Since I published How to Start a Revolution, I have been inundated with demands to present a step by step guide.
While it is uplifting to see that many more of our people are beginning to see what some of us have been crying about for years, I am not one to encourage anyone to embark on a foolish mission. It is important that we do a reality check before we begin.
Are We Ripe?
People are like wood. A revolution is like a bonfire. The wood must be dry. The pieces need to come together under a stand. Then they are ready for a spark to set them ablaze. In our own case, I think we have been ripe for many years. My fear is that we may have become overripe. Like a mango that the owner failed to harvest when ripe, it gets over ripe. And worse still, it becomes rotten. I fear that we are rotten, too rotten for a revolution. I fear that because I do not understand why we have suffered so much humiliation for so long without any serious attempt at revolting. I fear that because I see our people expressing their outrage after watching a video of soldiers murdering defenseless civilians in Jos. I fear that because I cannot understand what took them so long. Hasn’t that been happening for decades without end? I hope we are not rotten. I hope so.
Are We Ready?
If we are ripe, are we ready? How many of us are ready to pledge our fortunes, our properties and our lives for the revolution? That is important, folks. A revolution is not like a demonstration. The critical mass of people cannot choose not to be involved. In a way, our people are not fully ready for a revolution. They must understand exactly what it takes. It takes everything. If people who want a revolution are not ready to bear the cost, they are better off not starting one. Are you ready to lose you house in Abuja? Are you ready to hand over that car in a dealer’s lot in Lagos waiting for a buyer? Are you ready to lose a leg? Are you ready to lose your wife?
Where Is the Manifesto?
All revolutions have the intellectual base from which they emerge. Where is ours? The upcoming revolution must be guided by an intellectual tablet. A revolution is like fire. If it is not controlled, it burns up even those who started it. A manifesto is needed to guide the revolution and those who will inherit it. Should the revolution fail the first time, the manifesto should be the guide for those who will try it the second time. The good news is that not everyone should be involved in drawing up a manifesto. And the other good news is that Nigerians are not shy about expressing their opinions. In all these opinions are the nuggets needed to draw up a manifesto that reflects the desires of our people. Luckily, our people are not asking for the moon. They are asking for decency, freedom and respect. The same things many people have asked for in revolutions past.
What Kind of Revolution?
There are two types of revolutions. It could be peaceful or violent. J.F. Kennedy said that, “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible, make violent revolution inevitable.” I must add that those who want peaceful revolution must prepare for a violent revolution while those who want a violent revolution must be open to a peaceful revolution. The kind of revolution is generally determined by the strength of the establishment being removed. By all indications, the Nigerian establishment is not going to hand over the keys without a fight. They are used to fights. They are not shy about using brutal force. They have been making peaceful revolution impossible. And they will not relent now.
Who Will Lead?
Who will lead is like asking which piece of wood will catch fire first. I will say that if you are up for a revolution, you have to act like a leader. Begin to organize people where you are. It is important that at the planning stage no single leader is identified. A leader identified at the early stage will simply be eliminated by those ready to quell the revolution. And that will have a demoralizing effect on the embryonic revolution. Let the leaders be so numerous and the centers of activity so vast that the reactionaries would be at a loss as to where to concentrate on. When it is time for a showdown, a central leadership will emerge. And should they be eliminated, other experienced leaders at other centers will quickly step in.
Step by Step Guide
Now here are the step by step guides toward starting a revolution.
1.) Stand in front of a mirror and tell yourself that you are pledging your fortune, properties and life to the revolution.
2.) Tell yourself that you are the leader of the revolution.
3.) Begin to put away significant resources for the revolution. The resources you commit must be large enough to hurt your lifestyle.
4.) Begin to recruit people of similar minds into your revolutionary circle.
5.) Reach out to those who have established other centers of revolutionary activities.
6.) Keep spreading the message.
7.) If the manifesto has not been prepared, work towards its emergence.
8.) In conjunction with other centers of revolutionary activities, begin test runs.
9.) Go for the critical mass.
10.) Once the resources have been accumulated; the pieces of wood are dry; they will easily catch a fire.
Test Run: How to Chase Away Nigerian Ministers & Members of the National Assembly from Abuja.
1.) Gather 100,000 sensitized Nigerian people ready to die.
2.) Transport them to Abuja.
3.) Provide them with food and basic necessities.
4.) Prepare to have them camped in Abuja for 100 days.
5.) Have them wired to communicate with the outside world.
6.) Be ready to lose 10,000 of them in a situation where the security forces open fire.
7.) If the government brings violence, be ready to respond in kind.
8.) … Let the people storm Aso Rocks and the National Assembly complex.
9.) … Freedom.
If you ask me, it is now that Anambra State Governor, Mr. Peter Obi, has won reelection and Mr. Goodluck Jonathan has become the acting president that we should prepare for a revolution that is long overdue. The new minister for special duties, the anaconda himself, Mr. Michael Aondoakaa, is available for the revolutionaries to use in testing the guillotine.
Damn! I forgot to talk about the guillotine.