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PERSPECTIVE: Why Is Nigeria A Jungle Of Bandit?

PERSPECTIVE: Why Is Nigeria A Jungle Of Bandit?
  • PublishedApril 15, 2022



NIGERIA is a country full of miseries, because the voice of wisdom and celebrated men of letters are getting relegated by the politicians who purchased their academic titles from the universities that have lost their universality. It’s no longer news that once upon an accused person for the murder of cicero of Esa Oke, Chief Bola Ige, Sen. Iyiola Omisore has been elevated to the position of National Secretary of the ruling All Progressives Congress. But when Professor Wole Soyinka penned his concerned in paper on the murder of his friend, and the elevation of the “prime suspect” to the post of National Secretary, Omisore replied with denigrating salvos, and even dragged the octogenarian roughly, just like Ige was once dragged before he was killed. However, the issue did not gain traction in the media, because the media outlets belong to those who made the elevation possible. There was no outrage, because Omisore’s position now would serve the political ambition of the payer of the pipers. However, that would not be subject for this piece, a time is coming for that, because the bomb carnage along Kaduna-Abuja corridor should be addressed quickly, for we could be the next victims if the situation is not addressed properly.

Nigerian banditry seems to have been upgraded to a full-fledged terrorism. Fortunately for the bandits, the country is blessed with highly incompetent leadership that is desperate for bougeyman to blame. To the best of my knowledge, the first constitutional assignment of any government in any sovereign state is to guarantee the security of life and property, and if you have a government that cannot do the least assignment, such a government has failed, and it deserves to be treated with scorn and disrespect.

I am not calling for insurrection or rebellion, because violence has no positive result, but accountability and probity that would make the government be on its toes. This could be achieved through a well coordinated civil action or a huge defeat for the ruling party in the next election. The question is what is the alternative? Obviously, the opposition is worse than the governing party, and that tells us that the nation is at the crossroads.

How could a rag-tagged bandit be more powerful than a state? Where are the intelligence and counterintelligence services? Why is the nation still paying the intelligence agencies, when there is nothing to gather for security information? Where is the Directorate of State Security? Where is the National Intelligence Agency? How come nobody knew how the bandit was planning to attack the train service along the Kaduna-Abuja corridor? How come there was no tip about the explosion that torpedoed a train and caused death, sorrow and abduction? How come no one was apprehended for the carnage? What are the Ministers for Defence, Police affairs, Director General of State Security and Director General of NIA still doing in their respective offices? Why is the President still holed up in his bunker at the Aso Rock, instead of visiting the site of the carnage, and various hospitals where the victims are ensconced? Which kind of country is this?

I used to think that the Nigerian government was bracing up for something that would eliminate the threat against the state, but the consistency of the attacks on the helpless citizens and properties since the return of civil rule has shown that there are misfits everywhere in the government. Though, the bucks stop at the table of the President, the security architecture that was set up to work for him is a failure, the intelligence services that ought to gather information are nowhere to be found, and the leadership of all security agencies seem to have slept on their core assignment, and to cap it all, the citizens who ought to have shown their displeasure on the way they are being governed have thrown their hands in the air.

However, it should be noted that each state has a governor, and each Governor is getting a security vote to police his state, but the data manifest their failure as well, because all the attacks were staged in states. That should tell us that most of the Governors are not doing their job. Give it to the Borno governor, Babangana Zulum, the guy is working round the clock to secure his people in a war-torn state, and that does not stop him from executing infrastructural projects, but large number of the Governors are getting richer, while their states are getting poorer and insecured, suggesting that priorities are being misplaced. States have failed as well.

Having painted the graphics of the sorry state of the nation, it behooves me to suggest plausible solutions: In the first place, genuine countrymen and women should organize themselves in such a way that voters would be educated on the recruitment of the leadership and with stated implications of electing bad leaders. This is not rocket science, because an average voter believes that his vote is not important, that what matters is the token a politician would offer to buy it. So, it is the duty of civil society groups to enlighten such a person that his vote is important, and that is why political gladiators are campaigning vigorously to have it. People should be made to understand the power of their thumbs, and the kind of sufferings that would follow its misuse.

Secondly, all presidential and governorship aspirants should be made to dissect the state of insecurity and economic downturn in the country, and people should be made to listen to pragmatic solutions each one of them offers.  Analysts of the civil societies should genuinely interpret words and intentions of the candidates for the people, and they should guide people in forming their opinion on the best candidate. This is achievable if people can endeavour to investigate members of the civil societies and figure out those who will not compromise on the pot of porridge.

Then, institutions of learning and civil societies should partner in a way to set a “microscope” on the behavioural pattern of the given leadership, in order to alert the people about the change of programmes of the government. I understand the nature of Nigerian universities and their Professors who cherish their academic titles and bask in academic arrogance, but it is noteworthy that political leadership with limited academic credentials would always be their employers and dictate tune. And if they choose to stay aloof, the demand of their job would be vitiated just like we are having ASUU strike now. That reminds me, this time demands for personalities of Gani Fawehinmi’s, who will constantly expose the government’s moves and covered iniquities, and until the above suggested solutions are somehow implemented, this nation has not prepared for a positive change, and the worse condition of the country has no chance of changing for better anytime soon.

It’s quite pathetic.  

Butika writes from Houston Texas, USA

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