Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka says he will cut his green card and leave the United States if Donald Trump wins the presidential election, according to a report by The Guardian.
The report said Soyinka, a scholar-in-residence at New York University’s Institute of American Affairs, disclosed the plan in a speech to Oxford students.
“If in the unlikely event he does win, the first thing he’ll do is to say [that] all green-card holders must reapply to come back into the US. Well, I’m not waiting for that,” said Soyinka, who is scholar-in-residence at New York University’s Institute of African American Affairs this autumn. “The moment they announce his victory, I will cut my green card myself and start packing up.”
The Nigerian playwright and poet, who was imprisoned in Nigeria during its civil war, later fleeing the country and receiving a death sentence in absentia, urged young people to stand up against oppression.
Giving a seminar to students at Oxford University, he also laid into Brexit, saying it was a “ridiculous decision”, and part of an international rise in what he called “ultranationalism”.
“What is happening in Europe shouldn’t surprise any of us … It has happened before,” he said. “We were here when Enoch Powell was leading his thugs out to drive blacks from here … it’s a constant fight to try to get a nation to recognize its own noble persuasions, its own persuasions of the loftiness of human possibility. It’s for young people like you to say no to them whenever that happens.”