Calls for the immediate probe of the former Service Chiefs by a Judicial Panel of Inquiry
*** Urges Buhari to Come Out from Aso Rock, come clean and tell Nigerians what really is happening with the Nation’s Security Architecture
***Says has not been hijacked and cocooned by a cabal of fifth columnists
By Henry Umoru
ABUJA – THE Action Democratic Party, ADP, Buhari asked President Muhammadu Buhari to as a matter of urgency, declare a state of emergency on the insecurity situation in the country following renewed cases of armed banditry, kidnapping, rape and wanton destruction of property across the country.
According to the ADP, the All Progressives Congress, APC-led administration’s poor handling of the challenges of insecurity in the country is mind-boggling, just as it said that President Buhari should declare a nationwide state of emergency on insecurity whereby, senior Army officers should relocate from their cosy offices in the barracks to the hot spots in the forests, remote areas/villages and the actual battle theatres.
Addressing Journalists yesterday in Abuja on the State of the Nation, ADP National Chairman, Engr. Yabagi Yusuf Sani called on President Muhammadu Buhari should come out clean and tell the country what is happening with the Nation’s Security Architecture, adding that it appears that the President has been hijacked and cocooned by a cabal of fifth columnists.
The ADP has also said that as part of moves to save the soul and promote the spirit of the Nigerian Armed Forces, President Buhari should immediately probe of the former Service Chiefs by a judicial panel of inquiry, adding that it is sad that the immediate past service chiefs who were criticised for not handling the Security challenges well, were at the end of the day, compensated with Ambassadorial positions.
According to ADP, the time has come for the former Chief of Defence Staff, General Abayomi Olonisakin; ex- Chief of Army Staff, General Tukur Yusuf Buratai; former Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar and Ex- Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Marshal Ibok- Ete Ibas for them to be dragged before the judicial panel of Inquiry warning that failure to do that, the party will not hesitate to take serious action.
Sani said, “At times as these, leaders should be physically and as frequently be speaking to those they lead because, there is so much comfort and healing from his words, presence and visibility. Truly and as a matter of honest advice, Nigerians will be glad to hear him address them now and more frequently as the father of the nation.
“Very pertinently, the President should declare a nationwide state of emergency on insecurity whereby, senior Army officers should relocate from their cosy offices in the barracks to the hot spots in the forests, remote areas/villages and the actual battle theatres;
“While he may not say it all for obvious national security considerations, the President should at least, be availing Nigerians with his words and visibility that have the powers of soothing and rekindling the hopes of a disillusioned and agonised citizenry. President Buhari has been too aloof and eerily invisible preferring to speak through aides, spokespersons and his spin-doctors.
“The Action Democratic Party identifies with the opinions of informed and well-meaning Nigerians which includes former and serving eminent political leaders that Nigeria should seek external military assistance in the bid to decisively deal with the twelve-year-old nightmarish catastrophe known as Boko Haram insurgency. It is our considered opinion that if the end will justify the means, let the nation put aside pride, bite the humble pie even if the external solution is coming by the name of mercenaries.
“All that can be done must be done to put an end to the gory of deaths, devastation of homesteads, rape and economic ruination on a monumental scale over all these years.
“The ADP had repeatedly pointed out that Mr President should, in the context of his party’s ‘avowed’ commitment to the war against corruption, beam the searchlight on the books of the military especially, with regards to budgetary allocations and the actual purchases of arms, the quality and integrity of the arms and ammunitions in use by the troops, remunerations and welfare of its personnel in the battlefields among other inventories and accoutrements requisite in modern warfare. As admitted by the nation’s National Security Adviser, earlier referred to, stupendous portions of funds allocated for arms and ammunitions may have been channelled elsewhere.”
According to him, “The ADP and most discerning and perceptible Nigerians had expected that the former Service Chiefs on exiting the office would be investigated on sundry allegations of gross abuse of office rather than the haste to glorify and reward them. Undoubtedly, the President is in position of more information than every other Nigerian, therefore, he knows much more about the records of the Service Chiefs than those available in the public domain.
“Otherwise, Nigerians are puzzled over the exoneration and inexplicable veneration of a set of public officials so roundly criticised for failing in their sacred and statutory duty of protecting the territorial integrity of the country. To save the soul and promote the spirit of the Nigerian Armed Forces, we call for the immediate probe of the former Service Chiefs by a panel of judicial enquiry NOW!
“As the country is being shaken to its foundation, it is amazing and worrisome that President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC government are refusing to come clean with Nigerians on what really is happening?
The ADP is saying this because, everybody should know that the triumph of insecurity is a sure recipe for instability and conversely a sound of the death knell for our hard-won democracy. In the absence any of tangible, or logical reasons to believe otherwise, we are constrained events and developments have given many the reason to wonder if the President has not been hijacked and cocooned by a cabal of fifth columnists who for reasons best known to them, have been working at cross purposes with our collective patriotic goals of keeping Nigeria one and, of nurturing the budding flowers of our nascent democracy. Even then, the President cannot be absolutely absolved of responsibility for the appalling frightful level of insecurity in the country.
“Unfortunately, President Muhammadu Buhari, literarily, the Chief Surgeon in charge of the ailing ‘patient’, does not seem to be correctly diagnosing the nature and gravity of the malaise talk less of the knowledge and the capacity to embark on the requisite surgical operation as a panacea to the cancerous tumour eating away our body polity.
” Alas, those around him as his aides are not similarly doing anything tangibly to mitigate the situation; as a matter of fact, most times, their utterances aggravate the pains and pace of the spread of the malady.
“The APC-led administration’s poor handling of the challenges of insecurity in the country is mind-boggling. As highlighted above, in spite of the propaganda and shenanigans of the government’s spin-doctors, Boko Haram insurgency has remained a monster more capable of inflicting devastating havoc on the peace, security and in fact, the stability, unity and continued corporate existence of Nigeria as one entity. Government propagandists tell us that Boko Haram has been “decimated”, “debased” or “degraded” due to their inability to carry out suicide bombings and that, Nigerians outside the war theatres of Borno and Yobe no longer have to put up with agonising military check points on the highways. However, they overlook the point that more soldiers and civilians in the North-East are now dying from the activities of the insurgents because the Islamists have now changed their strategy and focus.
“It is as sad as it is paradoxical, that some of those who can obviously be held responsible for the sorry state of the war against Boko haram at least, by way of giving false report to the President in particular and the public in general, are being celebrated as heroes.
“Similarly, while we are being inundated with the glowing reports of victories recorded over banditry in the Northwest and elsewhere, the bandits have continued to demonstrate, like hydra-headed snakes, a vicious capacity to strike with increasing deadly venom in an ever-escalating geographical space. With their trademark of abducting citizens for ransom, banditry like the twin evil of kidnapping has become a veritable source of stupendous wealth to those engaged in the evil enterprise.”
Sani said, “Given the emerging trend, there is no gainsaying the fact that, if utmost care is not taken, it may just be a matter of time before similar ‘reprisal’ counter attacks may snow-ball to other parts of the country. In the event of such an unhealthy development, then we can foresee the unfolding of the reign of anarchy.
“The recent failed attempt on the life of Governor Samuel Ortom should serve as a loud and clear signal to those who might have been deceiving themselves that ‘all is well’ with the nation. It is a very frightening dimension that brings to mind, the aftermath of the death in a rocket attack on a flight of two Presidents of Hutu ethnic extraction, Juvenal Hybiyarimana and Cyprien Ntaryamira, of Rwanda and Burundi respectively, in 1994. What if they had succeeded in their objective of killing Governor Ortom, a leader of the Tiv ethnic group?
“As the country is being shaken to its foundation, it is amazing and worrisome that President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC government are refusing to come clean with Nigerians on what really is happening? The ADP is saying this because, everybody should know that the triumph of insecurity is a sure recipe for instability and conversely a sound of the death knell for our hard-won democracy. In the absence any of tangible, or logical reasons to believe otherwise, we are constrained to suspect that the government of the day is inexplicably oblivious of this salient fact on the repercussions of the pervading insecurity in the land and its ripple effects on survival of democracy in Nigeria.
“While we must give it to President Muhammadu Buhari that he is a passionate patriot who even fought in the battlefields for the peace, security and indissolubility of Nigeria, unfolding events and developments have given many the reason to wonder if the President has not been hijacked and cocooned by a cabal of fifth columnists who for reasons best known to them, have been working at cross purposes with our collective patriotic goals of keeping Nigeria one and, of nurturing the budding flowers of our nascent democracy. Even then, the President cannot be absolutely absolved of responsibility for the appalling frightful level of insecurity in the country.
“For example, why did it take him so long to sack the immediate past Service Chiefs in spite of their glaring abysmal records in prosecuting the war against insurgency? Nigerians deserve to know why President Buhari, when he eventually disengaged the failed military chiefs, decided to reward them with the prestigious appointments of representing him in foreign countries as Ambassadors? Is the President telling us that elevation to higher levels of responsibilities is the best way of rewarding failure? By this nonplus, inexplicable twist of logic, what message is Mr. President sending to those new Service Chiefs? In other words, where is the impetus to propel the present and future Service Chiefs to selflessly commit their all in the service of the country if, after an abysmal performance in office they expect to be rewarded with elevations to higher pedestals.
On statements by the National Security Adviser, NSA, Major- General Babagana Monguno, the ADP National Chairman said, “Perhaps, the principal causative factor that has brought the nation this low to its knees, is the high level of heartless, blood-cuddling corruption and sharp practices in the purchase of arms and ammunition meant for prosecuting the war against insurgency, banditry and related violent crimes by the nation’s armed forces. No less an official of the government than the National Security Adviser (NSA), General Babagana Monguno (Rtd.) has lent credence to this fact that most informed Nigerians have always known all along.
On planned maintenance of Port Harcourt Refinery, Sani said, “the ADP also calls for the immediate probe of the NNPC on subsidy, refineries turn-around maintenance TAM, at the projected cost of USD1.5 Billion from Port Harcourt refineries and crude oil allocations, etc.”