November 14, 2014 by Kambili M.A. Chimalu
“Anytime I try to defend Nigeria, it finds a way to disappoint me,” A friend once said to me.
The truth is that there is a lot to be disappointed about in Nigeria: lack of security, lack of suitable infrastructure, unstable power supply, abysmal healthcare system, below average educational achievements, unrealized potentials, etc. However, I have never been prouder of Nigeria than I was with the recent handling of the Ebola crisis. The efficiency with which the virus was contained surprised me beyond words. Officials quarantined people who were suspected of having come in contact with infected persons, provided adequate treatment for those suspected of having the virus, went on a massive media campaign to educate the public about the virus, and instituted widespread policies to limit the spread of the virus. Heck, they even caught the lady who escaped quarantine and ran all the way to Enugu and forced her back into quarantine. WOW.
I never knew that our Nigerian officials had this level of dedication and efficiency in them to swiftly carry out their duties without it being directly related to embezzlement or the looting of our treasury.
However, given the remarkable response of our officials to the Ebola crisis, I am left with one very troubling question: why can’t we apply this level of dedication and efficiency to other issues plaguing Nigeria especially the issue of Boko Haram.
It seems like every time I turn on the news, there is a report of yet another suicide bombing, mass kidnapping, or school shooting in the Northern part of Nigeria. More often than not, Boko Haram claims responsibility for these attacks, we mourn the dead, and move on without dealing with the issue until another attack launches the nation into a frenzy. Nigerian citizens are massacred in their own homes, made refugees in the land of their fathers, and our government looks on in confusion? That is a national disgrace.
Having read some of Boko Haram’s manifesto and viewing some of their videos, I have come to the conclusion that the government is still treating them with kid gloves because they are killing the wrong ones.
Judging from the little bit of insanity I have heard from Shekau, I believe that Boko Haram’s ultimate fantasy is to turn Nigeria into some kind of aberration-Sharia-Haven where their warped idea of what Islam is would reign supreme, but in trying to achieve this goal, they are killing the wrong ones. The majority of the casualties are poor Muslim Northerners. These are their brothers and countrymen and yet, they slaughter them like goats. The government they are trying to overthrow does not give a fuck about the poor hawker that has just been blown to bits in Nyanya car park trying to cater for his family or the hundreds of secondary school girls that were kidnapped from their hostel.
It seems that the only time the Nigerian government acts is when the right ones are killed or kidnapped. How did it take them just a few days to rescue the sister of Minister of Petroleum, Diezani Allison-Madueke, and arrest her alleged kidnappers, yet they didn’t even acknowledge the missing Chibok girls for a whole two weeks and months later, they still haven’t been returned home to their parents. Why didn’t we uproot everything in Sambisa forest to find those girls? Why didn’t we turn the place upside down?
I ask myself, “what if Jonathan’s daughter, Buhari’s daughter, Atiku’s daughter, Obasanjo’s daughter, and Babangida’s daughter had been among the girls kidnapped?” That would mean kidnapping the right people because the government would be forced to confront Boko Haram.
Now, one has to ask, “what are the lives of the ordinary Nigerian victims worth?” How many more people will have to die before our government can take a definitive stand and annihilate the pest that is Boko Haram?
Isn’t it high time Goodluck Jonathan realized that we cannot negotiate with deranged terrorists. We cannot negotiate with these monsters because there is no possible compromise we can reach with people who have been blinded by the illusion of their ideologies.
We must not even bring up the option of negotiation only to have it thrown back in our face by ideological maniacs. We cannot bring up the option of ceasefire because it legitimizes a group of murderous parasites that should be fed to the lions.
Since Boko Haram members fancy themselves as martyrs, it is our solemn responsibility to honour and help them in realizing their dreams: we must expedite their exit from this world by exterminating them like the pests they are from the face of the Earth.
If Boko Haram continues to kill the wrong ones, innocent Nigerians, the government must endeavor to wipe out the right ones, Boko Haram.