By: Philip Agbese
Most analysts of Nigerian descent often conclude that Nigerians tend to easily forget yesterday’s history. We must know our yesterday to understand our today and grasp the future better. I dare say, Nigerians indeed have short retentive memory. We are tied to ephemeral issues and we tenaciously hold unto it.
I am an ardent apostle and student of history. But most profoundly, I am a researcher on human rights laws and currently working on the role of non-state actors in the global war against insurgency. With this research interest, I have traversed quite a number of countries, where terrorism and its variants seem to be permanent guests of the people and their countries.
I have spent years visiting some terrorism infested countries in the Middle East and Africa. I have tried to understand the character or sociological content of terrorism; what economic factors accentuate it; perception of leaders of countries under the spell of terrorism, the role of non-state actors in emboldening terrorism; its mercantilist colouration and why it festers near uncontrollably.
While in Nigeria from the United Kingdom on same mission, I visited the Northeastern states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe. It is famed as the hub of Boko Haram terrorism, from where it has extended tentacles to other parts of Northern Nigeria and almost the whole country. I am quite familiar with the Boko Haram history.
In the aforementioned enclaves, Boko Haram insurgents who made their debut in Nigeria in 2009 have killed, destroyed, abducted, ransacked and ravaged whole communities and villages. I assessed its progression over the years and the unsteady blight of its rampaging prowess.
I discovered that prior to 2015, and before the advent of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, a leader with a military background, Boko Haram had literally conquered Nigeria. It was undoubtable that no one was safe anywhere in Nigeria, including residents of the nation’s capital, Abuja. The fear of Boko Haram suppressed the courage and the boldness of men of valour.
And for about seven odd years, Nigerian Government under different leaders could not tame the monster of Boko Haram insurgency until the arrival of President Buhari. It was simply because there were many snags in the strategies, tactics adopted, in addition to a defective military structure or precisely leadership in combating Boko Haram insurgency.
Furthermore, a consuming mass poverty and wrong economic priorities, a divisive political leadership and its lack of a clear focus on tackling security challenges exacerbated the scourge of terrorism in Nigeria. It has reflected in many books, media articles/news reports, conference papers and the whole lot.
In my book titled “Integrity Vs Powerplay: Understanding The Buhari Phenomenon,” (author: Philip Agbese) and published in 2019, I attempted a chronicle of the achievements of President Buhari. As a prophet of God, I wrote the book to capture some of the lofty achievements of the Buhari administration. I authored the work for a time like this in order to avail fellow citizens of this country or those abroad the opportunity to re-write the efforts, successes and achievements of the Buhari administration, especially on security.
So, strikingly, I took a deep delve into the counter-insurgency operations under the Buhari Presidency, revealing the extent of the damage he inherited; his efforts in repositioning the country on the path of economic recovery; the reorganization of the Military leadership and the sustained focus on combating insurgency in Nigeria to berth the respite we relished.
I therefore find it necessary to refresh our minds on the achievements of Mr. President on the war against insurgency in N…