When Daniel Pantaleo got off for killing Eric Garner in 2014 we were at a dead-silent breakfast buffet in Victoria Island, Lagos, getting ready for an interview. Garner’s repeated words of “I can’t breathe” lingered in the thoughts of all at the table, who were dumbfounded by a Richmond jury’s decision not to indict Pantaleo.

I remember thinking that while Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, felt miles away from an America with a black and hunted minority, not even being black in a nation with the largest number of black people in the world shielded one from being a target. Ask Fela Kuti or Ken Saro-Wiwa. The global system of white supremacy has never been short of the pliable and willing among the oppressed. “Barristers” wore fake white wigs and had afternoon tea at 3.45pm in Nairobi decades after the last governor-general left after the Mau Mau uprising.

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