Following the accusations in the human rights activists community in the country, Nigerians have taken to the social media to lament the dearth of conscientious, people-focused and selfless activists like the late lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Chief Gani Fawehinmi.
According to them, present day activists are after grants, appointments and other fringe benefits that accrue from activism and advocacy.
The comments followed a claim by a young activist, Oluwatosin Adeniji, who accused Sahara Reporters Publisher and #RevolutionNow convener, Omoyele Sowore, of pocketing an #EndSARS grant which she claimed Sowore applied for on her behalf in 2020. Sowore has since said he didn’t apply for or collect any grant in Adeniji’s name.
The comments on the dearth of true activists followed a disagreement between blogger Japheth Omojuwa, and former Minister of Education and #BringBackOurGirls campaigner, Oby Ezekwesili .
Reacting to the claims by Adeniji and Omojuwa, a Facebook user, Murana Akinniyi, wrote, “All these anti-Buhari protests, #RevolutionNow and #EndSARS agitation are all about inability to secure appointment. Gani had died and gone with activism. Today’s activists believe in grant and appointments.”
“Fake activists everywhere, they are worse than our politicians, only the gullible will believe that some fake activist are fighting for them not knowing they are only fighting for themselves and their families,” stated another user, Olayemi Oshinuga.
Also, a tweep, “@Emmatex1238, stated, “This says more about BBOG (#BringBackOurGirls) which is politically motivated to destabilise the former government and not for the release of those girls.”
“All these revelations and allegations make me sad. Are we saying there is no true activist again in this country?” @ENIBOY asked.
“Nigerian activists are more corrupt than the politicians and the government they throw punches on!” said @BedeBartholome1.
Fawehinmi, who died at the age of 71 in September 2009, was widely celebrated as a Nigerian social critic, human and civil rights activist, politician, author and philanthropist.
He was arrested and detained by the military regime at different times for speaking for the masses.