The furore generated by the controversial Ekiti State Rerun Election of 2009 was followed by a period of uneasy silence. It seemed that all sides in the conflict were exhausted and just waiting for something to happen.
On May 25, 2009, operating as the Defenders of Democracy coalition, we organized Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) party members and independent voters in Ekiti State to stage a March for Justice in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.
We raised donations from interested supporters and printed banners, t-shirts, placards and reflective jackets for marshalls whose job was to ensure an orderly procession.
We also had meetings with the party executive to ensure that there was representation from all the local governments. We did not want to adopt the common practice of simply 'renting' unemployed youth to march. To ensure that party members were able to take part in the protest, we paid for them to hire buses but no protesters received any form of payment.
We did however provide refreshments and other necessary tools like handkerchiefs soaked in kerosene in case of tear-gassing by the police.
The handkerchiefs turned out to be quite useful as the march was abruptly terminated after a couple of kilometers by a detachment of mobile policemen on the orders the State Governor.
The State ACN Chairman, Chief Jide Awe, who took part in the march, subsequently addressed a press conference at the party headquarters. No lives were lost during the March for Justice.
The march helped to refocus attention on the inconclusive rerun elections.