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Onovo, Senate and Benin – Lagos Expressway

IG Onovo:I pray for a safer country

By Emma Okocha

There are all sorts of ruin; one is the work of time, the other of men. Of all ruins the ruin of man is the saddest.”
-Seneca, Roman Statesman, Stoic Philosopher, Dramatist, Orator.

”Throwing light on the robbery, the IG debunked the story, saying the incident actually took place on the July 31, 2009…some suspected armed robbers attacked the vehicle, [Young  Shall Grow] and ordered all the 41 passengers in the bus to alight .They were ordered to sit down right on the road …..a heavy duty vehicle, on high speed, which had lost control ran over the people.”

-Yemi Akinsuyi, This Day, reporting on the floor of the Senate.
”I started hearing gun shots .Out of panic, I decided to run over what I assumed were logs of woods. As my truck ran over the barricades, I noticed that they were too soft. I also heard gun shots and agonizing cries of people. I suspected I must have killed some people.”

– Osayande Idahosa, driver of the mass killer truck, to Christopher Oji, Daily Sun, March 8, 2010.
”It is only the Police that has the training and the orientation to protect the people and in fact, we are the only disciplined force that is prepared to handle any change in government. As I said, the army is totally ill suited for that role. In Nigeria the army is an idle and pepper soup guzzling bunch.”
– ASP Alozie Ogugbuaja to the author, at Ikeja Sheraton, April 27th 2000.

The arid programs running on the NTA International was punctuated by the news. The Inspector General of Police, was in an open repartee with his Minister, the lame Hon. Lam before an equally staid Senate. The Minister had concluded that the 21 thousand naira monthly pay to the Police other ranks, and the  recent upgrading of the Police equipment provided by the Federal government, absorbs it from any blames, responsibilities, as recorded by the current security lapses in the country.

Lam argued that once the Federal money has doled out money and provided equipment to the Police, the looting cabal, the robbers, the cultists, the anti Christ, the congregation of false praying mantises, who charge money to pray for the missing president, religious fanatics, all the criminals;  including the machete waving and the blood sucking nomadic terrorists on the plateau, would retreat to the Sahara.

In blaming the Police for the legion of security issues, the country is facing, the lame Minister exhibited crass ignorance on the codes of communication employed by  government officials and the top executives as they conduct the business of government. Sir, when next you are invited to the Senate or to the House, please show some understanding, and kind considerations for your Inspector General.

Before any unnecessary grandstanding invite him over to your office, have him brief you, discuss and have a talk with your Inspector General, and once you are out there, you will insist and speak on behalf the government.  In the alternative, let your IG   with your authority, speak on behalf of you and the government. It is wrong protocol to allow the Senate to stampede you, and your Inspector General to present a double brief on security, for the same government, at the same time.

Not to be intimidated, the Inspector General did not allow Mr. Lam to eat his cake and have it. The Police under his watch, has registered some fairly recent successes. The Press and the Civil Society, have echoed the Onovo innovations and we are confident that the Police is on its way to fulfill his stated mission. The force under the present IG is not as hopeless as was the Police under his predecessors.

Inspector General, please, go ahead now and revive the old Police football team. The Machine FC. Appoint Sunday  Onyarukhau the team manager. That former police Inspector was one of the greatest Nigerian Number 9 of all times, and he played for the machine FC.  Re absorb ASP Alozie Ogugbuajar, and if he is no longer too strong after his long battles with the corrupt system,  retire him with his full due emoluments. You were a very good No 11 better than most of these pretenders still all over the scene. If you had elected to play football you would have played for Nigeria . If you had wanted Politics, you were a brilliant student and probably could have been in the Senate. Now restore the Police and start with some Public Relations instrument of football and draw your men closer to the people.

Having said that, we are concerned that the Senate did not move that the dangerous Ore-Shagamu part of the Benin -Lagos Expressway be given an emergency lift. We are concerned that both the Minister and the Police Inspector General have nothing to say about the brigands that ambushed the Young Shall Grow  Ugbo Ndi Israel luxury bus. If they have not been apprehended after these months, why release the killer driver, Osayande Idahosa?  This homicide is more than manslaughter. On account of the sheer number of the innocent souls mangled to death on that fateful night, that driver should still be in helping the investigations.. How could the driver be allowed to pronounce himself not liable, just because he did not know that his poor victims were not logs of wood but human beings. Since when is ignorance of the law an acquittal for mass slaughter?.

Why on earth did the Police blue book not report this crime and what is my friend Emma Ojukwu saying about the actually date of the of the horror, on that cursed freeway?. Another unbaked reporter of the highly respected This Day, led his report by misquoting the IG; when he insinuated that the IG debunked our story. Did the IG debunk Apo Six? Was he not the direct officer investigating this other mass murder? What about the poor Igbo welder that was roasted in Jos, and mentioned in my piece. If the IG debunked that story, then click on Aljazeera, today’s news and see the mother of all terrorism in the same

Jos!…http./english.aljazeera.net/news/africa/2010/02/20100298114949 112.htm1 We had in our opening speculative piece, called on the authorities to help investigate the story.  I remember we prayed that the internet pictures would in the end, be disregarded treated as some photo trick. When the Senate and the Security Czars confirmed the story, it was sad and clear that the same cavalier treatment and resolution which over time, have always followed most of the people’s demands on government, would follow this confirmation.

Again, if the authorities do not as a matter of urgency, beef up security and move to reconstruct that Ore- Shagamu danger zone, we are going to do something from here. Write Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, International Committee of the Red Cross, Geneva . We shall write the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extra Judiciary, Summary and Arbitrary Excutions, and we are sure the attention of this government will be drawn for immediate responsibility and sure compensation to the victims of that unprecedented, unbelievable waste on that Benin- Lagos Expressway.


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