President Muhammadu Buhari’s most notable achievement in six years must be the re-arrest of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu almost four years after he fled Nigeria to escape an encampment of the Nigerian Army that fired at everything at sight. There is no point in minimising the efforts Buhari invested in making Kanu and the dividends he is about to reap from his creation.
The likes of Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information, cannot pretend to applaud the diligence of our security services and at the same time edit their attention on Kanu to two years. There are things the Minister should not lie about. Kanu has been a big dot in Buhari’s decisions even indecisions.
In addition to the 11 charges against him, the Minister recited some alleged behaviours of Kanu as if they were offences in Nigeria. He was living “a five-star life across several countries. He was travelling on chartered private jets, living in luxury apartments and turning out in designing clothes and shoes.
“Of course, as we all saw, he was wearing an attire made by Fendi, a luxury Italian fashion brand, when he was arrested,” Mohammed said, sounding triumphant and at the same time envious of a young man who expressed his frustrations about Nigeria in words I disagree with, but they reflect his feelings, and failings.
Lai was not the first to complain about Kanu amassing things. Buhari ended a live media chat abruptly in December 2015 when someone asked him why Kanu was still in detention, two months after his arrest. Buhari was upset. He found the question annoying. His response? “Do you know that young man has two passports?” You would think Kanu stopped Buhari from acquiring more passports.
The President shunned media chats until weeks ago when he spoke to Arise TV and his angst with Kanu had escalated to awarding IPOB membership to more than 50 million people, deriding them as a dot, reminding them they were landlocked, and all these while we were wondering why President Buhari was threatening Igbos, the South East.
Many of us do not have the nerves to be Kanu. Many of us feel the same or worse than him about how Nigeria does not work. The determination of some to worsen Nigeria now ranks as patriotism.
Kanu back in confinement is the elixir for all Nigeria’s challenges. It is news that strengthens feeble bones. Nigeria is redeemed from hunger, anger, diseases, terrorists, inflation, unemployment, refineries, and bad politics that Kanu imposed on it.
No need for foreign medical trips for the President. No more strikes. Bandits have banned themselves. The exchange rate will crash in favour of the Naira.
Nigerians will muster the resources to buy fuel at any price. Covid-19 will circumvent Nigeria. Corruption will disappear as Buhari has shared his attention between fighting Kanu and corruption.
Peace will prevail across the land. No longer will Fulani herdsmen be denied their rights to waste lives and property anywhere they please in their Nigeria. Gold mining would continue in Zamfara State away from the control of the Federal Government. The Constitution might have placed mineral resources under the Federal Government such that peoples of the Niger Delta do not have a say in how oil and gas exploration affects their lives.
We all know that gold is not spelt as oil nor is it used for the same purpose. A slight surprise is that Kanu has not been charged with illegal mining in Zamfara. It is still not late.
Something good for Nigerians could come out of Kanu’s trial that starts on 26 July. Buhari is establishing new standards for dealing with those he deems terrorists. We have a duty to hold him to his standards. No more excuses.
If his security operatives can cross seas and valleys to get Kanu, wherever he was arrested, there is no reason for them not acting similarly in arresting insecurity in Nigeria. We have the men and the international cooperation we require. Kanu’s case is the proof.
While Kanu is under-going trial Sheikh Gumi is long overdue to be appointed National Security Adviser (North). He knows the bandits, kidnappers, terrorists. He speaks for them. He negotiates for them. He forecasts that bandits would not let Nigeria be until Nigeria meets all their terms.
Why the accommodation of Gumi’s positions that promote the lawlessness that pervades the North and seeps to the South in the mould of entitled Fulani herdsmen?
We are not entitled to answers.
A few things have been established – Buhari is not sick, Kanu has been the malaise sweeping across Nigeria; Fulani herdsmen are the mainstay of the Nigerian economy, not oil and gas as we are wont to speculate.
Should we not worry about Buhari? How will his days be without some bile against Igbos? What would feed his anger with the South East now he has Kanu?
As we congratulate the President on his moment in the sun, he should lift the security siege on the South East. Kanu has been the excuse for Buhari’s unique attention on the South East. Mr. President, lift the siege, Kanu is back.
GOVERNOR Bello Matawalle of Zamfara State who joined APC on Tuesday was heard in a 2019 video vowing in Hausa, “If I ever betray PDP, may I not live in peace for the rest of my life, I swear by Allah. If I can leave PDP or cheat any of our members, may Allah punish me.” Two years is a long time in politics, I won’t swear.
.Isiguzo is a major commentator on minor issues