Jackson Lekan Ojo, a security expert and member of the American Society of Industrial Experts (ASIS), is the National Coordinator of the Yoruba Youth Alliance (YYA). The chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Osun State, in this interview with GBENGA OMOKHUNU speaks on how government can further win the war against the Boko Haram sect, the health of President Muhammadu Buhari and other national issues.
What is your view on President Muhammadu Buhari’s health status ?
President Muhammadu Buhari is over 70 years. At over 70, he is still very fit. There are many 70 year old people that are useless. But Buhari is still effective and the he is bound to be sick and he did not tell us that he was going forv a tea-party in London, he told Nigerians and the world that he was going for vacation and will also involve medical checkup. And after this many people stated wishing him dead. What are we going to gain? I know part of this people that are wishing the president dead are in Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Even if he dies today those people that are wishing him dead will not take his position. Religious wise there is already a cause in the Bible and the Koran over anybody that wish someone dead. I pray that the cause will not work on these people. Even if he comes at anytime, he is still over president. If Buhari is their father will they wish him dead? That is part of corruption fighting back. Many of these people must have been using Juju and other things to attack him. People should know that there is no leader that will emerge without God. Those that are seeing him as a threat to their 2019 presidential ambition are wishing him dead. But they will fail because Nigeria knows them. The level of our political awareness in Nigeria is so high now. We know those that will not win election. Rigging works when the person is popular. No armed robber, no looter, can win election in this country again.
In the area of fighting corruption, how far has the president fared?
President Muhammadu Buhari is not fighting corruption the way it should be fought. When he arrest these criminals he should not allow court to grant them bail. If they are granted bail they should not be given freedom, they should be kept under house arrest. If he does profiling for 200 persons release their report and arrest them one night send them to court at the same time, let them be tried at the same time. Jail them the same day. By this act, nobody will fight back. But these people are rich and wealthy so by the time you tamper with them and you give them freedom they will fight back both spiritually and physically. These people are so rich that they can even insight the public against government. EFCC is trying bit the agency is selective in its trail. Some people are super looters in this government and they are still moving freely because they belong to the kitchen cabinet of Mr. President. Nigerians know this likewise the world. As a president you must be ruthless and firm. Those close to the president if found corrupt should be tried without delay. There has been high profile and high profile bail. Corruption is still thriving in this country and we need to fight it together. The people that looted billions of naira are still keeping the money. Buhari should be careful on who visits him in London. He should not allow the corrupt elements to visit him to avoid the avoidable.
As a security expert, how do you think government can better win the battle against Boko Haram?
It is a pity that today in Nigeria over 95 percent of the citizenry is security illiterate. They do not know the value of security. What they are after is economy, politics and religion. But without security, politics, economy and religion cannot thrive. Most people are just complaining on the issue of the economic recession and others without relating it to security. But I want to tell you that insecurity is part of what is causing the recession we are experiencing now. And if care is not taken we will no longer be in recession we will go into depression. Why and how? When there is high level of insecurity a lot of foreign investors will be running to other African countries. High level of insecurity will affect electricity. For example during gun battle transformers may be set ablaze and there is no way for the authority concern to go there and replace it. So electricity defect will occur and productivity will reduce and those people that can manage with generator with very high cost and with low patronage will not find it easy. Boko Haram has done more havoc. Many people lack security awareness. Many people are employing the services of mai-guard and they call them security. People do not know the importance of security expertise in this part of the word. What they know is government security forces.
Could you shedlight on that?
Let me explain, police officers are not security people per say. They are law enforcement agents. The military are for territorial defence. It is only the State Security Service (SSS) that are security people. And how many of them do we have in Nigeria? This people you are fighting are like spirit because they are within you, they do not ware uniform, and they do not use marked vehicles. When you pass them with government security vehicles which is marked, they will follow you without you knowing and they went to see where you are heading to. And again when government buys a specified type of gun they announce it to the public. This means that the enemy with the announcement is aware of government’s capacity and capability. With this the Boko Haram sect will now go for superior guns. They know the numbers of solders we have. When we announce the deployment of some number of solders to the Maiduguri and we announce it, they will also prepare themselves and acquire superior guns. Government should henceforth keep their moves to conquer insurgence secret. I appreciate President Muhammadu Buhari and the military for the good job they have done in the fight against Boko Haram. We know that Buhari will do well in fighting the insurgence because he was a military tactician and strategist. I also appreciate the Chief of Army Staff. He has been able to boot the moral of the military men on the battle field. During the Christmas and Easter celebrations he was with his men on the field. There is no military force that can win any war in the world when the moral of its officers is dead. This is why we are having positive results in fighting the Boko Haram. For government, the battle against Boko Haram is not yet over.
Why will the war be over?
From the security angle of it, we are celebrating that we have overran Boko Haram. What we have just done is that the military have dislodged them. How many members of Boko Haram do we know? How many of them have we killed? Where are they, after their dislodgment in Sambia forest? Definitely they are some where else. Some of them may be in Niger or Lagos. Where ever they are now, they will be regrouping again. They have ways of communicating. We can wipe them off. What we need now are men of intelligence. They will gather intelligence and observe what we call body language. There are courses for security experts on how to read body language. If I see any Boko Haram man or woman today, I will recognise him or her. I will know that this man or woman is not living in this environment and the person is not too comfortable with this environment. Some of us are better trained than what we have today in Nigeria military but we are not recognized because we are not wearing uniform. What we have now over Boko Haram is a momentary victory which can expire at any time. I read about a development that arrested Boko Haram members are now been released back to the society. Have they been re-indoctrinated? Most of them are not kept under surveillance. They still have access where they have access to before they were arrested. If they have armory before they still know where to locate it. The recruitment of the so call civilian JTF is an indirect recruitment of Boko Haram informant in to the Nigeria Army. We do not know the background of the civilian JTF. Most of them may have been planted there to give information about the Nigeria Army. So it is my humble advice that the recruitment of civilian JTF should be stopped immediately. Federal Government and the Nigeria Army should take note.
– The Nation