Is This The Start Of The Somalization Of Nigeria?

By Anthony Chuka Konwea, PhD, PE

There is sporadic mayhem and isolated looting spree going on right now in several parts of Southern Nigeria, signaling the early stages of state collapse.

Many Nigerian youths were hitherto distracted by the reality show, Big Brother Nigeria's celebration of lewd conduct.

Then the Government withdrew subsidy on petroleum products and implemented a hike in electricity tariffs.

With nothing to occupy them, the cost of living rising astronomically overnight, Nigerian youths took to the streets with their #EndSARS protest movement against police harassment.

Since they were crushed early this week by President Buhari's iron fist policies, hoodlums among them have moved to the next level.

They have taken to looting.
Right now they are looting from the houses of several prominent politicians.

And there is emerging breakdown of law and order.
Left unchecked they may descend to looting from the wealthy and middle class.

Perhaps to protect their lives from reprisals, the Inspector-General of Police withdrew policemen guarding the rich and powerful in Nigeria, inadvertently declaring open season of looting on the affluent.

What is going on right now in Nigeria could be the early stages of class warfare.

Complete anarchy and breakdown of civil society driven by crushing poverty.

Savaged by extended Covid-19 lockdowns, and sapped by hunger, hordes of Nigerians have already located and looted Government warehouses stocked with basic food items.

You wonder whether those food items were meant for rats and rodents instead of humans.

It is a failure of governance for perishable relief foodstuffs meant for the people to be detained indefinitely in Government warehouses.

Taking their cues from the failed President Buhari, nepotism rules everywhere and all over in Nigeria.

It has always been about “what is in it for me?” in Nigeria.

But under Buhari’s next-level mal-transformation of Nigeria, things have degenerated into becoming “everything for me”.

No wonder, hoodlums and looters are now parading the streets of Nigeria in broad daylight.

Poverty stricken parents now mobilize their children to go outside in search of what and where to loot.

Left unchecked, expect the formation of civilian 'defense' militias, the rise of suburban gangster warlords controlling territory, and the exacting of tributary payments from ordinary citizens in exchange for 'protection'.

Could we be witnessing the early stages of the Somalization of Nigeria?

Already more than ever before, many people are thinking of fleeing the country.

Meanwhile foreign Fulani nomads from the Sahel backed by the Buhari Administration are trooping in, itching to occupy and resettle in abandoned territory.

The pressure on Buhari to abdicate power from local politicians under siege in their various localities is invariably going to mount.

That is the only good thing that could possibly come from the looting fest currently underway.

Muhammadu Buhari has clearly failed abysmally and catastrophically.

Governing a complex entity like Nigeria is manifestly way above and beyond his league.

His nepotistic, clannish policies, and fixation with Fulani territorial expansionism have accelerated poverty and deepened discontent in Nigeria.

What Nigeria needs now is a fairly new face with a modicum of electoral mandate like the incumbent Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, to calm frayed nerves, restore law and order, rebuild a sense of unity, provide jobs and create wealth in the interim.

I hope the elite and powerful in Nigeria as well as Foreign powers and the international community are reaching the same conclusion as myself that President Buhari must go.

The era when a nation’s internal affairs are exclusively theirs to control and govern in any way and manner they like should cease.

When an armed, irate man is hell bent on decapitating his wife or children, neighbors must step in on a humanitarian mission to calm and control the situation by calling the police to disarm him.

It is immoral to stand by on the premise that it is a family affair.

Family affair ends when there is threat to human life and property.

The same considerations should apply when it comes to nation states.

If only to avoid the Somalization of Nigeria, the destabilization of West Africa, the unregulated exodus of millions of Nigerian refugees, the creation of a safe haven for Islamic terrorists in Nigeria, Buhari has to go.

It is better for one incapable, and intellectually insufficient man to go on early retirement than for a whole nation to perish under his manifestly unfit hands.

Anthony Chuka Konwea, Ph.D., P.E., M.ASCE, MNSE, FNIStructE, MNICE.

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