|Abayomi Nurain Mumuni|
A renowned security expert, Abayomi Nurain Mumuni, has called on the Federal Government to charge the former President, Goodluck Jonathan; ex-National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki and other beneficiaries of the $2.1bn arms cash to the International Criminal Court in the Hague for war crimes against Nigerians who lost their lives during the Boko Haram reign of terror.
Speaking with newsmen ahead of the release of his second book, 'Demand by Terror', Mumuni said the ex-NSA's role in sharing funds meant for the procurement of ammunition for the Nigerian military empowered the dreaded Boko Haram militants to kill thousands of Nigerians and destroy property worth billions of naira.
'Demand by Terror' is the sequel to 'Global Terrorism and its Effects on Humanity' by the same author, and would be launched in the United States of America in September to commemorate the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Centre Twin Towers by terrorists fifteen years ago.
According to the author, While Boko Haram embarked on the brutal and indiscriminate killing of the Nigerian citizens, the Jonathan administration, through the ex-NSA, was busy sharing money meant for the purchase of arms for our military. At the time Boko Haram was taking over cities in the Northeast, the military was helpless; not that they couldn't fight but they were using substandard weapons.
He described the unpatriotic conduct of former President Jonathan and his cohorts as a criminal offence, which is punishable under international law.
"Apart from the money laundering charges they are presently facing, this (war crimes charge) is really a criminal offence, punishable under international law. Money laundering is a crime, but this is a greater criminal offence because under their nose, they allowed Boko Haram to thrive. They aided terrorists by stealing money meant for arms to fight the same terrorists that have wrecked havoc in Nigeria and other neighboring African countries.
"Once they are done with the money laundering charges, Dasuki should be charged. Jonathan too should be tried because he knew how the money was distributed. All other beneficiaries involved should also be charged for war crimes. They would have curtailed the activities of the group if they had done what President Buhari is doing now," he noted.
The 2011 Lagos State governorship candidate of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) commended President Buhari for his anti-corruption campaign, which led to the discovery of the massively looted cash embezzled by the last administration.
He said; "President Buhari should be commended for his anti-corruption campaign. I have known him for close to 2 decades. We were together during our days in the defunct All Progressives Party (APP). When he founded the now defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), we were together. I know him very well. He'll never disappoint Nigerians. All we need to do is support, encourage and pray for him.
Mumuni however cautioned the Nigerian military not to rejoice in the fight against Boko Haram, stressing that it is not over, until it's finally over.
According to him, "No doubt, FG is winning the war against Boko Haram insurgents, but it's not time for celebration because the sect members are now widespread, recuperating somewhere; and they can strike whenever they want to. That's why the military should continue their search for them, especially within our land borders.
"Remember the Maitatsine crisis in the 80s? They metamorphosed into what we know today as Boko Haram with the help of cross-border terrorists. They are not Nigerians. Most of them are not even practising Muslims. They are cross-border terrorists. That's why we need to strengthen the security in our borders. I was not surprised when I read that some Boko Haram members were apprehended in a church in Lagos. If we fail to tighten the security of our land borders, many of them will still find their way in and continue their nefarous atrocities."
Comparing the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) to Boko Haram, Mumuni, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) stated that the former is not a terrorist group, but are fighting for their rights in violent ways.
He said; "The NDA are not terrorists. They are fighting for their rights and if you've been to their regions, you'll feel for them. However, they are going about it in a wrong way. Their modus operandi is totally unacceptable. It falls under terror, even though their reasons are justifiable. They should have dialogued with the government instead of going violent.
"This is an act of terrorism and Nigeria is too big for a small group to hold government into ransom. They can't fight government and win despite their access to ammunition. If government descends heavily on them, they'll pay dearly for it, and it might even lead to war crimes.
"They have forgotten that their state governments collect derivation funds and other allocations from the Federal Government. They should hold their governments responsible for the poor level of development in the their region, because some people are directly benefiting from such. They should dialogue with the government. Violence begets violence. The President Buhari I know is a listening president," he stated.
Mumuni, who holds a number of degrees in national homeland security, peacekeeping missions, global and remote terrorism, and mediation from universities in the United States, South Africa, Israel, Nigeria and the United Kingdom, said terrorism cannot be totally eradicated, but its risks could be reduced if the government at all levels embarks on massive literacy campaigns and makes the welfare of its citizens a priority.
He said: "It's a global phenomenon. Terrorism has been existing before we started experiencing it in Africa. The qualifier is not an English word; it originated from French. Like I said in my books, terrorism has different faces, from State Terrorism to Religious Terrorism to Cyber Terrorism, among others. Terrorism will not fade out overnight, as they will always attack soft targets to achieve their goals.
"But its risks could be reduced through enlightenment and providing means of livelihood for the people. When you fail to provide for them, they indulge in criminal activities. They become instruments for the devil. In fact, some of these people receive stolen goods from these terrorists. They help them keep their guns. Once they provide them food, they keep mum. The terrorists have informants among them. Most of the villagers are benefitting from the terrorists because of the level of poverty in the country. Government needs to provide for them before embarking on literacy programmes."