Year in, year out
SIR: When terrorists massacre their victims and you have nothing to say, memorise and recite the familiar rhetoric: “Terrorism is a global problem; it has nothing to do with religion.”
There are two groups of countries in the world today – countries that have security as top priority, and countries that have no future. It’s a privilege to own a gun in some countries; it’s Dylann Roof’s birthday toy in the United States of America. They’ve got plenty of sense but no common sense for gun control. For crying out loud, there’s common sense in UNcommon sense, for goodness’ sake. If it is reasonable to oversee overseas non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, it is unreasonable to overlook the proliferation of small arms and light weapons. What is righteoUS for the NPT is righteoUS for the UN Arms Trade Treaty.
The security and welfare of the people shall be the primary purpose of government. Needless to say, insecurity is one reason the Nigerian state faces a bleak future. State governors collect security votes and pretend to be chief security officers of their respective states. But God knows – the thief security officers in every state; terrorists, kidnappers, armed robbers all over the place; and human beings between the reign of terror and free rein of evil.
In countries where lives matter, states do have own state police and communities like a university campus or a local district reasonably do have district police. It’s long overdue the states were empowered to own their police to tackle familiar crimes. A decentralised police is change we need. Federal police and state police and local police and community policing we pray!
Our fears, our nemesis! People reason upside down that there is no need for state police because state governors could abuse “the privilege.” Maybe we should do away with the national security because presidents themselves sometimes do abuse their power. At any rate, I do not think a country of 36 states would be so unlucky to have in government 36 lawless governors. Moreover, when we get serious we can import security architectures and protocols to checkmate governors, ordinary governors.
Let’s talk about our greatest fear – one Nigeria. Methinks that the life of one Nigerian is more precious than one Nigeria. Of what use is one Nigeria to one Nigerian if one Nigeria cannot protect one Nigerian? Today in Nigeria, no place is secure and no one is safe. It is alarming innocent lives wasted daily across the country. It is sorrowful to know that fellow Nigerians perish everyday due to terrorism, kidnapping, armed robbery, ritual killing, assassination, militancy, cultism, religious riots, ethnic violence, jungle justice, violent crimes by thugs, armed gangs, motor-park touts, area boys et al. Crime is everywhere in the world, and there’s no time and nowhere on earth crime will disappear altogether. Nevertheless, if we as a people would do the needful, Nigeria will become a peaceful country where people can live in peace and leave in peace.
As this year begins to find exit to rest in peace, may the coming year bring opportunities for global peace and security.
• John Adebisi,
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