According to Arthur Charles Clarke;
“All truth passes through three stages. First it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident. “
It is against that background that there is a need to ask on the recent killing of 3 policemen of the Intelligence Response Team in a covert operation in Taraba state by soldiers of the 93 Battalion whose report shall we believe: that of Frank Mba or Sagir Musa? Mba and Musa spokespersons of the Police and Army respectively have presented contrasting narratives. The truth however is that General TY Danjuma has finally been vindicated.
In March 2018, a former Army chief TY Danjuma warned Nigerians to stand up and defend themselves.
He spoke against the backdrop of the increased killings in the Riverine area purportedly by Fulani herdsmen in collusion with army personnel. The General was not only succinct but vehement in his allegations. Predictably, the government of the day including its host of supporters particularly social media, took on the former Army chief using all sorts of diatribes and uncomplimentary language.
The Nigerian Army authorities not only denied the allegations but raised a panel under the chairmanship of General John Nimyel (rtd) to look into the charges by the former Army chief.
While that was playing out, leading legal authorities from across the country validated Danjuma’s claims based on constitutional grounds. Despite the fact that the General has been ridiculed and violently opposed, what he had asserted has nevertheless become self-evident in full accordance to Mr. Clarke’s dictum.
Beyond the denials and multiplicity of lame excuses and speculative justification on a myriad of reasons ranging from lack of inter agency cooperation to narratives and counter narratives, the whereabouts of the arrested kidnap kingpin in the attacked police convoy remains a mystery.
With the additional benefit of hindsight, General Danjuma was characteristically unequivocal when he declared “The armed forces are not neutral”. That coming from an elder statesman with proven track record of national service was supposed to be a wake-up call but this is Nigeria where those that worship at the altar of the political idolatry of President Buhari consider any meaningful observation or constructive criticism as hostile action.
Far from it. Our nation needs voices of conscience that are beyond partisan sentiments and hero worship. Nigeria is at cross roads and we need more Danjumas that would embark on regular national rescue missions.
As for those that want to stand on the truth in our national affairs, may they be reminded of the words of Martin Luther King’s warning “Nothing in this world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”
In conclusion, the General Nimyel panel gave the army a clean bill of health over their former chief’s emphatic allegations. Did they hear from him to validate his claims? I have my doubts because the day the committee was inaugurated they promised to publicize the findings. Well, it’s more than a year down and still no report findings in the public domain.
That no doubt speaks volumes!