Freedom Of Choice? Not In My House!

Governorship Candidate Ejects Displaced Persons For Their Electoral Choices

by Jerry Chiemeke

Freedom Of Choice? Not In My House!

"There is freedom of speech, but I cannot guarantee freedom after speech." - Idi Amin.

It's true what they say, one's freedom ends where another person's freedom begins. Sure enough, people are allowed to express their right to make choices in respect of certain situations, but they cannot be heard to complain when, as a reaction to their decision, others exercise their own freedom in ways that ultimately affect them negatively. The rockstar is free to make music in his apartment, but the landlord is also allowed to choose to throw him out if he feels that the drums are too loud.

The governorship candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) in Zamfara State, Alhaji Sani Shinkafi, on Wednesday February 27 confirmed that he has ejected all displaced persons taking shelter in his houses for voting for the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the general elections. Shinkafi confirmed this in Gusau at a news conference organised by a coalition of some political parties in the state protesting against the elections.

“I have asked all the IDPs residing in my Shinkafi houses to immediately pack out because they are not serious in life. These are people who had to leave their villages due to insecurity caused by a government that could not provide such basic necessity to them, yet they went and sold their votes at the last elections trying to bring back the same gang,” he claimed.

According to him, in spite of earlier advice to the displaced persons “to vote out those who failed them in the past years”, they still did, allowing themselves to be bought over during the election by “the people who failed them.”

Call him petty, call him vindictive, but the fact remains that he is within his rights to decide whom he (does not) want to live in his house. It's a sad situation, considering the plight of these displaced persons over the past couple of years, but just as tenants cannot be forced on homeowners, these people cannot be imposed on their erstwhile benefactor. It would be interesting to see where they go from here, following the decision of one man to make his feelings known in a rather extreme manner. Political differences should not stand in the way of kindness, but here we are.