TRIBAL AND RELIGIOUS CHARACTER SHOULD REPLACE FEDERAL CHARACTER
Section 14: 3 of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution written by General Abdulsalami Abubakar states,
“The composition of the Government of the Federation or any of its agencies and the conduct of its affairs shall be carried out in such a manner as to reflect the federal character of Nigeria and the need to promote national unity, and also to command national loyalty, thereby ensuring that there shall be no predominance of persons from a few State or from a few ethnic or other sectional groups in that Government or in any of its agencies.”
This is a spurious provision that is open to abuse. There are Fulanis in every Northern State. The Fulanis see themselves as one. There is no difference between the Fulani in Senegal, Mali or Zamfara State. A better provision is tribal character, which was enshrined in Nigeria’s first National Anthem – “Though tribe and tongue may differ ….” You cannot legislate unity; you cultivate unity by words and deeds.
This is the composition of cadets recruited into Nigeria’s dreaded DSS (Department of State Security) in 2017. This extra-judicial organization defies court orders, beats up teachers in classrooms, and can “disappear” people for years disregarding court granted bail. Now this agency is being stacked on a tribal and sectarian basis. This is the breakdown of a recent recruitment of recruits by state and tribe. Of 479 recruits, 331 are from the northern states, while 148 are from the southern states.
STATES & Number Employed
Akwa Ibom 5
Cross River 9
The list of Nigeria’s top security officials is the following:
Director General, DSS, Alhaji Lawal Daura; National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno; DCG, Civil Defence, Mr. MS Mohammed; the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Idris Lawal; and the Defense Miniater, Mr. Mohammed Dan Ali. I understand that their meetings are conducted in the Hausa language. What imbalance is this correcting?
Since the Presidency claimed that the exercise was to correct past imbalances in DSS recruitment, the Federal Government of Nigeria needs to answer the following questions:
1. Are all the 51 recruits from Katsina, Fulani?
2. Are all the 51, Muslim?
3. Out of 331 recruits from the Northern States how many are Fulani and Muslim?
4. How many are Christians?
5. How many are Traditional African Religionists?
6. How many are Atheists?
7. How can a Muslim Fulani DSS agent investigate Muslim Fulani herdsmen who are killing Nigerians?
8. Could the Presidency publish a full list of current DSS employees including their tribes and religion for the world to determine if there was past discrimination as claimed by the Presidency? It should be easy to discern past discrimination against the northern states, tribes, and religion (Islam).
9. Has the Islamization of Nigeria left the train station in Kaura Namoda and is hurtling towards Forcados at full steam?
10. Does Nigeria have a legislative arm?
11. Are lawyers from the disenfranchised states listening?
These questions demand answers especially when the goal of those in power are incongruent with those of the populace. The Federal Government of Nigeria should comply with Nigeria’s Constitution by publishing the state, tribe, and religion of every federal employee and appointee. Nigerians will be able to determine if tribal and religious character has replaced federal character in the constitution.
Africastallestman is waiting for Alhaji Lai Mohammed to respond.