Thoughts Lead To Appreciation
You can kill me if you want, BUT, I will say what I want!
I am very disappointed!
I expected you to be better than your subordinates; instead you are worse.
I expected your subordinates to give me problems that I will seek your intervention.
Director: You are right.
No! It is not a matter of my being right.
If I were to evaluate you. I will grade you worse than your subordinates!
They were very nice, unless they were pretending.
Director: No. They were not pretending.
That was the second heated exchange I had with the director of Department Of State Security ~DSS/ SSS, Sokoto.
The first was sparked when in our first sitting he demanded in succession I provide the names of my parents and former husband.
You are demanding I give you the names of persons who are not part of my life!
I have not lived with my parents since I was 15!
After all my struggles alone, you want me to give you their names!
I divorced my former husband almost 12 years ago and you want his name!
The director dropped the demand for details of my ex-husband, saying I should answer any questions his staff ask me.
What more information do you want!
I have given you all the information I can.
The director was annoyed I had written a half-page statement instead of several pages.
He was emphatic on the need to gather information about me to clear public perception.
You are holding me here because of public perception!
Is public perception a criminal offence?
Director: We are all Muslims.
NO! Do not tell me we are all Muslims!
You practise your religion; I practise mine!
I did that so my freedom of Religion is not circumscribed or defined by any Muslim.
I expected much better.
This is the Department Of State Security not the Department Of Gossip Circle!
I left his office and was taken to another official who insisted I remove my Niqab.
Official: So we know whom we are asking questions.
Ask me your questions.
Again, I declined to provide the names and addresses of my parents and ex-husband.
At a point, I mentioned my friends.
Official: Give us the names of your associates.
You mean my friends?
Official: Are they ghosts?
NO! Do not say that!
I asked for a simple clarification:
You mean my friends?
Official: Yes, your friends.
I wrote their names and addresses, with oral explanations of the residences.
I refused to surrender their telephone numbers.
I cannot give you their phone numbers.
In my second sitting with the director after giving him my opinions on how poorly he does his job, he became calm and resorted to demanding respect because he is an elder.
Moreover, he reminded me, he had approved for a meal and drinks to be bought for me!
He swiftly redacted his words that my presence at SSS was not to do with public perception and that DSS was not a gossip circle.
His staff beseeched me to remain calm.
How anyone is expected to have any semblance of tranquility when one’s liberty is threatened remains a mystery!
I sincerely commend the two female staff who discussed at depth with me.
One of the women revealed she remembers me, for we were colleagues at college.
Both of the women were cordial from start to finish.
They made arrangements for lunch to be bought for me and for me to pray Salat Al-Asr.
Prior to leaving for State Security Office, Salah Az-Zuhr, I prayed at my apartment with their consent and they sat in my home waiting.
Nigeria works for me.
I am to return to the office of State Security Service tomorrow, Thursday morning, at 10:00 hours.
They have not concluded investigations, I was told.
Yeah! – After five full hours in the company of DSS/ SSS!
I still believe in this nation.