We are the animal that cannot get rid of its fears and when so many of them lay inside of us, these fears tend to colour how we view the world. We shift from feeling fear because of some threat, to having a fearful attitude towards life itself… We exaggerate
the dangers and our vulnerability.
– The 50th Law (50 cent & R. Greene)
|President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan of Nigeria.|
As I write this article I’m aware that there will be a National Security Council meeting in the presidency today. Last Thursday (17th), the president had met with security chiefs and later with state governors in the country but the governors of the major opposition party, the APC, failed to turn up on the premise that a senior official of the presidency had informed one of them that the meeting would not hold.
This is coming in the wake of last week Monday’s bombing of Nyanya bus station and the kidnapping of about 230 schoolgirls in Chibok; 190 of them still missing.
I was at the
(an arena where I go to jaw-jaw with like minds, once in a while) on Saturday and was happy to see ‘the Prof’. The Prof is a Hausa friend who sells kulikuli (groundnut cake) to eke out a living. Aside from the fact that he goes about with a world receiver radio pressed to his ears, he has only basic education. Yet the Prof never ceases to amaze us with his insightful analysis of events in the country. Temple
On this occasion, I was particularly glad to see him because it’s been a long time we met last. He suddenly went AWOL without anybody knowing his whereabouts. And so I called out to him. “The Prof, the Prof; long time no see. Where have you been all this while?”
“My brother, I went home to attend to my uncle who was ill for a while. You see, because of his love for me he personally requested that I should come and see him fearing that he might die of the illness. We thank Allah for saving his life, even though he had a serious battle with lung cancer.
After the usual exchange of banter, I asked him “What would you say about the recent Nyanya bombing?” In his characteristic manner, he paused a little his creative imagination properly weighing the question for a right response I suspect.
Then he let out the blow “It is a slap on the president’s face. Remember that less than two weeks before that black Monday, some members of the Boko Haram sect had attempted a jailbreak at the Department of State Security Service, right under Mr President’s nose. I mean it was just a stone throw from Aso Rock.
“That same March,” he ploughed on “on the 14th, the sect had attacked the Giwa Military Barrack in
and freed dozens from its members that were jailed there. I believe they chose Maiduguri this time so they could hit the president where it hurts. To make him believe that even his seat is not safe.” Abuja
Though I have known the Prof for some time now, but this very perception was more than I bargained for. A slap on the president’s face just to hit him where it hurts? Unbelievable! Come to think of it, is that not what terrorism is about? To inflict pain, thereby creating terror?
“But what do you think of the anti-terror campaign so far?” Again, he waited a little before saying “It’s just a half-hearted effort by the presidency. Mr. President should wake up. They are trying to paralyze him. He seems weak already, but they intend to knock him out totally.”
“Why do you think they are doing all these?” “It is simple,” he retorted. “They want to enslave us. All of us!”
At home later that Saturday, I just couldn’t push the statement off my mind. They want to enslave us. All of us! The sect have since continued their killing and maiming of Nigerians. Just yesterday they sacked a village and killed 25 in
. They seem to be winning. Taraba State
They seem to be winning, not because they have been succeeding in killing some of us, but because we are becoming passive. The president’s passivity is infecting us gradually. That is what they intend their terror to create in us. Mental enslavement involves creating deep levels of fear.
We are all seeking the passive mode. The president didn’t go dancing in a political rally a day after the Nyanya explosion because he was bold, no. He saw it as an opportunity to hide from the problem at hand. Little wonder he gleefullytold the world from the venue of a governor who stole his campaign money. He is becoming more vulnerable and his enemies know this.
Bad as the situation may seem, Mr President could seize this opportunity to create a different dynamics. Rather than keep reacting to the tactics of the terrorists and their sponsors, he could become active; motivate Nigerians to come together, make them see this terror as a common enemy that must be crushed. Reinvent the mood of Nigerians. Fan the embers of patriotism and destroy every blade of division.
I pray that he will see this truth, especially now that they have slapped him in the face.
Written By: Jucson Uko
Jucson Is a communications and international relations scholar with keen eyes on global trends. As an author, Jucson analyses developmental issues in a simple and humanistic manner that recognizes man as the major actor of social change.