OPERATION AMOTEKUN VERSUS C-I-C OF NIGERIA
“An excellent plumber is infinitely more adorable than an incompetent [Attorney General to the Government of the Federation, AGF]. A society which scorns excellence in plumbing because it is a humble work activity, and tolerates shoddiness in [the AGF’s office] because it is an exalted activity, will have neither good plumbing nor good [Minister of Justice]. Neither its pipes nor its [legal submissions] will hold water.” [statement amended by me].
John Gardener, USA Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare, in 1960s.
President Buhari has tolerated shoddiness in the Office of the Attorney-General for the Federation, AGF, for almost five years and the tragedies that invariably accumulate after appointing people beyond their level of competence are becoming increasingly apparent. Nigerians need to be reminded that Mr Malami, who inherited a judgment debt of about $6 billion in favour of P&ID in 2015 and who sat on it until it accelerated to $9.01 billion in 2019 and is still (or should be unless the Minister of Finance is also daft) outstanding as a liability on the National Accounts. All Malami’s steps have amounted to chasing shadows. If Buhari is not so totally in love with proven failures, the man should have been sacked for seating on such a huge judgment debt for so long – especially when the court is off-shore. Since then, he going about holding P&ID hostages in Nigeria as if that would pay the bill or get the UK Appeal court to rule in our favour. Most likely, by the time we are through Nigeria will apply a great percentage of the $30bn fresh loan sought just to pay for Jonathan-Adoke-Buhari-Malami’s foolishness. As usual, that is only the appetiser.
Operatn Amotekun hit the Federal Government like a sucker punch to the jaw which sends a stupid boxer to the canvass gasping for breath and wondering what hit him. Suddenly, the country had been polarised into two unequal segments – those for the idea and those against. Buhari, most of the Fulani and people of the Northwest, who are distinctly in the minority, are against it. Virtually the rest of the country is for it. Buhari is increasingly becoming a minority leader. Even the docile President of the Senate, Ahmoed Lawan on January 28, 2020 in the VANGUARD was quoted as saying: “if we must get it right in the country, it has become imperative to restructure the security architecture.” He had gone as far as he could to support Amotekun or something like it. Restructuring security architecture might have to be done without Buhari — a major failure who cannot think of what to do next except send condolence.
Operation Amotekun, as everybody in Nigeria now knows was launched by the South West Governors a few weeks ago as a security outfit to protect the lives and properties of ALL the people living in the zone – not just the majority Yoruba people. The Commander In Condolence, C-I-C of Nigeria, the President, who despite leading a country not at declared war, had been sending out more condolence messages than any President in the history of the world had, through his incompetent Minister of Justice declared Amotekun illegal – forgetting that in a democracy, Presidents and AGFs don’t make law. I have on several occasions called Mr Malami, SAN, incompetent. I am now beginning to wonder how he managed to become a Senior Advocate of Nigeria. Has quota or Federal Character entered into what should be strictly a merit system? Has the Nigerian Factor crept into it? If the law, as alleged in some quarters, is an ass, public legal officers like Malami have made it so. There is no major issue of law that he had not bungled. I will not engage him as my lawyer – even if for free.
“Considering people for jobs has to be a heartless business.”
CP Snow, 1905-1980, VANGUARD BOOK OF QUOTATIONS, VBQ, p 109.
So heartless, that I on two occasions refused to seat on interview panels when some of the applicants were my relatives. The best deserve the appointment.
Buhari announced that he appoints people he knows and can trust. He never said they need to be good at their jobs. Malami is an example of what can happen when a confused leader misinterprets the nature of his assignment. Most effective Presidents and Prime Ministers worldwide search for the best talents they can get to fill important positions. They don’t drag in dullards from their home town or impose failure in-laws on the people of their country. That is why they grow in every way and Nigeria is getting poorer in its own ways under Buhari. Our C0mmander-In-Condolence recruits only incompetents!!
Lee Kuan Yew, father of Singapore, in his best seller FROM THIRD TO FIRST WORLD IN ONE GENERATION, which Buhari should have read, but did not, before attempting to rule Nigeria,, had this to say about appointing talented people to high office. “It had taken me some time to see the obvious; that talent is a country’s most precious asset.” (p 135) Talent is the last thing Buhari searches for. He prefers the Abubakars and Mohammeds – invariably the untalented. Singapore is growing; Nigeria is sinking. The reason is obvious!!!
Buhari must be the only person left in the world who does not know that all his security chiefs are incapable of securing the lives and properties of Fellow Nigerians. One only hopes he has read enough to understand that self-preservation is such a powerful motive that people pushed to the wall will do anything to assure it. Furthermore, he is probably too busy scheduling flight by his daughter on “Buhari Airlines” to realise that a security vacuum had been created by Buratai, Adamu, Bichi etc. Yet, those with more than WAEC attempted certificate know that “Nature abhors a vacuum” When his service chiefs increasingly demonstrate that they cannot protect all Nigerians – Buhari’s relatives in Daura included – they have invited not only Amotekun; but similar organisations nationwide which will emerge in a chaotic manner.
Incidentally, Buratai wants to withdraw his troops from the Maiduguri-Damaturu road. It was probably not his decision. Nigerian troops want to run away from Boko Haram and the Chief of Army Staff increasingly cannot keep them there. Even on the highway, they seldom confront Boko Haram. Old friends living in that axis inform me that Buratai had merely given the troops stationed there ATM cards to draw on travellers. At least, the Governor of Borno State said so openly not just me. Let us all face it; Buhari has lost total control of the security in Nigeria.
In Europe, he now goes about cap in hand begging for assistance to cope with security problems which were largely created by his own misunderstanding of modern warfare and insurgency. To some extent PUNCH is wrong. Buhari can no longer be called a General. He is fit only to command in the Punic Wars. Last year, I published an article titled NEXT LEVEL IS PURE ANARCHY. In it, the prediction was made that Buhari’s management of the security situation in Nigeria is tending towards total chaos. The President, an old and tired warrior, had abdicated his role as the nation’s Chief Security Officer. He had become Chief Condolence Officer – sending out condolence messages with increasing frequency – now up to twice a week. He had not even noticed the diminishing returns involved in sending out those meaningless words which can never console citizens who had been betrayed by his government. All now end in the trash can.
“The worst thing that can happen to a leader is to look back and find that nobody is following him.” US President John Kennedy, 1917-1963.
Later, an excerpt from the June 2019 article will be published. Read and you can easily understand why Buhari and Malami, as well as the security chiefs labour in vain in their attempt to stop Amotekun and other self-help efforts that will spring up in Nigeria. If Buhari wants to know the truth, most Nigerians no longer believe he can protect them and they are provided with clear evidence everyday bandits, Boko Haram and kidnappers strike somewhere in this country. The President might as well stop sending those empty condolence messages which are now received with the contempt they deserve. What would his message mean to me if my daughter was kidnapped by Islamic terrorists in Michika? Would it bring her back? Would it lead to her rescue or stop her from suffering the same fate as Leah Sharibu? With all due respects, Buhari should leave us alone to protect our selves anyway we can. The question can then be asked: What happens if the country breaks up? There is a short answer to that. Only people who are alive have a country. Dead people have no nation. To which country does the Pastor in Adamawa slaughtered by “peace-loving” Islamic elements now belong? Buhari should tell us. Until he was butchered by Northern Islamic barbarians, Buhari and Buratai were still promising to protect him and all Nigerians. Who believes them now? Who will rely on them in the future?
“In the clashes between ignorance and intelligence, ignorance is always the aggressor.” Paul Harris, VBQ, 99.
Draw a line across Nigeria – separating North and South – and there is no dispute where the weight of ignorance lies. There is also no argument about where the poverty is most dehumanising. It is no longer news that while the North is predominantly Islamic, the South is mostly Christian. One only has to cross any of the two great rivers – Niger and Benue – to notice the differences. It is clear who is holding Nigeria down and who will continue to hold everybody down – unless some of us break free…
Amotekun, despite some of the misgivings many of us have about it is the beginning of that transition. It is not perfect; it is a step in the right direction.
TWO TRIBUTES IN ONE: AJIBOLA AND ATTAH – 2.
“No person was ever honoured for what he received. Honour has been the reward for what he gave.” Calvin Coolidge, 1872-1933, 30th US President.
VANGUARD BOOK OF QUOTATIONS, VBQ p 94.
VANGUARD has bestowed honour on Obong (Dr) Victor Attah, for his lifetime achievement. Incredibly, people often need to be reminded about who was their benefactor. I wrote the Foreword to Attah’s RESOURCE CONTROL in 2004, at a time when achieving 13 per cent derivation for Niger Delta States appeared like a mission impossible. I was with him through the trials and tribulations of fighting for that objective until it was achieved. Today, not only Akwa Ibom State, but all the oil-producing states enjoying 13 per cent derivation and much enhanced revenue owe much of the bountiful blessings to God and Attah.
Now that VANGUARD has honoured my abiding hero, the appeal is being made to the people of AKS to come out and honour the man widely acknowledged as the FATHER OF MODERN AKWA IBOM STATE. Seats and invitation cards are limited. So, it will be a first come and first served affair – especially for the political class. It is not a partisan issue. For as long as AKS exists as a part of Nigeria, every Governor, Speaker, major contractor, even indigene of AKS, irrespective of party, would have or will benefit from Attah’s landmark achievement. Come and give a little to someone who gave so much to his people.
JUST ASK ME for anything you need to know about getting an invitation and/or a seat or participation. Don’t bother Obong Attah; we are on the same page. Thanks.
NB. Fifteen (15) seats are gone already. Don’t be left out.