By Adekunle Ade- Adeleye
IF ANYTHING is an accurate indication of the diminution of Southwest’s leadership in fighting popular causes involving human rights, oppression and injustice, last December’s Army/Shiites clash must top the list. Not only did Southwest media fail to give prominence to the Zaria crisis stories, even the zone’s civil liberties groups, bar a few, have been reticent, if not quite disinterested.
More surprisingly, even the revelation that over 300 Shiite members, including women and children, were massacred and clandestinely buried in mass graves has failed to elicit the kind of outrage the region’s elites have been known to express over smaller and less provocative actions of government. It seemed eons ago that the late sage Obafemi Awolowo took it upon himself to finance the defence of Shugaba Darman of Borno State who was oppressed and deported in 1980 by the defunct National Party of Nigeria (NPN) government of the day.
It is no longer clear just what kind of provocation would be required to wake the Southwest up to its customary role of defending with all their might popular causes. Perhaps, such a tendency has become a lost art.