“Soro Soke were” – Dr. Bukunmi Kolade
This Yoruba expression was first made by Lola Idije, a prominent Nollywood actress. Literarily speaking, it means “speak up lunatic” or “speak up dunce”. it was taken up during the ill fated End Sars protest as a battle cry of rebellion and valid belligerency.
Each time I hear the expression, I remember an incident with George W. Bush Jnr, standing at ground zero, a few days after the 9/11 attacks, holding a megaphone and addressing an exhausted crowd of first responders. Someone yelled from the back… “I can’t hear you…” to which POTUS responded and said “I can hear you; the world can hear you“ to an uproar of cheers and applause before he added “those who did this (pointing at the smoldering rubble of the twin towers) will hear from us very soon”. It took 10 years but Osama Bin Laden and his cohorts certainly heard from them. That was leadership in its finest form speaking.
When the End Sars protest started, it was a beauty to behold. There was no religion, no tribe, no gender; just Nigerian youths tired of been kept quiet… I heard the term “a velvet take over” for the first time during the protests. Unfortunately it was hijacked by hoodlums and the reaction of the higher powers soured the events at great loss of lives to peacefully protesting Nigerian youths. Its aftermath spelt the loss of lives to dozens of our security agents and destruction of public property.
Obviously, the Soro Soke approach of End Sars didn’t give the desired results. Another opportunity to Soro Soke is around the corner: with our voters card. Let’s get it ready. Unfortunately many youths still believe our votes won’t count. My admonition to them is to go and ask GEJ and his cronies how we sent them back to Otukpo. We are Nigerian youths, we are woke; we will Soro Soke with our voters card. And the votes will count!!!!!)
Dr. Bukunmi Kolade (MB,BS Ib, FWACS) lives in Ibadan