BASHIR MAGASHI, retired Army General, now Buhari’s Defence Minister, recently, chided Nigerians, insinuating that they are cowards, for not confronting, AK47 armed terrorists and bandits. Immediate past, retired General Tuku Buratai, Chief of Army Staff; after about six years, in the saddle, of extensive military campaign against terrorists Boko Haram, recently, said the present approach, in combating insurgency in the country, would be unsuccessful, and could lead terrorism to fester for 20 years.
Other officials in Buhari’s government, at different times, provided “make-believe” narratives, that the war against insurgency in the country, was either “progressing” better than the previous administration; or “technically defeated” by the government. Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information, was the “narrator-in-chief”, selling imaginary successes on the war on insurgency to the public. Media aids to the president – Femi Adesina, Special Adviser, Media and Publicity; and Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant, Media and Publicity, followed suit.
After about six years “make-up” narratives on the superficial successes by Buhari’s government in the war against terrorism and banditry, failure seemed to be starring President Buhari and his officials in the face. The reality has now done on the president and his officials. They are hands-down, deflated in their claims of successes in the war against terrorism and banditry in the country. It has been total colossal failure.
NIGERIAN GOVERNMENT, some state governments and private individuals, presently, appear to have embarked on negotiation with terrorists and bandits. There have been claims and counter-claims of paying ransom to terrorists and bandits, through the back door to release kidnapped victims; as well as, to lay down their arms and surrender for “amnesty” to be granted to them. The debate is becoming louder in some quarters and sections of the country.
In very strong terms, however, Nigerians have condemned the call for amnesty to be granted terrorists and bandits – people who took up arms against the Nigerian state; maimed and killed for unjust cause, and for money; as well as, inflicting dehumanizing atrocities against innocent Nigerians — including women and children. Destroying economic life and worsening poverty.
NIGERIA’S main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is scoffing President Buhari’s administration for ditching the country into a failed state. For “President Buhari’s manifest failure to effectively lead from the fronts against bandits and terrorists ravaging the country”, the PDP said the president no longer deserved the title “Commander-in-Chief” of the country. PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbodiya, stated this in a statement at the weekend.
PDP stated that the country had descended to a level where government officials and prominent Nigerians have resorted to “begging and negotiating with terrorists”. The party said such ugly reality confirmed that Buhari’s administration had surrendered Nigeria’s sovereignty to bandits, insurgents and terrorists.
The PDP stated: “Moreover, Minister of Defence, Gen. Bashir Magashi’s recent statement that unarmed Nigerians should protect themselves in the face of armed aggression by bandits and terrorists, further exposes Buhari as a failed Commander-in-Chief, who cannot stand up to the demands of his office”.
PDP further stated: “Even more depressing is the disposition of the Buhari Presidency to blame victims of terrorists’ attacks, as was in the case with the beheading of 43 farmers in Borno State, instead of making efforts to arrest the assailants”.
And added that: “Such tendencies against Nigerians exposes the Buhari administration’s lack of determination to fight the terrorists, which emboldens the outlaws who had earlier been pushed to the fringes under the PDP administration, to resurge and unleash terror on Nigerians.
“A Commander-in-Chief that cannot lead from the fronts, as President Buhari promised to, and who blames everyone except himself for his failures, leaves much to be desired. Indeed, our nation cannot afford the ongoing gruesome mass killings, bloodletting, arson, kidnapping and all sorts of mindless atrocities by bandits, terrorists, kidnappers and vandals”, the party stated.
PDP urged Buhari’s administration to end what the party described as “lethargic and cowardly” disposition towards security matters in the country; with the words: “The President must stand up to the demands of his office Commander-in-Chief.”