Conscience Triumph Editorial of May 1-15, 2014
The gory incidents last week of continuing terrorist insurgency and insecurity in parts of some States in the North have provided another reason for worry over the claims by the Federal Government to be “in control” of the security challenges in the country.
The fatal multiple explosions at Nyanya, near Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja, the abduction of over 100 female students of Government Girls’ Secondary School, Chibok, in Chibok Local Government Area (LGA) in Borno State and the violent attacks in Taraba State by gunmen, do not speak well for the security score-card of Nigeria. They create new worries about the worsening insecurity in Nigeria, especially in the Northern States.
All of that may have heightened the controversy surrounding the dilemma and burden of the government to extend the state-of-emergency in the 3 North East states of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa.
The following salient questions are inevitable: Why have the blasts, abductions and killings in the North East persisted and even increasing, in spite of the state-of-emergency that is still in place there? What has been the extent of achievement by the Special Joint Task Force (SJTF) that was deployed to restore peace in that part of the country?
Now that there are increasing reports of gunmen in full security gears turning terrorist insurgents, could it not mean that the security apparatus has been infiltrated and compromised by fifth columnists? Is the security situation not getting out of hand?
These questions demand an answer from all the security organisations put together.
Though the Federal Government is known to have formally requested for foreign assistance in containing the security challenges of the country, we pray the assistance will pay off; that is, to bring an end the activities of the insurgents.
However, we call upon the government to carefully reappraise the security situation and devise more proactive, intelligence-oriented approaches to executing the fight.
Our Newspaper is of the view that these most recent attacks are unfortunate, coming just few weeks after some 25 female students were abducted from Federal Government College, Buni Yardi in Yobe State.
We are worried that despite the huge investment to the military and financial resources to tackle terrorist insurgency and insecurity in Nigeria, the menace remains on an uncontrollable rise. This is really saddening, condemnable and unacceptable.
One is prompted to question the wasteful huge financial allocations to the Governors as “security vote.” What have they been doing with such resources?
We implore the government to further heighten its effort at combating insurgency in the North Eastern States in particular and Nigeria in general. If this will entail the extension of the state-of-emergency there, for instance, then so be it. However, we feel that every method that should be adopted to checkmate insurgency and insecurity in the country should be employed.
The achievement of lasting peace must remain uppermost in the minds of security operatives, programmes of the government, and the citizens in the country.
The casualty figures at the Nyanya explosions were officially confirmed to have reached 215, with 75 dead and 140 injured. A total of 40 vehicles were said to have been burnt.
We feel these massive losses could have been prevented if the national security arrangements had been more vigilant and proactive. Also, they might have been averted if the security operatives involved much of security intelligence mostly needed at this time.
The security operatives on the ground involved are members of the Armed Forces, the Police, Civil Defence, Road Safety, Customs, Immigration, various vigilanty groups, and all the intelligence agencies of the organisations are deployed all over the country and, of course, the much talked about Community Policing must coordinate their activities to bring lasting solution to the problems.