In furtherance of local and international campaigns by the leadership of International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Rule-Intersociety, for an end to ceaseless butcheries in northern Nigeria in the name of politics, ethnicity and religion; it is our shocking discovery that the insurgency violence under reference has led to the criminal death of at least 631 citizens in July 2014 alone. Those killed are mostly civilians: women, children and the aged. In some cases such as attacks and invasions directed at rural Christian communities in southern Borno, southern Kaduna, Plateau, Taraba and Adamawa States; young male populations are targeted for massacre. The 631 citizens killed in July 2014 alone has brought the total number of citizens killed since January 2014 to at least 4, 749. In other words, in the past seven months of 2014, at least 4, 749 citizens have been killed. Those responsible for their criminal death are Islamic Boko Haram and Fulani terror insurgents.
In consolidation of their 70%/30% edge over Nigerian security forces, the Boko Haram terror insurgents have become deadlier and more menacing. The terror group has in late July introduced other dimensions to its butchery campaign. These include child and feminine terrorism; whereby children of ten years or less and young girls dressed in hijab are indoctrinated and coerced to become suicide bombers. A number of bomb attacks or attempted bomb attacks that took place in the past one week in northern Nigeria have been officially linked to child and feminine suicide bombings. There are recent media reports saying that out of 177 young girls 15 years and below recruited by Boko Haram terror insurgents in partnership with Iranian funded Hezbollah (Party of God) Islamic Jihad movement in Lebanon as potential suicide bombers, 75 have been successfully trained and brought into Nigeria. In all, in the eyes of the Rome Statute for International Criminal Court and the Geneva Conventions of 1949, they amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Also since the opposition politicians and parties were accused internationally of links with Boko Haram terror sect, the terror sect has extended its butchery campaign to a number of Muslim targets. This includes the July 23rd twin bomb blasts in Kaduna State that killed at least 110 innocent citizens as well as the July 29th attack at Shakafa Mosque in Potiskum, Yobe State that killed at least 13 civilians. Before the late July addition of a few non-Christian targets owing to the said international accusations, all of the sect’s terror attacks were directed at urban and rural Christian targets as well as local and national facilities owned by the Federal Government of Nigeria. In all, it is correct to submit here that while the Boko Haram terror sect advances in tactics and sophistication, Nigerian security forces have continued to fail in their counter terror methods owing to their cluelessness, ethnicization, archaic securitization tactics and graft.
Timeline of 631 Killings Recorded in July 2014: On July 3rd, over 40 civilians were massacred in the Monday Market in Maiduguri, Borno State courtesy of Boko Haram insurgents. On July 14, at least 106 civilians were massacred in Borno, Zamfara and Plateau States by Boko Haram and Fulani terror insurgents: 45 died in Dille village, Borno State (Guardian Newspaper); 50 in Gidandawa district in Maradun LGA of Zamfara State and 11 in Zamadede in Pil-Gani district of Lantang North LGA of Plateau State (Vanguard Newspaper). On July 15th and 16th, at least 36 civilians were killed by Boko Haram insurgents in Borno State: 20 died in Damboa; 9 in Huyim village in Askira-Uba LGA and 7 killed on July 16th while burying their dead loved ones. On July 18th, at least 100 civilians were massacred by Boko Haram terror insurgents in Damboa village in Borno State. Houses and shops including Damboa Central Market were torched (Guardian Newspaper). On same July 18th, at least five rural Christians were killed by Fulani terror insurgents in Fadan Karshi village in Sanga LGA of Kaduna State. Earlier on June 24th, about 200 rural Christians were massacred in the same area.
Further, on July 19th, at least 60 citizens including women and children were massacred by Boko Haram terror insurgents in Gaidamgari village in Barma Local Government Area (LGA) of Borno State. Scores were injured in the attacks, which also destroyed many houses, shops and vehicles. Local security forces confirmed the attacks but claimed that only 29 citizens were killed. The attackers (BH) came on Hilux vans and armed with improvised explosive devices, guns, etc (source: Vanguard Newspaper, July 22, 2014). On July 22, at least five citizens were shot dead by Boko Haram terror insurgents in Damboa community in Borno State (source: News Express quoting Vanguard Newspaper). On July 23, the Boko Haram terror insurgents invaded Garubula village and Gamboru border town in Biu LGA of Borno State and abducted the district head of Garubula village, Ibrahim Dawi. The terror insurgents also killed 14 villagers and a palace guard. Local military sources confirmed the two attacks (source: News Express quoting Guardian Newspaper).
On July 23, 110 innocent citizens were killed in two deadly bomb blasts that hit Alkali Road/Isa Kaita Junction and Ali Akilu Road all in Kaduna State. The two bomb attacks occurred at about 12:45pm and 2: 30pm respectively. Those who escaped unhurt included Mr. Mohammed Buhari of the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) and an Islamic preacher and leader of Tijjaniyya and Derika Islamism movement, Sheikh Dahiru Bauchi. According to the officials of the Kaduna State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), 72 dead bodies were picked from the streets of the attacks, 25 from the scenes and 13 out of the injured that died as a result of serious injuries. On the same date (23-7-2014), the Boko Haram terror insurgents also blew up an important bridge linking Maiduguri and Gamboru-Ngala with the Republic of Cameroun.
On July 24th, a bomb blast occurred at the New Road Market Park, located in Sabon Gari district of Kano State, which is populated by Igbo-Christians. Five persons were killed. One died on the spot while four others died later as a result of serious injuries. On July 26th, three sons of a radical Shite Islamic preacher, Malam Ibraheem El-zakzarky, and 32 other unarmed members of the sect were killed under unlawful circumstances by Nigerian security forces. The unlawful killing took place in Zaria, Kaduna State during their annual international QUDS procession to mark the last week of Ramadan (source: News Express quoting PM News).
On July 27th, at least five Christian worshippers (official figures) were killed in a bomb blast detonated by the Boko Haram terror insurgents at St Charles Cath. Church in Sabon Gari district, Kano State. On the same date (27-7-2014), at least 30 rural Christians were killed by the violent sect in gun and bomb attacks carried out in three communities of Lube, Mubeng and Zar in Hong LGA of Adamawa State. Innocent citizens numbering twenty were butchered in Mubeng community alone. The District Head of the Zar Community, retired Wing Commander Dauda Daniel was also abducted and yet to be seen (source: News Express of July 28th, 2014 quoting Daily Newswatch Newspaper). On July 28th, at least four citizens were killed in a bomb blast at the Hotoro Mega Station of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) located along Maiduguri Road in Kano State. Ten Persons were injured in the attack perpetrated by the Boko Haram terror insurgents (source: News Express).
Again, on July 27th, over 46 civilians and four soldiers were massacred in two separate attacks by Boko Haram terror insurgents in Adamawa State. While over 40 civilians and four soldiers were killed in Garkida Community in Gombi LGA of the State, six people were killed in Madagali LGA. In the Garkida attack that occurred at about 5: pm on Sunday, two churches and many houses were also destroyed. A military base also came under attack (source: News Express quoting Channels TV). On July 28th, at least eight civilians were killed in Katarko town, outskirt of Damaturu in Yobe State. The Boko Haram terror insurgents first attacked a local military base before killing eight civilians (source: News Express quoting Channels TV). On July 29th, at least 13 civilians were killed in attacks at Shakafa Mosque and a Central Market in Potiskum, Yobe State. On July 30th, at least six civilians were killed in the Kano State Polytechnic targeted at large students who have gathered to check their National Youth Service Mobilization list. A female suicide bomber sneaked into the crowd and blew up herself killing six students.
Disrespecting the Sanctity of Human Lives: It is correct to say that the Federal Government of Nigeria attaches no value to the sanctity of human lives. The FGN also promotes primordial and ethno-religious sentiments and politics far above the security and welfare of ordinary Nigerians contrary to Section 14 (2b) of the Constitution of Nigeria 1999. The recent statement credited to Mr. President to the effect “if Buhari had died in the Kaduna bomb blasts, Nigeria would have been in turmoil by now” is not only shocking, but also a clear case in point. In as much as violent loss of lives including that of Mr. Mohammed Buhari are totally rejected; but placing Mr. Buhari’s life above the lives of 110 innocent Nigerian citizens lost in the two bomb attacks is a clear indication of Federal Government’s tolerant of indiscriminate violent loss of lives in the country on daily basis.
Sponsorship of Boko Haram Insurgency & Seeking Power by Violence: The events since the allegations of sponsorship of Boko Haram terror insurgency went international have clearly confirmed the allegations. Attempts have been made to extend the terror campaigns to other areas and individuals so as to make the weighty allegations watery. Funny enough, these attempts have ended up adding value to the allegations. In the Nigerian media, there is a huge division among sections of the important industry. While those peopled and controlled by the west axis of Nigeria are tolerant of the butchery campaigns by the duo of Boko Haram and Fulani ethno-religious violent zealots; others controlled by the south-south, southeast and old middle-belt are intolerant of same. In the rights based Civil Society community in the country, which is dominated by the west axis of the country, it is a noticeable fact that most of them have gone sleeping in matters of Boko Haram and Fulani jihadist violent uprising against Nigeria and Nigerians.
However, their voices are extensively pronounced whenever the Nigerian security forces kill suspected members of the terror sects possibly under unlawful or extra judicial circumstances or whenever any member of the opposition politics in the country is among those caught by the terror attacks. In other words, these CSOs rarely condemn or document the terror killings under reference. Other than Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch reports and condemnations of the butchery as well as reports from few local rights CSOs located outside the west axis of the country, it is a near impossibility for one to lay one’s hand on any report, documentation or condemnation publication originating from any of the groups from the zone under reference. This is a clear departure from the revolutionary characteristics of the military era rights and pro-democracy CSOs and a new testament of “alliance for seeking power through violent means or through human misery”.
How Mr. President Returned Nigeria Police Force to Typewriter & Ethno-Religious Policing: The official appointment of AIG Suleiman A. Abba as Nigeria’s 17th Inspector General of Police amounts to presidential cluelessness. By this, Nigeria has chosen to remain in the policing of the Yore. Owing to primordial political interest and ethno-religious sentiments, the country has lost a great opportunity of wriggling itself out of policing cave and launching itself into policing moon. Stamping IGPship to the zone (northwest) that is one of those that despise “western education or culture” including ICT globalization is one of the most clueless decisions taken in recent times by Mr. President. The new IGPship should have been given to northeast or north-central minorities who have suffered irreparably in the hands of their majority neighbors’ oiled group butchery and brigandage. From our detailed checks, there are a good number of ICT grounded young senior police officers from the areas occupying DC and CP positions.
Also by this suicidal presidential appointment, Mr. President has finally stamped continuation of gross lopsidedness (“dogari” policy) in the area of postings and promotions in the Force. The NPF, under AIG Suleiman Abba will continue to pursue or go after ICT bomb detonators with typewriter police officers armed with AK-47 rifles and batons. This is in the context of “something can never be gotten from nothing”. Mr. President has also by this clueless appointment voted for the continued use of archaic roadblocks, extortion, harassment, bribery, torture, disappearances, unlawful detention, unfair trials and indiscriminate arrests and unlawful killings as NPF weapons against common or street crimes like stealing, assault, rape, armed robbery and abduction and group crimes such as political, ethnic and religious insurgencies. It has been universally established that to effectively control and fight modern crimes, ICT policing including man-machine intelligence policing and preventive policing are roundly required. The more NPF decays in its operational methods the more emerging modern security threats and other unsafe conditions such as cyber crimes including cyber and chemical terrorism.
By appointing AIG Suleiman Abba of typewriter era of policing as Nigeria’s ICT era policing IGP to stay on for next five years (from 1st August 2014 to 22nd March 2019 when he will statutorily bow out of the NPF), the NPF will be more than fifty years behind today’s insecurity challenges. This is more so when the NPF is the most populated security force in Nigeria with roughly 400,000 officers and constitutionally placed in charge of internal security. The mournful look on the faces of most police officers in the 6,651 operational establishments of the Force is clear evidence.
Gross Lopsidedness in the Latest DIG Promotion & NPF Management Team: From authoritative information available to us this morning out of six new AIGs said to have been promoted to DIGs to form members of the new NPF Management Team, no senior police officer from Southeast, Southwest and Northeast is included. Their names are AIG Dan’azumi Jos Doma with service number AP21795 (Niger State, North-central), AIG Mamman Ibrahim Tsafe with service number AP24211 (Zamfara State, Northwest), AIG Saliu Argungu Hashimu with service number AP24214 (Kebbi State, Northwest), AIG Solomon E. Arase with service number AP16474 (Edo State, South-south), AIG Christopher Terhem Dega with service number AP16471 (Benue State, North-central) and AIG Ballah Magaji Nasarawa with service number AP24213 (Kebbi State, Northwest). AIG Doma retires in 2019 (01/01/2019), AIG Tsafe 19/02/2017, AIG Argungu Hashimu 10/7/2017, AIG Arase 21/6/2016, AIG Dega 11/3/2015 and AIG Nasarawa 31/12/2019. Out of the six new DIGs, three are from Northwest, two from North-central, one from South-south and zero from Southeast, Southwest and Northeast zones. The three just retired DIGs from the three zones under reference are DIG Emmanuel Kachi Udeoji, Abia State, Southeast (retired 1st August 2014 with statutory retirement date of 09/09/2014), DIG Johnson Jonathan, Taraba State, Northeast (retired on 03/7/2014) and DIG Abdulrahaman Akano, Osun State, Southwest (retired on 22/6/2014).
Finally, President Goodluck Jonathan remains one of the presidents in modern times that have unhindered access to best form of citizen advice through ICT resource, but owing to presidential cluelessness, such golden opportunities usually slip off his hands. It is on record that Mr. President does not have dedicated phone numbers or emails or social media accounts handled by himself as public office holder or elected president. He also, does not respond to citizens’ letters or enquiries or reply them, thereby making himself a “cocooned president”. These may most likely earn him “the worst president of Nigeria in recent times”.
Emeka Umeagbalasi, Board Chairman
Uzo Oguejiofor, Esq., Head, Publicity Desk