The collapse of national security

Savagery on our land is claiming the lives of Nigerians and their property with lightening speed, almost competing with bird flu that claims the lives of thousand chickens within seconds. Ritual killing has it share of savagery, deliberate arson aimed at terminating the lives of fellow Nigerians, assassination, a “lucrative” enterprise, kidnapping, the new comer is there. All these have reached a frightening dimension. There is no hiding place for anyone.

In a nation that does not have accurate social statistics, we cannot have the actual number of our friends and relations that have gone to the grave in the most callous manner. What of unreported cases? Do we know the actual number of people killed in the Jos ethnic crisis that has enveloped that calm city? This is a job for the police to hand over to Federal Bureau of Statistics to enable it store the record and release same to the public. This is a tall order for the police.

The entry of the monstrous Boko Haram Sect that is executing its own savagery in an overt manner and perhaps with pin point accuracy, disarming security agencies, burning army and police barracks has exposed the nation’s security and even ridiculed us.

Addressing the Boko Haram threat has become a serious challenge to this country’s leadership. Our President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, will tell us today that Nigeria can handle this sect effectively and bring an end to all forms of insecurity in the country, but the unruffled murderers, will come out harder, killing more lives unchallenged.

How can the Federal Authorities tame Boko Haram insurgency that invades military and police barracks that are supposed to ward off threats with the weapons purchased with public fund. How prepared are these forces to protect Nigeria from foreign invasion? This question is food for thought for our security agencies including the army.

This is also a political challenge for the government. Many children have been orphaned by ritual killers and kidnappers. Many have been rendered homeless as a result of their lost homes to arsonists.

Are we legitimising the culture of violence? If the answer is no, why should the reign of terror be foisted on us? How long shall we remain in perpetual fear? This is a sorry spectacle. The nation has the police to handle problems related to protection of lives and restoration of order and the judiciary to adjudicate in cases brought before it. Are they capitulating?

Nigerians are worried because of the debilitating effects of these negative developments have on their socio-economic wellbeing; the business community is nervous and unsure of the safety of their investments. For instance, the quarterly Business Confidence reports by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry reveal disquieting results on the havoc done to business by this monster we accommodate.

It is only the South West Region that has achieved relative stability, according to the LCCI Business Confidence Reports, outscoring other regions of the country where all forms of violence are stagnating businesses.

The South-South regions score low points, while the entire north records dismal points with the North East scoring near zero point. And the South East point is slightly higher than the neighbouring South-South.

The poor security situation in the country has to be frontally addressed with utmost patriotism. All lapses in the police, State Security Service and the army should be taken care of before the insurgents take over all the barracks and capture their officers. The result is clear, total collapses of national security and anarchy.

The Nigeria Customs Service also has a role to play in this. Saddled with the responsibility of securing our borders and ensuring that only authorized merchandise are brought into the country, Customs must be more alive to its responsibilities by ensuring that arms, ammunition and weapons of destruction are not allowed to gain entry illegally into Nigeria.