[Nigerian Tribune] THE incessant bombings in the country by the Islamic sect, Boko Haram, may not be unconnected with plots by certain elements in the northern part of the country to destabilise President Goodluck Jonathan-led administration, using the terrorist group as cover, investigation has revealed.
Fresh facts emerged at the weekend from various sources to the effect that a group of individuals were unhappy with the appointment of General Andrew Azazi as the National Security Adviser (NSA) and some key ministers, outside the North.
Azazi assumed office as NSA on October 4, 2010, thereby becoming the first non-northerner to occupy the office since independence.
It was gathered that the group of the aggrieved individuals had vowed to destabilise Jonathan’s government through the perpetration of attacks on strategic national institutions.
The sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, cited the continuous retention of Azazi as being reprehensible to this group, as they had vowed to continue to sabotage his efforts at combating national insecurity.
According to the source, the aggrieved group may be vexed that the strategic office of the NSA had, for the first time, slipped out of the hands of the North and was currently being held by “a southerner and outsider.”
Specifically, the group was said to be aggrieved that discreet hints to President Jonathan to dump Azazi had failed to yield fruit.
To this end, the group, it was learnt, had vowed that the present administration would not know peace until their demands were met by returning to status quo ante.
Investigations revealed that the group had been pressuring the president, through some politicians and traditional rulers, to sack Azazi and replace him with any of the former military chiefs that had held the office before.
The office of the NSA had always been occupied by northerners.
For instance, Aliyu Mohammed Gusau, a retired Major-General, served as NSA between January 2, 1990 to August 30, 1993; Abdullahi Mohammed, also a retired Major-General, served as NSA between July 3, 1998 to May 29, 1999; Aliyu Mohammed, a retired Lieutenant-General, served as NSA between May 29,1999 to June 1, 2006 and Sarki Mukhtar, a retired Major-General, served as NSA between June 1,2006 to March 8, 2010.
Gusau returned to serve between March 9, 2010 and September 20, 2010 as NSA.
Multiple sources confirmed that there were fears over the safety of President Jonathan if the position of the NSA slipped into the hands of those currently scheming for it.
“Jonathan has no problems with the North. After all, millions of northerners voted for him. He is, however, keenly aware that the office of the NSA controls the Presidential Air Fleet and, therefore, directly oversees his safety in the air.
“You see, some of those lobbying for the position now are persons Jonathan cannot entrust his life to,” a source said.
FLASH BACK SEPTEMBER 2010. Pointblanknews
A crisis of huge magnitude capable of thwarting Nigeria’s democratic process is currently being planned by some Northern elements following the declaration of President Goodluck Jonathan to contest the 2011 Presidential elections.
It was learnt that the characters behind the plot have at various nocturnal meetings vowed to ensure gridlock, and mayhem if President Jonathan gets the ticket.
Highly placed sources told pointblanknews.com that the plot is in three phases: challenge the PDP’s decision to accept President Jonathan’s candidacy in court, cause religious riots and killings of Southerners in the North and then create a state of emergency in the country and a consequent military putsch.
Spearheading the plot that has on the table, a possible event that could lead to the ‘suspension of the constitution’, are Former Central Bank Governor and Ex- Minister for Finance, Adamu Ciroma, Ex Internal Affairs minister and former Senate President, Iyorchia Ayu, PDP chieftain, Yakassai; former deputy National chairman of the defunct National Party Of Nigeria (NPN), Shetima Ali Munguno;, Senator Kanti Bello, Ex National Democratic Party chairman, and IBB campaign coordinator, Hassan Mohammed Jalo; PDP chieftain, Lawal Kaita, Bello Kirfi, Second republic Ambassador to Switzerland, Yahaya Kwande, and Special assistant to for Vice President, Abubakar Atiku, Ex Chief of Army, General Abdulrahman Dambazzau, and scribe Northern consultative Forum (NCF), Bashir Yusuf Ibrahim while General Office Commanding (GOC), 3 rd Armored Division, in Jos, General Saleh Maina, is said to have been briefed.
Pointblanknews.com also learnt that the extremists in the North are expected to co-opt some influential and desperate politicians from other zones in the sinister game plan.
In line with the script, some of the arrowheads have agreed to start sending signals through the media, of a possible pogrom that would make the Rwandan genocide, a child’s play. They also want to recreate pockets of massacre in the north that led to the civil war. They intend to mobilize ethnic militia like the Boko Haram, to launch all out genocide on southerners in the north, with an anticipated reprisal attacks in the south.
The plot is expected to also involve some officers of northern extraction and top attorneys. The attorney’s are expected to begin series of legal battles to challenge the PDP in court. The legal option would be a page out of the Arthur Nzeribe’s infamous Association for Better Nigeria, ABN, play book. ABN had in 1993 got an injunction stopping the Professor Humphrey Nwosu’s electoral Commission from conducting the Presidential election.
Pointblanknews.com learnt that, If Jonathan gets the nod of the PDP as its standard bearer, the legal think-tank made up of top jurists, retired justices and judges are expected to fashion out a suit that would be brought before a judge of their peers who would grant an injunction that would restrain INEC from conducting the presidential election.
In a recent letter jointly signed by Ciroma, Ayu, Kaita, Kirfi, Kwande and Bashir Ibrahim, they said “…we are extremely worried that our Party’s failure to deliver justice in this matter, may ignite a series of events, the scope and magnitude of which we can neither proximate nor contain. The peace, stability and unity of our country are superior to the personal ambition of one man. This stability and the corporate existence of our Party are all at stake and we urge you to grant our prayers.”
Recently also , one of General Ibrahim Babangida’s campaign coordinators, and ex National Democratic Party chairman, Hassan Mohammed Jalo , in line with the fiery rhetoric of characters like Kanti Bello and Tanko Yakassai said “we have a leader (Jonathan) that wants Nigeria to disintegrate, that wants Nigeria to crumble on his head. At the rate we are going, if anything happens to Nigeria now the whole blame will go to Goodluck Jonathan because he is the President”
Monguno, 74, former Mines and Power Commissioner under General Gowon said “I am afraid if he (Jonathan) insists on standing for the Presidency, there will be all sorts of confusion, a lot of confusion that could compromise the unity of Nigeria.”
Sources hinted pointblanknews.com that the series of warnings and threats issued by leaders from the North have now reached a new crescendo as options and strategies are now being worked out.
According to highly placed sources, in the event of a crisis, the North would take full advantage of its population in the Military and take over. The source said “they would also take advantage of the fact that the new Army chief, General Onyeabo Azubuike Ihejirika is yet to ‘settle’ down, coupled with the fact that some key officers are still loyal to the sacked Army chief, Gen Abdulrahman Dambazzau.”
Dambazzau who was relieved from his position while attending a conference in New York and is said to have expressed anger over the way and manner he was fired. He has a long list of followers among soldiers of Northern extraction.
General Maina who is a key consideration in the plot was at one time put under surveillance by the military intelligence. He heads one of the most strategic and lethal Division in the Nigeria Army. The other three key areas that are being infiltrated are 2 nd Div, Ibadan; 82 Div, Lagos and 1 Mechanized Division, Kaduna.
President Jonathan have had to cancel his planned Visit to the United States to address the United Nations General Assembly soon after declaring to contest in what a security source said had to do with “immediate security reports obtained.”
Some Northern politicians had warned that the People’s Democratic Party, (PDP), must not field President Jonathan, a southerner for the Presidential election insisting that it is the turn of Northern Nigeria to produce the President.
However, security sources hinted Pointblanknews.com that soon after president Jonathan declared at the Eagle Square, Abuja, some top Northern leaders met to strategize and stop the Presidency from “being hijacked by the Southerner.”
According to a source “we received a tip- off almost immediately because they were monitoring the events on television and that was why we advised the president against any foreign trip now.”
But President Jonathan had relied on the provision of the Nigeria constitution as against an agreement in the PDP to declare his interest to vie for the top political position. Flashback September 2010: Jonathan’s Presidency: Northern Elements plan Gridlock, Mayhem, may use Boko Haram
- Born to Rule-ism: a History of Ethnocentric Impunity Orchestrated by the British (transformationwatch.com)
- BOKO HARAM: Azazi’s bold position and America’s evasive posturing (transformationwatch.com)
- Jonathan must resist call for NSA removal – Joseph Evah (vanguardngr.com)
- Jonathan under pressure to sack Azazi – Punch (thenigerianoracle.com)
- The Fate of Azazi By Aliyu U. Tilde (oladapokolawole.com)