"For this reason, I seek the concurrence of the
Although the President of
I must state quite clearly that President Jonathan is right to have described the matter as "urgent." In fact, urgent might be an understatement. The situation is near catastrophic as the Nigerian Armed Forces are being shown to be facing challenges for which they were not fully prepared. When one of the Service Chiefs, on his appointment a few months ago, proclaimed that Boko Haram would be defeated in three months or so, Nigerians knew we have, as our first line defenders, some people who were living in a world of fantasy.
Today, it is over three months since those appointments were made and Boko Haram has become more murderous. The situation had gone from bad to very bad, and now, to desperate. That explains the sense of urgency the President attaches to the matter. And, if indeed, the President nurses a second term ambition, he is aware that it would be an uphill task if the insurgency in the Northeast is not contained by the time Nigerians go to the polls next year.
For starters, certainly nobody would represent INEC in those areas controlled by Boko Haram. The Nigerian Armed Forces really need more and better weapons to prosecute this war - for the simple reason that what they have is not turning the tide of conflict in our favour.
But, having agreed that our armed forces need to be better equipped, there is still the need to address the President's request to borrow
While on the sources of the loan, it would appear to me to be a cardinal mistake for
Second, N160 billion to procure equipment, mostly weapons of destruction, which can and some of which will also be destroyed, is not an investment to promote growth. The returns on investment on this expenditure are totally negative. We are going to repay the loans from funds generated from other sources. That makes it important for us to ensure that the entire
Third, since some of the equipment would not be things that can be taken off the shelf and installed, one again hopes that our armed forces will be adequately trained to use them.
For instance, the Lagos State inherited four giant incinerators from the military in 1979 which the government of Governor Jakande could not operate. They remain largely useless till today. Yet, a foreign loan was taken to install them. Most of the equipment and systems which Chief
Perhaps the best argument in support of the request for the
In fact, the continuation of the conflict has prevented us from assessing the refugee situation, the damage done to people whose means of livelihood had been impaired or destroyed for ever and families that had been scattered never to re-group again. Everyday the conflict continues represents another day to add to the tragedies which the war has inflicted on millions of our countrymen and women.
I am aware of the crippling and endemic corruption with which our country had become known. Some would assume that the N160 billion constitutes another avenue for self-enrichment, for inflated contracts (over which we will argue later). That may be true. But, as I pointed out to one of my friends who took this position, using analogy borrowed from medicine, "The fact that a particular surgeon had performed two operations which resulted in death does not mean that he cannot perform the next one - if he is the Chief Surgeon."
Jonathan is our "Chief Surgeon", at the moment. Let us give him the support and the chance to perform his duty. The NASS should lead by example. They should approve the loan before going on leave.
Visit: www.delesobowale.com or Visit:
Most Popular Stories
- Doctor Who Christmas Episode Begins Production
- HCL America Adding 1,200 IT Jobs
- Medical Mfg. Jobs Coming to Dayton
- Michael Jackson, Freddie Mercury on Previously Unreleased Queen Cut
- Longtime Unemployed to Get Help in Las Vegas
- SpaceX Aims for Predawn Launch on Saturday
- Women Key to Democratic Party: Clinton
- U.S. Chamber Caught Up in Tax Inversion Question
- Feds Won't Say How Many Border Crossers Jailed
- Christie Didn't Order Bridge Shut Down, Feds Say