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Commuting in Lagos, Nigeria is hard! It is stressful! And sometimes, not safe  Damilola Olokesusi decided to do something about it. She founded Shuttlers Logistics Company, a platform that allows professionals, companies, fun-seekers access comfortable, safe, efficient yet affordable transportation to and from work and around the city through bus-pooling.

Damilola decided to start the company after her sister was robbed by armed men disguised as public bus drivers, on her way to work. She and her cofounders Busola Majekodunmi, and Damilola Quadry put their savings together and launched the company, and as the business grew, they received grants from the World Bank, Airtel and Sahara Energy, and they were able to go from one to 22 routes.

Through the Shuttlers App, professionals book a seat in a route, pay a subscription, and track arrival and departure times of their rides: “comfortable air-conditioned buses and cars providing them with extra time to catch up on sleep, work or personal development time. Sharing with other professionals also give room for networking opportunities.”

Damilola’s Shuttlers has also launched SHE-MOVES, an initiative supported by the Ford Motor Company Fund and Ford Motor Company in partnership with Global Water Challenge (GWC). According to Ford, SHE-MOVES (Strengthen Her: Mobilizing Ventures for Social Innovation) is designed to provide “Whole-Person Leadership” development and promote access to mobility.

With Shuttlers, the initiative gives female professionals the opportunity to use their otherwise long commute time in traffic as a learning and development time .The project gives them access to online courses, mentors and peer-to-peer support for professional courses they might be interested in taking.

Damilola holds a bachelors degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Lagos. She is a part of the Harambean Team for 2018 cohort; an Alliance for highly educated young African social, business and political entrepreneurs, attending leading universities in Asia, Europe and North America.

She won the Award for Digital and Tech award at the Women in Africa Contest in Morocco, Award for the Best Idea at the Aso Villa Demo Day and is also a Global Shaper of the World Economic Forum where she leads the Entrepreneurship and Innovation team and is also the Vice-Curator of the Lagos hub for 2019/2020.

In 2019, she was named in Forbes Africa’s 30 Under 30 list (Technology category).

We celebrate Damilola for providing a solution that will positively impact millions of people as well as making commuting to and from work a productive part of one’s day. We’re rooting for her and the team!

Source: Bellanaija

There are many kinds of books on relationships out there to help people lead long-lasting marriages, couples, and lives. But out of the vast selection of them, some of the most impactful books to pick up are the ones about love and how to love.

As you know, 50% of marriages end in divorce—which is terrible—and I think it comes down to love. People don’t quite know what it means to love someone else properly.

So, to help, I’ve picked out some of the best books to help with understanding love on a deeper level than you can imagine.

The best kind of books on relationships I find are ones that have the following specifications to them:

  • Backed by research – This is based on whether the author is a professional or someone who does a lot of research. A reliable book is one that has plenty of facts to back up claims.
  • Clarity – Clarity not only in readability but also in the actionable advice that it gives. You don’t want to deal with too much jargon.
  • Easy to read – You want a book to be engaging and entertaining to read. Information sticks better if the writing is amusing and can keep readers invested.
  • Solvability – The book provides clear advice that solves some of the common relationship problems and struggles.
  • Non-Cliche – It isn’t filled with typical cliches or theories that many people know about. The book should provide a new perspective on something familiar.

Now let’s dive in to the 10 essential books on relationships:

1. Difficult Conversations

 

One of the most frequent problems with couples is communication. To that extent, not having difficult conversations is also a problem. If couples want a relationship to last, they need to have those difficult conversations. But the reason most couples avoid those conversations is that they’re not sure what to do or are worried about these conversations hindering the relationship.

If you’re in that situation, I suggest you take a look at this book. While there are many books out there that teach you to be a great conversationalist, this book is a simplistic guide to help you navigate through every kind of difficult conversation or fight you may have—not just with couples, but with other people as well.

Buy “Difficult Conversations” here.

2. The 5 Love Languages

 

 

This is a top-tier relationship book that’s been on many lists before, and this won’t be the last. This book has a unique spin to what love is all about, and it helps you understand it in a profound manner.

According to the book, how we give and receive love can be divided into five parts. While we deliver love with these five “languages,” there are one or two of them that are more dominant than the other. This book helps you to identify your and your partner’s love languages to help communicate your love for one another better.

Buy “The 5 Love Languages” here.

3. Mindful Relationship Habits

 

Relationships have ups and downs, of course, and there are several ways to handle them. Sometimes, it’s being able to have those conversations and smooth things over. Other times, you get unique solutions like developing mindful relationship habits with your partner.

The idea with the habits mentioned in these books is to help you communicate clearly, avoid arguments, and better understand each other in thoughtful ways. All in all, it addresses the small relationship issues that you and your partner have to deal with.

Buy “Mindful Relationship Habits” here.

4. The Science of Happily Ever After

 

Growing up, the hope of relationships is to be able to live happily ever after—like what you’ve read in so many children’s books. This book is more of an adult expansion from that concept. But instead of filling you up with all kinds of hope with no rhyme or reason, the book is founded on science and hard facts.

⌄ Scroll down to continue reading article ⌄

The author, Dr. Ty Tashiro, translates years of research and analysis of how we look for a partner to live “happily ever after” with and simplifies it. Using real-life scenarios, this book paints a path to guide you to your other half.

This book still applies to couples as well since this provides unique perspectives on how one can find enduring love for one another.

Buy “The Science of Happily Ever After” here.

5. Attached

 

Another science-based book, this one takes a different approach to the search for love. Instead, the research from this book talks about the “attachment theory.” The premise of the theory states why we need to be a relationship at all times and how we behave in those relationships as well.

The theory outlines three categories: anxious, avoidant, and secure. Written by a neuroscientist and a psychologist, you get a unique perspective in those fields and how it involves love. Overall, you’ll learn which of the three categories you fall into and how you can build your relationship around that.

Buy “Attached” here.

6. First Comes Love, Then Comes Money

 

One particular struggle I want to highlight in relationships is money. Finances alone cause a lot of disruption for couples. The reason for this is that couples don’t talk about money until it is a problem and by that point, you have two people arguing about money with no real way to steer the conversation or manage it.

Since many people don’t know how to talk about money—let alone to their partner—this book provides great insight into how people think about money. The book also explains the different kinds of money personalities and how you’re meant to interact with one another based on that information.

Buy “First Comes Love, Then Comes Money” here.

 

7. Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus

 

This is an older book on relationships, but it still holds up to this very day. The overall thesis of this book revolves around the idea that Martians (men) and Venusians (women) are at their happiest in relationships when they accept the differences as positives. Even though this is a familiar concept, it addresses some of the main struggles and complications in relationships—understanding one another and working through problems.

Buy “Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus” here.

8. The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work

 

With over a million copies sold, The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work is a book that’s revolutionized the way we think and understand, repair, and improve marriages. John Gottman Ph.D. conducted an extensive study spanning a period of years and distilled the results into this book that author Nan Silver supported.

He narrowed his research down to habits that either build marriages up or tear them down. From those habits, he created the seven principles that help guide marriages down a path to long-lasting relationships.

Buy “The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work” here.

oNgozi Erondu, PhD MPH, is a global health and biosecurity advisor who has over a decade experience in epidemiology, public health and biosecurity.

Ngozi, a Google Scholar, holds a bachelors degree in Psychology, Biology from DePaul University and went on to bag a Masters in Public Health (MPH) degree University of Hawaii, John A. Burns School of Medicine.

After her masters degree Ngozi joined the Center for Disease Control and Prevention as a Public Health Prevention Service Fellow and then she joined a global consulting firm that provides expert services and support in strategic planning field epidemiology and surveillance, designing public health programs and developing monitoring and evaluation strategies and dashboard tools.

During her time at the consulting firm, Ngozi worked as a Research Fellow at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine while completing her doctoral training in public health policy and epidemiology. She them moved on to the World Health Organisation as a Consultant Technical Officer. She was also a field epidemiologist in the CDC ebola response in Guinea.

Between 2016 and 2018, she was an assistant professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) where she had completed her doctoral training in public health policy and epidemiology prior.

Ngozi is a fellow of the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Emerging Leaders in Biosecurity Initiative. In 2017, she was one of the people selected for The Aspen Institute’s New Voices Fellowship, a year-long media skills, communication and leadership program designed for standout development professionals.

In 2015, Ngozi and Betiel Hadgu Haile co-founded the Global Bridge Group — a global health and development consultancy company which provided services to inform and improve global health initiatives in resource-constrained countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa.

She’s currently a Senior Research Fellow at the Chatham House Centre for Global Health Security and was a Senior Public Health Advisor at Public Health England.

Ngozi is also the Chief Executive of Project Zambezi, a public-private-partnership improving drug distribution across Africa.

Ngozi is also an independent consultant, providing health systems research/training and monitoring and evaluation services. We celebrate her for being a force in global health and development and we’re rooting for her!

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie wrote an article titled “Nigeria Is Murdering Its Citizens”, which was published by the New York Times on Wednesday, October 21, 2020.

In the Op-Ed, she speaks on the recent happenings in Nigeria: the necessity of the #EndSARS movement, the peaceful protest, Nigeria’s political culture being “steeped in state-sponsored thuggery”, and the killings at Lekki toll gate.

“I think of their families brutally plunged into the terrible abyss of grief, made more terrible by the knowledge that their loved ones were killed by their country. And for what? Because they peacefully asked to be allowed to live”, she writes.

Here are excerpts from the article:

For years, the name SARS hung in the air here in Nigeria like a putrid fog. SARS, which stood for Special Anti-Robbery Squad, was supposed to be the elite Nigerian police unit dedicated to fighting crime, but it was really a moneymaking terror squad with no accountability. SARS was random, vicious, vilely extortionist. SARS officers would raid bars or stop buses on the road and arbitrarily arrest young men for such crimes as wearing their hair in dreadlocks, having tattoos, holding a nice phone or a laptop, driving a nice car. Then they would demand large amounts of money as “bail.”

SARS officers once arrested my cousin at a beer parlor because he arrived driving a Mercedes. They accused him of being an armed robber, ignored the work ID cards he showed them, took him to a station where they threatened to photograph him next to a gun and claim he was a robber, unless he paid them a large sum of money. My cousin is one of the fortunate few who could pay an amount large enough for SARS, and who was released. He is not one of the many tortured, or the many disappeared, like Chijioke Iloanya.

In 2012 Mr. Iloanya was 20 when SARS officers arrested him at a child dedication ceremony in Anambra State. He had committed no crime. His family tried to pay to have him released but were asked to bring more money than they had. So they sold their property to raise money and went back to the SARS office but Mr. Iloanya was no longer there. They have not seen him since. Photos of him on social media show a young man, still almost a child, with sensitive eyes and a future waiting for him. There are so many families like the Iloanyas who are caught between pain and hope, because their sons and brothers were arrested by SARS and they fear the worst, knowing the reputation of SARS, but still they dare to hope in the desperate way we humans do for those we love.

There have been End SARS protests, since 2016, but October 2020 was different, a tipping point had been reached. The protests signaled the overturning of convention — the protesters insisted on not having a central leadership, it was social rather than traditional media that documented the protests, and, in a country with firm class divisions, the protests cut across class. The protests were peaceful, insistently peaceful, consistently peaceful. They were organized mostly on social media by young Nigerians, born in the 1980s and 1990s, a disaffected generation with the courage to act. Their bravery is inspiring. They speak to hope and to the possibility of what Nigeria could become. Of those involved in the organization, none is more remarkable than a group called Feminist Coalition, set up by Nigerian feminists, who have raised more than $180,000, and have provided legal aid, security and food to protesters.

But the Nigerian government tried to disrupt their fund-raising. The Nigerian government has reportedly accused Flutterwave, the company through which the donation link was created, of accepting funds from terrorists, even though it is clear that Feminist Coalition’s members are not terrorists. Their fund-raising link suddenly stopped working. Still, they persisted and began to raise money through Bitcoin.

From the capital city of Abuja to the small town of Ogbomosho, state agents attacked and beat up protesters. The police killed a few and detained many others until social media and video evidence forced them to release some of the detained. Still, the protesters persisted.

The Lagos State government accused protesters of violence, but it defied common sense that a protest so consistently committed to peaceful means would suddenly turn around and become violent. Protesters know they have everything to lose in a country like Nigeria where the mere hint of violence gives free reign to murderous security forces. Nigeria’s political culture is steeped in state-sponsored thuggery. Politicians routinely hire thugs to cause chaos, especially during elections, and many people believed that thugs had been hired to compromise the protests. On social media, videos that attested to this — of thugs getting into SUVs that belonged to the government, of hardened and hungry young men admitting they were paid to join the protests and become violent. Still, the protesters persisted.

At about noon on Oct. 20, 2020, about two weeks into the protests, the Lagos State governor suddenly announced a curfew that would begin at 4 p.m., which gave people in a famously traffic-clogged state only a few hours to get home and hunker down. I feared that a curfew would provide an excuse for state violence, that in the name of restoring order, the army and police would unleash violence. Still, I was unprepared for the carnage that followed at the Lekki Toll Gate, the most prominent in Lagos. Government officials reportedly cut the security cameras, then cut off the bright floodlights, leaving only a darkness heavy with foreboding. The protesters were holding Nigerian flags, sitting on the ground, some kneeling, some singing the national anthem, peaceful and determined.

Read full article on New York times here

Looking (and successfully applying) for new jobs is always going to be difficult – it does not matter if you are a recent graduate looking to take the first steps in your career, or an experienced professional seeking a change. The job market becomes increasingly more competitive each year, with numerous qualified people applying for the same job. Therefore, it is important that you take on any and all advice offered to you when searching for a job – whether they offer advice on cover letters or what to wear to an interview

Here are some top tips to help you through the process!

1. Alter your resume

Every job will have a different job specification, where they will list the skills and abilities required to undertake the role. It is important that you read this specification carefully and then alter your CV to carefully match their requirements. For example, if you have worked in a shop, be sure to note down you have cash handling experience if it is on the job spec, as opposed to assuming the employer will be aware of this already. This makes the process of looking over your CV much easier for the employer, who will be able to quickly determine whether or not you are suitable for the role.

You don’t have to massively change your CV each time. Set up a base CV that contains your main skills, work experience, and any academic qualifications and simply alter it a little each time.

2. Search smartly

Though you may feel in desperate need of work, you must search for jobs that you are trained for or have a specific interest in. It is important that you enjoy your work – you want it to be something you look forward to and can really invest yourself in order to get the most out of it. Once you know what industry you want to work within, find the best ways to apply for jobs in that industry. For example, if you are looking for business administration work, you may benefit from applying on LinkedIn or Indeed.

However, if you are looking for work within a more niche field, such as audio visual jobs, then you need to use job application portals that are more industry-specific and focused, such as Lasso. When registered with Lasso, you can browse through hundreds of jobs within the audio visual field, selecting those that are a perfect match for your skills. Even better, you don’t have to wait for invoices and can get paid weekly.

3. Do your research

When applying for a new job at a company, it is important that you learn as much as you can about that company. Check out their website and social media pages, research any news articles written about them, browse through their LinkedIn. Try to gain a deep understanding of not only the services they offer but their attitudes to work and their ethos. This will help you decide whether you want to work for them, but can also be used to help you stand out from the crowd in an interview.

Source: Baucemag.com

Rukayat Sadiq, is  a software engineer with over 5 years successful experience leading engineering teams to build and deliver scalable software products in multiple languages and technologies.

The need to solve problems around her led Rukayat to study Electrical & Electronics Engineering. The same zeal also directed her the field of software engineering field where she has focused on working with teams to build software solutions targeted at the health, financial and educational sectors through her career.

Rukayat decided to go into software engineering after she realised what she could potentially build through computer programs having successfully written code to solve her engineering mathematics problems in her undergraduate days.

She currently works as a software engineer with Influitive – a Canadian based marketing technology firm.

She had worked as a Full Stack Software Engineer and Technical Team Lead, Senior Software Engineer at Andela, after completing the Andela Fellowship Program. At Andela, Rukayat also co-foounded and co-led the Andela’s Ladies-in-Tech group. She is also a co-organizer of the Lagos Women in Machine Learning and Data Science Group.

Rukayat holds a bachelors degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the University of Ilorin and is completing her masters degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.

Rukayat was one of the women celebrated in Tech Cabal‘s Tech Women Lagos series, which profiled 50 women in the Lagos technology ecosystem from different backgrounds and at different stages of their technology careers.

We celebrate Rukayat for pursuing her dreams and inspiring others to do so and we’re rooting for her!

Source: Bellanaija

Although we’d like to believe that our partner would never lie to us, occasionally we get hit with a gut feeling that something just isn’t right. Maybe your partner has been more secretive with their phone. Perhaps they aren’t as talkative as normal. Regardless of the reason, if you’re trying to alleviate your anxiety, here’s how to know if your partner is hiding something.

They’re Hiding Accounts or Transactions

If you used to pay your bills together and your partner now suddenly takes care of the bills before you can see them, they may be hiding something. To find out the truth, visit a website like https://checkpeople.com. For a small fee, you’ll be able to run a background check on your partner. The report gives users a comprehensive report, covering everything from the criminal background to a credit check.

Simply review the accounts posted to their credit report to verify any loans, bank accounts, and credit cards they have in their name. If something doesn’t match what they’ve disclosed to you, they’re hiding something.

They Become Super Defensive

One of the first ways to uncover whether your partner is hiding something is to ask them. Opening the conversation with a calm, rational tone is important. You don’t want to come across as confrontational or manipulative. Start the dialogue with how you’re feeling and build from there.

Make sure to gauge their reaction, particularly if they get triggered or offended. This reaction is either a subconscious defense or an intentional response to avoid how they’re feeling. In a normal, healthy relationship, both partners should feel comfortable discussing their concerns without the other person blowing up emotionally. When a simple conversation winds up causing defensive behavior or irrational anger, there’s a good chance they’ve got something to hide.

Their Schedule Becomes Unpredictable and Odd

If your partner has always been a creature of habit, sudden changes in routine can be an indicator that something is awry. Changes to exercise routines or personal schedules (like driving into work early) may not be conclusive evidence that your partner is hiding something, but it is worth noticing if it seems to fluctuate.

Often, if a partner is considering an affair, changes to personal appearance are ways of getting more attention from new partners or interests. Pay attention to whether your partner suddenly has an interest in working out, dressing up, or increases their grooming routine. They may be trying to improve their overall health or emotional well being, but it’s worth a conversation if it’s out of character.

They Seem to Overly Compensate

After being with a partner for longer periods, romance and sweet gestures seem to fall by the wayside. This is especially true for couples who have been together long after the honeymoon phase of their relationship. Everyone enjoys affection and sweet gifts but pay attention to when these gifts are given.

While your partner may want to improve the romance within your relationship, it may also be a sign of hiding shady behavior. Purchasing flowers or jewelry randomly makes you feel good. However, if the gift-giving seems to follow a late return home or long business trips, trust your gut if you feel like something is off.

Something Just Doesn’t Add Up

The one problem with lying is the inability to keep up with the stories as time goes on. Eventually, inconsistencies are going to show up as they forget what they told you. Although no one can remember their day in perfect detail, listen for major discrepancies in their story.

If your partner told you he went out for lunch with a few coworkers and the story suddenly changes to not getting lunch at all, there’s a good chance he’s trying to hide something. Feel free to ask him to clarify what he did during his lunch break if the stories don’t add up. If the relationship is going to last, communication and honesty need to be at the front of the relationship.

When you have suspicions that something in your relationship isn’t quite right, it’s always a good idea to try and uncover the truth. Although your suspicion may be entirely unfounded, knowing the truth about any discrepancies or changes in behavior is important when you want to build your future together.

Source: Baucemag.com

When you first made the decision to become a business owner, you knew you had to come up with a budget, devise marketing strategies, and focus on customer needs… it never occurred to you what it would take to build a strong team behind your brand.

As important as employees are to every business, hiring them is oftentimes the last thing on an entrepreneur’s to-do list up until they actually need them.

The thing to understand about entrepreneurship is that there’s not one business owner who completely did everything by themselves… they had help along the way.

Employees are the foundation of many businesses, and in order to get the most out of your team and for your business to be successful, you’re going to have to invest in them. Investing in your employees can be done in many different ways. But whether you have a team of 10 or 30, it’s not going to be an easy feat.

When you group different people with different personalities together, there will eventually be some clashings of personalities, miscommunications, and differences of opinions…this are to be expected. But as the owner of the business, it’s up to you to have measures in place so that when conflicts do arise you can handle it with grace and it doesn’t affect the overall efficiency and productivity of the workday.

Nonetheless, whether conflict arises or not, the key to success is to be proactive in minimizing conflict in the workplace before it even happens. To build an effective and productive team, here are some efforts you need to make as a business owner managing your team.

Create a Healthy and Positive Work Environment

Many people don’t realize it but the environment you work in plays a significant role in just how productive you are. If your office area and desk is full of clutter, it can be a huge hindrance to the psyche.

Papers laying around, food, TV, and music are all potential distractions to your employees. But then again, you have to gauge your employees to see what type of office environment plays to their productivity. Maybe providing coffee and snacks in the breakroom adds to their productivity; Maybe lightly playing classical music is something that makes them work more efficiently…

Ultimately, creating a healthy and positive work environment for your team is going to require you getting to know them as well as their likes and dislikes.

Incorporate Team Building Exercises

Productivity within your team is going to rely heavily on camaraderie among the employees. Do your employees get along with each other? If not, it’s typically because they don’t know each other too well. This is when it’s important to incorporate various team building activities.

Team building is an excellent way to help employees get to know their co-workers and boost the overall office environment… plus it’s fun! You can do these exercises outside of the office and at the office as well, but the overall purpose and goal of it is to eliminate any grudges or judgments among team members to create a harmonious and productive work environment.

Understand the Strengths and Weaknesses of Your Team

In being the owner of a business, you hired each individual member of your team because they had certain strengths you were looking for. But in hiring them for their strengths, you don’t always find out during the hiring process what their weaknesses are, and because of that, you have to become a mentor to your team and find out their strengths and weaknesses.

By finding out the strengths and weaknesses of your employees, it’s going to help you better divvy responsibilities. Maybe you hired an employee for accounting but discover she’s not good at drafting contracts. This may force you to get creative in your thinking. Maybe you just let her stick to numbers and then let your other team member handle drafting contracts for you…

It’s all very doable, especially if you have a solid team; you just have to have a clear understanding of your employees’ strengths and weaknesses to run your business more efficiently. Having the wrong people handling the wrong responsibilities will only slow productivity down.

Invest in Project Management Software

Project management software is going to be key in ensuring all employees are on the same page, which, in turn, boosts productivity and efficiency. It also allows you to track productivity and efficiency as well. Everything from sales projections to group chats, this type of software is the complete solution for workplace miscommunications.

Source: Baucemag

The Coalition of #EndSARS protest groups across Lagos and Nigeria has released a statement regarding the deprioritization of physical protests for now, and its objectives in the next couple of days which includes, the nomination of leaders to represent protesters, clean up, offline community engagement and more.

Read the statement below:

Following the nationwide address from President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday, October 22, we are more resolved to press not just for justice but for a new and better Nigeria where all citizens are safe and can thrive.

Lagos State, where the hotbed of resistance began has been under state-wide curfew imposed by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu. Prior to that, Soldiers attacked peaceful protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate and unleashed carnage. We have watched with horror, the ensuing acts of violence, murder, looting, razing and vandalization of homes, businesses and organizations in Lagos State, and we will like to state emphatically that these are not protesters. We completely condemn any form of violence or looting.

For the sake of the wellbeing of our comrades and ordinary citizens being adversely affected by this, we will deprioritize the physical protests, for now. But, for the sake of those who died, before the protests, during the protests, and at the hands of Soldiers at the Lekki Toll Gate — people who the government has largely refused to acknowledge, THE STRUGGLE MUST CONTINUE.

Here are our objectives in the next few days:

1. Clean Up

During our protests, we made a conscious effort to clean up the venues and keep our environment safe for everyone. Following the condemnable vandalizations that took place since the curfews began, we are volunteering efforts towards the clean-up and rebuilding of the state.

2. Online Protest

We will continue to intensify online publicity and protest of the issues and demands made. We will be hosting conversations, sharing articles and amplifying voices of thought leaders in that direction.

3. Offline Community Engagement

We will continue grassroots mobilization and civic education of the masses, providing tools for education to enable them to understand the scale and scope of what is at stake.

4. Timelines

We are putting a timeline together to track actions taken to meet our demands. This way, we know what has been done, what is being done, and what can be ticked off our list. This way, we know if and when the government defaults, and we can decide if a return to the streets is necessary.

5. Strategy

We are building short, medium- and long-term strategies to sustain this momentum and keep this fire that has been ignited by the actions of young people across Nigeria burning. The strategies are pillared on and geared towards Education, Voter Registration, Political Consciousness and Representation for Young People in government.

6. Structure

We will create a structure to strategically consolidate demands, formalize the coalition, galvanize the continued online protest, develop standards for monitoring and evaluation, and continue the mobilization and education of the citizens.

7. Representation

The leaderless nature of this protest but consistent oneness in demands have been part of our unique strengths. As we move towards consolidation and negotiation, it is now pertinent we put forward a diverse group to represent the different coalitions; from celebrities to activists, legal minds to strategists, journalists to entrepreneurs, etc. We consulted far and wide, to come up with these names, and while this may not be exhaustive, it offers us an interim basis to begin the negotiation and consolidation.

The nominees will meet with different protest leaders/blocs across the country/states, and consolidate on a vehicle for continuous demands. They will also track actions of the Government, represent our demands and provide feedback to us regularly. They are:

Names of Nominees at the Federal level:

Click to Vote 

Names of Nominees at the State level: (Lagos)

Click to Vote

Advisory

Due to the decentralized nature of this movement across the country, we nominate a team with experience in leadership and diplomacy, to assist in advisory and other support. This team will be consulted from time to time within the process. The criteria are people with integrity, people who have a vast experience in national issues, and who have a track record of being pro-young people.

Nominees for Advisory Board

Click to Vote

All nominations are provisional. If there are people you think should be on the list, people who have been critical in the success of these protests and can work towards the actualization of our demands, and the ultimate mission — a better government/future for Nigeria, please nominate.

In conclusion, these protests have never been politically motivated. It is not about ethnicity or tribalism. The young people across the country are demanding justice, good governance, accountability and reforms. These protests have no sponsor nor agenda other than what we have stated repeatedly; better governance, accountability and an end to brutality.

To everyone who has lost someone or something, we stand in solidarity with you.

To all our heroes that died before and during these struggles, we say Rest in Power! Your deaths will not be in vain.

It is NOT finished!

On behalf of the Coalition.

“Thursday is Thursday”

– Runtown

This was all we needed to reach our boiling point and take to the streets finally. This tweet woke up the youth in every state in Nigeria, and, subsequently, in countries across all habitable continents in the world.

This was the beginning of our journey to freedom, our journey to bring hope to the hundreds of families who had lost members to the Nigerian Police Force’s irrational brutality, especially the SARS unit. It was justice for the Iloanyas of the country.

The protest was the best thing I had experienced as a citizen of Nigeria. For the first time in my life, I was proud to be called a Nigerian, especially a Nigerian youth. We, the Soro Soke, Phone Pressing, Indomie, and Coconut Head Generation, were united. The religious and tribal and political lines that used to divide us were non-existent. The constant bickering on social media about gender was on hold; the Patriarchy FC and Feminist Coven sheath their swords as we all focused on a common goal: #EndSARS.

Young people in different states came out in numbers almost every day, sharing food, playing games, praying, and even practicing yoga while still demanding our rights. In all the days people protested across the country, nobody ever complained that a phone got stolen or a car vandalized; people returned lost phones and other items found. We cleaned up the streets each day, celebrity or not.

Our protest yielded the devil’s gift: the SARS unit got scrapped and was replaced with SWAT. Same people, different names. The protest continued, and we were met with more police brutality for protesting against police brutality. Jimoh Isiaq and many others died. Why would you use live ammunition on unarmed protesters? The aim is clear: sacrifice a few and let the rest cower in fear.

We ignored them and protested even harder. We demanded justice for the numbers added to their long list of atrocities. This was when the government decided to play the oldest hand in their playbook. They unleashed their greatest weapon – poverty.

Institutionalized poverty is the greatest asset of the average Nigerian politician. They use it to win elections, fight their enemies, and, in this case, win protests. The government deployed hoodlums to infiltrate the protest, to cause havoc, and blame it on us. These hoodlums attacked protesters, killing a few and injuring many others (RIP Anthony Unuode). They destroyed cars and other properties belonging to peaceful protesters. This carnage happened in the full glare of police officers and other security operatives.

Now, this is where it gets interesting. According to eyewitness videos, these hoodlums were transported with police vehicles, state-owned official buses and, the most shocking, a government-owned SUV complete with a well-dressed security officer. More videos have surfaced showing them being directed on what to destroy and what not to destroy because they belonged to ‘baba.’

One of the hoodlums graciously granted a peaceful protester an interview (celebrity things). He said they got paid N1500 to disrupt the protest by damaging government and individual properties. He also said he had been a victim of the SARS unit, and he had just been released from prison, but he needed the money.

Inmates in different state prisons were freed to discredit the #EndSARS protest and justify what later became the #LekkiMassacre. Military men attacked the most peaceful and fun protesters in the country who occupied the Lekki toll gate. They sat on the ground holding up the Nigerian flag, singing the national anthem while the military shot at them. The Nigerian flag was stained with the blood of the innocent. A courageous young woman, DJ Switch, got the events of that day on her Instagram Live. Many of us watched in horror as she and a few others tried to remove a bullet from the lap of one of our patriots, before he eventually died. Scores died, and the streets of Twitter are currently littered with pictures of missing persons.

Nigerian youths did not deserve what happened on 20-10-20. We were only asking that we stop getting extorted if we are lucky, or killed if we are not, by the police. Did it have to deteriorate to people dying like flies and people losing their homes and businesses?

When you release a beast to solve a problem, you create even greater problems, because you can’t tell the beast when to stop. These hoodlums have gone on a destruction spree, looting supermarkets and other businesses across the states. They have set fire to countless buildings and places. The country is in a state of chaos, and we don’t even know when it will end. I am sure these hoodlums were there peacefully during the protests, until they decided to use the weapon of poverty to pit them against their mates who were equally fighting for them.

Still, on this poverty thing, these people withheld palliatives meant for the citizens during the pandemic. Several warehouses have been discovered with thousands of food items stashed – I guess they were saving it to distribute during elections. They starve people to the point where they can buy their votes with a few packs of Indomie that were meant for them in the first place. One lawmaker justified keeping the palliatives intended for his constituents because he wanted to share it on his birthday, as per birthday giveaway abi souvenirs. They call us the Indomie generation, whereas they are the ones storing cartons of Indomie. Shame!

This country will not get better until we go to the grassroots and educate our brothers and sisters on the need to stop dancing to the tune of these wicked people in power. If not, they will continue to use them to sabotage our efforts for a better Nigeria.

The #EndSARS protest has played a significant role in unraveling the damage poverty and bad governance can cause in any society. It has shone more light on the fact that we are sitting on a keg of gun powder. The poorer the citizens are, the more dangerous it is for everyone. Some people in government have experienced this as some of their houses got raided and even burnt.

Dear Nigerian youth, we have started a movement that has gained international recognition. We cannot back down now. We must continue to demand justice for our brothers and sisters who have fallen due to police brutality. We must continue to fight for those who died protesting and the many whose lives were cut short on 20-10-20 and the days that followed. We must demand the punishment of the perpetrators of these heinous crimes against humanity. Most importantly, we have to take the campaign to the grassroots. We have to sensitize and ensure that our brothers and sisters who were paid  N1500, an amount that cannot buy a bucket of rice, begin to see the light. Let them know these people may have stolen their future but they can get it back, if not for themselves, then for their children unborn.

To all the people still protesting internationally, thank you. To the international press who covered what happened, thank you. To the Feminist Coalition, thank you. To all the celebrities and people across the world who lent their voices to our struggle, we love and appreciate you. Na who support us we go watch their film and stream their music.

To the Nigerian youth, thank you! May we continue to soro soke and demand for what is truly ours.

#EndSARS #EndSWAT #Endpolicebrutality #ENDbadgovernanceinNigeria.