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EndSars: Beyond hashtags, Eagles must boycott Tunisia game.

Nigerian youths are on the streets, demanding unfrustrated existence. The barest need of any human being. The Super Eagles are gearing up to play a friendly match against Tunisia on Tuesday, like the nation they are representing and the demographic they fall into, are not fighting for life. Social media posts and hashtags amplification are excused for athletes in faraway places, but members of Super Eagles in this squad have a bigger platform to echo our demands and they must use it. Super Eagles must boycott the game against Tunisia.

Across the world, sports are been used as a hammer to force plea for social justice into the ears of adamant, cow-headed governments. African American basketballers stopped the capitalistic wheel of NBA to avoid distractions for the #BlackLivesMatter protests ripping through their streets. College athletes around the U.S.A. channeled their youthful exuberance from collegiate games into the gramophone for social justice. Super Eagles must lend gut from these athletes who didn’t just tweet fiery words accompanied by trendy hashtags while they take partake in activities that stymie attention away from their people’s suffering. Nigerian footballers, like several thousands of their colleagues, bent knees for BLM earlier this year, it’s time to flex their social justice muscles for their brothers and sisters at home, and their protest must be loud and unambiguous.

It’s not a phenomenon that #EndSars protest is not popular with the older generations whose age insulates them from the brutality of this exploitative, murderous unit of Nigeria Police Force. Super Eagles walking out of the game against Tunisia won’t only raise their awareness, it’ll force the government to finally bow to the demands of the people— and maybe the nonchalant president will eventually address the issue. Super Eagles must be informed that yesterday’s dissolution of the unit by the inspector general of police, Mohammed Adamu, is reminiscent of a lengthy list of ineffectual “disbandment”, “suspension,” “ban”, “reform” etc., and several other variants that only gore these scorpions and they come more brutal every time.

In February, along Sagamu Interchange, a young man was sent flying out of a fast-moving vehicle. The car from behind collided with him. He continued flying and didn’t stop until he slammed into the other side of the road. He was dead. The young man was Tiamiyu Kazeem, a defender for Remo Stars. The person who sent him flying was a SARS officer, who had arrested and harassed the Tiamiyu despite seeing the footballer presenting his ID card and jersey. Tiamiyu was 21. His twinkling flame snuffed out by police brutality before it could even burn. This gruesome murder shows that police brutality is a pandemic whose virus settles on every area of our society including football. And Super Eagles must walkout for this.

As they must do for Jimoh Ishaq, Ifeoma Abugu, Kolade Johnson, Kudirat Adebayo, Tina Ezekwe, Ayomide Taiwo, Chibuike Anams, and many of other murdered by trigger-happy officers and the extrajudicial whims of Nigerian Police.

Super Eagles must emulate Afro Beats stars and Nollywood actors, and move beyond cheap words to gutsy actions that’ll reverberate through the nation.

Shehu Idris Tẹjumọla​18 Posts

Shehu Idris Tẹjumọla​ is a football fanatic, a voracious reader of football contents and an Indefatigable football writing junkie. Author of future Man Booker-winning, best-selling books.

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