Governor seeks help amid mounting hostilities

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“Frustration is a fuel that can lead to the development of an innovative and useful idea.” –Marley Dia

By Cosmas Omegoh

These are sad times for the Governor of Katsina State, Alhaji Aminu Bello Masari.

Forget about the perks that come to him as executive governor. Forget the strong words that come out of his lips and that often translate into law in his field. Truth be told, here are some unsavory times for the Katsina State coxswain.

In politics, if Masari is not a veteran, he is not a novice either. He paid his membership fee. Indeed, no one can deny the former speaker of the House of Representatives between 2003 and 2007 his rightful place in the Nigerian political space. Who will omit Masari’s name? A man who, by May 2023, will have served two terms as governor of Katsina state? But all that aside, at the moment Masari does not find government and governance easy, at least it seems.

Yes, there is indeed no construction in the face to determine the heart of man, said the legendary William Shakespeare. But the good book insists that “it is from the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks.”

The circumstances around Masari betray him as a man under siege, under an enormous burden. It is the weight of insecurity that is currently ravaging his condition; that everyone knows too well. It seems to break him; is there for everyone to see. But who would not be broken by the violent wind of insecurity sweeping like an angry hurricane the Sahelian state on the borders of the Republic of Niger?

For years now, Katsina, which is the home state of outgoing President General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), has grappled with self-proclaimed and now officially crowned bandits who have swept through the Sahara Desert – massacres, mutilations, rape, kidnapping, kidnapping, looting, theft – perpetuating the worst form of bestiality ever seen in history. They pounce on hundreds of motorcycles in incredible numbers, and once they’re done, they let evidence-based crime crawl on all fours.

This is the silhouette of the atmosphere in which Governor Masari has operated in recent years. His dilemma each time resuscitates the eternal line which uneasily lies the head that wears the golden crown.

Judging by the quantum of evil Masari has had to face – or rather had to endure, clear signs emerge each time he’s more and more broken into slices. Who won’t do it after all? Even the beasts give way under a heavy burden.

Right now, Masari’s dilemma emerges. He has tried various options on the table to reduce banditry in his state, but he does not seem to come close to success or victory. Nothing tangible to show for his efforts. And even President Buhari who would pass for his “father” by virtue of his state background was not as open as he, Masari, and certainly many in the state would have imagined.

Speaking recently at a forum, Masari let the storm raging through his mind run wild. It was kind of a last resort. He signaled to the distraught people of Katsina State to rise to the challenge and face the bandits face-to-face. He stopped before declaring that he was tired of the insecurity regime in the state; so he instructed them to stand up and defend themselves.

Masari spoke at the inauguration of the Joint Security Operations and Communications Control Center in Katsina, in the state capital. He said it was absurd for the people to be tasked with not fighting for themselves against the continued onslaught of bandits who currently rule the landscape like demigods.

Listen to the besieged governor: “Why should I sit in my village and just make phone calls and do nothing?

“Every bandit, every criminal has an address, a place and they are human beings like us. The only difference is that they took up arms against us; does that mean we have nothing to blame them for?

Some analysts believe Masari’s recent outburst reflects helplessness. He gives credit to a man overwhelmed on all fronts. Broken down because there is no breakthrough in sight. He did not care that his political translators made a meal of his entry. He didn’t care about being misunderstood and misinterpreted. He just let his emotions run free. He was clear, not caring which horse would feel horned. Of course, his statement was no accident. He must have weighed everything in his heart.

After saying what he said, Masari joined the league of those who spoke earlier in existential terms, calling on the people to stand up and do whatever is necessary or be wiped out. Then they were vilified. But now the chicken is coming home to roost. And people know better.

As might be expected, the opposition had to cling to the submission of the besieged governor.

A branch of the Katsina State People’s Democratic Party – the Social Media Organization of the People’s Democratic Party led by comrade Nuraddeen Adam Kankara Tina, added another twist to the debacle.

In apparent mockery of the governor’s bugle call, Kankara Tina announced that her group would confront the Katsina bandits with catapults, adding that they had ordered a certain amount of the article to combat the thugs who held the state. by the chin strap. To that end, they said their members started catapult training in response to the governor’s call.

“We have embarked on the exercise in accordance with the recent directive issued by the state government of Katsina and we are determined to extend the exercise to all areas of local government in the state,” he said. he declares.

To the uninitiated, Katsina’s vibe feels as pedestrianized as it gets. But it does bring out the eye-opening reality that is emerging in front of everyone in 21st century Nigeria. It is a faithful image of the helplessness and despair of the rulers and the ruled. This will directly elevate bandits and banditry to the status of a new powerhouse on the block. Everything about this is happening too fast – too fast. Increasingly, no one has an answer and may not have one in the near future.

When pockets of bandits first announced their presence in the Katsina firmament in 2019, no one took them seriously. Armed gangs wielding AK-47 assault rifles had started roaming the villages, rustling cows, stealing food and demanding relief supplies. Every attempt by the now unhappy villagers to stop them has become futile and in some cases fatal. Gradually, the crime continued.

Each step taken by the men of the underworld emboldened them. Then they dug out ungoverned spaces in the vast forest area of ​​Rugu on the border of the Republic of Niger and Zamfara State.

They burst onto the scene proper when in February 2020, they launched a full-scale attack, imposing taxes on farmers, many of whom refused access to their farms. Those who tried to play pranks paid with their blood.

In April of the same year, they killed 47 people in the villages of Danmusa, Dutsemna and Safana in the state. It was a simultaneous mass murder, carried out in the wee hours of the night. About 300 armed men committed the act.

Responses from the military, police, air force and other security agencies have not yet discouraged them. It was all futile.

When a gang of bandits kidnapped a relative of President Buhari a few months ago, it was a clear statement that they were on the right track. Little by little, the armed bands multiplied and widened their border.

Months ago, they stormed Kankara High School also in Katsina State and took young boys, whom they later released after paying a ransom. Now, they have grown strange and wild, causing fear that they are there to rule and rule. And now government at all levels is desperate, defeated and disillusioned. Are you wondering why Masari urged self-help?

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