Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka speaks to pupils during a mentoring session at the Lagos Book and Art Festival November 15, 2014. REUTERS/Akintunde Akinleye
Renowned Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka has described Nigeria as sick and empty, deserving of the term “shithole” as described by United States President, Donald Trump.
Soyinka said this while speaking at the Ripples Nigerian Dialogue titled “Rebuilding trust in a Divided Nigeria,” held at The Wheatbaker Hotel in Ikoyi, Lagos.
“We have become laughing stocks in the eyes of the public.
“We have earned the term of shithole. Nigeria is sick and empty. Some retrogressive forces won’t just stop. Everything Nigeria touches rusts.”
He condemned the humiliation of Nigerians by military personnel, stating that the humiliation of Nigerians led him to relocating abroad.
“The treatment of Nigerians by the military led me to relocating to a saner clime. I remember invading Obasanjo’s residence in Lagos and challenging him concerning the way Nigerians were being treated. It is a disgrace to us, as a nation. We have been left behind in nearly every field.
“There are lessons to be learnt from the diaspora. We need to peep across the Atlantic to see how other countries have been faring,” Soyinka said.
Drawing illustrations from his lecture titled “From Miyetti to Haiti: Notes from a Solidarity Visit,” Soyinka emphasized the need to end slavery in our society.
Soyinka emphasized the need of looking in the mirror to solve Nigerian problems and encouraged youths to resist the passage of the Hate Speech bill.
The round table featured Soyinka, Professor Pat Utomi, represented by Mr Rasheed Adegbenro, Ex Governor Peter Obi and Dr. (Mrs) Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi.
The session was moderated by former Presidential spokesman Reuben Abati.