In the fight against
terrorism and insurgency the federal government under the leadership of the
newly appointed minister of the federal capital territory broadcasted online
and real time a memo informing the general public especially those who go to
either of the following places; the mosque, church or market (which happens to
be, let me see; more than 99% of Abuja's citizens) to be careful. In summary
the conversation would be like “be careful because the bokoharam is on to you”
“who exactly?” “I don’t know, maybe you! just know that they might look like
beautiful ladies giving aids.” This was supposed to help the public. But I
believe it did more harm.
The fight against
terrorism and insurgency is not just about saving people from an untimely death
physically but also mentally. It’s not just saving the country from being blown
to ruins but also saving the spirit of this nation. That is if I can get you to
think that you are not safe, get you to always look over your shoulders, I
really don’t have to attack you; you would attack yourselves. Your social life
would shut down, your revenue, your creativity and sometimes your spirituality.
This is the major reason the terrorist broadcast their message through the
social media to spread fear and panic. With this memo, the cause terrorism is
being helped rather than curbed. The essence of terrorist groups owning up to
their atrocities and putting out threats like these, is to gain 'relevance' and
get their name to strike awe in people.
As a parent asking your
children for money to do anything has to be your last resort. So also as leaders
involving the public like this should be the last resort. New York was
threatened in the wake of the Paris attack, they denied the threat but doubled
their security over night, today its alleged that they keep a 24 hour watch on
the members of the suspected ISIS
faithful living in their country; 500 more officers were needed to achieve
this. Even if we don’t have the numbers like the American’s, then work with the
leaders and if you cant then, approach the citizens differently, work with the
radio and television stations tell people something like “congratulations for
making it to December, I believe we would all be in January but please be
careful, be vigilant, we can defeat terrorism together, God bless Nigeria” and
then repeat it as much as you can in the media, until it sinks in, just like
Senator Ben Bruce common sense campaign.
This was an
un-intentional mistake. But, remember the road to hell is laced up with good
intentions. Mistakes are mistakes, they are not you. We believe in you. We
believe in Nigeria.
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By the way I am just a
Labels: FCT MINISTER, OPEN LETTER