State of emergency: Why only Anambra?

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The presidency or, better yet, the Federal Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, has reportedly threatened Anambra state with a state of emergency; its apparent reason being the ongoing massacre throughout the south-eastern region, Anambra included.

Some have attributed the killings to Igbo seeking independence under the aegis of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), led by Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, currently in detention in Abuja after his reported kidnapping in Kenya by the Nigerian government and / or its agents. Others have pointed to an arm of federally controlled security agencies as having a hand in the murders. The government must investigate and tell the truth. IPOB is campaigning to leave Nigeria and have Biafra. For this same cause, a 30-month civil war was fought between 1967 and 1970, as a result of which millions of lives and limbs were lost.

Then Lt. Col. Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu, military governor of the eastern region at the time, led the Igbo to war, but they lost on the Nigerian side and their dream of a sovereign nation was truncated . Half a century later, however, the flame of secession is burning brightly again in the Southeast; not thanks to the alleged insane marginalization of the Igbo by the administration of retired Major-General Muhammadu Buhari. In his body language, in his words, in his actions and in his dates, Buhari left no doubt that he could still be at war with the Igbo. For him, the civil war might not have ended, and the three Rs of the then military head of state, General Yakubu Gowon – Reconciliation, Reconstruction and Rehabilitation – could be pure bogus.

Buhari defended his government’s claim of marginalization of Igbo, saying they only gave him 5% of the vote in the election that brought him to power against his own people in the North who gave him gave 97% of the vote. Not too long ago, he also called the Igbo a point in the middle of nowhere.

Experience has shown that these volatile, intemperate, callous and provocative statements and ethnic profiling, besides being unworthy of a statesman, are also the building blocks of ethnic cleansing, sectarian strife and violence. uncontrollable. Ask the Rwandans! Ask the Ogoni! Of course, many South Easters never gave up on their dream of Biafra, but it was Buhari’s treatment of the Igbo that poured gasoline into the smoldering fire of Biafran irredentism.

It is as if there is a deliberate plot to incense and provoke the Igbo so that they can be removed again for another murder. Attend the various “Operation Crocodile Smile” in the region! Witness the automatic haste with which the IPOB has been branded as a terrorist organization as Boko Haram, Fulani shepherds and bandits are cuddled, installed, protected and treated at worst with children’s gloves by the same government that wasted no time in descending on IPOB with a hammer sled.

There is no doubt that the killings and destruction of property in the South East are senseless and horrific – but so are the longstanding killings in Borno, Yobe, Zamfara, Katsina, Kaduna, the states of Niger and other parts of the country. the North. Why was a state of emergency not declared in these states? Why have the perpetrators of heinous crimes in the North not been properly labeled as terrorists? Double standards are damn too obvious and are indefensible by any rational and sane criteria. In the South-East itself, why is it only Anambra, an opposition state, that is targeted by the state of emergency? And Imo – and Ebonyi? There is no state in the Southeast that does not recover from “volcanic” eruptions caused by the sit-athome order declared by IPOB every Monday.

If this is because elections are scheduled in Anambra, does no one see that a state of emergency will worsen, rather than help, the situation, as many may see it as a smart tactic? on the part of the ruling CPA to steal the election and seize the sleight of hand of the state. When a state of emergency was declared in the Western region on May 29, 1962 by the then Prime Minister, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, to rob the region from the government of Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s action group and impose an unpopular government on reluctant people, what happened? This singular action led to a series of actions – Operation Wetie; the wild Wild West; military coup then civil war. George Santayana says those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat his mistakes, but some mistakes are damn too costly, they should never be repeated.

If elections seem unlikely in Anambra due to the turmoil there, then the right thing to do is not flex the muscles and exacerbate the problem, but listen to the wise advice and start the process. process of de-escalating a self-inflicted problem except, as we said earlier, this is a deliberate effort to give a dog a bad name in order to hook it.

In the event, however, where Malami or the Presidency is determined to declare a state of emergency, many areas of our national life call for one. The education sector is one of them. ASUU and other unions in the education sector started to cry trying to get the government’s attention. Strike after strike, negotiation after negotiation, rather than improving, the state of education is worsening. Quality education has left these shores.

Yet education is the cornerstone of the development of any nation. No nation develops better than the quality of its educational sector. May Buhari urgently declare a state of emergency in the education sector and I will applaud him. A state of emergency in the health sector is also urgently needed. Our hospitals are much worse today than the “consultation centers” they were in the dizzying days of the military dictatorship.

At that time, there were still doctors and consultants; today, virtually all physicians and consultants have moved in search of greener pastures and healthy environments that support their practice. Anyone who is anyone in the country these days, including President Buhari himself, is leaving the country for medical treatment. People die of preventable deaths; yet health is wealth, and a healthy mind is found in a healthy body. From his own personal experience, I am sure that Buhari himself knows the importance of good health; therefore, he should be quick to declare a state of emergency in the health sector.

The insurgency drove the farmers off the farm and resulted in a food shortage. Food prices have skyrocketed. Yet our people have a saying that once hunger is eliminated from a man’s problems, whatever is left becomes manageable. In many cultures and traditions, thieves are left behind once they can prove that hunger drove them. A hungry man, they say, is an angry man.

In the past, the poor Nigerians used to feed on the trash cans of the rich, but today, with the middle class all but wiped out, there is nothing worthwhile in many trash cans for the desperately poor to salvage. Productivity will drop. The crime will escalate.

More and more people will fall ill, and hospitals and workforces that are already inadequate and overworked will collapse further. Other preventable and preventable deaths will follow. So Buhari should hurry and declare a state of emergency in the agro-food sector. This is the time when we need the whole of Operation Feed the Nation; Operation Return to Earth, Operation Food for All, etc. According to some statistics, Nigeria has one of the largest youth populations in the world.

These young people are struggling to get admitted – but for private and public universities, God only knows where we would have been! After going to school – no scholarships; no scholarship; skinned by poor, hungry, angry and oppressive teachers; Incessant school closings and sky-high tuition fees In many cases, students pass out to face a tough economic environment with no jobs, no unemployment benefits, and no subsidies to start on their own. Those with paid jobs continue to lose their jobs on a daily basis due to the oppressive naira exchange rate, epileptic power supply, corruption at every turn which makes the cost of doing business prohibitive, low purchasing power of the population, etc. The unemployment rate in Nigeria (2021) is 32.5% while the inflation rate is above 17%; the naira is trading for nearly 600 naira at US $ while the country’s outstanding debt exceeds 100,000 billion naira. Eighty-eight percent and more of all government revenue goes to debt service (not principal payments!) While more foreign loans are needed to maintain some semblance of governance.

Nowhere is a state of emergency more necessary than the economy. So what is Buhari waiting for? We can go on and on! What about the dilapidated state of infrastructure across the country? How about epileptic power supply? And should we not talk about the state of insecurity that has invaded the whole country? Yes, the state of emergency is imposed as yesterday in the Presidential Villa itself! But if they weren’t listening, Anambra might as well be, like that of Napoleon Bonaparte, their own Waterloo, or like the biblical king Ahab, their own Ramoth-Gilead!






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