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What does President Jonathan know about Boko Haram?

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The answer the President gave to the very naughty question of the “resurrection” of Alhaji Abubakar Shekau during his recent media chat shall continuously attract different interpretation from diverse groups.

Yet, the question was simple enough. ‘The leader of the Boko Haram, Alhaji Abubakar Shekau, said to have been killed by the Military … sometime ago seems to have come back to life,’ the journalist explained to the President before dropping the question. “Does it mean the military did not kill him or what actually happened”? Mr President’s answer: “I don’t know whether he is dead or not”, he said, adding “I don’t know him because l have not seen him before”.

My interpretation of his answer is that the man (President) told the whole world the truth, nothing but the truth. And this is where l sympathise with the President of the largest Black country on earth.

Yes, he should be praised for his audacious admission of not knowing because he could have been politically diplomatic by saying that “l don’t want to comment on this question because it is a classified information”.

If he had said that, what he knows or does not know about the Nigerian security debacle, ditto Boko Haram, would have remained a matter of rhetoric. But we now know that our President does not have the whole fact about us, ditto the problems confronting us.

There must remain therefore, nagging doubts if the man without the knowledge of our problems can ever proffer solutions to overcome our challenges.

If the Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces; the one with enormous constitutional power to declare war against any other country, declare state of emergency on any part of the country, deploy the Armed Forces into any combat inside and outside Nigeria [of course he has to go to the Senate – which is almost, always, fait accompli] does not have facts about the true situation of Nigeria’s security, as his answer to the question reveals, then we are in serious trouble.

Permit me, at this point, to recommend a book – No Easy Day, written by one of the American SEAL Group, the very member that pulled the trigger which terminated Osama Bin Laden’s life in Pakistan, for Mr President’s reading. After reading it – that is if he will read it- he may therefore come back to Nigerians to speak with authority of the security situation in the country.

The book confirmed other known facts on the military operation that put an end to OBL’s ten years reign. Unlike our President, who knows nothing about the situation in the zone where he declared a state of emergency, Barack Obama, the American President, personally approved the operational plan to capture the target [OBL] in Pakistan. Beyond approving the operational plan, Obama remained in the Operation Situation Room of the White House, monitoring the attack while it lasted.

He was spiritually and emotionally involved in the operation. He saw it all and even confirmed further, through DNA test conducted that the body in question was exactly that of Osama Bin Laden.

At the end, the American President was able to tell the whole world that “we got [Osama Bin Laden] him”. How l wished our own President could stand tall [or even sit upright] to tell Nigerians that “yes, Abubakar Shekau is dead”!

The book further revealed that identification of the subject’s place of hiding plus geographical location of the hiding place – all in Pakistan, was not the direct responsibility of the dreaded Navy Seal that carried out the operation final phase, but the full adventure of the Central Intelligence Agency [CIA] and other security agencies of the USA. What that proves is excellent synergy of committed security agencies operating under a dynamic leadership in achieving advantages of collectivism. We don’t have such or something near it in Nigeria.

What an irony! In the Nigerian subject matter under discussion – “death and resurrection” of Abubakar Shekau – facts of the Presidential Media Chat revealed that Jonathan is either not in control of his security apparatus [which include his security chiefs] or there is no synergy between him and his men, or victim of both. We cannot afford such President in either case. We suggest solution to ensure that this type of destructive embarrassment does not come again, ever.

Nigerians want to know the officer who told them about the death of Abubakar Shekau – the name, rank and position. We demand to know who, amongst Jonathan’s security gurus that cleared and approved the statement which intimated us about the “death” of Shekau.

Then, we the people of Nigeria, who elected Jonathan to office as President, demand with immediate alacrity, the dismissal from office of those officers.

We [Nigerians] further demand that Jonathan must wake up from his sleep, take direct control of all segments of security agencies with powers of hire and fire [which he has but has ceded to some ghosts] so that he can place us in a safe ground and also save us the continuous embarrassment of a President “that does not know”. Enough is enough.

Mr Godwin Etakibuebu, a commentator on national issues, wrote from Lagos

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