We of the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) express our heartfelt sorrow at the untimely departure of Bamidele Aturu, a renowned former students’ leader and pro-working class and human rights activist.
As the Students’ Union President at Adeyemi College of Education, Ondo, Ondo State and later as Vice-President of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) at Obafemi Awolowo University, where he read Law, Aturu stood as one of the leading lights of the student movement’s struggle against the anti-poor capitalist policy of education commercialization.
It was in furtherance of that struggle that he famously rejected a National Youth Service Corps award from a military administrator in Niger State.
Aturu was to later play prominent roles in the anti-military and post military struggles against human rights violations and pauperizing neoliberal policies. Through all these, “BF” as he is popularly called built the reputation of a steadfast working class activist and socialist.
For us in the SPN, one of the most striking aspects of Aturu’s character was his broad-minded orientation which illuminated his political conclusions. This explains why despite that he belonged to a different political spectrum on the left which often does not see any good from the Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM), Aturu gave commendable financial support to the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN), a party initiated by DSM.
No tribute can be more befitting for Aturu’s than for socialist, youth and working class elements to continue with the challenge of building a genuine political alternative.
The Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) would continue the unflinching defense of working people’s interests, as Aturu relentlessly did, by opposing all forms of mass disenfranchisement of the working people through such means as undemocratic deregistration of political parties and obnoxious conditions for party registration.
Pursuant to this task, the SPN has since submitted its application to the Independent National Electoral Commission having met all conditions under the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and Electoral Act 2010 (2011 as amended) for the purpose of standing genuine working class candidates in the coming 2015 general elections and participating in the daily struggles of the working people in and out of political offices.
National Chairperson, SPN