The demand by the Nigerian Senate for the firing of the three Service Chiefs of the Nigerian armed forces over the spate of killings in parts of the country, in particular the killings carried out by marauding herdsmen is borderline ridiculous, and the presidency will be well served to reject such agitations.
Such hollowness of calls by PDP Senators on matters of security is nothing but a ploy to politicize the security situation of the country for political reasons and they should be condemned for this. One cannot help but laugh at the pretentious and belated posturing of Security concerns and corruption by Senators from the PDP, a political party that gifted Nigeria the weakest President in the modern history of Africa.
A political party which in just six years in power bankrupted the economy. Under the Jonathan administration it was a global free for all on Nigeria security wise. Huge swathes of territory the size of Belguim was lost to Boko Haram terrorists, the Chadians openly smuggling weapons to the enemy, scamming the Nigerian government into a fake cease-fire agreement that never came to fruition, to the tune of $5 million a week. Only to discover later it was nothing but a ploy by Chad to buy Boko Haram time, yet taking no punitive measures.
Need we go on about the military chiefs stole as much as $15 billion through fraudulent arms procurement deals during the PDP led government? How about the revelation that huge sums of money, equivalent to half of Nigeria’s foreign currency reserves were stolen.
Why wasformer CBN governor Sanusi Labido fired ? Oh… I forgot about the beautiful Mrs Alison Dieziani Madueke, OPEC’s first female President accused of stealing billions and laundering them via buying properties in London?
When President Buhari took office he planned to make his security policy everything that previous PDP dispensation was not. Jonathan had accommodated the criminal service chiefs, who conducted the war against Boko Haram in Maiduguri from air-conditioned offices in Abuja.
The Jonathan administration made humility the hallmark of Nigeria’s diplomacy, but to what end?..that’s right, our foes responded with aggression. We couldn’t put together a force worthy of a continental power to Mali, the Chadians danced to the bank because of the gullibility of the Nigerian government , they couldn’t believe out government could be that corrupt and stupid.
They sponsored armed insurgencies in Nigeria on one hand and invaded Nigerian territory and ran to the media to show the world the weakness of Nigeria and announce the arrival of Chad as the new military power in West Africa.
Later in his presidency when election was near, president Jonathan tried to look tough. He proposed a modest increase in defense spending; pulled Nigeria out of U.S army program to train a battalion of Nigerian soldiers, he threatened South Africa with economic war and threatened retribution on the Chadian government if it carried out more unauthorized incursions into Nigerian territory.
These actions didn’t faze our enemies. Soldiers on the frontline got wind of $15 billion for arms procurement missing and overtime deserted en mass. In one instant 400 Nigerian troops fled to Cameroon TWICE, in what the Nigeruan Army Spokesman Olukolade famously called – Tactical Retreat. There were cases of mutiny, with troops attacking their commanders in frustration. All this happened in an era when fuel prices was above the $100 mark and Nigeria was second only to Algeria in Foreign Reserves with almost $65 billion in cash reserves.
Never once did the opposing party derail the security effort by calling for the head of the Service Chiefs. As Buhari entered his presidency, the Nigerian economy had tanked. The Excess Crude Account was empty and the morale of Nigerian servicemen were at an all time low.
He fired the Service Chiefs and had their International passports seized. He appointed new service chiefs and committed to a policy of strength, and gave his Service Chiefs 12 months to take back all hitherto lost territories. And, even before he put his plan into action, our enemies began to worry.
Buhari’s assertive approach to foreign policy did not spark war. It produced peace. The Powers that be discovered Buhari could not be trusted and was to be feared. They refused to respect the more muscular Nigeria, so to keep tabs they started blanketing Nigeria with surveillance installations and military base all over. Having encircled Nigeria from its northern and eastern periphery they are now making inroads via the Western axis. To weeks ago it was Ghana, Togo is next.
When the three countries affected by Boko haram (Chad, Niger,Cameroon) proposed a halt to offensive so they could better integrate a multinational task force to take on the Jihadi group, Buhari refused. Defense was not the problem, he told them and went ahead with the launching of Operation Lafya Dole.
Compare that to Goodluck Jonathan, who yielded to Idris Derby’s request for a cease-fire because, miraculously Boko Haram wanted to talk. After canceling plans for the final assault on the Sambisa, without Senate approval he authorized the release of N2.5 billion (Yes. its a B ) to Idris Derby for a fake ceasefire brokered by Derby’s presidential aids in Chad.
A month later Chadian jets carried out strikes against Boko Haram positions on Gamboru, without authorization, and once again bragged to the international media about his decision to take this unilateral action criticized Nigeria’s lethargic approach to fighting Boko Haram. He claimed Chadian troops liberated several town and for weeks Nigeria refused to send troops to relieve the Chadian because they were afraid to fight.
A classic example of how Nigeria’s concessions during the PDP led era only encouraged our enemies to be more aggressive.
Publicly calling for the sacking of the military’s Chief’s of Staffs and portraying, with hyperbole the security situation with doomsday qualifiers like :
“We woke up yesterday to see that the entire city of Abuja was under siege.”
“This country is gradually falling into anarchy and we need to wake up to our responsibilities. It is very sad that corpses are littering everywhere.”
“The president should not wait before it gets worst to call for International assistance”
……only encourage our nation’s enemies to doubt Nigeria’s resolve to deal with any security threats. Defense spending today under the Buhari government is down from nearly half the budget when Goodluck Jonathan had been president, yet Nigeria has done a much better job fighting Boko Haram.
It took a long time for the Nigerian army to find its mojo back, destabilizing this momentum for political gains by PDP Senators to score political points because 2019 is around the corner is grossly irresponsible and borders on treason. Keeping Nigeria safe, free, and prosperous, doesn’t start with making the nation unsafe by randomly firing Service Chiefs