The Committee for the Defence of Human Rights, CDHR, Thursday, remembered Dr Beko Ransome-Kuti who died on February 10, 2006, at the age of 65.
Dr Beko, a Nigerian medical doctor, was a foremost human rights activist who was a thorn in the flesh of the military and civilian ruling class for many years.
In a well-attended event themed “16 Years After Beko And The Struggle For An Oppressed Free Nigeria,” various speakers, who spoke on insecurity, Police brutality, labour protest, unstable democracy and 2023 as sub-themes, extolled the intrinsic worth of the late activist who was CDHR first national president and lived his entire life fighting for a better Nigeria.
In his welcome address, the chairman, Lagos State branch of CDHR, Comrade Kehinde Adeoye, described the annual memorial theme as “ Very timely and appropriate.”
He noted that 16 years after Beko’s death, nothing has changed in the country adding that what currently defines the landscape are “ Insecurity, Police brutality against innocent citizens, labour protests, students’ unrest, ASUU strike and unstable democracy.”
Comrade Adeoye called on CDHR Comrades including the National Association of Online Security Reporters, NAOSRE and other journalists to unite and continue the fight against democratic tyranny “Until Nigeria becomes totally free from all forms of human rights violation.”
On his part, the national secretary, Comrade Yinka Folarin reminded the distinguished audience of the prevailing problems in the country and requested for redoubled efforts to chase away anti-democratic elements
“Who is safe in Nigeria? There are huge problems. The problems are no longer about North East. Lagos-Ibadan road is no longer safe and Buhari does not have any solution,” he lamented.
As a remedy, Folarin called on all activists to immediately embark on radical voters’ sensitization in their respective enclaves to avoid the wrong choices in the 2023 general elections.
The chairman of the occasion and CDHR past President, Comrade Malachy Ugwummadu admonished fellow comrades to be disciplined and methodical in the face of molestations and other forms of challenges.
He challenged comrades to learn how to gather information and evidence at any unsavoury scene so that whenever issues arise, there would be enough evidence to fight against injustice.
He noted that Beko’s spirit was inspiring, resolute and sacrificial and urged members to be disciplined as worthy ambassadors of the association.
“We must be disciplined in character and avoid dubiousness so that we can attract people to our struggle,” he advised.