Richard Akinnola, a veteran journalist, pro-democracy activist and author, has demanded a carton of beer of President Muhammadu Buhari. Akinnola made his demand in his recollection of an encounter he had with soldiers on January 1, 1984. It was the day preceding the military putsch, led by then Major General Buhari, on December 31, 1983.
Based on Akinnola’s account, he had gone to fetch some booze for revelry among his colleagues at the Guardian newspaper. While returning, soldiers manning a checkpoint stopped and searched the trunk of his car, upon which they found the ‘culprits’ carefully arranged in a cartoon. The soldiers behaved to type and Akinnola believes now President Buhari was vicariously liable for his loss.
He recalled: “A day after the new year eve of Buhari’s coup that is, January 1, 1984, we were busy in the newsroom at The Guardian till midnight, getting all angles to the coup. Of course, there was a curfew. But you know now, boys became restless in the newsroom. We wanted to “shak”. I am sure, baba Ndidi, Chuks Iloegbunam would remember this incident.
“When it was about 1am, l picked my car key and told either Wole Agunbiade or Tunde Olofintila to accompany me to go buy a carton of beer at Ilupeju for the boys. “We managed to get to Ilupeju. Bought our carton of Star and headed back to Rutam house at Aswani. Then we met an army checkpoint. Kasala burst. Na so we dey beg say we be journalists; we dey support you people nah, bla bla bla. Dem say make we open booth. Dem come see carton of beer. They gave us two bottles and carried the rest. That was our visa to go. See wetin beer dey cause? I go still tell PMB say he dey owe me a carton of Star beer but as old things have passed away now, make he monetise am. Hehehe…shayo na bastard. Shege.”
Akinnola, a prolific writer, has authored many books including Fellow Countrymen: The Story of Coup D’etats in Nigeria; Abiola, Democracy and Rule of Law; Judge Don Beg Me: The Odyssey of Fela Anikulapo Kuti’s encounters with the law; Prison J.60: the legal struggles of Gani Fawehinmi.
Akinnola’s Facebook post: