Buhari unleashes hostility on his en­emies . . . Time to begin to ask questions, By Dr. Amanze Obi

Posted by News Express | 10 September 2015 | 4,147 times

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Those who imagined that the recent ordeal of the for­mer National Security Adviser (NSA), Col. Sambo Da­suki (rtd.), in the hands of operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) was mere happenstance should now be in a position to conclude that it was enemy ac­tion. The impunity visited on Dasuki has been flown to Akwa Ibom State where the official residence of the State governor, Udom Emmanuel, was, last week, in­vaded by a special squad of the DSS.

At first, it was the private residence of a former gov­ernment official. And now, a Government House, a ma­jor symbol of our democracy, and a serving governor, are at the receiving end. And this goes to show that the impunity has not just taken roots, it has grown wings. It is no respecter of persons or institutions, whether you are protected by the constitution or not. It does not matter that the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, provides that no civil or criminal pro­ceedings shall be preferred against a serving governor. Udom Emmanuel and the office he occupies, for rea­sons we are yet to fathom, were subjected to impunity by a government agency that is supposed to operate un­der the ambits of the law.

In the face of this growing culture of impunity, we should go back in time and begin to ask necessary questions that will give us insight into the insanity of the moment. We begin with the Dasuki incident. What was the drama around the former NSA all about? We were told that truck loads of DSS operatives invaded Dasuki’s residences in Abuja and Sokoto, created as much scene as they wanted and finally forced their way into the residences. After the forceful entry and seizure of items that appealed to the fancy of the operatives, Dasuki was placed under house arrest for about 24 hours. When the brazen show of power was over, the man at the centre of the drama was accused of sundry crimes by his persecutors. They included treason, fel­ony, corruption, illegal possession of firearms, misuse of power, and more. In fact, he was accused of being in possession of lethal weapons that could be used to overthrow the Federal Government. With such grave accusation, the government, through its agent, the DSS, made Dasuki, an individual, a one-man riot squad who has the capacity to destabilise a whole federal govern­ment. The accusation sounded laughable. It was against reason and all that appertain to it. Many wondered why government decided to make itself a laughing stock by deifying an individual who obviously does not have the capacity that government associated him with. The situation got many wondering why government should descend to such pettiness. What could be responsible for such show of shame, such wild goose chase by a new government that has so much on its hands?

The worry of concerned Nigerians was deepened the more by where the impunity was coming from. The new government, formed by elements who had been laying claim to progressive politics, was expected to do things differently. It was expected to live above board. It was actually expected to shun those acts and actions for which some governments before it were demonised and derided. We have had governments in this country, both civilian and military, which trampled upon the ba­sic freedoms of individuals and persons. Nigerians of goodwill, including the vociferous elements that popu­late the political party that formed the government of the day, rose against such acts of impunity. Under such atmosphere, words and expressions like police state, Gestapo, impunity, dictatorship, rights violation, and the like, were freely used. The impression the promot­ers of an APC (All Progressives Congress) government created was that they would shun such violations and uncivil acts if the party was voted into power. Now, those who were taken in by such pretensious posturing must have been stunned. They must have been disap­pointed by the bare-faced deception, the antics and the white lies. They now must have come to terms with the fact that appearance is far from reality, that precepts are worlds away from actuality.

Yet there are those who hold that some of those who once held themselves out as progressives and who helped to put the present administration in place are taken aback by the one-man show of President Muham­madu Buhari but cannot disown him because of the em­barrassment such an action would inflict on the APC government. They are therefore silently squirming with discomfort while Buhari unleashes hostility on his en­emies, real or imagined. Buhari, for instance, is said to have a personal grouse against Dasuki. The former NSA was said to have played a key role in the ouster of Buhari as head of state in 1985. Thirty years after, Buhari has found himself back to power and is not pre­pared to spare anyone who humiliated him, one way or another. He is therefore said to be hunting Dasuki not for any sins the man is being accused of today but for the events of 1985. This is vendetta at work, isn’t it? But the unfortunate thing here is that Buhari must drag the entire APC clan and the government of the federation into his personal wars.

Strangely, the army of human rights crusaders who made a public show of their disagreement with uncon­stitutional and illegal acts of previous governments have retreated into their shells. They have gone under. They no longer have a face and a voice. We are now being treated to a well crafted conspiracy of silence; something the apostles of symbolist movement in Lit­erature would call “excellent dumb discourse”. Many a player in the socio-political sphere of this country will need some decoding, some mystical interpreters to un­derstand why things are the way they are now. But there is really no point looking too far. We can put the situ­ation in a straitjacket by saying that Nigeria has been taken over by a different kind of cabal, a clique of pre­tenders who have, over the years, been accustomed to riding the high horse. They are the compulsive critics, the all-time agitators, the pretenders to the throne of po­litical morality and the grand masters of the scheming game. They have got into power by default and all their pretensious ideologies have collapsed overnight.

But what they have going for them is that those they took over from are still dazed. They have not been able to put their acts together. They do not even know what it means to operate outside the system or the establish­ment. That is why we have an eerie silence all over the nation. Despondency has enveloped the nation and there are no voices of dissent to tell the story.

And because impunity is having its way, those who violated the human rights of Dasuki still have the ef­frontery to charge him to court. They are not embar­rassed by their own lies. From multiple charges of treason, felony, corruption, abuse of power and the like, Dasuki’s accusers have settled for a one-count charge of illegal possession of fire arms. Suddenly, the man is no longer planning to single-handedly overthrow the fed­eral government. If this is not absurdity of the highest order, I do not know what else it can be called.

However, whatever the situation, the new men of power must not take Nigerians for granted. Those who are behind the well choreographed assault on our sensi­bilities should note that no situation, however pleasant or otherwise, lasts forever.

•This piece by Dr. Amanze Obi originally appeared in his column BROKEN TONGUES in today’s edition of Daily Sun, under the heading, ‘Impunity on the runway’. Amanze Obi can be reached via amaobi@yahoo.co.uk

Source: News Express

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