Sunday, 18 May 2014

Photonews: "Women Arise" Activists Protest In Onitsha For Abducted Chibok Girls

News Release: Nigeria’s Spending For Mass Murder

For a country to arrive and become a noble member of the modern global community, it must foundationally be rested upon three pillars of: democracy & good governance, civil liberties & rule of law and security & safety. Each of these three pillars cannot stand without the other: where there is no democracy, there is no good governance; where there is no rule of law, there are no civil liberties; and where there is no security, safety becomes a scarcest commodity. Such is the situation upon which a country called “Nigeria” finds itself, especially now –Emeka Umeagbalasi-Criminologist & Security Expert: May 2014

It is no longer news that Nigeria operates a woefully failed security system. But what saddens seminal minds in criminological securitization and rest of the world is that the country’s political and security managers have grown and entrenched a culture of immunity from change and advice heeding. The country’s political and security managers have continued to apply security and public governance methods used in the days of the Yore in this day of “man-machine-environment”. Strictly speaking, Nigeria’s security challenges and other unsafe conditions are one of the easiest to manage in the world in that they are human generated and maximally soluble. Nigeria remains one of the luckiest countries in the world that have not been afflicted with catastrophic natural disasters and other natural unsafe conditions. From the look of things, the country may not survive any major earthquake or ocean overflows. If the country cannot contain a mere onslaught from a group of IEDs detonators, it simply means that if Nigeria were to be the State of Israel, it would have long been wiped out of the world map and forgotten.

By any world security nomenclature, Nigeria has it in name. The Nigeria Police Force remains the largest and most populated security organization not only in Nigeria but also on African Continent. Its officers and personnel are presently in the neighborhood of 400,000 with current police-citizen ratio of 1/450 (one police officer for 450 citizens using estimated population of 170 million). This is not too far from the UN basic recommendation of one police officer for every 400 citizens issued in the year 2000. Yet the NPF is one of the most failed police forces in the world and one of the most incompetent police services in Africa.  It may most likely be correct to say that three out of every four of its senior commanding officers including those in the ranks of CSP, ACP, DCP, CP, AIG, DIG and IGP are computer illiterates.

Statutorily, the NPF takes charge of internal security of Nigeria; the army for external; the air force for air; the navy for Nigerian waters; the DSS for counter intelligence; and the NIA for national intelligence. These primary functions are clearly spelt out in Sections 214-216 of the Constitution (for NPF); and 217 of the Constitution and 18(3) of the Armed Forces Act, Cap A20 Laws of the Federation (for Armed Forces). There are others like Custom, Immigration, NSCDC and tens of thousands of armed vigilantes and licensed and unlicensed private militias claiming to be providing security for Nigerian populace. All the armed bodies publicly recognized in the country are called “Nigerian Security Forces”. Nigeria is also one of the countries in the world with highest number of small arms in circulation. Those in wrong hands are in millions and they continue to surge.

In the context of global territorial securitization and terrain securitization midwifery, Nigeria remains one of the easiest countries for territorial policing. This is because 95% of its border and non-border territories are very easy to be policed. Nigerian territories are also measured and known to local and international data banks. For instance, there are a total of 198,328 kilometers of road network in the country as at 2012. They include: 34,448 kilometers of federal roads (4,150 for South-south, 4,161 for Southwest, 3,231 Southeast, 6,363 for Northwest, 6,787 for Northeast and 9,756 for North-central including the FCT), 34,300 kilometers of roads for 36 States of the Federation and 129, 580 kilometers for 774 Local Government Areas( Research Department Occasion Paper of the CBN 2011).

There are also 22 local and international airports in Nigeria. The country’s existing railways have a total of 3, 500 kilometers. There are 8,600 kilometers of inland water ways in the country and four transnational highways. The transnational highways are: Trans Saharan or Lagos-Algiers Highway, Trans Saherian Highway in Kano, Trans Western African Coastal Highway in Lagos and Lagos-Mombasa Transnational Highway. The country has a total of 4,047 kilometers of land boundaries and they are: Nigerian-Benin Border-773 kilometers, Nigerian-Cameroun Border-1,690 kilometers, Nigerian-Chad Border-87 kilometers and Nigerian-Niger Border-1, 497 kilometers (CIA World Fact Book, December 2013).

Various special security squads of the Nigerian Armed Forces and the NPF are created to police all these exits and entrances. In the NPF, there are police border patrol, airport police, marine or port authority police, police railway or railway police and police highway patrol. Nigeria Police Mobile Force, General Duties Police and Special Anti Robbery and Anti Terrorism Police Squads also police Nigerian roads. The Nigeria’s exits and entrances under references are also policed by other members of the Nigerian Armed Forces.

Spending For Mass Murder:
Our recent investigation shockingly revealed that out of $120 Billion or N19. 525 Trillion Federal budgets of 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014, a whopping sum of $23 Billion or N3.632 Trillion was spent on woefully failed security in Nigeria. The shocking sums covered block budget allocations (recurrent, overheads and capital) to all security agencies, their training institutes and oversight bodies. In the 2011 spent budget of N4.971 Trillion, N764.7 Billion was spent on security, out of which the NPF got N296 Billion, the Ministry of Defense (Army, Navy, Air Force, DSS, NIA, NSCDC, etc) got N380.4 Billion and the Office of the National Security Adviser received N87.8 Billion.

In the 2012 spent budget of N4.877 Trillion, N921 Billion was spent on security, out of which, the NPF got N307.5 Billion. In the 2013 spent budget of N4.987 Trillion, N953 Billion was spent on security, out of which, the NPF got N320 Billion, and in the 2014 passed budget of N4.695 Trillion, N993 Billion is being spent on security, out of which, the NPF is allocated with N292 Billion. In the four federal budget seasons under reference, the NPF had received a total of N1.215 Trillion or $7.5 Billion. In spite of the colossal sum spent on the NPF in the four federal budget regimes, the Force has nothing to show for it. It has become one of Nigeria’s public drain pipes.

It is totally correct to say that the more money is allocated and spent on security, the more Nigeria becomes insecure and the more Nigerians feel unsafe in their fatherland and the more citizens get killed like fowls on daily basis. The country’s insecurity is deliberately being sustained by relevant public security managers, who have become “merchants of death” by living far above their statutory incomes or earnings. It is a very difficult task to identify or find a senior public security manager drawn from the armed forces and police living within his or her statutory earnings in Nigeria.

Average serving or past Inspector General of Police in Nigeria since 1999 is so crookedly rich to the point of surpassing the annual budget size of a State in Nigeria. This is why we held that Nigerian government spends for mass murder instead of spending for citizens’ security. The Government appears to be a corporate serial killer and an undertaker merchant by getting happier when more citizens are killed and making more illicit and blood proceeds when more insecurity is created. Of all the birds in Nigeria, the Nigerian Government has improved the living conditions of vultures more than other birds by ensuring that they never lack human corpses to feed on.

The blatant refusal of relevant public security managers in Nigeria to demystify and access modern security system has continued to cost many lives in the country on daily basis. The three pillars of modern security have long been centered on “preventive policing”, “security intelligence” and “electronic security technology”. None of these three has found its way into Nigeria’s public security industry till date. In Syria, the UN has estimated that over 100,000 people have been killed since the eruption of civil war in the country about four years ago. In Nigeria, between 64,000 and 65,000 citizens have been murdered outside the law since 1999, out of which, between 6,000 and 8,000 have been killed by Boko Haram insurgent group since 2009. In the four years budget regimes under reference (2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014), up to 10,000 citizens or more have been killed, mostly in the hands of Boko Haram barbarous group. In the first five months of this year (2014), over 2,000 citizens have been murdered by the violent armed group. Hundreds of innocent citizens have also died in the hands of Nigerian security forces in the course of the so-called war on Boko Haram terror.

We have severally advised the Nigerian Government to demystify and access the three pillars of modern security stated above. The country’s current security system and policy are nothing to write home about. A country that still retains a national policy on security it adopted 35 years ago (1979) is not a serious participant in modern securitization. A country that retains a police force that still uses a police Act enacted in 1930 without major changes in its body and contents operates a policing organization of the Yore. A country that has a police force of approximately 400,000 officers dominated to the point of 95% by typewriter police officers or computer illiterates is a sworn enemy of electronic, intelligence and preventive policing. A police force with 6,651 field formations that runs its administrative operations on pen and papers in place of digital hardware and software is a disguised community vigilante group and not a police force of a computer age. A police force that sends its typewriter driven officers after computer literate improvised explosive devices detonators is playing at the center of an expressway.


Emeka Umeagbalasi, Board Chairman
International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law
+2348180103912, +2348033601078,

Comrade Jusus Uche Ijeoma, Head, Publicity Desk

News Release: CLO Condemns Arrest, Detention Of Nigerian Journalist

Okechukwu Obenta

On Thursday, 15th May 2014, Mrs. Njideka Oraedu, Managing Director, Anambra State Waste  Management Authority (ASWAMA) allowed her emotions to act before her brain and dealt a fatal blow to the noble footprints of the Governor Willie Obiano who has made positive impressions in the minds of Anambra people since March 17 , 2014.

On the orders of Mrs. Oraedu, Mr. Okechukwu Obenta, a senior journalist with the Source Magazine and Vice Chairman, Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Anambra State Chapter was beaten up, molested and bundled into a vehicle before he was detained at Central Police Station, Awka.

Obenta’s offence that warranted this unacceptable treatment was that he had the effrontery to take pictures of the carelessness of the ASWAMA officials who were busy arresting people and confiscating their wares for flouting the orders of the ASWAMA boss who declared an emergency but poorly publicized sanitation exercise on a Thursday morning.

The ASWAMA boss personally seized Mr. Obenta’s ipad and reportedly boasted that nothing will happen while allegedly creating the erroneous impression to the governor that Obenta was working for opposition politicians in the state.

Lord Acton in Historical Essays and Studies was right when he said that: “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely”.  Ambassador George Lodge in Havard Today once said also that “Power is the chief weapon of the ignorant” and we think that both sayings best captured the irrational behavior of Mrs. Oraedu.

To think of it, Mrs. Oraedu who has been at the helm of affairs before the advent of the present administration has been wobbling and fumbling in her assigned duties. While the agency under her watch was more interested in collecting revenues, different parts of the state became much filthier that some chided Anambra residents as people living like Bida pigs (Ndi Ezi Bida).
The situation remained like that until the Obiano administration decided to pick the gauntlet to give the state a practical aesthetic look. 

We also wonder where the ASWAMA chief derived her powers to declare an emergency sanitation day on a Thursday morning while relying only on the public address system of Aiza Nwosu to pass the message round the entire Awka metropolis on a Wednesday evening.

We condemn in strong terms the humiliating treatment meted out to journalist Obenta by the overzealous ASWAMA chief.  While trying to impress the governor or whatever may have been her motive, Mrs. Oraedu acted beyond her powers.

The arrest and detention of several people going about and engaged in their legitimate businesses and by the ASWAMA officials in connivance with the police was an unwarranted provocation, illegal detention and broad daylight extortion.

The new wind of change blowing in Anambra State is appreciated by all sundry but we sound the alarm that enforcement of any directive should be anchored on rule of law, respect for fundamental human rights and devoid of arbitrariness. 

We call for adequate sanctions on the ASWAMA MD and a new and continuous orientation for all field government officials engaged in any form of enforcement.  This includes road decongestion, waste disposal and any other government approved directives.

Comrade Aloysius Emeka Attah,
Chairman Civil Liberties Organisation, Anambra State Branch. 08035090548,

Comrade Chibueze Nwajiaku,
Secretary, Anambra State Branch, 07039055839

News Release: MEND Says Ransom Paid To Police Chief, Others

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) can authoritatively confirm that the sum of 20 Million Naira was paid as ransom to the kidnapers of the three (3) abducted Dutch Nationals for their release.

We can also confirm that 3.45 Million Naira was paid as bribes to the Bayelsa State Commissioner of Police, Hilary Okpara and also to the Special Adviser on Security to the Bayelsa State Governor, Mr Bernard Kenebai.

This bribe, made to the aforementioned, was to hoodwink the Nigerian public and the world in believing the release of the three kidnapped Dutch Nationals, was carried out by a ‘rescue operation’ by the Bayelsa State Police and “facilitated” by a Mr Berry Negrese, the Chairman of the Dodo River Regional Development Area of Bayelsa State, who himself, made the bribe payments.

This desperate action not only showed a confused and embarrassed Government, but also the failure of the Niger Delta Amnesty Programme.

It is rather unfortunate that the shameless Bayelsa State Police Commissioner and the Special Adviser on Security to the Bayelsa State Governor can think they can deceive Nigerians and the world with a phantom rescue operation of the three kidnapped Dutch Nationals and denying the payment of a ransom after being bribed.

Jomo Gbomo

Article: Now That The USA And Others Are In Nigeria

 By Emmanuel Chigozie Osuchukwu

Now the USA and other world powers are here, we may have an opportunity to ask questions and let the truth be told and heard. It is not every day that a country commands the centre of world attention. It has taken the sordid abduction of possibly over 200 school girls for the world to turn their search light on us and offered to help our rescue efforts. It is a pity that it has taken such an odious event for Nigeria to be the headline news across the globe. But we knew that Nigeria is an accident waiting to happen and let’s hope this is not the beginning of a dark chapter in our history. Let’s hope the arrival of USA and co is not the beginning of the Afghanistanization of Nigeria. It always starts with a few advisers and technical experts - ask Vietnam and Afghanistan.

Last year in an article that brought out the salient points in my book, 1966 Crisis and the Evolution of Nigerian Politics and Achebe’s There was a country a Country I wrote that, ‘suppose and God forbid that Nigeria is invaded today by a foreign power, who in honesty will be fighting for Nigeria with his life’. This has now turned to be a prophetic statement. It preempted the possibility that if Nigeria is attacked there are many prevailing factors that will incapacitate the country as strong and united nation capable of overcoming a serious challenge. Those factors are beginning to crystallize. If we are looking for evidence the upsurge and ruthlessness of the insurgents; the wives of our military men at Enugu protesting that their husbands should not be sent to fight the Boko Haram insurgents; recent report of our soldiers firing at their Commander at Maiduguri, and reports of ill equipped and ill motivated military are serious matters of concern.

This article is by the way not an indictment of President Jonathan and his administration because the country was heading towards an irredeemable status before he came to power. He is a victim as any of us. In any case the man emerged from the unconscionable political gimmicks of the last of the military dictators turned ‘democrat’.  Our country is simply in trouble and we have to face up to that fact. Our sovereignty is being seriously questioned.

It is no longer news that our concerned and benevolent international friends have decided to lend us some support to deal with our present quagmire. But our friends need to know a few home truths about us. Our problem goes deeper than missing school children. This is not the statement of a callous Nigerian oblivious to the pains of unfortunate and innocent parents. This is the lamentation of a Nigerian who is well aware that life is worthless in the country and our leaders do not care if Nigerians are dropping like flies. After all Nigerians die needlessly in their thousands daily and our leaders do not bother. Nigerians have been dying in ethno-religious and community conflicts without our leaders blinking an eyelid. Luxuries buses and fuel tankers have been wasting lives in thousands and no one cares. People are lynched in public or missing without trace and no one cares. No member of the public to my recollection has ever read reports of any commission of enquiry on the legion of outrageous waste of lives in Nigeria. In fact if the world did not explode with disgust who knows what our reaction would be to the Chibok abductions. I guess we would politicize it and even deny that it ever happened or as usual dish out fake figures to minimize the event.  

Now the world is beaming their torch light on us we may take the opportunity to let them know who they have come to help. I will start by telling this story of an Igbo widow. A young Igbo man died leaving a young widow behind. In accordance with Igbo tradition his kinsmen gathered to arrange his funeral. His crying widow uninvitedly appeared before the assembled kinsmen and made this important request - ‘I know my brothers in law that you are discussing how to bury your brother, my own dear husband but please as you do so can you also discuss who amongst you will inherit me and provide for me for the rest of my life’. Well the poor widow knows that after the burial the kinsmen will disperse and she will be left to her hopeless devices. Therefore our powerful rescuers before you go we have other matters you need to listen to. If you are here just to rescue our girls, we appreciate your concerns but we are in deeper trouble and we are beginning to wonder whether left alone we can cope with our overwhelming conditions.

The countries offering to help us know that we could do better than we are doing. We need to tell them that our main problem is our political leadership irrespective of political party affiliation. To our visiting helpers, we need to advise you that we are ruled by Imperial gods far disconnected with the realities of the country. Be not deceived by the razzmatazz they are dazzling you with. The endless convoys with sirens ushering you to their imperial palaces; the sumptuous meals and expensive wines has nothing to do with the realities of our country. Our political leaders constitute a great burden to us. We run one of the world’s most expensive democracies and yet the people have nothing to show that they have a leadership in place. Our leaders are the most selfish, self seeking, self indulgent and lacking in any sense of altruism. Power is sought and acquired for purposes not necessarily for the good of the populace. They believe that the legitimacy of their positions of power is derived from their conquest of us. They apparently believe so because our electoral process can be described as one big farce. They collude, squabble amongst themselves and ultimately buy their way to their positions. Mediocrity and criminality are not uncommon descriptions of our political class. When they get to their positions of power and authority they discard us and remember us only when the next election draws near. We are never in their reckoning and they are only accountable to themselves.

Resultantly Nigeria is one of the most corrupt countries in the world. Any country more corrupt than Nigeria must be hell on earth. Can you imagine that on record Nigeria has spent trillions of Naira in defense and security matters but we can’t encircle and rout a bunch of armed hooligans camping in a forest inside our own country. It begs the serious question of the state of the nation: the cohesiveness of Nigeria as a nation with a common destiny, common vision and a common will to die for a common purpose. Our history, recent events and the utterances of our political leaders do not leave us with a positive and exciting conclusion. The complicity of some of our leaders in the emergence of Boko Haram has been the subject of open discussion. Suffice to say that we are a much divided, corrupt, and ineptly run country. It has not much to do with the present administration. Those outside the seat of power are equally culprits in our despicable conditions. The President is as much a victim as also a perpetrator.

We therefore beg you not to listen to our leaders. They will beg for aids to equip our security forces. When they do, please for ask them why the richest country in Africa should be begging.  They will beg for aids to ameliorate stifling poverty and other forms of socially unacceptable conditions particularly in the North. They will try to convince you that these are the underlying reasons for armed insurrections. Please respond in the negative, otherwise you would be adding to what we call more grease to their elbows. Do also ask for an account of trillions of Naira of annual budgetary allocations in education, health and other areas of public infrastructure. Do not leave until you have asked our leaders why they have discarded Nigeria’s once proclaimed motto of one nation, one destiny or strength in diversity; why they have abandoned our constitutional stipulation of a secular society and by insidiously using religion as a political weapon they left the door open for Boko Haram to sneak in. To our sympathetic international friends, please do ask questions because no one listens to us and I doubt if our democracy can rescue us.

(Osuchukwu is a London based writer. He can be reached on or tel. +447880600236)