Ali Abare, Gombe It was all tears as the remains of former ECOMOG Commander Major General Timothy Mai Shelpidi (retd) was buried Tuesday at his Boh country home in Shongom local government area of Gombe State. Governor Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo, who led the state government’s delegation to the funeral, described Major General Shelpidi death as a big…
In most countries of the world, it is difficult to find the presence of armed policemen on official beat around the premises of religious houses as it is common in Nigeria. Before such sight, there must have been a recorded incident like terrorist attack or some other act of violence. This should not overrule police patrol of religious areas as part of their operational duties. lnstead, what we see is divisional police officers and area commanders jostling to collect “security money” from church leaders, as if it is no longer part of their duty to protect life and property. However, God, through the ages, as recorded in the holy book, has always protected his people and properties that are consecrated to him. When the sons of Eli, the priest, in 1 Samuel 2:34 (KJV), Hophni and Phinehas, were tampering with God’s offerings and sacrifices in the synagogue, as it is common in many churches in Nigeria, God wasted no time but consumed them and even punished their father. So it is very correct to state that, once a church is built on the foundation of God (many are not), it is impossible for thieves or robbers to successfully attack such a place of worship.
There are examples of robbers being arrested spiritually in their attempt to rob certain churches. This writer witnessed one of such incidents when a robber had attended service at the Champions Royal Assembly in Kubwa, Abuja, and was surveying the situation while the service was in session so that he could communicate with his gang on when appropriate to strike. Unfortunately, while he was seated and the preaching was on, suddenly, the man of God, Brother Joshua lginla, stopped his preaching and called out a name, describing the strange visitor’s dress colour. The young man stood up, to the bewilderment of the congregation. He was invited to the front and asked to surrender a concealed weapon hidden inside his pants. To the consternation of the congregation, he brought out a locally-made pistol and, after interrogation, was delivered from the spirit of robbery before the pistol was handed over to the police. In his confession, he disclosed that he was on a robbery mission to the church and in other churches. His evil mission was terminated as he was arrested by the angel of God on guard in the church. Yes, there are angels on guard, angels whose mission is to secure life and property. These are angels of war that fight on behalf of God and sons of God. Security is much deeper than what is today practiced, if only leaders and heads of security organisations can acknowledge his supremacy. There are testimonies of robbers that raided a church and got glued to the spot as they stepped through the church gate. Mysterious happenings that defy human explanation. Church members should not be relaxed when they go to church believing that the next member is genuine. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the female members carrying along their bags along as they step out of their seats to give their offerings. Workers in the church should be tagged for easy identification by security personnel. So also should artisan workers recruited for particular jobs or repairs, who should be made to register and sign in at the gate before being allowed into the premises.
Impressively, technology has come to enhance security with different devices that are handy and portable to ease most security problems in churches. One of such is the surveillance camera and monitoring devices that are necessary in large premises and car parks. The installation of a monitoring device like wireless CCTV is now a leading solution that is rapidly deployable. There are portable CCTV and surveillance systems. The systems operate over wireless and can record video images and can be viewed from a dedicated monitoring station even via a laptop. ln all of these, religious leaders must ensure cooperation with the police once they are overwhelmed with insecurity in their churches. (Concluded)
I feel humbled after reading your last piece titled “THAT REDEPLOYMENT OF OFFICERS”. You have pointed out in clear terms what police officers are going through, especially members of the rank and file and Inspectors in Nigeria.
The authorities pay nothing to them with regard to transfers and other sundry allowances. That is the primary reason they post the men at will with no human consideration.
Another cause for concern is that, when there are security challenges, the authorities would not first assess and evaluate the situation before sending men there without checking if anything happens to them, whether they have money on them. As one officer said, “rank and file are what officers use to test a situation.”
No wonder, one commentator also put it this way “police work in Nigeria is modern slavery with hard labour.”
More worrisome is when a police officers is injured or killed in the line of duty. The police would abandon you to take care of yourself.
If you die, your family must bear the responsibility in taking up your burial expenditures. Nothing comes from the police to offset your bills, except the deceased has a godfather.” Barengo Lolo (08062726645).
US counter-terrorism report: Whose report shall we believe? (1)
Reports are expositional and meant to update and review a particular issue or issues. However, in recent times, many international organisations have indulged in presenting reports on the political, economic and security activities of developing countries, which have often helped to further educate citizens of these countries. Nigeria and most African countries have been turned into classrooms that must absorb everything taught by their teacher (America). No wonder, in one of his lyrics, the late Afrobeat music legend, Fela Anikpolaku-Kuti, said, “Teacher, don’t teach me nonsense.”
ln the holy book, it says, “Whose report should we believe?” Then it emphatically affirms, “we shall believe the report of the Lord.”
It has become a norm for international bodies like Amnesty lnternational and, recently, the United State Bureau, a unit in the US Department of State, to list some areas in the war against Boko Haram that are perceived to have been ignored by either the security institutions or the federal government, to cast aspersions on them, even when such flaws are being addressed though not at the pace the US report anticipated. A war that lasted nine years, with attendant collateral damage, cannot take a few months to restore and rebuild the destroyed houses. When the war was gearing up and the military was having the upper hand, suddenly all attention was focused on the presidential campaign and, instead of the leaders of the military then to continue to up the gains, they went on a looting spree and this changed the tempo as officers and men at the warfront were denied their welfare and the Boko Haram terrorists went haywire by also affiliating with ISIS. All this period, politics had taken the centre stage, as Nigeria was in transition awaiting the swearing-in of a new President.
On assumption, the President directed the war headquarters to move nearer the war zone. Since then till date, there has been significant progress recorded by the Chief of Amy Staff, Lt-General Tukur Buratai.
(To be continued)