Declare full scale war on Boko Haram before it’s too late: Former General advises Jonathan


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Brig.-Gen. Williams Obene (retd.)

A retired general, Brig.-Gen Williams Obene (retd.), who pioneered the Nigerian Army Counter-Terrorism and Counter-Insurgency Centre has advised President Jonathan to escalate the military’s aggression against terrorists in the Northern region before more damage was done to the country.

Obene said Nigerians should also brace up for more attacks from the insurgents as the terror would not end soon.

Obene said, “Professionally speaking and as an expert, I will tell Nigerians to brace for more sporadic attacks; more attacks that will be targeted at soft and vulnerable targets for many weeks, many months and many years to come. I have my references.”

“It is expected because Nigeria is under attacks by terrorists. We have advocated from the onset that Nigeria lost the opportunity to declare full war on terrorism. But in the wisdom of government, it decided that since it was a local thing, it would offer them (insurgents) amnesty with its carrot-and-stick strategy.

“From the onset, when the Federal Government offered amnesty, Boko Haram stated unequivocally that it did not need any amnesty. I thought that was the strongest signal that government received and it ought to have acted differently. The government decided to go soft in order to bring everybody on board and that has failed.”

He added, “What I want to say from the professional point of view, which politicians and the military will not be able to say, but which we who are neutral can say is that insurgency is not something to wish away.

“The Nigerian government thinks it can wish away insurgency; the Nigerian population thinks that Jonathan is not doing anything and that the people who are fighting the insurgency are not doing anything. We cannot wish away insurgency from this nation.

“It took 26 years for Sri Lanka to deal with insurgency. Since 1948, Israel has been fighting insurgency. Since 2001, America has been fighting terrorism. Nigeria cannot be an exception. It is a plague that has come to this nation.”

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