By Charles Ogbu
If the 82 year old comparative literature professor Akinwande Oluwole Babatunde Soyinka could use words such as “Imbeciles”, “Barbarians”, “Morons”, “Stupid”, “Internet Milipedes” etc on Nigerians simply for reminding him to tear (not throw away) his green card as he promised he would if Donald Trump emerged winner in the U.S. election, assuming he was the one sitting in that office currently occupied by the daura-born political hurricane called Muhammadu Buhari, what do you think he would do to his political opponents, members of the opposition and young Nigerians criticizing him on the internet?
This is a man who has spent the greater part of the 82 years he’s spent so far on this earth ‘chuking’ his mouth into the affairs of others. The same man who once called the wife of his president a “Shippopotamus”.
We were told that Soyinka hates military dictators. Never mind that he quickly accepted the position of the FRSC chief from IBB, a military dictator.
We were told that Soyinka fought tyrants from Fernando Po to Bermuda Triangle. Never mind that he recently helped enthrone another tyrant, Muhammadu Buhari as the president of a 21st century Nigeria.
My question is, what exactly is the difference between those military dictators who jail their critics and a Wole Soyinka who haul invectives at his fellow citizens simply for reminding him to keep his word?
And what is the difference between those who turn reason, commonsense and logic upside down to defend dictators like Idi-Amin, Adolf Hitler, Muhammadu Buhari etc and people like Pius Adesanmi and co who have been standing commonsense on its head in a desperate bid to portray Wole Soyinka as a God who can do no wrong?
So because a man is a Professor, people should no longer criticise him if he progresses in error?
Something is criminally wrong with a people who think that certain academic achievements confers one with immunity over criticism.
Professor Wole Soyinka is not exactly the problem. The horde of hypocritical alleluia boys giving him the God status are the real problem. The mindset of “my hero can do no wrong” being exhibited by people like Pius Adesanmi and co in this Soyinka issue is the same mindset exhibited by supporters of tyrants all over the world.
Dictators are made, not born.
If you love a man to the point where you cannot stand anyone expressing reservations about such a man, trust me, you need to watch it. What you have for that man is blind love which is no love at all.
If you only condemn ‘wrong’ when it’s done by your enemy and praise it when its done by your friends, trust me, you are part of the problem, not the solution.
Don’t get carried away by big titles such as “professor”, “SAN” and other etcetera etcetera stuff attached to people’s names both on social media and in real life. Engage every man according to what he brings to the table. Some of these men with those big titles are as morally-bankrupt and integrity-challenged as they come.
I think the law of diminishing return is taking its toll on our dear Prof. Wole Soyinka. Just like many Nigerians, he is a victim of this thing called God complex. Journalists should help our Prof. stay away from the camera and microphones. Just like the big masquerade, Ijele, he has overstayed in the village square, he now stand the risk of children mistaking him for a mere mortal wearing mask.
This is indeed the trial of ‘brother’ Soyinka!