Lekki Massacre, Ighalo’s Speech – We Are Devastated.. Where Do We Go From Here?

Oluwole Ola
Oluwole Ola

Yesterday, October 20th, 2020 has to go down as one of the gloomiest days in the history of this nation (Lekki Massacre Ighalo, Speech) . 

Over 140,000 people watched on Instagram Live as a Nigerian took his last breath, after he was shot by what eyewitnesses claim are officers of the Nigerian Army. We watched as protesters tried to remove, with crude tools, a bullet from the thigh of an unarmed and peaceful protester. We watched on social media as these officers opened fire on protesters who were sitting on the floor, singing the national anthem, the bullets ringing out like fireworks on New Year’s Day. We saw the Nigerian flag stained red with the blood of innocent Nigerians, innocent Nigerians who were out on the street demanding not to be killed by the Nigerian police, demanding for better.

Things get worse, reports on Twitter claim that ambulances are being blocked from reaching the protesters who have been injured in the shooting. They say the military is putting bodies in trucks—an effort to hide the massacre.

It was a difficult watch for me as a citizen. There were so many Champions league matches going on concurrently with the massacre but it was difficult keeping tabs with those games.

Odion Ighalo who was an unused substitute in Manchester United’s 2-1 win in Paris couldn’t contain his pain and posted a video after full time lamenting and called for the world to take notice of what is happening in Nigeria and pleaded for help stopping the government from killing its own citizens.

Lekki Massacre Ighalo Speech Transcript;

“I’m sad and I don’t know where to start from,” Ighalo said in a video message from the Parc des Princes.

“I’m not the kind of guy who talks about politics – but I can’t keep quiet anymore about what is going on back home in Nigeria.

“I would say [to the] government are a shame to the world – for killing your own citizens, sending military to the streets, to kill [unarmed] protesters because they are protesting for their rights. It’s uncalled for.

“Today, 20th of October 2020, you people will be remembered in the history as the first government to send military to the city to start killing their own citizens.

“I am ashamed of this government. I am tired of you guys. I can’t take this anymore.

“I’m calling the UK government, calling all those leaders in the world to please see what is going on in Nigeria and help us – help the poor citizens.

“The government are killing their own citizens. We are calling [the world’s governments], the United Nations, to see to the matter.

“I want to tell my brothers and sisters back home to remain safe. Be indoors, please don’t come [outside]. Because this government are killers and they will keep killing if the world does not talk about this.

“God bless you all. Remain safe. One Nigeria.”

At this juncture, we must continue to unite in the fight against oppression and impunity. We cannot back down. Your contribution as a football fan is important because this current situation affects us all.

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