The Kerosene Subsidy Scam and the Boko Haram Massacres By Peregrino Brimah
Boko Haram has struck once again, again after not so long when they had struck again. In this latest strike, over 100 villagers in a Christian predominant Izghe farming village were slaughtered, their homes were burned and stores looted. Re-inspired by the violence in the Central African Republic (CAR) the death vampire cult hopes to trigger such in Nigeria and pit Nigeria’s religious groups against each other to spill the blood they thirst for. God forbid. The terror bandits drove in, in 7 hilux vehicles according to eyewitnesses. This was not the first time terrorists drove freely in convoys within unprotected parts of our nation, operated for hours, killing, raping and burning, and then left, unscathed. They even dared to do so and shoot videos while doing it to our air force base in Maiduguri last December. For this to occur, something is seriously wrong… our civilians and military are ridiculously unsafe.
The two questions to ask are, why do we have such a brazen terror situation which continues to not only seize innocent lives, but also destroy our economy and status, and why can we not combat it?
The answers to both are the same—money (greed) lead to this terror state and money (greed) ensures Nigeria is unable to reasonably abate the crises and protect its citizens.
It was our politicians who invented and armed these terrorists as political thugs, to get in power and loot wealth. The same happened in Borno as happened in Rivers. These politicians, the likes of former Borno governor Ali Modu Sheriff, are still free men, thus validating that crime pays and terrorism is government policy. Our NSA under whose tenure Modu Sheriff and co did these things, is a free man even being nominated—in terror to Nigeria—for the minister of defense spot; under his watch and till date, southern economic usurpers and terror sponsors likewise remain free, the likes of Peter Odili [see “Chop Fine” HRW report of 2007]. Former PDP chairman, Bamanga Tukur who praised Boko Haram terrorists for being ‘freedom fighters,’ is not only free, but rewarded as head of Nigeria’s Railway Corporation. The president has said he knows many other supporters and sponsors of Boko Haram terror.
Nigeria is officially under a terrorist government so long as the Goodluck Jonathan administration protects these terror sponsors; and there will be more deaths, there will be the creation of many more similar, new terrorist operations across Nigeria, especially leading up to the next round of elections.
How many innocent civilians and military men, women and children must be slaughtered before the Jonathan administration stops partying with the terror masterminds and arrests them? This government is dangerously incompetent and has woefully, painfully failed its people. We all know how ruthlessly late Yar’adua with his NSA Mukhtar dealt decisively with the Boko Haram scourge, that the Obasanjo administration, with interests and greed much like the Jonathan admin. was prior playing with. Last week 9 soldiers were killed. This week over 100 civilians were killed. When will enough blood have been spilled for the Jonathan administration to get the balls to do the duty they swore to do—to protect the Nigerian people o to admit and quit in the interest of life? When will our treacherous lawmakers of all parties move forward with a democratic option to impeach for failure to execute the laws of the land and protect the people from economic and its derived violent terror? There is a white-paper report chaired by Interior minister Abba Moro, on the presidents table and NSA Dasuki’s table which listed those who established Ecomog and now Boko Haram. The president had said he gave the go ahead to act. When shall NSA Dasuki act on these evil men? What is the value of our lives to this administration?
Would Boko Haram still be as it is today, able to invade in convoys and burn and destroy for hours, un-accosted, if NSA Dasuki or President Jonathan was made to live in Bama or Baga? Fortified in Abuja and Aso rock and transported in bullet proof vehicles and with a dozen private presidential jets, these people do not even empathize with Nigeria any more when massacres occur.
The second money related aspect that has led to the entrenchment of terrorism in Nigeria is the poverty and oppression levels. Where there is wealth in the hands of the wrong and the reckless and there is poverty among the masses, there will be terror. Nigeria has 100 million destitute. Parts of the north have destitute levels between 75-85% who live under a dollar a day and really have no shoes. Had these regions been autonomous, the people would have been in sync with their governments who would have understood, related with and served to maintain cohesion. However being fed fat by Nigeria’s oil wealth, the so-called leaders in these parts as a part of the national political reckless Cabal block, used the nation’s wealth to create imbalance and rather than alleviating poverty, they colluded with those at the center to further exploit the poor. The poor are exposed to the elements, stripped naked, exploited and armed by the cabal and political ruining class.
The massive looting of Nigeria’s resources is directly responsible for the state of embedded terror today. Why does Nigeria’s NNPC under Diezani Alison-Madukwe have kerosene sold to the people at $150 per liter, while claiming and keeping a subsidy on the 10 million liters sold per day at N40.9/liter, that enables the stealing of N100+/liter from the poor and desperate, through her handful of cabal portfolio middle-men marketers? With the subsidy scam that several political cabal have shares in, the Goodluck administration scams Nigerian masses of $10 million every day! This $10 million stolen daily would go a long way to curing terror in the north east once and for all.
Late Yar’adua banned the subsidy scam, his quick death as he went after processes the greedy ruling politicians used to feed fat and sponsor terror, caused panic among the Obasanjo establishment. Yar’adua had overturned the illegal sale of Nigeria’s refineries to Dangote by the Obasanjo administration, and as he sent several directives to stop the subsidy scam, the ex-president ran helter-skelter to see how to get rid of Yar’adua. Yar’adua’s illness took a sudden turn for the worse, and several close associates of his have relayed that he suspected he was poisoned with his food and had the Obasnajo kitchen staff he was still using, fired for fear that they may have poisoned him. A report also states that his wife feared he may be poisoned. When the Goodluck Jonathan government took over, the senate abandoned investigating his death.
The looting of $10 million per day in the subsidy scam has continued and so has terror. $10 million looted by Diezani and co everyday can buy 10 Armored Personnel Carriers (APC’s) every day. In a recent barrack that was sacked in Borno and had its army wives raped and children slaughtered complains were made of there being only a single APC to defend the barrack. Most of the equipment Nigeria’s military still uses, was purchased since the Shagari regime. The looting governments do not give a damn about equipping the military; rather they arm and equip terrorists to defend their political interests. This topsy-turvy running and ruining of the state is the reason why we are in the current predicament and our people are dying like chickens.
The 10 million the government steals everyday through the illegal subsidy scam could buy 500 drones everyday to ensure that the terrorists are spotted as they dare to drive their convoys into town, and APC’s can block their route and send them to the great beyond. But rather than stop stealing and protect the masses, these greedy officials will keep dipping their hands into the people’s pockets to steal N100 per liter of kerosene so their kids can fly around the world in private jets and flaunt money in public. Diezani has insolently insisted that she will continue to ‘steal’ billions form us via the subsidy scam, regardless of presidential directive, which she says she can disobey.
$10 million stolen everyday by the Goodluck administration in this scam can provide social security and welfare for the people in each state of Nigeria, starting from Borno, through the entire states, investing just one year, 12 days at a time, state-by-state. The people will be happy, victims of terror, kidnapping and armed robbery will be compensated, there will be security measures including police helicopters and drones to provided additional security and trace and track down terrorists and bandits, and Nigeria would be a happy land. But rather than do so, a handful of the ruining class, decide to steal this wealth which ultimately sponsors terror in Nigeria. The government is even so desperate; they steal from Almajiri’s (beggars) as has been exposed in the budget which includes Almajiri education projects with grossly inflated rates. [See: “Federal Ministry of Education has planned in its 2014 budget to spend N950 million on the construction of a single block of three classrooms” in article: “Why steal in the name of Almajiris?”by M.U. Ndagi in WeeklyTrust of 8th February, 2014]. And these are the Almajiris we are trying to support to dissuade their recruitment in terrorism.
The kerosene subsidy scam must stop yesterday! All the middlemen marketers who aided and abetted the oil minister to steal N100/liter from Nigerians for 10 million liters per day in this fourth kleptocratic republic must be arrested along with the above-the law minister. These thieves are at the root of terror in Nigeria. It is time to put an end to economic terror and the political environment of terror in Nigeria! It is enough. #NoToChancing
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