By Kola Animashaun
This is not the Nigeria and the North we inherited and for us it cannot be the North we desire to bequeath to our children. The present North was not bequeathed to us and neither our children are responsible for it. — Yakubu Gowon.
As at the end of last week we were informed that Boko Haram attacks have killed at least 935 people since they launched their terror on the people of Nigeria , according Human Right Watch.
Mr Hague, the British Foreign Secretary said: “The nature of these attacks has sickened people around the world and I send my deepest condolences and sympathies to the families of those killed and to those injured.
“There is no place in today’s world for such barbaric acts and I condemn in the strongest possible terms those who carried them out. He also urged British nationals in Nigeria to comply with all curfews.
“These events underline the importance of the international community standing together in the face of terrorism in all its forms.”
In the first three weeks of January 2012 alone, more than 253 people have been killed in 21 separate attacks. Recently, 185 police and residents were killed in coordinated attacks targeting mainly police stations in Kano — the country’s second largest city — on January 20, Boko Haram’s deadliest single operation.
Human Rights groups have urged that Nigerian Government to work towards putting a stop to this campaign of terror. It ensure that those responsible be brought to justice for their heinous crimes. These terrorists, according to Corrine Dufka, Human Rights worker: “Boko Haram’s attacks show a complete and utter disregard for human life”. We have become accustomed to violent deaths and we have made it into a spectator sport.
Young people are watching as well adults, this will have an impact on a lot of Nigerians. We have all become walking post traumatic victims and most do not even know it.
The British Foreign Secretary, William Hague said he was “shocked and appalled” by the violence. Therefore in the wake of the attacks, the British Foreign Office updated its travel advice for Nigeria, warning people not to travel to Kano.
So they are appalled to hear the National Security Adviser, Gen. Azazi Owoeye, say that Nigeria is too big to be policed.
It was shocking to say the least as we thought that they should have some contingency plans for emergencies.
The FG has refused to consider state police because according to them, it is prone to abuse, but the same Government does not seem to see the implication of contracting the policing of our maritime sector to an ex-militant.
Authorities enforced a 24-hour curfew in the city, with many people remaining at home as soldiers and police patrol the streets and set up roadblocks.
Friday’s attacks hit police stations, immigration offices and the local headquarters of the SSS in Kano.
People have become shell shocked, traumatised and our Government does not seem to gauge the mood of the people that they feel helpless , terrified, insecure and there are no assurances or plan put in place to weed these people out. What people hear is hollow words and no action and no intelligence .
After all, President Goodluck Jonathan said Boko Haram would “face the full wrath of the law”. Yet his government has repeatedly been unable to stop attacks by the group.
Nigeria is not working; it seems that Nigeria is doing nothing to counter the evil deeds amongst its people. The feelings of the people is that the government is to blame as it fails to protect its citizens . There is an underlying fragmentation of its people and it does not seem to concern the powers that be.
The president said that this type of terror is new and they are working to solve the problem but when will that be?
So while we wait for another attack the authorities enforced a 24-hour curfew in the city, with many people remaining home as soldiers and police patrolled the streets and set up roadblocks.
The country is descending to free for all. So how long do people have to wait for things to get better as they have enough on their plate already – inadequate power, lack of access to public education – you pay through your nose for health care .
Transportation, right now, is a sore point with the subsidy removal. It has had a knock on effect on so many parts of our daily activity.
Boko Haram of “Sokoto” escaped from Police custody gives no confidence to the Police, which was demonstrated during the strike.
Human lives account for nothing and the population are exposed to these macabre spectacle.
It is a very tense and unhealthy environment that the young do not have a future , the old are tired , the poor ,hopeless and helpless.
People are fearful of the future and are unsure when their lives will improve . Some people are feeling unsafe and uprooting their families and going back to their villages or towns of origin. Ironic that we now have refugees within our borders.
People are beginning to see themselves in terms of tribes and not Nigerians. There is a general mistrust. People are talking of the country to be governed on cultural and religious boundaries.