Before I proceed, I must clear any doubtthat my title is bound to create in the minds of my interested readers. Readers, you saw the title right. You are not dreaming. In the last two months, to say I went through hell is a mere attempt at making pleasant what no thought through man would ever pray to go through. It was a total detachment from the inspiring street, my motivating friends, my outstanding family, my academic journey and of course my uncaring facebook friends who did not even know I was arrested, tortured by those heartless agents against change, tried by a partial judge and spent 2 months in kirikiri let alone attending my thanksgiving service today. Yes, you owe me no duty of care but I owe you the duty of information.
On March 18, 2014, I left the school library at exactly 7:00 pm and walked towards the ATM point to make a withdrawal. As usual, the queue was long and the poor service made a good spouse for the occasion. After 5 minutes of standing without any visible depreciation in the crowd or a considerate response by the ATM, I turned towards my right and headed for the bank outside the school gate. I was lucky to meet less than 5 people there and all seemed to be well until I noticed a Policeman at the checkpoint opposite the bank holding a poor old man by his trousers. It was easy for me to turn my head and pretend I did not see that, but as I was in the process of doing that, I heard a sharp groan from the same direction and turned to see what went wrong. To my amazement, I could not see the old man again but I saw the Policeman making gestures with his hand. It was the same gesture that Muhammed Ali made to George Foreman after knocking him out in Kinshasa, Zaire on October 30, 1974. From his continuous gesture and the direction he was facing, I sensed his earlier blow had landed the poor man in the gutter. Injustice! My heart started beating at a great pace as I ran towards the oppressor of the civilian.
I got to the scene and saw the old man groaning in the gutter. His shirt was torn and his face was swollen. I did not know where the gut emerged from but I faced the Policeman and said few words that were annoying but true. I remembered calling him a packaged thief scheduled to extort in a subtle manner. The old man stood and told me he (The Policeman) demanded for bribe but because he could not afford a dime, he threatened to impound his motorbike. It was in an attempt to plead with him that the official bulldog went totally mad. Oh, a good reason to fight. I continued calling him names and telling him bribery is wrong as if he was not aware. From nowhere, I got a typical police slap. Before I could say anything or regain my balance, I was held by my trousers by the same Policeman. By then, the old man was already at a distance displaying his relay skill. Two other Policemen joined the third and I was dragged into a Police van. On getting to the station, the story changed, I was accused of obstructing an officer in the course of his duty! All attempts to sound diplomatic failed as I was stripped to my trousers and led to their temporary facility for “offenders”. It is dangerous to be right in this country when the Police or the Government is wrong.
I tried all I could to reach people around me but they insisted that I give them an extensive lecture on bribery and teach them how to do their work. I begged, cried and lamented but all seemingly hardened their hearts. On March 26, 2014, I was arraigned with three others for the same offence and the Judge acted like our trial was an opportunity to slam his desk and be addressed as “my Lord”. In his rulings, he conceded that a Nigerian Policeman would not lie and that he would have used his discretion to sentence us to 5 years jail term but because of his impartial and magnanimous nature, he reduced it to 11 months in kirikiri. The most saddening experience was that no one knew where I was, not even an opportunity for a bail or something. Luckily, at the end of the trial, a friend saw us being led towards the waiting van. It was his effort that led to the intervention of my lawyer, my freedom, an opportunity to run my mouth against my uncaring facebook friends and the pleasure to “unfriend” you one after the other.
Finally, things are bound to happen to anyone, at any time and for any reason. No man is too good for the most pathetic situation. I have realized change does not come easily as we chant everyday by mere words of mouth. The truth you should know is that I did not even get arrested, let alone visiting kirikiri. It was just a reflection of the uncaring attitude of my facebook friends when placed on the experience of a victim of circumstance.
#Anticipate – Law Gots Talent