Discordant Tunes From Security Agencies
THE Nigerian Armed Forces have proved their professionalism on several fronts. Whenever there has been a call to duty, they have been prompt in response. Their records of success have been from ‘ancient’ to the modern times. They have recorded victory in confrontations with local insurgents, zonal militants, neighboring aggressors and many Islamic extremists as well as a war against secessionists between 1967 and 1970 to keep Nigeria as an entity that it is today. In the West Africa sub region, our military was most prominent in the Economic Community of West Africa (ECOWAS) to restore order in the war torn country of Liberia where it was more or less ECOMOG.
SEVERAL feats have been recorded by the military and paramilitary agencies from Nigeria. Not a few military and police personnel have returned home from international assignments with commendations and medals. To the rest of us, “bloody civilians,” we have developed in our minds the picture of a big brother Army that has professionally accommodated sister agencies as comrades in the onerous service of defending territorial integrity and ensuring safety of lives and property. We have accepted the armed forces as comprising men and women that have voluntarily committed themselves to gallantly ensure our peace.
AT the home front, the Nigeria Police have recorded no mean success at detecting crimes and bursting invisible syndicates so insidious to subjugate communities and thousands of law abiding citizens to servility in Apalara in Lagos, Otokoto in Owerri.
WE of The Hope recall the feats achieved in bursting several otherwise inscrutable, puzzling robberies of celebrated gangsters like Oyenusi, Babatunde Folorunso, Iyamu, Rambo and others. Or shall we forget in a hurry the breakthrough recorded in unveiling the man behind the mask of sophisticated kidnap network of legendary Evans? Despite our essentially civilian literary minds we can locate the well-knit collaboration of different specialized military and paramilitary agencies whose goal is to provide an environment safe for prosecution of lawful business and thriving cultural intercourse.
WE of The Hope have a penchant for recognizing output of our vintage forces and have marveled at the uncharacteristic delay in concluding action against Boko Haram ‘guerilla’ and the new trend in Fulani Herdsmen war against the rest of us. The prevalent kidnap and banditry have made us to imagine what has happened to skills and mastery in communication and unity of command which were principally behind the gallantry and victory recorded by our men and officers in the days of analogue, which came to play in recent times in the days of information communication technology that has turned the universe to a global village? What could have given the picture of foot dragging in Sambisa or dampened espirit de corps within the forces and among the personnel? Has anything changed in the management and hierarchy of the agencies to undermine the time honoured efficiency and precision?
THE report from Taraba State with regard to military personnel foiling an otherwise successful police operation that resulted in arrest of ‘Wadume’ a serial kidnapper and notorious criminal suggests discordant tunes have been issuing from the security agencies. How can one explain that the commander of a unit of a responsible army made over 200 telephone calls to a fugitive and thereafter rescued him from the hand of the law of a land he was enlisted to sacrifice his own life? The tune from Alhaji Hamiso Bale Wadume has shown how some military officers could descend to betray the trust reposed in them. Not only that, how they have gone to sacrifice the lives of personnel from another security agency to facilitate escape of a common felon. It is therefore not unfounded to infer that hitherto, extraneous factors offensive to rational, logical process have informed several actions and inactions of our security agencies or their units. This is also an indication that discipline in the security forces has suffered while defense and security issues must have been compromised.
WITHOUT prejudice to the established culture of loyalty to the state, professionalism in service and exploits in public service delivery, we demand for an explanation on the current pattern of confusion. But more importantly, The Hope pleads with the security agencies to clear their channels and recoup the public confidence befitting the nature of their services and sacrifice to motherland. We also pray the authorities to go beyond on-going investigations, and conduct an interdepartmental enquiry to find out how interagency interaction has deteriorated to the point of such a scandalous state of abuse, and work out new regulations and procedure to prevent further future abuse.
NIGERIA will be a safer community where relationship between security agencies are well defined, communication process is clearly defined, hierarchy is well spelt, action and inactions attract unambiguous reward or sanction. It is then that contradiction would be avoided and the greatest good of the greatest number could be guaranteed.