Wednesday, February 26, 2014
MASSACRE OF 43 STUDENTS BY BOKO HARAM
26th February, 2014
MASSACRE OF 43 STUDENTS: IS JONATHAN PLAYING JEKYLL AND HYDE WITH BOKO HARAM?
43 students of the Federal Government College in Yobe State were alleged to have been brutally massacred yesterday by members of Boko Haram. Hundreds more were reported killed by the same group in the past few days.
It is barbaric, preposterous and unacceptable. This gruesome killing must not go unpunished. Neither should it go unexplained by the Nigerian Army. Reports reaching us affirm that the killings in the school started from 11.30 pm till 4.am in the morning. This is shocking and unbelievable in a state under emergency! Is it a conspiracy? Is it compromise of professionalism? Is it gross ineptitude? The Nigerian Army must explain this. The Federal Government (FG) must go beyond mere condemnation. We are constrained to ask why FG is treating Boko Haram with kid gloves. How can the massacre of innocent Nigerians continue unabated in spite of a state of emergency which has been in place for months? Who is fooling who?
The Nigerian Army top command must provide answers to questions being asked by Nigerians. Why is Boko Haram always attacking when they are supposed to be on the run? Why are our troops always on the defence?
Is it true that Nigerian soldiers merely sit and wait for the group to attack? Is it also true that there is poor welfare for soldiers posted to the area? Is it true that soldiers in the region use their own money to pay for treatment? Who is keeping sophisticated weapons from reaching Nigerian soldiers fighting Boko Haram?
Is it true that Boko Haram once stole more than 30 trucks of ammunition from the Nigerian Army? How can this happen when military operation demands first and foremost that weapons and ammunitions must be secured? What was the army doing when all these were happening? What happened to 24-hour vigilance around military location and hardware.
The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) is nonplussed at these avoidable massacres. We remind President Jonathan that the buck stops at his table. As the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Jonathan has to explain why the Boko Haram phenomenon still flourishes long after the declaration of emergency rule.
It is our considered opinion that Mr. President lacks the political will to conduct the military campaign against Boko Haram. He is not ready to give it what it takes. To compound the problem, nobody trusts his offer of truce. Nigeria is in a quagmire.
MURIC tasks Jonathan to take urgent steps to crush Boko Haram in order to convince cynics that his perceived nonchalance is not another anti-North agenda. Otherwise why did the president allegedly give a paltry N2 billion to the three states under emergency rule when Niger Delta militants swim in wads of naira notes that make Mount Everest green with envy?
It gives the impression of a tale of two regions: one over-pampered, the other neglected. We warn that those who rejoice in the political and economic debilitation of the North are merely cutting their noses to spite their faces.
Why is the allocation to Niger Delta militants higher that of the army and the police put together in the proposed budget for 2014? The militants got N54 billion while both the military and police received N46 billion. This is appalling! No wonder the army cannot cope with Boko Haram. FG has imposed inferiority complex on its own soldiers.
We affirm that what goes round comes around. This is why Nigerians must unite as one not only in the condemnation of this ugly development but also in fighting it. The promotion of weakness in any region will no doubt contribute to the overall weakness of the country. Fate has brought us all together; so the earlier we face the reality of our conjoined destiny the better for all of us.
MURIC contends that FG has lost focus in the fight against Boko Haram. Dirty politics, promotion of corruption and witch-hunting are taking their tolls on the landlord of Aso Rock. President Jonathan must start addressing the real problems facing this country if we are going to win the war against the Boko Haram insurgents. 180 million Nigerians are waiting anxiously for an enduring solution. This is definitely not the time to play Mr. Jekyll and Hyde.
Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)