A common theme that’s been the hallmark of Nigeria’s civilian leadership since the return of democracy is that Nigeria must abide by the rules of the International Community, wheather its Nigeria keeping shut as its territory is carved out and given to its tiny neighbors or its dociliy in the face of overwhelming evidence of external complicityin stirring civil strife and violence in Nigeria. For nearly two decades the message Nigeria’s leadership has sent to the outside world is that Nigeria is a flawed nation. A nation of whimps, and no matter what they do to Nigeria, we will smile and look the other way in the spirit of big brotherliness.
The strategy of Nigeria’s incompetent, unpatriotic and corrupt leadership is of unconditional engagement with Nigeria’s enemies combined with a relentless penchant for apology, making it a recipe for more act of sabotage and attack. Maybe if Abuja wasn’t so far away from the epicentre our leaders will be Moe proactive in defending Nigeria’s core interest. The overall effect of this has been to weaken Nigeria’s power in th region rather than strengthen it.
ECOWAS is %80 Nigerian funded, but had it gotten us any appreciation?
Take Ghana for instance. The country with a life long obsession for competition with Nigeria, no matter how trivial. Nigerians are victimised in Ghana because ” we run drug trafficking rings and we steal their women”. Nigerian students studying in Ghana are exploited financially because they believe we are so wealthy.
Nigeria recently eclipsed both China and the U.S as the biggest foreign direct investors in Ghana yet unfair trade practises are carried out against Nigerians. Nollywood movies are banned. Nigerian producers are fined ridiculous amounts of money to market movies in Ghana.
But the biggest assault on Nigeria as a whole has not come from its Anglophone beneficiary partners in West Africa, but rather from our life long major geopolitical foes : Francophone West Africa.
The following are a list of the 5 times Nigeria has been directly attacked and 5 times our leaders have cowered like scared cats.
Giving just a 72 hour warning, the government of Cameroon opened the flood gates of two dams- the Lagdo and Riga dams on Nigeria. The effect of this on Nigeria was akin to a nuclear bomb detonation on Nigeria. The flood occured at night while victims were asleep, leaving them no opportunity to salvage propety.
- Two million Nigerians are displaced.
- 5,000 villages are wiped out around Adamawa are submerged.
- 50,000 homes are destroyed.
- 300 Nigerians lost their lives.
Economic cost : N2.6 trillion.
Nigerians were furious and demanded punitive reprisals. How did the Nigerian government react? The Director of Dam Services at the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, Emmanuel Adanu said ” the Cameroonian authorities did nothing wrong when they released excess water from 4th Lagdo dam and caused massive flooding in hundreds of communities.
Two thousand Chadian troops backed by two hundred ground vehicles and helicopter gunships crossed into Nigerian, carried out airstrikes against Boko Haram targets and captured the city of BAGA without the consent of the Nigerian government.
Nigeria’s defense spokesman Chris Olukolade said it was against the law. He revealed that the government was unaware of the deployments but said that he would need to “verify” This is what regional power Nigeria could muster in response. (It’s ok to cry.).
Can you imagine Mexico invading America and annexing Texas, and General Matt saying ” America is unaware but he would need to verify”?
Just when you think it coukdnt get any works than this you are proven wrong.
Chadian President Idris Derby himself said in a press conference :
“We answered the call of (Cameroon’s) President Paul Biya. We cannot remain indifferent to what happens to our neighbours. Cameroon must not be left alone to face this threat that has so hurt innocent people in Cameroon” .
The last time Chadian troops invaded Nigeria they were routed by the Nigerian army, leaving 200 Chadian troops dead. Those who managed to break the encirclement and escaped were pummeled by Nigerian Air Force MiG -21’s. Those who survived the air attack were chased by the Nigerian army across the border right into Chad until they were a kilometre away from the capital.
Hundreds of heavily armed Cameroonian soldiers cross into Nigeria, killed 70 Nigerians civilians in Gwoza Borno State. Another batch of troops entered Kiraa village and asked the local villagers where Boko Haram insurgents were, before the could answer they ooened fire, killing another 60, burnt down the entire villages and sent hundreds fleeing.
Cameroonian BIR (Special Forces) crossed into Nigerian territory under the pretext of pursuing Boko Haram and unleashed rocket propelled grenades indiscriminately, killing 24 Nigerian villagers. Eye witnesses said he watched Cameroonian soldiers dragg away two elderly men and shot them in the outskirts of the village.
Cameroonian Gendarmes kill 90 Nigerians in Bakassi over their refusal to pay N100,000 for boat engine fee. Those not shot were beaten to death. The rest escaped by jumping into the water and swam for hours until they got to Ikang Jerry aroynd 3:am in the morning. Many drowned.
This is what Africa’s richest nation have been reduced to. Nigerians are today the most persecuted Africans because we have as leaders incompetent criminals who couldnt care less about the sufferings of the people. Can we truly call ourselves the regional power when our military is the smallest and weakest its being since the civil war. We cannot even protect our very own borders.
In the last 3 fiscal years our defence spending has averaged $5 billion dollars, not including the extra seperate $1 billion allocate to by arms. Pakistan, a country roughly in size to Nigeria spends $7 billion annually on defence, just $2 billion more than Nigeria. Yet they have been able to build up a military strong enough to stand up to India.
The Pakistani Air Force flies nearly 500 F-16’s and fields a complement of JF-17, MiG-29. Pakistan does not have access to credit facilities it can finance with its oil yet they take the defence of their country seriously.
Enter Nigeria. 19th richest economy on Earth. Africa’s first trillion dollar economy. 6th largest exporter of oil in the world and 4th largest exporter of Liquified Natural Gas. 40 billion barrels in proven oil reserve worth as estimated $4 trillion today.
Yet we can only boast of 6 F-7N interceptors to defend Nigeria’s airspace. Tiny countries whose combined military is less the size of the Nigeria police force infiltrate our borders at will. They kill our citizens at will. Actions that will be regarded as an act of war elsewhere are the routine her. We keep deceiving ourselves b pretending to be a regional military power.
We have become a nation of whimps. A disgrace. We have the most educated populace in Africa. Nigerians are the best educated of all ethnic nationalities in the United States, eclipsing China, South Korea and Japan, yet we consistently find ourselves led by people who struggle with articulation. We are the world’s smartest people led by the world’s dumbest and most corrupt politicians.
Generations of Nigerians have been wasted because of the stupidity and greed of our leaders. If this continues we will not have much of a country left in a decade.