Security expert calls for president’s impeachment
A FORMER Commodore of the Nigerian Navy Kunle Olawunmi has said that sponsors of terrorist groups are currently holding positions in the cabinet of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Olawunmi said this on Wednesday when he featured on Channels Television breakfast show Sunrise Daily, following the attack on the Nigeria Defence Academy in Afaka, Kaduna State on Tuesday.
The former military commodore said terrorists arrested in the past years had mentioned their names as their sponsors.
“Boys (terrorists) that we arrested mentioned names of people that are in the government now. Some of them are governors, some of them are in the Nigerina Senate, and some of them are ministers. The Department of State Service (DSS) know them.
“…I have interrogated a high-ranking member of this government on the issue of Boko Haram in 2007/2008 and he was found culpable,” he said.
The Nigerian government had also said that it had a list of over 400 persons sponsoring terrorism in Nigeria but had failed to prosecute them.
The Attorney-General of the Federation Abubakar Malami recently said that over 400 financiers of terrorism in Nigeria were being arraigned.
He said the suspects were arrested in Kano, Borno, Lagos, Sokoto, Adamawa, Kaduna, Zamfara states and Abuja.
However, there has not been any information on their trial, and the names have not been made public.
The ICIR contacted Spokesperson for the DSS Peter Afunanya over names of governors and ministers who are sponsors of terrorism, but he did not respond to calls and a text message sent to him.
Olawunmi, who is also the head of the Department of Criminology and Security Studies at Chrisland University said it was beyond the powers of the military to tackle the centre of gravity of terrorism in Nigeria because it had to do with the sponsors of terror groups.
“The government did not try any of them and the Defence did not try that because it was beyond them. It was a policy problem; they cannot go beyond their masters.
“The DHQ cannot conduct any operation that is not sanctioned by the commander-in-chief of the armed forces (president), they cannot do it,” Olawunmi said.
Speaking on the unwillingness of the government to prosecute those found guilty of sponsoring terrorism against the country, the retired commodore said it was because of ethnoreligious sentiments shared by the current administration led by Muhammadu Buhari.
He added that the end-game for allowing terrorism to fester was to turn Nigeria into a Taliban-like country by Islamising it.
Olawunmi further stated that in 2017, during an intelligence meeting, he advised the government to buy beam surveillance equipment that could give real-time intelligence that would detect the location of terrorists after their operations, but this was not done.
He also argued that military formations in Nigeria were also compromising their security architecture by opening up their gates to the public on Fridays for Juma’at prayers.
“Every military formation across the country, on Fridays by 1pm, are doing the same thing, including Naval Training Command in Apapa, the Divison in Ibadan, Jaji and the Defence Headquarters, that is when terrorists have the time to profile the security architecture. Our problem is religion and it is also socio-cultural,” Olawunmi said.
A forensic investigator Alfred Ononugbo, who also spoke on Sunrise Daily, called for the impeachment of Buhari over incessant terrorist attacks.
He said it was worrisome that there had been un-seriousness about tackling the identified problem of insecurity in Nigeria.
“The National Assembly, if they are not compromised, should look at the option of impeaching the president,” Ononugbo said.
He also advised that the structure of the Nigerian security be reviewed due to the ‘very dire situation’ of insecurity.
Olawunmi further noted that a few years ago, terrorists had kidnapped cadets of the NDA in Kaduna State.
According to Olawunmi, the terrorists demanded N400,000 for the release of the cadets and it was paid.
However, he said it was shocking that upon their release, the cadets said where they were taken to was not far away from the academy.
Olawunmi noted that if the Buhari administration was serious about putting an end to insecurity, he must pronounce them a terrorist organisation.