It is sad what has become of this country and even more scary and unthinkable, what could yet become of the country in the coming months and years until 2023 when an opportunity for redemption and salvation comes by the election.
The country has without a doubt surely degenerated into the lowest trenches right before our very eyes and the painful reality is that there appears to be no light at the end of the tunnel, no end in sight, just doom, and gloom, sadness mixed with disgust and anger at what is unfolding right before us.
Need we remind the President that security is one of his primary responsibilities? Or do we need to remind Mr. President of the campaign promises he rode on in 2014 when sailing on the mantra of “change” like a messiah coming with a magic wand to save the country? Maybe we should!
In his own words, Mr. President said, “I will urgently secure the territorial integrity of the nation. I will never leave the defense of the nation in the hands of hunters, children, and civilian JTF through the following:
1) Urgently address capacity-building mechanisms of law enforcement agents in terms of quantity and quality as this is critical in safeguarding the sanctity of lives and property.
2) Establish a well-trained, adequately equipped, and goals-driven serious crime squad to combat insurgencies, kidnapping, armed robbery, ethno-religious and communal clashes nationwide.
Six years on and we are left to wonder if we have progressed or retrogressed as a nation in the area of security.
When the news broke on Wednesday 17th November 2021, of the kidnap of some pupils and staff of Government College Kagara, Niger State, one could not help but react with absolute disgust at what is fast becoming a norm in the country. One only has to go two months back to the 11th of December 2020 to think of the last time there was an occurrence of such with the abduction of over 300 schoolboys from the Government Science Secondary School (GSSS) in Kankara Katsina State still fresh in our minds.
Does February 19, 2018 ring any bells in our minds? Yes, that was the day the 110 schoolgirls aged 11-19 years old were kidnapped from Government Girls Science and Technical College (GGSTC) in Dapchi Yobe State while five of the schoolgirls died. Has the name Leah Sharibu been forgotten and erased from our minds so soon? NO! She’s the 14-year-old schoolgirl who has not been released to her family since her kidnap along with the other schoolgirls.
The sad reality is that our lives are not safe and even worse so, our children. Our children don’t need to go to school in fear because no one knows who’s next. Parents should be able to take their children to school and expect to see them later in the day. If COVID-19 did not take away our children, then we should not lose our kids to terrorists and bandits who should be taken away from society.
Kidnapping is on the rise in the country and why not? The security situation in the country is getting worse, the bad guys are being negotiated with and large sums of money are being disbursed. There is a huge security deficit and what we have is a government that rather than be proactive is reactive. Our security network is porous and that is why school children are being moved away in such large numbers to different locations without any security agency being able to stop them.
Must our children be taken away before we begin to pull all heaven and earth into getting them returned? What about the trauma those children go through? And yet some persons would clamor that the government is praised for securing their release, for solving the problem. The question is; has the problem being solved? Was the problem not created by the government?
The Kagara abduction is a slap on the face of an irresponsible government that has failed to assure its citizens of their safety and what’s worse; no one knows who is next.