November 28, 2020
A book, titled: ”Guerrilla Journalism”, is a compelling personal narrative of how Sunday Dare and his colleagues frontally defied anti-media military laws in Nigeria by adopting hitherto unknown tactics to continue to report political events.
”Guerrilla Jounalism’ is a text that narrates a time in the life of the author, Sunday Dare, the Nigeria’s Minister for Sports and Youth Development.
From the vantage position of a first person, Dare provided terrific insights into how it all came together and why in the face of grave danger; a group of journalists embraced underground tactics to continue to expose the military junta.
Indeed, Sunday Dare’s life as a journalist is pretty much a walk in a minefield. From his days as a reporter through his years as an editor and eventually manager of media resources, Dare has weathered storms and come face-to-face with the most potent hazards.
”But in all these, Dare’s quest for balance and fairness has always been unequivocal. Dare is one of the few journalists who uphold fiery reporting and fair representation as sacrosanct principles of journalism.
At a time when most Nigerian journalists wallowed in resentment for the military, Sunday Dare remained a potent professional hand. This may have led to his posting to the jaws of the Abacha Junta, by TheNEWS and TEMPO publications whose writers were all on the hit list of the Junta.
Dare’s posting to Abuja, Nigeria’s Capital city and the cat-and-mouse game he had to sustain gave true meaning to the term “Editor-at-Large”.
Dare took his posting seriously and the execution of his assignments proved that the journalist and his publishers fit each other like a hand and its glove. Some ascribed Dare’s composure to his academic brilliance, while others linked it to his humility.
More point to his detribalized personality, just as others attribute his successes to his thick skin. Either way, Sunday Dare’s unique ability to bring forth the sensitive issues in political tactics places him way ahead of many, aficionados and adversaries alike.
Through his college days Sunday Dare learnt the art of “sleeping with the enemy”. This skill eventually helped to put him a step ahead of the Junta, and its apparatchiks.
Under the military, the nation’s army, its oil industry and the electronic media were the fiefdoms of government. And the resources of all three were vested in one behemoth, which ultimately held the public hostage.
This predatory behemoth was the Junta, which sneered at any craving for a quick return to democracy. Dare’s duty was to expose this Junta.
The military short-changed Nigerians and Dare’s courageous publication exposed them, and it paid dearly for its bravado.
Sunday Dare was one of a group of young, resilient, and enterprising journalists who frontally defied the military. This is not just Sunday Dare’s story, it is their book.
In Guerrilla Journalism, Sunday Dare highlights the previously unattended subject of aggressive reporting of ill- constituted authority that Nigeria last witnessed when it struggled for the return of democracy.
Dare chronicles a confrontation in which the pen audaciously stares the bullet in the face.
If Nigerians cogitated the modus operandi of Dare’s media which enriched public awareness on the insincerity of the military, their moral frailties, crack on the truth, negation of social justice and use of state terrorism, this narration, serves it on a platter; an expose’ of a special kind.
He is a Poet and Journalist,