Jungle Justice

I was watching the news yesterday and one particular occurrence broke me. I will first share the facts, before we discuss context.

A driver killed 3 people and took his life. The driver ran down his first victim, before proceeding on a collision course with other unsuspecting victims and in the end, he took his life.

In France, the first suspicion would have been terrorism.
In Nigeria, the first suspicion was hit-and-run.

Read the full story here.

If it happened in France, it will be shocking to imagine that the driver tried to get away because of fear. It will be thought that the act was either willful vengeance or the result of a mental illness. After all, that individual can still be saved if you stop and call for help.

This tragedy was supposed to end with the loss of one life, but in Nigeria, the fear of lynching has forced drivers to flee, immediately a fatal accident occurs.

A bad situation quickly escalated to a total disaster because of fear.

We lost 4 lives yesterday, because the one person that could save everyone, was scared. He knew the full extent of his error and like every human, he wanted to preserve self. He could have stopped and helped, but he knew he would lose his life before he had the chance to help or explain.

We lost 4 lives because our society accepts jungle justice. Jungle justice is premised on the belief that all we see is all there is. In this case – a life taken can be more bearable by taking another life. A life is never just one life. You don’t nil the loss by taking another life, you compound the loss. Worse still, we condition people into mistaking murder for justice, thus grooming killers that walk free on our streets.

We lost 4 lives. May their souls rest in peace.

– Osasu Oviawe

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