Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has challenged the international community to adopt a policy of visa denial to Nigerians who advocate violence in the name of religion or engage in rigging of elections.
He spoke in Lagos, yesterday, during the celebration of World Poetry Day with Wole Soyinka.
The theme was “Restating humanity with the woman”
He said: “If the government of this nation cannot protect her own and cannot take action when our humanity is violated in this manner, we have to ask for help from outside. And I am throwing a challenge to our foreign friends and visitors, representatives of ambassadors to take action on those who have committed certain crimes.
“Such people should be refused visas and put them on your watchlist for them to stay in their hole, (tell them) we don’t want you in our country. It’s about time. The crime against humanity is just beyond the way it is because it demonises the rest of us who tolerate it and allow it to happen or fail to happen.
“Start preparing or compiling a list of all those who commit or advocate violence in the name of religion, especially our youths, let them stay in their holes.
“Incidentally, I teach in a Moslem nation, one of the universities in Abu Dhabi, and when I get there, I will challenge them to do the same because these same people will say it’s okay, it’s Western world which is against us, we can always take refuge in a Moslem world. No, let’s make it a movement and propagate it everywhere. People need to stop violence against our youths.”
He added: “Let us remember Leah Sharibu. Because of the circumstances of her abduction, he case was publicised. There is a more recent name that nobody is talking about and her name is Deborah Samuel, who was lynched in this country in one of the most brutal ways in the presence of armed police and they did not save her.
“She was lynched by her own peers, those who have added lunancy to simple phenomenon like faith, beliefs. They are those whose minds have been worked to such an extent that they can descend on their own peers and school mates, chase her, haug her to death and burnt her corpse.”