s irrational public behaviour.

The police, should as a matter of urgency, investigate the matter and report back to the public. This, to me, will serve as a deterrent to other political office holders in the country.

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