UN Complex Blast: Making Nigeria Ungovernable For Jonathan —Ben Nanaghan

Opinion

The dreaded Islamic fundamentalist sect- boko haram, added some more “feathers” to its cap as it gained international prominence and reckoning when it bombed the United Nations Office Complex in Abuja on Friday 26 August 2011, with a devastating brutality and a casualty of at least 23 dead and an unidentified numbers injured.

This barbaric and abominable act of treasonable felony proportion against Nigeria will go into the record logs as President Goodluck Jonathan’s most embarrassing moment in his brief but chequered stint as Nigeria’s most embattled President. It is significant to note that President Jonathan has not had time to truly govern this country, because of security challenges which are divisionary and meant to checkmate the president’s programmes for good governance.

I have cried in nearly every write-up like the lone voice in the wilderness that the bombings in Nigeria are a well orchestrated strategy of the Northern elite to frustrate Jonathan and make Nigeria ungovernable for him and if possible bomb him out of his earthly existence.

Many of them have bragged about it openly and for the deadlier ones making Nigeria ungovernable for the President, is a passionate and uncompromisable project which they have sworn to execute by any means – boko haram, al qaeda, suicide bombers, etc.

Or are Nigerians suffering from selective amnesia? The warnings to make Nigeria ungovernable came before, during and even after Jonathan won the PDP primaries which made him one of the contestants for the April 16th 2011 presidential election. And even this threat was furiously orchestrated before, during and after the presidential election which Jonathan won convincingly.

And before, during and after the election, one of the presidential candidates harangued his supporters to defend their votes if they perceived or suspected election malpractice. And after the presidential election this candidate went to court to challenge the election result thereby convincing his fanatics that truly the election was rigged by INEC to favour Jonathan. From there the boko haram took over and there has never been any respite since then.

Or have Nigerians forgotten in a hurry how the Eagles Square was bombed on our 50th Independence Anniversary and telephone communication link (sms message) was established between one of the accused terrorist bombers and a campaign director for one of the Presidential aspirants?

The campaign director who is a media mogul was immediately released when Nigeria’s most dreaded former military President pleaded a case of innocence on behalf of his campaign director cum agent.

And on June 16th boko haram again acting the master’s script, bombed the Louis Edet House, the Nigerian Police Force Headquarters in Abuja.

Even with both eyes closed, Nigerians know the brains behind these bombings. They said it, they acted it and they dramatised it to the full glare of the whole world – even via press conferences.

But unfortunately, government has treated the matter with kid gloves by setting up probe panels and mollifying the boko haram sect by negotiating with them and even thinking of granting them amnesty.

Government even took a step further by arresting and prosecuting police officers who were accused of extra judicially murdering some boko haram members. Government must realise that boko haram sect itself carries out its heinous murders extra-judicially. A chronic ailment that needs an urgent surgical operation cannot be healed by chemotherapy.

Even the United States of America which flaunts the highest level of neo-liberalism indulges in extra judicial killing and prisoners’ torture when it deems fit.

The information leading to the hideout and eventual death of Osama bin Laden was extracted from a prisoner in Guantanamo Bay. And just last week America announced the mysterious death of Mohammed el Salif, al qaeda’s 2nd in command in Pakistan. Till date, America has not disclosed the circumstances leading to this “mysterious” death. Today the world has known more peace with the exit of Osama bin Laden and his deputy.

President Goodluck Jonathan should realise that Nigeria is ensconced by the warring nations, of Sudan, Chad, Somalia, Eritrea – Ethiopia etc. These countries are a fertile breeding ground for Islamic fundamentalism, terrorism, al qaeda, al shabaab, etc.

This security alarm in the terrorist quadrangle of evil comprising Somalia (in the far North Eastern fringe of Africa), Eritrea, Ethiopia and Sudan should be of great concern to Nigerian security strategists who should know that these unrepentant Islamic fundamentalists could offload their evil contents into neighbouring Chad and Niger Republics with the terminal objective of dipping the Quran into the waters of Southern Nigeria.

By bombing the United Nations Complex in Abuja, the Jonathan – must–not-rule clique in the North has inadvertently exposed the vulnerability and underbelly of the Nigerian nation. We have incurred the wrath of the whole civilised world by attacking the United Nations which has its primary functions as the maintenance of global peace.

I will like to reiterate that the fragile peace that holds the world together today is as a result of ceaseless and untiring efforts on the part of the world body and its various organs to manage, douse and in extreme cases suppress, uprisings, terrorism and wars for continental and global peace.

It is our onerous responsibility to protect all diplomatic missions in Nigeria in accordance with the Vienna Convention of 1963 on the Inviolability of Premises and extraterritoriality.

Since the boko haram tragedy has assumed an international dimension, Nigeria should seek international intervention to bring these feuding politicians and their boko haram accomplices speedily to book.

Nigeria’s greatest drawback in security matters are in the areas of training and intelligence gathering. Ironically Nigeria’s defence budgets only gallop during election years for obvious reasons of winning elections by all means as evidenced in 2003 and 2007.

Today China is the biggest spender in matters of military training and the results are very obvious because for the first time China has become a threat to American strategic interest in the South East Asian sub-region.

Africa is bedeviled with contentious and unmarked borders. Nigeria must in the long run properly manage its borders with Islamic fundamentalist states like Niger and Chad or take the painful and expensive investment decision of fencing its borders with these two nomadic and drought infested states. We must not count the cost.

America embarked on the unenviable project of fencing its border with Mexico to stem the influx of Mexicans and Mexican hard drugs into America. This exercise covered 32,000 kilometres through four American states costing America $billions.

If this border fencing can stave off these boko haramists who are mainly Nigeriens and Chadians then the exercise will be worth the while.

The most effective panacea however will be the enactment of harsh laws to effectively curb this scourge of terrorism. Capital punishment would be an appropriate deterrent to such inhuman and barbaric crimes after all, a very drastic action attracts a very drastic reaction.

To be seen to be transparent, this law must be no respecter of persons whether high or low.

I have not heard of a Nigerian jailed for terrorism, they are all released behind the headlines by their untouchable sponsors who are now emboldened and hell-bent on destroying Nigeria because a president from the South-South is ruling Nigeria for the first time in its 50 years of existence.

It is now left for Jonathan’s government to stay alive and meet boko haram and its under cover sponsors force for force as Nigeria has the wherewithal to call the boko haram bluff.

Peace is a very potent and vital catalyst for lasting development. Nigeria must distance itself from Rousseau’s natural man and from all the vestiges of violence and primitivism. Nigeria must embrace and strive to touch that electronic button that makes it possible to communicate almost physically from the remotest village in Mongolia to the farthest community in Nigeria.

Nigeria must join the new peace seeking nations of the world to fashion out a holistic approach to peaceful and harmonious coexistence, where violence, terrorism, al shabaab, al qaeda, rancour, strife, suicide bombers, wars and even physical strength will be dumped into the dustbin of history.

Nigeria must lead this crusade if we must earnestly earn the toga of “Giant of Africa”.

 

•Nanaghan writes in from [email protected]

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