The convener, Centre for Africa Liberation and Socio-Economic Rights (CALSER) Princess Bosede Ajibola, in this interview with KANAYO UMEH, said the United Nations is doing little to sanction countries that promote and watch Boko Haram/ ISWAP unleash mayhem across Africa.
Why do you think the United Nations has refused to sanction countries that promote and watch Boko Haram spread across Africa?
FIRST of all, what is united about the United Nations? What’s basically the aim of the United Nations? And what are the benefits of member-countries? Look at Syria and other war-torn countries, most of them are members of the United Nations. How have they benefitted from their membership of the UN?
We were not colonised by France, but former French President, Jacques Chirac, gave us a clue as to why these western countries are doing what they doing to Africa when he said, “Without Africa, France will slide down into the rank of a third (world) power.” Most of these European countries have been feeding fat on our tears, our blood, and our sweats, and the only way they can go about doing that is to continue to cause problems in our countries and to make us go against one another.
Of course you can recall that Jos was one of the most peaceful cities in Nigeria in the past, can we say the same of Jos today. How much is the cost of one AK47? The more we go against one another, the more they sell their weapons and service their accounts; they are using our blood to service their accounts. It is clear that why the United Nations is not sanctioning France is because France is the United Nations and the United Nations is France, just like America is the United Nations and United Nations is America. They are just using the rest of us (especially on the African continent) to service their big bellies. So, it should be stated boldly that the UN is doing little by not sanctioning countries that promote and watch Boko Haram/ ISWAP spread its ideology of senseless killings across Africa.
The worrisome bid by Boko Haram/ ISWAP to regain relevance is from the tacit support enjoyed from unscrupulous countries and international organisations. The UN must condemn the activities of the terrorists rather than watch with destructive indifference. Intergovernmental organisations must also create a coalition of willing nations that are committed to doing what right-thinking citizens of the earth expect them to do. Ignoring the atrocities committed by such groups has further imperiled local populations because government forces are often wrongly accused of and credited with human rights abuses, including murder, committed by these groups. They are able to continue killing knowing that there is no effort to hold them accountable or bring them to justice for the crimes they have committed against humanity. There is also the troubling pattern of rogue nations, even though they parade impressive democratic credentials, scaling up their tactical, policy and, material support for criminal groups such that they are able to continue launching attacks against non-combatant population while making attempts at staging spectacular standoffs against established militaries.
In other words, some foreign countries are benefitting from insurgencies?
What are we saying? France is selling weapons to people from different parts of the world. So, the more the crisis in these countries rage on, the more they sell, the more they sell, the more they make their money. They have also carefully made their way into Nigeria in the form of foreign NGO’s, who are also serving as spies. These NGO’s are their spies. The United Nations will not sanction France because of financial interest. If the UN will not say something about what is happening here, we should say something and we will continue to say something. Enough of France’s harassment and destruction of lives and properties in the country all because it wants to sell arms …Our situation is beginning to appear helpless, should we be helpless? The answer is no!
In your opinion, did international politics play any role in the recent withdrawal of Chadian troops from the fight against Boko Haram in Nigeria?
I believe that it did because there is a connection between Chad, Niger and Cameroon, which are all former French colonies, they are France’s puppets, and they are also the border countries, which France uses to penetrate Nigeria. I think the move was designed to create fear among the Nigerian populace. But I can say that we don’t need them because our armed forces are capable, and indeed our security agencies are capable. Wherever our military men go to on foreign missions they excel, So, as a matter of fact, we should tell them to leave so that we can really come to terms with the veracity of our problems. This is because I don’t think these people are 100 per cent for Nigerians; some of them are also being used. Each time there is heavy demobilisation of Boko Haram, France rises up and accuses Nigerian troops of human rights abuses.
What can African leaders do to address these ugly situations?
There will be no success, no progress if there is no sustainable peace everywhere in Africa. And as Nigerians, we are saying, we are Nigerians, this is our land and we do not want to die. The last time I went to the Embassy of France, I told them that they are waiting for Nigeria to erupt in flames. I, however, assured them that we are Nigerians, and if you push us very far, we would tell you that enough is enough. I added that instead of Nigeria to erupt in flames, the countries that do not mean us well are the ones that will be up in flames because I don’t have any other place to run to, and I am don’t have dual citizenship of any other country, I am only a bonafide citizen of Nigeria. So, anything that will threaten my existence, our existence, and our children’s existence will be met with stiff resistance. I have a problem with looking up to the Western world to solve our problem because they don’t look up to us to solve their own problems. In any case, these countries have similar interests all over. Depending on other countries to solve our problems is sending us back into another level of slavery, even though we said we got our independence in 1960. We have the Organisation of African Unity, which is now African Union, what are African heads of state doing there? What are the benefits we derived in some of these international organisations? How does it benefit us because we also pay our dues? …We really need to explore how to be independent of these countries and solve our problems. It is time Africans and their leaders stopped being puppets in the hands of the West.
Africans must begin to solve their problems themselves because we have a lot of persons, who clearly understand what our problems are. We have intelligent people on the continent, so enough of these external influences because when we go to the West, they end up giving us their terms and conditions; they will always give you visible and the invisible conditions, and the invisible condition is what is fueling the Boko Haram crisis. I still maintain that we can solve our own problems, but the only problem is the willingness to do so.
Are there things Nigeria is not doing right in her bid to win global support for the fight against Boko Haram?
Nigeria’s corruption index is very high, so if you expect the international community to come and give Nigeria humanitarian assistance, on what basis is it going to be? Nigerians keep stealing money meant for the betterment of their compatriots and taking the stolen money abroad. The interesting thing is that these Western countries know how much those Nigerians have in their country, so if you are not smart enough to use what you have for your people, why should you expect them to come and give to you? If a Nigerian has about N20b stashed in one institution abroad, how are you expecting such country give us financial support? Why should that country come to Nigeria’s aid?