The Ongoing Shiite v Sunnis fight on Nigerian Soil

Several years ago, before GEJ became President, before Boko Haram became such a huge menace, in the early days of Umar Yar’Adua, I did a series articles regarding:

1. The Preaching of Islamic Extremism by Clerics in the Core North

2. The encouraging habitat for Islamic Extremism in the Core North based on the receptive nature of the leaders to such excesses of these clerics

3. The impending danger to Nigeria in keeping Sharia Law within our constitution while claiming to be a Secular State

4. How the ex-Leader of Boko Haram had Northern Leaders go and beg Umar Yar’Adua to have him released – which the then President did prior to the clash with the police that led to his death – and led to what has become “the real Boko Haram” today

5. The lousy nature of the elites – first from the North; and then the South to live in denial about all of these – while always choosing to play the political correctness game.

6. As I wrote of all of these, I equally mentioned how the world might increasingly be faced with a situation in which the world would become a larger stage for the Sunnis v Shiite fight – how the Middle East would no longer be the primary turf for this ancient-long fight

7. I warned Nigerians not to encourage Nigeria to become “a stadium” for this by throwing ridiculous rhetorics like “Poverty is the cause of extremism” plus “PDP is the reason that’s causing this poverty” – but true to type, dem no hear me

8. Then, the rest is History, after the Iraq, Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Nigeria is now possibly the next nation that has suffered the most loss of lives and properties; and dent to the economy in the last 5 years to “Core Islamic Extremism”

9. As I kept raising these issues during GEJ’s term, I was told “I was being paid by him to launder his image” – the Soldiers under him were even blamed when El-Zakzaky held his annual procession that led the loss of lives – as happens every other year – including this year – even though he lost two or three of his sons in the last year’s clash – recall that, close to 10 years ago, this guy was listed by BBC as “one of the most dangerous Nigerians”

10. The rest as they say is History – only yesterday, Nigeria almost lost our hard-working Buratai, the Chief of Army Staff to the Sunni Clash!

Well, you can be sure, after reading 1-10 above, some people would still say “I am writing these because GEJ lost the election and that I am still bitter from the loss” – some would still say “the constitution protects the rights of every Nigerian to practice his religion/faith/doctrine as he pleases (even such is leading to the loss of human lives)”; and some would still say “Poverty as caused by GEJ/PDP is the cause of Extremism.”

If you’re not yet tired of the cheap rhetoric in this nation that continually seems to lead the Nigerian State into the doldrums, then you must be a very tough-minded person – and I congratulate you for that – I have not yet seen any nation in which it’s own people seem to passionate to destroy it with their own very hands – and in fact, compete very vigorously to be the first to do so as though “there was a gold medal plus $100 reward for doing so” as I have consistently seen with the Nigerian State in the course of the last two decades.

@favourafolabi

Shettima’s relationship with Boko Haram

I am tempted to ask “Why Shekau/Boko Haram has had to wait for 21 days to claim responsibility for the kidnap of these girls?”; especially ONLY after:

1. WAEC blew the lid on SHETTIMA’s complicity in this kidnap case having gotten the school principal and state officials to keep mum on this or so long; while also refusing to release the full biodata and pictures of these kids;

2. After GEJ was reported to have asked SHETTIMA to produce the girls or face the sack!

Could Shekau have made this claim at this strategic time to deflect the attention away from Shettima only within hours of these newer revelations?

Well I came up with this theory after I had a one-hour long phone convo with a friend of mine based in North America who also inboxed this to me:

After we noted rightly that Boko Haram NEVER CLAIMED RESPONSIBILITY for the CHIBOK Abduction, After the President also said it on the Media chat yesterday, after 3 weeks of the stage-managed abduction, after GEJ gave marching orders to the Governor and principal to produce the girls, SHEKAU COMES UP WITH A VIDEO SAYING HE AND HIS MEN ABDUCTED THE GIRLS… Who is a MUGU HERE?”

During this phone call, he had reminded me of there was another story in March 2014 in Konduga/Borno about 20 girls being abducted before the school denied such reports; he went on to further suggest that there was a plan at the time to ask for ransom to be paid to free the so-called missing girls before ‘the business come scatter.

My take is this is sounding like too much of a coincidence especially considering that:

3. it is this same SHETTIMA that told WAEC to come and conduct the exams in CHIBOK against the opinion of the body;

4. Kabiru Sokoto, the Christmas day bomber was also arrested in the company of a serving military officer on 14th of March 2012 in Borno State Governor’s Lodge, Abuja under the leadership of SHETTIMA!

I believe it is high time GEJ suspended SHETTIMA so the FGN can properly investigate his relationship with BOKO HARAM!

You might call this a CONSPIRACY THEORY but with all these FACTS, I would say this a FACT-BASED-TOO-MUCH-OF-A-COINCIDENCE THEORY – one that it would be nice for others to disprove if they disagree with me on.

I have provided weblinks to back up my theory below even as it should be noted that these sources are anti-GEJ titling media houses – Leadership and The Nation – these are four proven connections of Shettima to Boko Haram that no one within this polity should deny!

See: http://www.thenationonlineng.net/2011/index.php/news/33323-police-arrest-suspect-in-borno-gov%E2%80%99s-lodge.html

See: http://leadership.ng/news/350838/police-schools-deny-abduction-20-borno-girls

Read NGOZI OKONJO-IWEALA’s response on SANUSI on CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS

TRANSCRIPT OF FAREED ZAKARIA’S INTERVIEW WITH NGOZI OKONJO-IWEALA [on SANUSI]

ZAKARIA:  Listen in to our conversation.  I began by asking her why the central banker was suspended for blowing the whistle.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

NGOZI OKONJO-IWEALA, NIGERIAN FINANCE MINISTER:  I believe that when you find problems, you should also find solutions.  I think the problem began the first time when he said that the amount that was – he never said it was stolen.  He said it was unaccounted for, was $49.8 billion.

And he wrote a letter to the president; he called me a couple of days after, to say I’ve written this letter.  And my first reaction was, that’s not possible.  We couldn’t be missing $50 billion as finance minister in this country.  We wouldn’t be able to function because that’s too high a hit.  Everybody would know it and feel it in the economy.

ZAKARIA:  There is some substantial gap.

OKONJO-IWEALA:  Oh, yes –

ZAKARIA:  Right?  I mean –

OKONJO-IWEALA:  No, we –

ZAKARIA:  – the World Bank, I think when you were one of the managing directors, issued a report on the Nigerian economy in which it said hundreds of billions of dollars over the past 30 or 40 years have been siphoned off.  And so this would be a perfect example of precisely this kind of siphoning off.

OKONJO-IWEALA:  No.  I think we should hold our horses a little bit.  Sanusi please ask him never said the money had been siphoned off.  He said it was unaccounted for.

And hold on.  There’s a difference, because when he alleged $49.8 billion – and this was looked at, it was found that some of that money had really been remitted to the tax agency directly and his people were not aware of it.

So $16 billion was immediately accounted for that, you know, they didn’t seem to know the accounting mode of the agency, so that’s what I’m saying.

But there has been – there’s no doubt that Nigerians feel suspicious of the oil sector, that it has been regarded as opaque over the years and this is not an issue, you know, whether it’s $10.8 billion, whether it’s $1, you know, we can’t afford to lose any money from the treasury.

ZAKARIA:  But then why fire the central banker, a respected central banker?

OKOJO-IWEALA:  You know, Fareed, what I would like to do is perhaps focus on the economy, because I don’t think I want to get into this issue of firing/not firing.  He’s still governor of the central bank.  He has been suspended.  He hasn’t been fired.

But I think we need to focus on the central issue, which is no one dollar should be lost from the treasury.  Any money that belongs to it must be remitted.  That’s what we’re insisting.

And the president, we pushed for – he has ordered one yesterday, that there should be a forensic audit to determine where these moneys, that what is unaccounted for, is it the $10.8 billion that we are saying from the accounts?

We’ve been working on this for two years.

And you know, is it $50 billion?  Is it $20 billion?  Is it $12 billion?  What is the amount?  We need to know for the sake of the Nigerian people and he has ordered that.  So we want it to be independent; we want it to be well done, so that we can lay it to rest.

ZAKARIA:  So how do we – how do you solve the problem of corruption?

You’ve been in government twice.  You have a reputation for being extremely honest.

What would you do, if you had a magic wand, if you were president, what would you do to get Nigeria to get this cancer out of its system?

OKOJO-IWEALA:  Well, you know, Fareed, you know with that, there are no easy answers.  But there’s one thing I want to say and repeat.  No one can fight corruption for Nigerians except Nigerians.  Everyone has to be committed from the top to the bottom to fight it.

And I think there are two key things that need to be done all along, and it’s not just in Nigeria.  It’s in many developing countries that you need to do this.

But in our country, you need to, coupled with – by all means pursue those who are corrupt, punish them, you know, make sure there’s no impunity.  But that has to be coupled with something which doesn’t get as much attention, which is building institutions.  It’s unglamorous; it’s work that takes time, but we have to do it.  We have to put it in place.

29 Names that you didn’t know would be attending the National Confab…

#fbablogs

29 Names that you didn’t know would be attending the National Confab

As I read through the full list of the delegates to the confab on pages 3 & 6 of Today’s The Punch [Yes, some of us still buy Newspapers], I found some names that I thought some Nigerians who believed this “Confab is a sham” might find hard to believe were there and though to list them out thus:

  1. Dr. Tunji Braithwaite
  2. Chief Ayo Adebanjo
  3. Chief Richard Akinjide
  4. Chief Afe Babalola
  5. Abdulwaheed Omar [NLC President]
  6. Issa Aremu [NLC]
  7. Peter Esele [ex-TUC President]
  8. Frank Nweke II
  9. Ajani James Olawale
  10. Joe Okei-Odumakin
  11. Dr. Olisa Agbakoba
  12. Femi Falana, SAN [the same one]
  13. Dr. Adetokunbo Awolowo-Dosunmu
  14. Yinka Odumakin
  15. Okey Wali [NBA President]
  16. Chief Olusegun Osoba
  17. Col. Tony Nyiam
  18. Atedo Peterside
  19. Annkio Brigs
  20. Prof Anya O. Anya
  21. Senator Ken Nnamani
  22. Supo Shasore [ex-AG Lagos]
  23. Fola Adeola
  24. Mr. John Dara
  25. Anthony Sani
  26. Prof Akin…

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29 Names that you didn’t know would be attending the National Confab…

29 Names that you didn’t know would be attending the National Confab

As I read through the full list of the delegates to the confab on pages 3 & 6 of Today’s The Punch [Yes, some of us still buy Newspapers], I found some names that I thought some Nigerians who believed this “Confab is a sham” might find hard to believe were there and though to list them out thus:

  1. Dr. Tunji Braithwaite
  2. Chief Ayo Adebanjo
  3. Chief Richard Akinjide
  4. Chief Afe Babalola
  5. Abdulwaheed Omar [NLC President]
  6. Issa Aremu [NLC]
  7. Peter Esele [ex-TUC President]
  8. Frank Nweke II
  9. Ajani James Olawale
  10. Joe Okei-Odumakin
  11. Dr. Olisa Agbakoba
  12. Femi Falana, SAN [the same one]
  13. Dr. Adetokunbo Awolowo-Dosunmu
  14. Yinka Odumakin
  15. Okey Wali [NBA President]
  16. Chief Olusegun Osoba
  17. Col. Tony Nyiam
  18. Atedo Peterside
  19. Annkio Brigs
  20. Prof Anya O. Anya
  21. Senator Ken Nnamani
  22. Supo Shasore [ex-AG Lagos]
  23. Fola Adeola
  24. Mr. John Dara
  25. Anthony Sani
  26. Prof Akin Oyebode
  27. Bayo Ojo
  28. Pastor Tunde Bakare [the very one]
  29. Gani Adams

And I thought to myself, “perhaps these folks are also going ahead to attend this sham of a confab?” What do you think about this?

The Nigerian-Camerounian Border Conundrum

The Nigerian-Camerounian Border Conundrum

The US/Mexico border is 1,969 mile (3,169 km) long – The border is guarded by more than 20,000 border patrol agents, more than any time in its history. However, they only have “effective control” of less than 700 miles (1,100 km) [35.6%] of the 1,954 miles (3,145 km) of total border, with an ability to actually prevent or stop illegal entries along 129 miles (208 km) [10.6%] of that border. The border is paralleled by United States Border Patrol Interior Checkpoints at major roads generally between 25 and 75 miles (121 km) to the U.S. side of the border, and garitas generally within 50 km of the border on the Mexican side.

There are an estimated 500,000 illegal entries into the United States each year. Border Patrol activity is concentrated around big border cities such as San Diego and El Paso which do have extensive border fencing.

The Secure Fence Act of 2006 was passed providing for the construction of 700 miles (1,100 km) [35.6%] of high-security fencing. Attempts to complete the construction of the United States–Mexico barrier have been challenged by the Mexican government and various U.S.–based organizations.

In January 2013, the Government Accountability Office released a report stating that the United States Border Patrol only intercepts 61% of individuals illegally crossing the border in 2011, which translated to 208,813 individuals not being apprehended. 85,827 of the 208,813 would go on to illegally enter the United States, while the rest returned into Mexico.

Now contrast this to the Nigeria-Cameroun which is reported to be between 1,200 and 1,500 miles long; almost the same size as the US/Mexico border – and you begin to get a sense of the enormity of the challenges that the Nigerian Armed Forces is having to contend with here. This of course should help you situate those who keep insinuating that the Nigerian Armed Forces isn’t doing much to curb this crisis.

Leave your comments on what you believe the Nigerian Military should do in dealing with this Boko Haram crises in the box below.

Credits: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Us_mexico_border

A brief history into “State of Emergency scenarios in Nigeria”

A brief history into “State of Emergency scenarios in Nigeria”

In May 2004 Plateau state erupted into sectarian violence, which spilled over into Kano State. It was reported that over 50,000 people had died. President Olusegun Obasanjo declared emergency rule in the state and suspended the governor and the state assembly, appointing Chris Alli as administrator. Alli quickly developed the Plateau Peace Program, involving dialog between religious, ethnic and community leaders, and a state-wide peace conference. He also gave an amnesty to holders of weapons and a reward for their turning in their arms. Alli’s measures were successful in calming the situation even as he spent 5 months in office [between 18th May and 18 November 2004], and he handed back to Joshua Dariye who he had earlier took over of from.

On 26 September 2006 the Ekiti State House of Assembly impeached the governor, Ayodele Fayose and his deputy Abiodun Christine Olujimi, alleging gross misconduct. On October 19, 2006, President Olusegun Obasanjo declared a State of Emergency in Ekiti State and suspended the governor, deputy governor and House of Assembly of the state. He appointed Tunji Olurin, as “Sole Administrator” of Ekiti State. The State of Emergency was ratified by the National Assembly on October 26. Olurin was to handover Tope Ademiluyi who was appointed acting governor on April 27, 2007, who went on to hold the position until 29 May 2007, when Olusegun Oni took office after winning the elections. The terms of Olurin and Ademiluyi came to a combined 6 months + 1 month = 7 months!

These two instances readily show that “peace was achieved at the end of the day” based on these interventions.

I have decided to get back into the HISTORY BOOKS to help out those that have been crying wolf ahead of the so-called plans by President Goodluck Jonathan to call for a Sole Administrator to take over in Borno State; as expected, these super bloggers and public commentators would typically throw substance away for sensationalism – leaving out the FACTS as presented above to show that it is not as though President Goodluck Jonathan would be the first person to do this and that the objectives rather than the politics of such an action should be the overriding focus here. 

In the same way that they would love to claim that “the governor is being punished because he spoke up to embarrass the President” or “the governor belongs to the opposition – APC” – well, it would be nice to ask these folks “if such an intervention won’t be something that even the Governor should pray for considering his statements from last week pointing in the direction of Boko Haram being more powerful than the Nigerian Armed Forces?”

 

Won’t it be better for him to step-aside while this is dealt with so that he can resume office as was the with Dariye thereafter than to have his entire government wiped off by Boko Haram even as his own life is also at stake here?

There must be times even within politically-charged and partisan-centric moods for us to pay attention to objectivity rather than manipulation of information dissemination that works against the common good – and I believe should be one of such times.