A casual visit to any Nigerian market will reveal a pitiful situation that many ordinary Nigerians are silently grappling with. While the illiterate grumble inwardly, the educated and ‘enlightened’ public take to social media to vent their frustrations, while others use radio stations to further vent their frustrations. Poverty and a lack of resources are all too evident in the country.
Agricultural and other product prices have soared to unimaginable heights, putting them out of reach of ordinary people.
Rice, one of the most common foods in every home, went from costing N8,000 per bag in 2014 to costing N30,000 per bag in 2022. A bag of rice in Nigeria is mathematically equivalent to a fresh graduate worker’s monthly minimum wage salary.
The same situation can be applied to any food item. As a result of the high cost, many Nigerians have reduced their purchasing power or reduced their consumption rate. Economists believe that if nothing had triggered the inflation, food prices would not have risen so dramatically. Many observers blame the government’s indifference and inaction in dealing with the threat of armed herdsmen, who allowed their herds to roam into farms and ravage crops about to be harvested, while resisting farmers were attacked and killed. The high cost of agricultural products was caused by the high frequency of these attacks. Farmers seemed to be haunted by the shadow of herdsmen from then on. Despite the public outcry, the federal government only gave lip service, issuing statements that were never followed up on.
Every week, the destructive activities of Boko Haram terrorists and bandits resulted in the deaths of villagers from one state to the next, as well as the destruction of farmlands and homes. For ransom, the gunmen kidnapped students, traditional rulers, and others, rapping women. The country was thrown into chaos. Nothing was spared from the effects of inflation, including the exchange rate.
Two great Nigerian musicians, Fela Anikulapo and Sir Victor Olaiya, prophetically captured the situation in their songs “Suffering and Smiling” and “lulle o kosi owl lode” (translated from Yoruba to English as “hardship in the country people are groaning for lack”). Nigerians would have put up with insecurity if it hadn’t been for poverty and hunger.
Insecurity is aided by hunger and scarcity. It’s no surprise that terrorists use them to infiltrate their intended victims. Unfortunately, there are no verifiable statistics on how many innocent Nigerians have been murdered by terrorists.
Even the bandits’ recent proscription cannot be said to have come from a determined government, because the bandits’ behavior and modus operandi perfectly match the description of criminals engaged in acts of terrorism around the world.
Prior to 2016, when the public began to notice the devilish activities of bandits, security agencies were inundated with intelligence reports, but there was little operational strategy in place to stop their devilish activities. Unfortunately, several government agencies have been harmed by this delay in action, which is usually associated with attitude.
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While the military was able to improve their strategy in fighting Boko Haram terrorists in the North-East under Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, who gallantly recaptured several local governments from the terrorists while Gen. Lucky Irabor and the Chief of Army Staff greatly reduced their prowess, the country’s main headache is effectively securing the country internally. An overworked military is currently exhausted and overwhelmed, and both the people and the government have suddenly realized that the country is about to be drowned by the river.
‘Where do we go from here?’ Is the question on everyone’s mind, including the government’s. The President’s surprise game-changer came from the blues when he declared that the country should change its decade-long strategy and beckon God, the great warrior, to take over the wars against Boko Haram and the terrorists known as bandits. At a national prayer session organized by Kano State Governor, President Muhammadu Buhari was reported to have openly declared his intentions to the world. The President was represented by Mustapha Baba Shehuri, Minister of State for Agriculture, who stated that the Federal Government has not rested on its oars in providing security personnel with needed equipment and welfare in order to end insecurity.
“Despite the support,” he said, “there is a need to seek divine intervention for the Almighty to put a stop to the challenges.”
It was similar to the Israelites, whose kings would often pray to God when they were losing a battle. If President Buhari’s prayer is answered and angelic warriors are dispatched to Nigerian war zones, this new move could end up being the greatest modern-day war strategy. The victory song will be sung.
slamming the security uniform
The uniform is a one-of-a-kind identification symbol designed specifically for people who have been trained under a constituted authority and students, respectively. There are some that are used by civilians and others that are used by security agencies. Those approved by the federal government differ from those approved by private institutions, educational institutions, and other civilian organizations throughout the country.
Uniforms are usually created specifically for government agencies and are protected by the law. As a result, it would be foolish for anyone not to recognize those intended for the military and police, in particular. The sight of an army uniform can either give people the creeps or draw attention to the person wearing it. As a result, the fact that civilian politicians wear army uniforms says a lot.
It’s worth noting that the country’s general election is coming up in a few months. The recent warning press statement from the Defense headquarters was reassuring. According to all indications, the concerned politicians are simply testing the waters to see if they will become rough later.
Knowing the volatile nature of campaigns and elections, as well as the youthful population and abundance of free firearms, no soothsayer is required to envision an environment in which army uniforms and paraphernalia are as readily available as free firearms.