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On SARS misconduct and police brutality: clearing the fog that deludes the ignorant

You see, the issue of SARS and Police brutality is far more than what we can continue to see as minor. We have surpassed the stage of “e no concern me.” If we conduct reality check on majority, we are always negligent to these issues of societal misdemeanor because it hasn’t happened to us or someone very close to us. Indeed, we’ve got to set some records straight. I’m a writer and I have to write rightly. I have the right to correct ills and champion causes of humanity.

May the soul of Professor Pius Adesanmi be well rested. He is a genius teacher of morals and socio-political issues that affect the entire Commonwealth. Even as he lectured in Carlton University, Ottawa Canada, his satires are always full of wisdom and his essays full of truthful ironies about his fatherland, Nigeria. Prof had spoken a lot about the issues with Nigeria and how the millennials can make it work. As a studious follower of his regular pieces, I’m glad I read through them, but sad he’s no more to witness the “bush meat pursue hunter” situation he’s always talked about.

In every society that human is borne, there is every tendency for crime upsurge. Reason is because we’re created differently into this unfair and imbalanced world. One has to hustle to make ends meet. Survival of the fittest it is. Crime rate in Nigeria is high. No doubt about this. But crime rate in top world countries is even higher. Yes/Yes? Armed robbery, armed banditry, kidnapping, ritual killings, et cetera, are some of the reasons why our security needs to be top notch. Hence, the Police, Civil Defence and other sister agencies to maintain law and order in the country gets established.

Maintaining law and order was the primary reason for the establishment of the Nigerian Police in 1930. But in their working modus operandi, some of them are deployed to secure private citizens – becoming their escorts; some rooted at stations in various units across area commands; some are sent on highway patrols; and the general overseer, ‘oga patapata’ of them all are special criminal forces called Special Anti-Robbery Squad. These guys are usually specially recruited and trained for intelligence purposes. They track and hack down armed highway robbers, petty thieves, and other criminals.

Everyone travels everyday. No one is oblivious of how policemen extort public vehicle owners and even some privates in certain instances. Well, some aren’t also law abiding as it is either their vehicle credentials are incomplete, their driving licenses expired, or they do not comply with the safe driving protocols which include having a fire extinguisher in their vehicles for every interstate travels. Hence, they are surreptitiously caught in the net of the wannabe policemen who have been hitherto underpaid by their government employers.

Of a truth, among the youthful millennials, there are those who do Yahoo, Yahoo+, etc. These guys scam whitemen/women of their hard-earned money and deserve criminal punishments upon getting caught. But it takes series of careful observation and weeks of quiet intel activities to hack down cyber criminals. In fact, advanced nations even engage the services of some of the most knowledgeable cyber security experts, computer scientists, programmers, hackers and Al before alleging and apprehending cyber criminals. Most notably, we saw how Hushpuppi was hoarsely hushed down after several months.

In Nigeria, any millennial using iPhone is being automatically adjudged a ‘yahoo boy.’ This is because to get such a phone, you must have been getting money from illegal sources. That is the general purview of the Nigerian society of the old in a technologically developed world of today. The believe of the system (including some of our parents) is that a young boy under the age of 30 cannot be earning money without going to work physically, running the rat race with some 9 – 5pm job. The belief of the system is that every young millennial who has in possession a laptop is a wannabe ‘Yahoo Yahoo’ adherent.

Such a worrisome ideology has eaten deep into the fabrics of our cerebrum that reasoning with worldly trends has become so irrational and illogical to us. It’s quite appalling, however, that when the rest of the world have moved on, we, Nigeria, a third world country, still remain underdeveloped and not even developing whatsoever.

I am a student writer. Yes. And, I work on Upwork and Fiverr. In fact, I spend most of my time on my screens (laptop and mobile phone) doing nothing else but working. I write for people who contract me and I earn reasonably better than some graduates do in wages or salaries. I equally have people who work for me too. Am I doing a 9 – 5pm? Are they doing same? No! And, I’m still a student. If today I dress handsomely and even purchase an iPhone for myself, I bet the way people in my immediate society will see me will be different. They’ll think I’ve joined the gang. The ‘Yahoo Yahoo’ geng. Sadly.

The future of the world is tech. They’ve been saying this since time immemorial. But, change only meets those who genuinely want to change. Only those who get committed to working around the edges of technology are the true winners and rulers of the future. I mean, works that doesn’t involve the use of the internet, creativity, media, etc. would sooner or later become obsolete. Just a little advice. What are you doing to help yourself? I can only lend an advice: upskill and be ready for the future!

Sola Akinlade and Ezra Olubi are the founders of Paystack. They jointly established the company in 2015. Some five years ago. Paystack is an online payment gateway that makes it easy for merchants to accept credit and debit card payments online from users or customers. They are an independent contractor for all purposes, providing a website and services on an independent service provider basis. Just three days ago, Stripe, a world-wide company doing exactly same job, acquired it for $200million USD. That’s some ₦76billion NGN. Huge! These folks are millennials under the age of 30 – youthful engagements using the internet to solve problems.

We’ve got lots of coders, programmers, software engineers, graphic designers, video animators/editors, cinematographers, data analysts, content writers, and an ocean of others who use the internet-provided platforms to work via freelancing, thereby earning massively. Are these young ones also Yahoo boys?
We’ve got some who are experts in Forex trading and others who are binary traders. I mean genuine investors who buy and trade bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies – the currency of the future. These works fetch these millennials hundreds of thousands of naira and even millions without leaving the comfort of their rooms while working. Is that what is synonymous with being Yahoo Boys?

Well, to be more objective, these millennials are doing for themselves what the government failed to do. For years, the older generation has failed this nation, but thankfully, this phone-pressing generation is now fully awake to take back what is theirs. They are ready to correct the age-long ills of our ailing society. They are woke to get the Nigeria of their dreams. They are ready to take it with all sincerity, commitment and unshakeable unity. This internet-age generation is courageous, respectful and beams with dignity. There’s no going back. Forward ever, Nigeria!

Wahab AR Ọlálékan is a 400L student of Physics Electronics from the Federal University of Technology, Akure. He is a freelance writer and content creator. He can be reached via wahabolamilekan94@gmail.com

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Comments to: On SARS misconduct and police brutality: clearing the fog that deludes the ignorant
  • October 17, 2020

    Great post! This generation is truly here to take back what is rightfully ours. No longer would we sit still and complain, enough is enough and we’re fighting for change!

  • October 18, 2020

    This is well written. 9 to 5 is no longer the norm. Technology has shaken up things. The problem is that security agencies and the older generation have refused to accept this.

    But change must come!


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