Why tackling insecurity may be difficult with chronic economic hardship

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The bane of terrorism have relentlessly been shaking the fabrics of the Country with bonds of cause and effect shackles manifesting adversely in several ways. The recent purported bomb attempt in Kaduna at a Living Faith Church (Winners Chapel) has continued to generate heated reactions from different quarters. The recent incident has awoken attentions on the turbulence of terrorism with deeper reflections on deep revelations which will continue to boggle the mind if considered critically.

Another awakening food for thought is the recent concern of the  Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) intimidating that more youths “will be ready and willing to join Boko Haram in the future” if the government fails to tackle critical challenges facing the country. In the warning, CAN made reference to the recent case of a National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) member abducted by Boko Haram who was reported to have refused to return home after payment of a ransom for his release.

In reaction to the controversy trailing the suspected Kaduna suicide bomber,  CAN’s National Director, Legal and Public Affairs, Kwamkur Samuel, had questioned why the police were more concerned with the name of the suspected bomber than the crime he attempted to commit.

His word state in quote: “I am not surprised that Nigerians, especially the loudmouthed Islamic fundamentalists, are interested in knowing and spreading the faith of the suspect than the crime. Whether the man is Mohammed Sani or Nathaniel Samuel, Nigerians know the religion and tribal groups that are terrorising them, particularly the Christians.

“For the avoidance of doubt, we have reliable information that the suspect who has been confused about his real name is actually a psychiatric patient and was holding fireworks instead of a bomb. God chose to expose those supporting terrorism in Nigeria by this singular act.

“If you want to know those who are directly or indirectly supporting terrorism in Nigeria, look out for those who are projecting the faith of the suspect on the matter and have not been heard at any point condemning the act of terrorism in most parts of Nigeria.

“You will find out that they didn’t sympathise with Christians and the family of those beheaded recently by Boko Haram. Like we have said, it is an act of irresponsibility for any government or Nigerian leader to spend time fighting those lamenting the act of insecurity instead of proffering solutions, preaching to the international community against the cry of citizens instead of telling them what they have done and comparing how many people were killed between the former and present regime.

“Many Christians have been abducted and converted by Islamic terrorists.Besides, some of us are convinced that if the government continues with the careless handling of the security situation in the country, I foresee that more youths will be ready and willing to join Boko Haram in the future.

“Most Nigerian youths now know that when you join Boko Haram and you are lucky not to be asked to detonate bombs, one is paid by them handsomely, when you are eventually arrested. The Federal Government will come to your help and provide a rehabilitation platform with the purpose of providing training and resources for you to start life afresh.

“If you are very lucky, the Federal Government will recruit you into the army. With the increasing unemployment level, which youth will not want to dare that? Let the President Buhari take seriously his responsibility of protecting Nigerians by providing the needed welfare to the security personnel on duty and overhauling the security chiefs.”

It would be recalled that Nigerian NewsDirect had last week in an editorial entitled the  “Kaduna Church Bomb Attempt: Actions, not debate is needed at this time”, slammed the unnecessary and irresponsible arguments over the identity of the suspect, stating that all efforts and attention should rather be on a full blown war in eliminating the bane of terrorism  and all  threats to  human lives and properties. The editorial stated in part: “Debating mere chaff without substance is largely baseless. Nigerians should not waste time and energy creating unnecessary controversies from matters by-the-way. All attention should rather be directed towards the danger of the attempted crime. Whatever religion or name the suspect bears should be the least in the bane of discourse at this time. The fact remains that the suspect attempted to inflict gruesome terror on human lives for whatever reason known to him and his sponsors. If the he had been successful in carrying-out the dastardly plan, no body would by now be questioning his identity as ‘Mohammed’ or ‘Natheniel’. The story would have been a lamentation of death and injury of a mammoth crowd of worshippers. All thanks to God for rendering the plan futile and exposing the culprit.

“Now that God has done His part, the point of rationality and sagacity calls for men to play their own part. Debating the culprit’s identity should be far behind on the list of schedule of responses against the intended terror. The incident is a pure note of warning that the Country is vulnerable to terrorism attack from any angle. The Government with the Police and all security forces in the Country should rise up to task on a full blown war against terrorism and all forms of potential threat against human lives. Rather than engaging in a baseless debate, the Police should munch its efforts in digging deep and tracing the sponsor-team of the culprit.”

Combating terrorism and the bane of insecurity as it stands in Nigeria presently, has grown beyond following traditional attempts and approaches. The attitude of the Federal Government is key in this regard. It is nauseating to ear the government releasing and  granting amnesty to merciless full time terrorists. The idea of the government negotiating with terrorists and bandits is a clear show of gross recklessness, weakness and diminishing of constituted authority. State powers and institutions are creations of authorities bounded with instruments of enforcement to ensure the protection and safety of lives and properties. It is therefore ‘a debasing’ of constituted authority and instituted powers, when  officials who  occupy government positions desecrate authoritative powers of the State by negotiating with, and settling criminals as against bringing justice to bear. When they call criminals to round tables for settlement, this is nothing but a stylish invitation for people to join and form terror and bandit groups, particularly in a Country where unemployment is the bane of the day.

It is no doubt that the untoward hardship afflicting majority of the populace is a strong factor contributing to inclination of crimes and terrorism. It is important to intimate the government from the Federal down to the State and Local Government, that no reasonable results may be expected in putting a stop to crimes and terrorism in the Country, in as much as people continue to languish in poverty. Where people are hungry and wanting, their longing may push them to do whatever possible, just to earn a living. Terrorism, kidnapping, banditry, and all forms of crimes may not be too far from possible options.

There is therefore no other time than now for government at all levels to become radical in the efforts toward revamping and revatilising the Country’s economy for a new leave for Nigerians. It high time State Governments with the support of their respective local councils put on the garments of creative innovations and the necessary political will to drive development and economic growth in their domain. All States depending solely on the monthly Federal allocation, should be reminded that there is little development that can be effected through the limitations of such dependence. State Government should follow after the example of Lagos State in terms of coming up with strategically creative ways to strengthen their respective economies. The truth should be sounded that the average Nigerians are hard working and industrious people who will exert all their energy to productive activities, if work is made available to them. Therefore, the onus lies on the government to provide the industrial architecture for Nigerians to work. To prevent people from diverting their productive strength and ability to criminal ventures, the government should begin to effect changes to the situation narrative  in the Country by  becoming creatively radical on the emergent need to eliminate penury and hardship across the Country. This is indispensable if terrorism, kidnapping, banditry and all security threats against the continuous existence of the Country would be nipped into the bud.

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