Nigerian Military Officers Are Like Zombies Who Follow Irresponsible Orders — DJ Switch
Obianuju Catherine Udeh, better known as DJ Switch, a Nigerian entertainer, has compared Nigerian military personnel to zombies.
She said this while referring to Fela Anikulapo Kuti’s 1977 hit song, Zombie, in which the late singer compares Nigerian soldiers to mindless zombies who obey idiotic orders.
In her speech at the Oslo Freedom Forum, the entertainer stated that youths are prepared to confront oppressors (Nigerian leaders) who are afraid of youths and have failed to create an enabling environment for them to thrive and contribute.
She called out Nigeria’s Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, as one of the country’s “oppressors.”
“As an artiste and DJ, I constantly listen to music and am reminded of the legend — the artiste, Fela Anikulapo Kuti.” He was known for using his music to speak truth to power, and I’m reminded of his 1977 song, Zombie.
“Here, Fela compares Nigeria’s military to mindless zombies obeying idiotic orders.” It was relevant back then, it is relevant now, and it will almost certainly be relevant tomorrow, in the future.
“They say the future is in the hands of tomorrow’s leaders, but what we have tomorrow are recycled leaders from today who have failed to provide an enabling environment for young leaders to thrive and contribute.” Instead, they chose to kill us all one by one.
“You may think this is outrageous, and you may wonder why; I will explain. It’s as simple as that: our leaders are afraid. They are afraid of a Nigeria that is thinking, innovative, and collaborative in its work. They are terrified of every young Nigerian who has made a name for themselves despite all odds.
“They are afraid of a’me,’ or the coconut head generation, as we like to refer to ourselves. We are tough-minded people who aren’t easily swayed by propaganda. We take a stand against our oppressors, beginning with Nigeria’s Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed.
“You heard me correctly. Our very own spin doctor, Nigeria’s Minister of Information, has the first name Lie. Isn’t it unavoidable? The pun begs to be made. The shooting, according to ‘Lie,’ was a fabrication of a massacre without bodies. He claimed I was a purveyor of fake news with the intent of tarnishing the nation’s image, as well as a terrorist.
“The Nigerian Army said the shooting was a hoax and that I made it all up with a green screen.” Yes, I intend to travel to Hollywood after this speech.”
DJ Switch rose to prominence after filming a live video of the Lekki Toll Gate shoot in October of last year.Many Nigerians took to the streets at the time to protest police brutality as part of the #EndSARS campaign.
Protesters had demanded that the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), a police unit notorious for extrajudicial killings, human rights violations, and torture, be disbanded.
On October 20, 2020, the Nigerian military allegedly fired live rounds of bullets at protesters, killing some.
The Nigerian government later targeted DJ Switch, forcing her to flee the country.
Protests began in major cities across Nigeria exactly one year ago, on October 8, 2020, in response to the death of a young man by police in Delta State on October 3, 2020.
The widespread protests are now known as #EndSARS demonstrations.