By Ebele ORAKPO
Ijeoma, a commuter in this Apapa-bound passenger bus wondered aloud: “I can’t understand why some people behave as if they can own the entire universe, as if they are immortal. The world, like the Igbo say, is a market place. You go and do your stuff and quit the stage. It is not home to anybody.
This is applicable to life. At the end of your performance, you must quit the stage whether you like it or not so why must some people behave as if they are here to stay for ever?” obviously referring to the recent bomb blasts in Abuja. Another commuter by name Ngozi, said: “Look, if the government really wants to know the people behind the bombing, it is quite simple. They said there was a warning sent out by e-mail five days before the incident. The logical thing to do was simply trace the computer from which the email was sent. All this beating about the bush should cease.”
“My dear, it’s not as simple as that. You may trace the computer from which the e-mail originated but what if the system does not belong to the criminals? They are a smart lot you know,” commented Joe.
“We’ll cross that bridge when we get there. In any case, not all criminals are smart. For instance, I laughed really hard when I read the warning text purportedly sent by MEND to Zamfara State Government where Niger-Delta was spelt as Niger-Delter! From what I gathered, MEND spokespersons are highly educated people,” said Tim.
“People will do anything for power. Just look at how many innocent souls lost their lives because of the inordinate ambition of a few people. I was pained after reading the story of the man who lost four loved ones – two sons, a nephew and his driver. It’s just so sad. Man’s inhumanity to man,” sighed Joe.
“Even if the Nigerian security agencies cannot do the job of unmasking the devils behind the dastardly act, I believe government has the wherewithal to employ the services of the FBI, CIA or Scotland Yard,” stated Mike matter-of-factly.
“I think they have taken fragments of the bomb to the US and UK labs for further forensic investigation,” said Ade.
Noted Tunde: “But President Jonathan said he knows those behind the blasts, let him name them and stop beating about the bush.”
“I doubt if he knows, otherwise, he would have mentioned their names,” noted Ngozi, adding: “He spoke too hastily for a leader. He dissociated MEND from the blasts after they had purportedly taken responsibility for it. That was not wise because it gave the impression that he knew the goings-on in MEND.”
“But did MEND really take responsibility for the action? I thought the group has ceased to exist..” asked Ade to which Mike replied thus: “Yeah, I heard that too, but Henry Okah later said he was coerced by President Jonathan’s aide to deny it.”
“Is the president’s aide faceless and nameless? Let them stop playing politics with the lives of Nigerians,” said Ijeoma.
“If we are to go by what some people are saying, does it make sense that the Federal Government would invite the whole world to come and rejoice with the nation as she celebrated her 50th independence anniversary and then turn around and bomb the place to give themselves a bad name? That singular act has undone all the job of the Information ministry in laundering the nation’s image. The world would see the nation as unsafe and a burgeoning terrorist enclave,” noted John.
“Yes indeed! It doesn’t make sense but then, one can never tell with politicians, especially the Nigerian species,” noted Ijeoma.
“If MEND did it, what would be their motive? To attract attention or pity? Then they’ve failed. But it doesn’t look as if they have a motive. After all, their brother is now the president so what exactly are they looking for? asked Mike. Said John: “Money. Gone are the days of true freedom fighters. Today, what we have are those fighting for their pockets, nobody cares about anybody else. It’s I, me and myself now.”
“The innocent souls must not die in vain,” said Ngozi.
“IBB said they fought to keep Nigeria united. We all know what they fought for – not for Nigerians but for oil. After all, what has the ordinary Nigerian from the East, West, North and South benefitted from the oil wealth? It’s the elite and the politicians deceiving us.”