Home Politics   Nigeria: The fuji house of commotion

  Nigeria: The fuji house of commotion

  Nigeria: The fuji house of commotion

Increasingly, Nigeria keeps going down with no sight of hope under the current Buhari administration. The President Buhari-led administration has handled the affairs of the country with reckless abandon leading the country to an all-time low in every sector.

The state of security, education, economy, and every sector has deteriorated immensely. The Academic Staff Union of Universities ASUU has been on strike for over five months with no hope in sight as the government is adamant about the demands of the striking lecturers. 

Insecurity has heightened in every part of the country; communities are ransacked with dozens displaced from their homes while others suffer abduction. With the dwindling economy, family and friends of abducted victims rally huge sums in other to secure the release of their loved ones.

In March, an Abuja-Kaduna train was attacked and 62 passengers onboard the train was abducted while eight were killed. Since then, the victims are being released in batches like parents sending their ripen girls to marriage. Sadly, families facilitated the release of those released so far because the government did little to nothing to secure their release.

 In July, a video emerged of how the victims were beaten like mere criminals. In that video, the terrorist threatened to turn the dungeon where they are holding them captive to an abattoir if the government does not meet their demands. The government clearly, even at now has no plans whatsoever to rescue the remaining victims. 

One of the victims who spoke in the video said the government did not allow their relations to negotiate their release. “We call on our relations who were willing to rescue us but the Nigerian government due to being insensitive to our plight did not allow our relations rescue us.”

The victims in the video all looked weak, haggard, hungry, and in so much distress. But of course, who would look good in such a condition? The level of negligence and betrayal of trust by the government is enough reason to be distressed.  

In the latest turn of events, reports emerged that the leader of the terror group with the Abuja-Kaduna train passengers has threatened to forcefully marry 21-year-old train abductee, Azurfa Lois John. What this will mean to the Nigerian government is what we do not know.

One Tukur Mamu, a media consultant to Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, a Kaduna-based Islamic cleric, revealed that he gathered from reliable sources that one of the top commanders of the terrorists is planning to marry her at any moment. Mamu had been at the forefront of mediating for the release of the victims before he later withdrew. 

Again, we have another case of a “Leah Sharibu” raising its ugly head all thanks to the Buhari-led administration. To avoid this ugly occurrence, Mamu said the federal government must take urgent steps to ensure the release of Azurfa Lois John. But what steps exactly? The one they never took?

“This is to alert the federal government and especially the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) that I can confirm through credible information at my disposal that if urgent action is not taken to immediately secure the release of the youngest victim of the train attack, a 21-year-old Azurfa Lois John, the abductors as they have done in the case of Leah Sharibu, are planning to marry her any moment from now,” said Mamu.

Tukur Mamu is a media consultant to Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, a Kaduna-based Islamic cleric who had been at the forefront of mediating for the release of the victims before he later withdrew. He said he withdrew from negotiating with the attackers because of a lack of support from the government among other reasons he said in a chat with Arise TV.

“I’ve announced my withdrawal from engaging with this group because I have my reasons. First, when you’re doing something as an army of one, even if you succeed, the success will be very little. And in a situation where there’s virtually no support from the government, no form of appreciation, you’re even being threatened in one way or the other. 

I am not accusing anybody; I am not accusing the security agencies. But honestly, from what I have seen and the pressure I went through, especially in the absence of government support, it will be very, dangerous for me to continue this.” Maybe the Nigerian government wants to work with “We do not negotiate with terrorists.” Yet, we do not see the government being proactive in securing the release of the victims.

Mamu went ahead to say that he feared that he might be killed in the process of negotiations not by the terrorist but by the “corrupt society.” Who is the “corrupt society”? Because the families of the victims cannot be a threat to a person trying to secure the release of their loved ones and he cleared the terrorist of being a threat to him in the process. Who then is the “corrupt society”? 

 “One could even risk the tendency of losing his life. Not from terrorists of course, but from corrupt society and then the tendency to even be blackmailed. So, no matter how you want to assist, once there’s no cooperation from the government, especially in a difficult situation like this, I think the best way is for you to disengage. Maybe until the time when government understands and appreciates the magnitude of the crisis,” Mamu speaking.  

 One would always wonder if Nigeria is under a course or something. Imagine that the government does not understand the magnitude of the situation at hand, this is utterly embarrassing. 62 citizens have been held hostage for over five months and we are still talking about the magnitude of such a crime. 

Even before the news of the proposed marriage to Miss Azurfa broke, the government has been and is still mum about the train victims. 28 including Miss Azurfa are still held captive by the terrorist. We just hope that the repeat of Leah Sharibu does not happen again.   

Author: Kangmwa Gofwen

Lagos Bureau Chief, Nigeria