The Sins of Kashim Shettima and the fight against Boko Haram -By Rabiu Usman
One of the busiest governor in Nigeria at the moment, Kashim Shettima of Borno, has come under fierce attack and criticism over the abduction of over 200 school girls in chibok under his watch. He’s had several knocks from the apex government for allowing the school to conduct WAEC despite the students’ vulnerability to activities of the deadly and radical sect up north-east in the sahara desert. Even he was accused of planning their kidnap; their reason was to further dent the credibility of the FG in a bid to wrestle power back to the North. He’s been portrayed as the mercenary of the opposition in a perfect conspiracy road map to discredit GEJ’s government.
His antecedents is in brief. After inheriting a poorly governed Borno from the stronghold of Ali Modu Sherrif’s dynasty, now a chieftain of the APC, Sherrif’s father almost turned the state to a Saraki style of leadership but SAS as he’s fondly called resist the pressure of fielding his younger brother, Mala Sherrif as the next successor “Kamkura” and opted for one of his commissioner Engr Gubio who was assassinated by unknown gunmen. The political permutation favours the former Zenith bank regional manager to take Kanem-Borno to a greater height. That was the fate that plunged governor Kashim in the middle of a deep sea of controversy today.
Tens of hundreds of Borno inhabitants are annihilated by Boko Haram on daily basis and thousands displaced with an un-estimated loss of properties till date.
Undoubtedly, Kashim Shettima cannot be exonerated from the mayhem being unleashed by the dreaded sect on the populace as the chief security officer of the state. But then, certain issues need to be dissected carefully to give the governor a fair verdict. He’s only hosting a local terror that is a threat to nationhood and has drawn global attention with its recent modus operandi of whisking away hundreds of school girls in the dead of the night. There is a state of emergency that had elapsed few days back. His state is bounded by Chad and Cameroon respectively. This translate that mass influx of recruits and insurgents taking refuge through the porous and loose borders of Nigeria. If the Nigeria Immigration Service had manned the borders properly to check these trends, a cut-off of channel of supply of arms and food would have been achieved. After a joint brave effort of Civilians and Military task force in confining insurgents out of Maiduguri, the president doesn’t need the DHQ or NSA to tell him that border town would be their refuge.
We have witnessed a security budget of over N1trillion with little or nothing to justify for the lion share. The military had complained of their opponent possessing a more superior firearms in the past. Their incentives is being looted even in the battle field by their superiors. The governor had cried out to the president on the same fate but instead he was threatened to make do with a low-motivated soldiers or risk having any. Shettima is still a foe to them while they cast their eyes and mind off the bigger picture that Boko Haram are not after Borno’s territory but the jugular of Nigeria’s infant and devilish democracy. Succeeding gradually in making Boko to be Haram in some Northern parts and even extending its frontiers in Haramising Abuja school children during the just concluded World Economic Forum. Soon enough, soldiers’ mutiny in Maimalari barracks Maiduguri proved Shettima right, and the government continue to live in its insidious characters and denials. The level of disconnect between the people of North-East and the president is so mammoth that the governor only had a call from the presidency 19days after the abduction of chibok school girls. Trying to serve Nigerians their usual pills of keeping lips sealed and maintaining deaf ears after each cruelty and calamity due to its gross incompetence and ineptitude. All these is because America did not know yet.
The tears in the eyes of Kashim shettima might need to be refilled due to incessant shedding of tears on each visit to victims of attack. Conversely, the president shed his last tears on Madalla victims of December 25th, 2011, and not only he’s acquired some shoes after previously being shoeless, he’s own a mix of party shoes to dance away every acclaimed opposition induced bomb blast or kidnap aiming at stopping him from being at par with Lee Kwan Yew, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King and Barack Obama.
As the government continue to shy away from protecting lives and properties, and the suspected opposition continue its romance with insurgents, the first lady has passed the message to them; “Diarris God o”. Its six feet at end of it. They will all give account in the court of Allah for all the blood they are “sharing”.
Rabiu Usman is a freelance-writer/Teacher based in Lagos.
He can be engaged directly on @rabiusm.
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