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Home 5 ARTICLES 5 #INSIGHTWITHLARIGOLD: COMPENSATING TERRORISTS… WHO DOES THAT?! BY @LANRE_OLAGUNJU

#INSIGHTWITHLARIGOLD: COMPENSATING TERRORISTS… WHO DOES THAT?! BY @LANRE_OLAGUNJU

It’s a sign of weakness to think that insecurity issues can be solved via a quick fix approach, it might be necessary that as a people, we relax, take a deep breath, and with the eye of shame begin to consider ourselves as a nation that dialogues with terrorists and compensates them so as to buy peace and security. If terrorists kill and cause anarchy for unthinkable demands, then what do you call those who plan to pay or negotiate with them? Evidently, Goodluck Jonathan’s administration is the worst thing that has happened to our fragile democracy.

President Goodluck Jonathan once told the entire world of the presence of Boko-Haram in his government and one would have assumed that some deep and secret intelligence work is going underground to check that out so as to install long lasting security to the nation. Compensating the Islamic Sect marks the end to all possible investigations and automatically rights the wrongs of their sponsors. We need not forget that Kabir Sokoto, the Christmas Day bomber of St Theresa Catholic Church, Madalla, Niger State was caught in the Governor of Borno’s lodge and that a police commissioner, Zakari Biu, apparently played a significant role in aiding Sokoto’s escape. What of Senator Ndume, who is standing trial for aiding and abetting Boko Haram? Once compensation plan is settled, then, we need not ask further questions from Alhaji Lawal Kaita, a northern leader who in October 2010 said Nigeria will be ungovernable if the president did not come from the North.

It’s somewhat alarming that the dreaded Islamic sect is now willing to dialogue and negotiate, that raises a whole lot of questions. We need to note that they once gave conditions for peace in February 2011, where they actually demanded that Ali Modu Sheriff, (The same former governor of Borno State whose arrest they are now demanding as a term for negotiation) steps down with immediate effect and permit members reclaim their mosque in Maiduguri.  Only for them to reject the offer for amnesty in May 2011 presented by the present governor of Borno state, Kashim Shettima

Is it that they have achieved their aim or that their masters have had enough blood shed? Or is it that they are out of cash and resources to finance their goals, hence they intend to pull a fast one on the weak and tactless federal government.  What beats my imagination is the amount of enthusiasm with which the Federal Government welcomed the silly offer and the amazing willingness to start drawing criteria for payments. It affirms that President Jonathan has only been fooling Nigerians with his “our administration is doing everything possible to ensure that the perpetrators of this dastardly act are brought to justice” speech which he doesn’t seem tired of giving after any bomb attack. Or could this possibly be his own definition of the justice he has been clamoring about?! Yes we all want peace to reign, but any cheap approach to getting it is not just it, because the fruits of such stupidity will ripen in few years, fully introducing anarchy and lawlessness in the country. We should expect that in no time several other groups will spring up.

The fact that dialogue and amnesty worked out with the Niger Delta militants who had clear demands is no guarantee that it would work out with Boko Haram who is fighting against western education alongside planning to Islamise the entire nation.

Dialoguing with them and paying them compensation simply implies that the Federal government who is saddled with the responsibility to protect lives and property has been cowed by some individuals. Where on earth is it heard that terrorists are compensated for killing innocent souls? What a shame! Reaching agreement with them will probably only lead to suspending their activities. They are terrorists, trained to commit suicide just like they have done on several occasions. Are we expecting that they will suddenly just become repentant? It didn’t happen like that with Maistasine!

The origin of terrorism in Nigeria can be widely traced to Maistasine, a religious sect founded by one late Malam Muhammadu Marwa alias Allah Ta-Tsine or Maitatsine, the group had same objectives with boko haram in the 80s. The ideology of the sect was to oppose modernization and Western influence, the first Maitasine violence in Kano claimed 4,177 lives. General Muhammed Buhari’s administration fought and wiped off the Maitasine sect and this  makes it understandable why General Buhari has refused to take up the role of mediator as the Boko Haram sect has demanded, stating that he would not have anything to do with the talks. “I do not know any member of the Boko Haram sect. I do not believe and I do not know of any religion that will go and kill people, burn schools”  Gen. Buhari clearly stated. President Goodluck Jonathan should be warned that negotiating implies that the Federal Government has lost total control of the country’s security.

Over N900billion was earmarked for security in the 2012 Budget alone, basically because of insecurity. The federal government according to The Financial Times has spent $1 billion on the amnesty program of the Niger delta ex-militants since inception. I think it’s time the government started working towards social security for the unemployed as long as the government remains incapable of creating employment and an environment that accommodates and encourages entrepreneurship.

Follow @Lanre_Olagunju on Twitter.

Blogs @ www.larigold.blogspot.com

#INSIGHTWITHLARIGOLD runs on www.omojuwa.com every Saturday.

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About Larigold

Lanre Olagunju is an hydrologist turned freelance journalist. He has a degree in hydrology from the University of Agriculture Abeokuta and a professional diploma in journalism from the American College of Journalism. Lanre advocates on several international platforms for the prosperity and absolute well-being of the African continent. He's @Lanre_Olagunju on Twitter

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