Episode 1: Osai Ojigho, Amnesty International Nigeria
“Rising Together” with Ayọ Tometi
In the debut episode of “Rising Together,” Human rights advocate and Black Lives Matter co-founder Ayọ Tometi speaks with Osai Ojigho, Executive Director of Amnesty International Nigeria, about the magnitude of the #EndSARS movement that has captivated the country, and much of the world.
In this conversation Ojigho speaks to the beginnings of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), and the deep colonial roots of policing in Nigeria. She also sheds light on the legacy of impunity from Nigerian leadership, and explains how the #LekkiMassacre on October 20, in which the Nigerian army opened fire on an assembly of peaceful protesters, is actually true to form for the country’s corrupt government.
In just two weeks, the #EndSARS movement swelled to momentous and historic proportions across Nigeria and the world, inspiring hope for the rebirth of Africa’s most populous nation, and captivating a worldwide audience into solidarity. Together, we watched as young people all over Nigeria took to the streets in several cities, raising fists and flags along with their voices, demanding an end to police brutality at the hands of the notorious Special Anti-Robbery Squad, known as SARS.
But the peaceful protests were met with the same brutality the people rallied against. On Tuesday, October 20, 2020, the #EndSARS movement suffered a devastating blow; protests in Lagos were impeded by a malicious attack on the assembly of protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate, where they had been gathering for days. The Nigerian government, using its military, carried out a premeditated murderous plan to stifle the uprisings with its same old tactics of force and fear.
Human rights advocate and Black Lives Matter co-founder Ayọ Tometi hosts a series of pertinent conversations with prominent figures of the #EndSARS movement in a new video series for Diaspora Rising. Ayọ and her guests discuss at length the events leading up to the #LekkiMassacre, the culture of impunity perpetuated by the Nigerian government, and the hope for a new Nigeria that still lingers in the aftermath of that fateful day.
“Rising Together” Episode 1 Credits:
Executive Producer: Ayọ Tometi
Directed by: Brandyn Johnson & c. Craig Patterson
Produced by: Chiderah Monde, Brandyn Johnson & c. Craig Patterson
Edited by: Alexa Villareal
Motion Graphics: Dus T’
Research Assistants: Keyna Anyiam & Enyah Wayne
Special Thanks To:
Amnesty International Nigeria