Since May 17th there has not been a single public report of a forward engagement by the Nigerian military. The Nigerian military under the retained leadership of Chiefs Badeh, Minimah and co has either gone silent again against Boko Haram or silent on informing us on their activities. Both silences are equally deadly as the need for action and public awareness can never be under emphasized.
Nigeria’s military under its current leadership was known for its silence throughout the Jonathan years. This led to a state of confusion and confused hopelessness of Nigerians, a lack of trust and cooperation with the locals and ultimate success for terror. Most times the military was silent, it was not because they were not keeping Nigeria informed on their victories or losses, it has been because they were militarily silent against terror, holed up largely in their barracks’ or only stationed defending the northeast capital cities and hence had nothing to talk about. When Nigerian towns fell to Boko Haram and genocides were committed, the army either still said nothing about it, and all Nigeria’s information was obtained by NGOs like our and the media, or the military denied it even happened as they still deny that 2500 of us were massacred in Baga, claiming it was only 150 of us Boko Haram killed.
We remember that it was only during presidency campaign season that the military got its guts and tongue. That was when we heard all these adverts on PRNigeria and on the Defence info facebook page, talking about military victories at Sambisa, Konduga and Gwoza including the one we saw with hidden feet carrying the Gwoza signpost. Indeed during the six-week war our Badeh-Ihejirika military which had by then become a full political, PDP campaign organ was agog with pro Jonathan campaigns and deliberate efforts to influence or shift the elections. In spite of the treachery it was a period that gave Nigerians some consolations because at last we heard stuff about Boko Haram and our war with them, be it true or false propaganda, it was some kind of notice.
This was a period if you remember when Chad got involved in the war having been hired by the Nigerian army and the Chadian soldiers were not just updating their public and ours with daily reports on their military campaigns, but were actually providing daily video, displaying the towns they conquered from Boko Haram, and then reporting how the towns were again lost to Boko Haram when the Nigerian military told them (Chad) to walk and never first collected the towns back from them. Yes, Chad’s government/military gave us both the positive and negative information and also told us of their issues with lack of cooperation and collaboration from their Nigerian counterparts. This was the behaviour of a responsible military under apt and able and non-treacherous leadership. Something Nigeria still lacks.
Today the service chiefs Nigerians are stunned and betrayed the new rulers* still keep at the head of the service to literally continue their terror against the state, which comes in all forms including harassment of locals, deadly silence against terror and silence to reveal necessary information, sentencing to death of deprived and sabotaged junior officers, frank support for Boko Haram with arms and foreign currency shipments and war crimes, to list a few, are still at their typical games. And Nigerians are still dying more than they should. (*The word is ‘rulers;’ rulers: impose/retain service chiefs in denial of the leadership desire of its people).
Looking once again today on Defence Information facebook page, all I saw was a book launch by spokesman Major General Olukolade that took place yesterday. A book coincidentally titled “Issues In The Mobilisation Of Public Support For Military Operation In Nigeria…” A book I hope has the important notes for our service chiefs and indeed our new rulers.
Apart from that book promo and notices of Buhari’s military decisions and collaborations with our neighbours, there has literally been not an iota of information from our army on that page since Jonathan lost. The ads tapered and stopped completely. I guess it’s a treacherous episode of same chiefs, different day.
We do have to thank president Buhari for keeping the military format that cost us our lives dignity and almost cost us change.