Nigerian flutist, Tee Mac Omatshola Iseli has firmly stated that there is some SARS in all of us as individuals, adding that there is a need for a moral revolution.
“We need a moral revolution from the bottom to the top. There is some SARS in all of us. From the musicians to politicians, teachers, students, everybody,” Tee Mac explained.
The ex-President of the Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria (PMAN) explained this while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, said people needed to treat their neighbors the same way they want to be treated.
NAN reports that recently there were widespread protests, tagged “#EndSARS” across the nation in condemnation of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), a police formation accused of extra-judicial killings.
In reaction to the protest, Tee Mac disclosed that his son was also harassed by SARS operatives, adding that the condemnation they received should also be visited on people who do not treat their neighbors well.
“My son was also harassed because of his hair and he uses an iPhone. Yes, we need to fight, not just SARS but the whole system.
“From my experience in Europe, you need to treat people well, respect your neighbors, and share when you make money, especially with your band members.
“I came to Nigeria after my degree in Music and Economics in 1970 to see some band leaders treating their members like thrash and I always criticize that,” he told NAN.
He recalled that in 2000, he was to perform at a Gala night after which he made his band members sleep at the same five-star hotel where they all passed the night and I saw some band leaders leaving their members to pass the night in the bus.
“I do the same thing when I cook. Now none of us was being paid immediately, in fact, I am still being owed but I made sure my members were comfortable because you are as good as your band.
“If one man in your band is not good, then the sound is not there. So, treat them well and pay them well. In the music industry and outside, treat those working for you well.
“My domestic staff have been working with me for years. This is not really because I pay them well but because I treat them well.
“If you are a bandleader and you don’t pay your musicians well, you don’t treat them well, you let them sleep in the bus on tour while you stay in a five-star hotel.”
He added that if you eat in a first-class restaurant while your band members eat bread and sardine, then you are worse than SARS.
“We have to start respecting our neighbors. It is stated in the bible. `Love thy neighbor as you love thyself’ and that will solve all the problems.” he said.