by on December 16, 2015

Article 1 of the Universal Human Rights says: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. Article 5 follows up with: No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

The Nigerian Armed forces are guilty of all these.

Following the recent events in the country, one wonders how much the Nigerian armed forces are increasingly out of touch with the civilians. I will always believe that being in the force means serving; serving the public. Not intimidating and killing the public at will.  The force members are no Rothweiliers; they are not murderers, they are there to guard us. They public showing their appreciation in return. There has to be a mutual trust. At each level of this relationship, in spite of differences in skills, values and institutions, you must understand the management of violence. It is fundamental. Armed people are sharply differentiated from civilian skills, and thus should understand the need to exercise restraint in face of violence.

One thing you do not do is:  kill those you are to protect – From IPOB members to a religious sect in the name of assuming Demi God status in the polity. You cannot do it. You do not crush the spirit that holds us together. This spirit moves from one generation to another. If you continue like this, there may be no country again to serve on its Armed forces. Like John Marsden once said “We kill all the caterpillars, and then complain there are no butterflies.”  We must avoid actions that trigger chronic consequences.

Thank you for reading again.  @enwagboso



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