IF JONATHAN KNEW THE BOMBERS, WHY DIDN’T HE STOP THEM?

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We know those behind the attack and the persons sponsoring them; they are terrorists not MEND. The name of MEND that operates in Niger Delta was only used. I grew up in the Niger Delta so nobody can claim to know Niger Delta than myself, because I am from Niger Delta —President Goodluck Jonathan “Abuja is symbolic as the seat of power that held the people of the

Niger Delta captive for 50 years and this was an opportunistic attack because it was an opportunity to highlight the injustice in the presence of world leaders who were beginning to get the false impression all was weirJomo Gbomo, MEND spokesperson

The tragic bombings of Abuja on the 50 anniversary of Nigeria’s independence last Friday not only killed 11 innocent citizens of our country, they also exploded whatever illusions remained about the hopeless inadequacy of our governance structures. If the basic duty of any government is to secure the lives of the citizenry, the 10-1 bombings exposed the ugly impotence of Nigeria’s security the way wind exposes the ugly hind place of a fowl. This is the same security structure which huffs and puffs when preying on innocent  citizens, harassing journalists, working people on strike or political opponents that need to be hounded or brutalized. But more disturbing is the official response to the bombings, especially the statements from President Goodluck Jonathan.

He is either living in denial, is deluded or has consciously chosen to ride the crest of the wave of national disgust to hit his perceived enemies wrongly or all of the above! Hours before the explosions, selected media houses received emails from MEND, the Niger Delta terrorist organization romanticized by sections of the media as “militants”. The messages unambiguously stated that bombs had been planted in the vicinity of the Eagle Square, warning people to avoid parked cars as well as dustbins. Similarly, the SSS confirmed that it received tip offs from British intelligence about plans to bomb Abuja on Independence Day. The security establishment later acknowledged that they towed away more than 65 cars from the area; but the bombings still succeeded in cutting out the lives of 11 citizens as well as injuring many others. Clearly, the SSS failed in securing the location neither did it tow away the REAL cars that ought to hav^ been removed! Goodluck Jonathan chose to chase phantoms instead of facing the truth of what happened. MEND, he argued did not do it; well MEND owned up that it did! The kneejerk reaction of Nigeria’s president is simply astounding! His standpoint is that “I grew up in Niger Delta so nobody can claim to know Niger Delta than myself”. But nobody has questioned his Niger Delta bona fides after all he stresses that daily by wearing the region’s hat and dress. But that is no rebuttal of the claim of the MEND terrorists. MEND stated that the Abuja bombing was “an opportunistic attack and a part of our arsenal”. Yet Jonathan, still obviously stunned that his security apparatus was as incompetent as his government, chose to look in a different direction. Speaking at a dinner in Lagos over the weekend, Jonathan said the bombers were “members of a small terrorist group outside the country, who were sponsored by unpatriotic elements within the country”. In moments of crisis, jingoism is often the refuge, the sandbags behind which enemies are often discovered and attacked! Jonathans political career is facing its greatest challenge thanks to the opposition to his decision to flout the accords within his party. Similarly, governance under him is marked by a frightening incompetence while he has heated up the polity and divided the country severely; so the two bombs which exploded on the 50th anniversary of Independence, an anniversary he wanted to exploit to shore up his position, were clearly a disaster. It was therefore imperative to reject the MEND angle, because it further damages his presidency. He is the Niger Delta “son of the soil” at the helm of the Nigerian prebendal pot; but he is so clearly humiliated by “militants” from his region of Nigeria. It is unacceptable, so like the absurd man in the tale riding a donkey but assuring passersby that he was on a stallion, Jonathan went outside of the shores of Nigeria to find the ghost he can chase around, with the hope that somehow, he will get some enemies’ feathers sufficiently ruffled in the rough and tumble of politics as well. So MEND did not perpetrate the bombings according to the “wisdom of Goodluck”: “a small terrorist group that resides outside Nigeria that was paid by some people within to perpetrate the dastardly act. We are on their trail and I promise Nigerians that the matter will be investigated to the last, and until everybody connected is brought to book, we will not rest. Government will no longer condone this culture of impunity.

These are serious words from the mouth of the president of our country. Goodluck confessed that he KNEW the bombers, but did NOT stop them before they killed innocent citizens; yet he swore to an oath to protect our lives! He then promised to INVESTIGATE the matter to the last” (whatever that means!), giving the impression that he is actually making very wild accusations at best, since he is just thinking of INVESTIGATING the matter! And the clincher for me is that last statement about government “no longer” CONDONING a culture of impunity, which is another confession that it had been condoning them in the past! Clearly, there is a lot wrong with the stance of President Goodluck Jonathan in respect of the 10-1 Abuja Bombings. The “demons and enemies of progress” that bombed Abuja, in his words, have exposed the ugly reality of Nigerian ruling class hegemony. Ours is the worst ruling class anywhere on earth! It has no sense of historical purpose because its central purpose and raison detre is simply THEFT! This Central Committee of looters and thieves cannot even secure the polity which it loots with the dexterity of brigands and on October 1,2010, it watered the country’s soils with the blood of the innocent.

This is the reality which Goodluck Jonathan cannot look. at in the face! MEND after all has its roots in the thugs which the PDP elite of the Niger Delta armed to steal elections from 2003. They were armed to steal elections and then ignored; the thugs had to fend for themselves. They launched a new career as “militants’ bursting oil pipes; kidnapping for ransom and a few elements from within the motley crowd began to see themselves a “emancipators” of a people who genuinely have grievances against a rapacious state and transnational oil companies Goodluck Jonathan should stop the clowning about chasing “terrorists” outside our shores; MEND terrorists confessed and even shed crocodile tears for the dead. He can beat his chest about his Niger Delta origins but the main issue here is the statement he made, that he knew who the bombers were, and yet did nothing to stop them! The president misspoke; and there are consequences for him and the office he currently holds?

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