Soyinka tackles coalition founders, says they are enemies of democracy

Wole Soyinka
Wole Soyinka

Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has cautioned Nigerians against those forming coalition ahead of the forthcoming general elections, saying most of them are enemies of democracy.

He spoke at the 80th posthumous birthday of Chief Gani Fawehinmi, yesterday, with the theme: “Democracy for the masses through proper and effective governance.”

Although Soyinka did not mention Obasanjo or anybody’s name in particular, however, he said: “All I have to say in connection with the theme of the event is vigilance. In this society and like others, there are people that whenever they smell anything decaying, they gather just as vultures.

“I find it ironic that those who put themselves, the enemies of democracy, who really take the committed act, not just act, negligence but actually inaugurated certain policies which contributed to our being at this point today, are, once again, coming out and positioning themselves as saviours and messiahs.

“Suddenly, they are forming coalition all over the place; confusing people especially the genuine leaders that we can trust.

“The answer to that is very simple. You need to look at their track record. Don’t allow yourself to plunge into a zone of amnesia which one would conveniently forget unpleasant reality.

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“We have had presidents in this country, some of whom inaugurated a never ending process which landed us under one of the most brutal dictator that this nation has ever known.

“We had others who supervised the sacking of democratic governance, I am speaking of Anambra and Oyo states; a governor was kidnapped and in another instance, thugs entered the House of Assembly and sacked the legislatures and installed their own candidate under their watch.

“And, they called themselves God-designated watchmen over the fortune of this nation. The next thing I knew was that the movement was hijacked by the very people who laid the foundation for the collapse of democratic edifice.

“The next thing we discovered was they are forming coalitions. I was invited by one of the rescue mission to address them. So, I called them asking if they were the original people that I saw or the faction under which everyone is moving. I told them not to come near me.

If you sign up to it, you will become one of those who are enemies of democracy in the country.”

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