New Telegraph

Tinubu’s Renewed War On Terror

Terrorism festers when those equipped with power to crush it fail in their responsibility. We commend President Bola Tinubu’s renewed fight against criminals who rule the jungles and highways, spilling blood and spreading fear all over the country.

The North-West Geo Political Zone has become a den of bandits who have declared war on education by abducting school children and their teachers without let. These criminals are making huge profits through payment of ransom. Tinubu has declared war on them.

The import is that those who have been using banditry to milk the government and people, of scarce resources, are in for hard times. When payment of ransom ceases, they will be forced to look for food elsewhere.

And that is if they are not eliminated. We are encouraged by the fact that some governors have woken up from slumber.

Uba Sani of Kaduna State, which has been so troubled by insecurity, has closed the chapter of paying money to free abductees. His Zamfara State counterpart, Dauda Lawal, is also on the same page. The President has to show that, this time, he means business.

He had threatened fire and brimstone in the past. We recall that in September 2023, at the Passing Out Parade (POP) of cadets of the 70th Regular Course of the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna, he assured, through Vice President Kashim Shettima, that insurgents would be defeated. In January 2024, Tinubu promised to wipe out Boko Haram.

The occasion was the presentation of a book on his predecessor, President Muhammadu Buhari, a man who was once touted by the insurgents as one their probable negotiators. Buhari and Tinubu were in opposition during the Dr. Goodluck Jonathan presidency and differed with him on the method adopted to fight Boko Haram.

It is remarkable that today, the trio remain the best of friends. Jonathan resorted to the use of foreign mercenaries in the North-East and it worked. By March 2015, Boko Haram found their usual terrain too hot to hibernate.

Calm was restored to a large extent in the region until the next dispensation. Terrorists who have refused to dialogue with the government deserve heavy firepower. The kidnap pers are more interested in ransom than reason. There is only one Federal Government in Nigeria. This is time for Tinubu to play his role as Commander-in-Chief

Jonathan resorted to the use of foreign mercenaries in the North-East and it worked. By March 2015, Boko Haram found their usual terrain too hot to hibernate

This fight needs new tactics. Now is the time to localise the Nigeria Police Force. State Police would be in a better position to deal with some of the nascent security threats. Tinubu should empower the police with sophisticated weapons to match the criminals. The Nigeria Army must return to their former position of respect.

The Police must be allowed to play their constitutional role. It is only when the police, backed with the necessary weapons, fail to crush internal crises, that the Armed Forces should be invited. Government cannot crush terrorists with outdated intelligence. The killing of 17 officers and men in Okuama, Delta State exposed this.

Perhaps, if enough scrutiny had been carried out before that mission, it would have ended differently. The Okuama pain said so much about strategy. Most of the slain soldiers hailed from outside the Niger Delta axis. It was not going to be the same outcome if a few of the soldiers were of Urhobo and Izon background.

They might have been able to glean vital information to save their colleagues. During the Civil War, Benjamin Adekunle’s Third Marine Commandos knew next to nothing about the sea and creeks.

Smart officers like Godwin Alabi-Isama and Alani Akinrinade devised means to ensure that Operation Tiger Claw succeeded. Alabi-Isama, in particular, relied so much on Isaac Boro and the Niger Delta Volunteer Forces to master the terrain. The Nigerian officer was smart.

He stooped to conquer. Of the Niger Delta fighters, Boro, Nottingham Dick, George Amangala and Boardman Nyanayo, were university graduates. Alabi-Isama did not put on airs with his rank, when a man like Sam Owonaro could walk through obstacles, alien to Pakistan Military Academy training.

The result was victory for the Marine Commandos. We commend Tinubu’s political will to battle terrorism headlong. From East to the West, North to South. There must be no consideration of religious or ethnic sentiments. The common target is to wipe out criminals.

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