The inherent mischief in some Nigerians has no limits. Those propelled by discernible forces of evil, constantly scheme to malign leaderships at other levels. But they pitiably forget their own status as leaders in the lower rungs, who have failed to play complementary roles to assist those they seek to rubbish, even though unconvincingly.
Our current House of Representatives member, Hon. Adamu Dau Usman Kamale
(PDP, Adamawa), representing Michika/Madagali Federal Constituency in Adamawa state strikes like one of such leaders with self-glorifying instincts and high capacity for mischief. Perhaps, Nigerians are reading his comments on the Boko Haram insurgency in the Northeast and specifically, in his home state of Adamawa for the first time.
But Kamale, this apparent backbencher in the Green Chambers sought visibility, not in sponsorship of any active legislation for national development, but weird comments on Boko Haram insurgency in our constituency. He fruitlessly attempted to diminish the efforts of the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) under President Muhammadu Buhari (PMB) and the Nigerian military in the counter-insurgency campaigns by quoting imagined figures of deaths and properties destroyed by Boko Haram terrorists in the two local governments he represents at the National Assembly (NASS).
Kamale was quoted as saying, “In the past few days, over 10 lives and over 200 houses have been lost again.” And referring to PMB, he said, “The security reports he gets on these two local governments are not detailed…The situation here is worse than the reports he gets from the military.” The true situation is that our representative has abandoned us.
President Buhari has consistently maintained that the life of every Nigerian is important and worth protecting anywhere he is domiciled in the country. Therefore, Rep Kamale’s concern that 10 persons have been killed in his constituency could be appreciated from this prism.
But what rubbishes his misguided utterances is the glaring inaccuracy with figures and the veiled intent to glorify and overblow the atrocities of the insurgents who are products of his neglect and lack of empowerment for our youths in Adamawa State.
It is unbelievable to think or even agree that if Boko Haram terrorists have the capacity to destroy over 200 inhabited houses, the insurgents would not have killed merely over 10 persons “in the last few days,” as claimed by this Rep. How few are the days is another problem for Rep Kamale. It means he has lost touch with his constituency and is being breast fed with distorted information by a cortege of political hangers-on.
At least a serious minded representative of his people should have devoted time to gather time-tested and credible statistics, to enable him raise a motion in plenary on the plight of his people from renewed Boko Haram terrorists attacks. No! it is not in the thinking of Rep Kamale. On this score too, the Rep member has failed woefully.
Nonetheless, Kamale should know that he cannot block the ears of Nigerians with his incensed hallucinations about an imagined festering of Boko Haram terrorism. To further scold the military and brand them as liars by claiming they are exaggerating or twisting the facts on the counter-insurgency campaigns smacks of self-indictment.
Falsehood cannot replace truth and factuality; no matter the extent it is embellished. One is tempted to believe even a primary school pupil in Adamawa state, one of the three states embroiled in outrageous terrorism, before President Buhari’s soothing balm, would defeat Hon. Kamale to a debate. He will tutor his Rep Kamale that if terrorists can overrun 200 houses in a “few” days, the death toll would not just be10 lives.
The kid will educate Hon. Kamale and his likes that the psychology of terrorists is no longer a hidden secret. Boko Haram terrorists’ main targets are human beings; they cannot run or waste their arms and ammunitions on empty buildings or thatched huts. The calculation admits itself that even if terrorists killed just one person in each of the 200 houses, the number of the dead would have been at least 200 persons, as against Kamale’s 10 persons. That is the extent fabricated lies dumps someone naked in the marketplace.
But Hon. Kamale failed to reason beyond his nose. And probably pushed by the forces of a re-election ambition, he decided to foul the air with figures he imagined or cooked from the pit of hell, in the bid to create an impression of effective representation of his people. But he ended up badly as an artificial voice of the voiceless constituents in Michika and Madagali.
There is no disgrace any leader at any level should wrought upon self this consciously as done by Kamale. Imaginations have limits. When a man does not know such limits, he is doomed forever.
The Nigerian military which is battling insurgency in the country can be excused for Kamale’s shortcomings; hence he also accused them of incompetence about the anti-terrorism campaigns. It is not expected that Hon. Kamale would have approached them to verify the figures he sat in his cozy house in Abuja and guessed.
But his conjured news has refused to fly because traditionally, the military does not conceal the figures of casualty from any incident of Boko Haram terrorists attacks. The Nigerian Military which leads the anti-terrorism campaigns is always plain, frank and honest with figures of casualties.
And even where they make mistakes by wrongly quoting casualty figures, they retract the statements with apologies to the Nigerian public and update the figures. The recent incident is the Boko Haram terrorists’ ambush of geologists, NNPC officials and Civilian JTF members on research mission in the Lake Chad area attests to it.
Therefore, if not operating from a predetermined mindset to smear the image of the Nigerian military and belittle their efforts in the counter-insurgency operations, a clear-headed Kamale would have attempted to verify the figures of the so called casualty of victims of terrorists in a “few” days from the police, civil defence, DSS or even the state government.
Assuming he has dreadful enemies in all these security agencies, reaching out to the office of National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) located in Abuja, where he resides and claims representation of a constituency far removed from his psyche and binoculars would have assisted.
Certainly, this is disreputable conduct from a supposedly honourable member. But Nigerians regale in the mentality of freedom of speech and say anything that their warped minds contrive, paying little or no attention to the harm to society or the public. But a freedom of expression irresponsibly exercised as done by Hon. Kamale most times boomerangs. It stains the reputation of the person and taints his image. It exposes him to ridicule in the eyes of sane minds.
There is no verisimilitude between what Kamale has said and the reality in his constituency. He may be visiting home for the first time since 2015, after his election to NASS. But to turn the Nigerian military and the FGN to scapegoats because he is seeking for another mandate is disheartening. He is indeed aware that we are not happy with him but it is not the right strategy to placate us ahead of 2019.
Kamale should ask himself, before the Buhari Presidency, would Boko Haram raids affecting 200 houses have posted just 10 deaths? Even if one is tempted to align with his submissions and accepts it as reality; is this not an appreciable level of improvement?
Mouthing in a manner that gives Boko Haram terrorists, sponsors and agents the illusion that they are indeed waxing stronger is disservice not only to his people, but humanity in general. If Yobe and Borno States have no such gory tales from terrorism, where has Kamale invented his tales? Or is it to unmask himself to Nigerians, as a Boko Haram sympathizer and agent?
Hon. Kamale should know that the issue of security is not for the military alone; it is not for the FGN alone either. It is not the headache of the state governor solely. It is for everybody, particularly those in its furnace like him. Let Hon. Kamale unfold his scorecard on intervention measures to assist and encourage the counter-insurgency campaigns in the last two years in his state. Can he boast of any?
By Nazir Haske
Haske, a political scientist writes from the Federal University, Wukari, Taraba State.