Security Forces and Checkmating Lawlessness of ‘Radical’ Groups
By Mukhtar Ya’u Madobi
In recent years, the Nigerian Military as well as Police, the Department of State Service (DSS) and a host of other sister security agencies have been unrelenting in their efforts toward curbing the security challenges facing the country. This is not unconnected to the rising public disorders which have since reached an alarming rate.
Across the length and breadth of the country, the Military are engaged in one or several forms of operations aimed at restoring peace and normalcy to various communities.
Towards achieving this cause, a lot of high profile criminals bedeviling the nation were neutralized, while on the other hand, some gallant officers have equally paid a supreme price in order to keep the country as a single corporate entity.
One of the most grievous danger that persistently poses threat to the continued existence of Nigeria is the violent secessionist agenda embarked upon by some ethnic militias in the name of liberating their geopolitical region.
Although the activities of Oduduwa nation agitators has been doused since the arrest of their leader, Sunday Igboho in Benin Republic, but the manner in which the proscribed group of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) are scheming to achieve their objective is of great concern and should no longer be treated with levity by security forces, as it clearly threaten the fabrics of national security.
The outlawed group, through their armed military wing, the Eastern Security Network (ESN) have been carrying attacks on Nigerian state aimed at killing security personnel and destruction of their facilities, setting ablaze of critical national assets and infrastructures, murdering of unarmed civilians as well as destroying their hard earned properties.
In many instances, the gallant Nigerian troops were able to uncover and equally raid the enclaves of these outlawed citizens within the Eastern region from where they used to launch attacks and perpetrate other nefarious activities.
Recently, it has been noted with great concern that the resurgence in the activities of this lawless group is capable of sending the country into chaos with unquantifiable consequences owing to the heterogeneous nature of Nigeria. It wasn’t long ago that the media space was dominated with unfortunate story of how Anambra State lawmaker was abducted, killed and equally beheaded.
Being undeterred and unremorseful, the perpetrators under the disguise identity of so-called ‘unknown gunmen’ vows to continue executing more of these lawmakers.
Prior to that, it was intending military couple that were intercepted en route to Imo State for their wedding ceremony, raped, killed, beheaded and the footage went viral on public media domains. What kind of devilish act by cohorts of blood-sucking demons? For how long are we going to continue to live under these uncertainties? Something must be done. Not later, but definitely now and urgently.
Moreover, the gruesome murder of Arewa pregnant woman alongside her four children and other six northerners in Anambra last week end by IPOB militant is one major issue that has continue to dominate the public discourse lately.
This reprehensible act is heating up the polity as several northern groups are clamoring for the outright fishing out of the perpetrators and subjecting them to the kind of justice they deserve. In addition, they called on security forces to implement measures aimed at protecting northerners residing within the south eastern part of the country.
However, as noted by the Northern Elders Forum, even the Igbos should be protected against the activities of these IPOB criminal elements, as various instances showed where they (Igbos) too were not spared of these attrocities.
In order to avert the looming civil unrest in form of reprisal attacks, the security forces should outlined plausible security measures as well as their outright implementation in order to calm the nerves of the wronged populace. Thus, efforts should be channeled towards arresting these perpetrators and ensuring that nothing of such episode is repeated in future.
Nigeria cannot afford to fight another civil war, not now. But never!
Meanwhile, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), which is mandated to provide intelligence to the military should be very alerted in gathering credible information that are very resourceful in neutralizing security threats prior to their emergence.
Similarly, the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), Major General Babagana Monguno (retd.) should continue to ensure collaboration among the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other sisters security agencies. Efforts using novel strategies should be directed on countering the rampaging activities of non-state actors.
This can be achieved, with the help of a sister intelligence security agency, i.e. the Department of State Service, whose efforts are also very helpful in making the country’s security architecture more formidable through information gathering and sharing with other security institutions.
Nevertheless, communities also have vital roles to play in ensuring the security of their localities. This include sharing information with security forces that will lead to uncover of criminal syndicates in order to drive them out from the territories of law abiding citizens.
Together we can surmount the security challenges.
Mukhtar is a Staff Writer with the Emergency Digest.