Ex-Banker reluctantly suspends Hunger Strike before he has a chance to starve to death.

Posted on November 27, 2012 by

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On the 12th of November 2012, 53 year old Olubiyi Odunaro embarked on an indefinite hunger strike in protest over the non-payment of terminal benefits owed to him and 14,000 of his ex-colleagues by their former employers, Hallmark Bank plc. His admirable attempt to make a change by doing something drastic, was brought to an end after an appeal from the Lagos State Government (LSG).

He ended, sorry, postponed his hunger strike for 2 weeks, after being persuaded by the LSG that (a) a hunger strike would surely damage his health and ultimately kill him, (b) it would provide Mr Odunaro and his colleagues with more lawyers (in addition to their already existing lawyer) to help prosecute their case and (c) it would wade in to help resolve the issue. It was reported that Mr Odunaro was provided with immediate health care and we are certain that the health warning was the straw that broke his proverbial back.

In spite of the quick turn around time on his indefinite hunger strike, Mr Odunaro has made a very strong point – that if you believe in something, do whatever it takes to get your voice heard and you can make a difference, even in Nigeria. This is reminiscent of the Tunisian fruit and vegetable seller who set himself ablaze and in turn set in motion the Arab Spring. Maybe when Mr Odunaro resumes his hunger strike in two weeks, others affected by his actions will join him and add numbers to the cause. We are doubtful.

 

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