The gruesome murder of Reverend Lawan Andimi, Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN in Michika Local Government Area of Adamawa State by Boko Haram is a heinous crime that should be condemned by all men and women who abhor evil.
Because what happened to him is the true definition of evil and man’s inhumanity to man. Andimi was abducted on January 3, 2020 following the invasion of Michika by the insurgents who were said to have been repelled by the security forces. They did not retreat without a fight and Andimi was captured in the process. He was another casualty of the unending war of insurgency. Thereafter, he was shown as a trophy of war by the abductors who apparently forced him to make videos appealing for his release before they finally decided to murder him in cold blood on Monday January 20, 2020 according to reports.
The scripting of the murder including his parade by his abductors before they carried out the dastardly act of murdering an innocent man over nothing shows the dire situations Nigeria is. The handwriting is very clear. The country may not be at war. But it is in the grip of a bloody insurgency fostering a regime of fear and helplessness across the land. Nobody is safe and the dark minds behind the insurgency are roaming round the nooks and crannies of selected parts of the country looking for whom to devour.
But Andimi’s murder is not just another strike by Boko Haram or whoever or whatever group is behind the reprehensible act. The perpetrators of the murder encrypted a message with the termination of another innocent life. It is a dark manifesto from the insurgents who seem to be saying that they are on the rebound from the degradation which the government and its security forces have repeatedly maintained that they have inflicted on them. Yes the security forces may have degraded Boko Haram and its allies and associates through the many encounters and battles between both sides. But from the murder of Andimi and the recent upsurge in hostage taking, random killings and invasion of villages particularly in Borno, Yobe, Adamawa and highway heist in Kaduna, Katsina and other contiguous zones, the bandits are still potent enough. They pick and choose their targets and spread fear and misery in the land through mindless killing, maiming and abduction of innocent citizens.
Of course condemnation is necessary and harsh words should be employed to characterize their odious crime and brigandage. But it is not enough to just condemn the act and move on until they strike again. Indeed this is not a period for grandstanding or parade of righteous indignation. It is also not time for political cheap shots and filibuster. Such condemnation in the face of clear and present danger that the insurgents pose to the polity and the welfare of its citizen sound hollow. We have seen and heard that time and time again. This is the time for action. This is a time to act. This is the time to reassess the war against the insurgency and their local and foreign collaborators and map out new strategies to tame them. Such discourse should be tempered by patriotic zeal and not any deft political game or ethnic jingoisms and religious rabble rousing.
Before our very eyes the insurgents are becoming bolder, killing both civilians and men of the security forces with reckless abandon and we are here debating over inanities. This is time for all concerned to come together and face our common enemy. And rather than dissipating energy on the propriety of the establishment of an ingenious security measure to check insecurity and banditry by a particular region, it’s time to see how such can be replicated all over the country. The debate should actually be about how to devise ways to build in check and balances into regional and state security outfits and fortify such structure to improve the security architecture of the country. Those who have fashioned new methods to shore up the security of their regions and states deserve commendation and not condemnation.
In plain terms, the government and those opposed to the Amotekun Security outfit of the Southwest region should be more concerned about halting the resurgence of Boko Haram. The Amotekun Initiative should provide a template that should engender similar outfits in other parts of the country. The debate should be about how to make Amotekun and similar security outfits fit into the drive to degrade Boko Haram and other hate spewing killing machines and permanently cut off their stranglehold on the country’s jugular. That is the only way the evil visited on Andimi by the unconscionable Boko Haram and their collaborators will not be repeated in Michika and other parts of the country.
Adebanjo sent this piece via [email protected]