Babs AjayiSaturday, May 5, 2012
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Gatineau, Quebec, Canada



o Nigerian soldier living or dead has been more devious and hypocritical than the retired general Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma. A master coup plotter and leader of military juntas for nearly three decades in Nigeria, TY Danjuma is the master opportunist and gifted grabber, the very pedantic soul with a price measured in stolen oil block. Danjuma was the chairman at the event marking the birthday of Mr. Sam Nda-Isaiaih in Abuja the other day. He opened the ceremony with some remarks, one of which was that "the North is on fire." One of a few men who high-jacked the future of our nation and set it on a course to perdition, TY Danjuma was the leader of the counter-coup at the 4th Battalion in Ibadan where he led a group of soldiers to arrest and subsequently murder General Aguiyi-Ironsi and the affable Colonel Adekunle Fajuyi. Danjuma's goal was to avenge the death of Mr. Ahmadu Bello, the Sardauna of Sokoto and to restore the control of the nation to the North. The bullet-riddled bodies of Aguiyi-Ironsi and Fajuyi were later discarded in a forest by the soldier of fortune and his co-murderers. The reward for murdering his superiors and helping to set fire on our collective homestead was a promotion that came in 1967 for Danjuma to the rank of lieutenant colonel.

A former Minister of Defence, Lt.-Gen Theophilus Danjuma, shocked his audience at a consultative meeting his Foundation and some Non-Governmental Organisations had in Abuja on Wednesday when he narrated how he made $500m from an oil business, and was in a fix on how to spend it.


Many of our people may not know this, but Danjuma was the leader responsible for prosecuting and court-marshalling soldiers in the Nigeria Army who were suspected of corruption and indiscipline from 1971 to 1972! It is very certain that any prosecution and national corruption probe for corrupt enrichment today would surely have condemned Yakubu Danjuma to death by firing squad. It is no secret that the North is on fire today because of the recklessness of TY Danjuma and his co-travellers from the North such as Ibrahim Babangida, Sani Abacha, Muhammadu Buhari, Jeremiah Useni along with the creepy members of the Northern Nigeria Oligarchy who chose abundance for themselves and offered poverty to the Almanjeris and the Talakawas in the North.

How could we expect any tsunami that will visit the land to dodge TY Danjuma and his nearly two billion dollar assets that include the South Atlantic Petroleum Limited (SAPETRO), an oil exploration and production company? Danjuma used the oil prospecting license (OPL) 246 he got from the junta monster Sani Abacha to establish his oil producing company. While the nation was boiling over and there was a political logjam in the land as the people insisted that Abacha and his goons handover the mandate of MKO Abiola to the elected president, TY Danjuma was busy lobbying Abacha for an oil block. Abacha offered him an oil block and effectively bought him over, and that was that. Danjuma also obtained OPL 246, OPL 130 from subsequent. It may be true that Danjuam has sold his interest in SAPETRO to the China National Offshore Oil Corporation for nearly $1.5 billion, it is a fact that the loot in his hands are yours and mine; it our collective assets grabbed by soldiers of fortune, which is why one feel insulted when it was reported that Danjuma spoke about the 'Somalialisation' of Nigeria. It is unfortunate that the Almanjeris, Talakawas and Boko Haram are inflicting pains and death on people of poor and hopeless means like themselves when the likes of Danjuma, Jeremiah Useni, Gwazo, the Abachas, and Babangida who played leading roles in ruining the nation and in confining them to inferior life and poverty are living a life of opulence, splendour and abundance. Danjuma also has his hands in several other businesses in the nation, including shipping, insurance, banking, and interests in several other sectors of the Nigerian economy. Most of the terrible stumbles Nigeria made are traceable to the actions, inactions, misdeeds, greed and blunders committed by Danjuma and his fellow fortune hunters who wore Nigeria's military uniforms and used it to achieve personal gains, and retired into lives of preternatural comfort.

Danjuma said in part, "The Somalialisation of Nigeria is taking place right now. We need to sit down and get to the root of the problem and find a solution to it. Let us not deceive ourselves, the Chief Security Officer of a state is the governor. Where are our Northern governors? Borno is a failed state, Jigawa is almost a failed state. Kano is threatening to be a failed state. Where on earth are we going? You hear talks about multi-million naira fences around government houses, what about the people?" Why is Danjuma pretending to care about the people? Since when has he shown any interest in the Nigerian people? It is glaring that Danjuma still think like a military man and has deliberately forgotten that the governors of all the states in Nigeria have no control or power over the police in their states. The governors do not control any garrison command or battalion, and they do not even have a mere paramilitary force under them. It is therefore reckless and hollow for Danjuma to be asking about and for the Northern governors; it is not their duty to police the state and they have no direct control over security apparatus. I am shocked that Danjuma did not ask for that the Nigeria Police, the State Security Service (SSS), the Directorate of Military Intelligence (DMI) and other federal agencies responsible for security and safety be held accountable for the bombings and killings. He also did not mention the endemic poverty of Northern Nigeria youths and the religious rascality (encouraged by the Northern Oligarchy) the North has been witnessing in more than three decades, thanks to the Sharia law that discourage people from working hard to change the destiny the Oligarchy claimed Allah has bestowed on them, even as a few shared the revenue allocation sent to the Northern states and take for themselves the oil blocks. It was so easy and convenient for Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma to push the blame on others. For three decades Danjuma was a strong and influential part of several military juntas that robbed the nation, looted her resources, starved her people, brutalized the masses, exalted force, brutal power, and their use and abuse as the best way to express superiority, authority and correctness.

Nigerians have suffered untold abuse and physical torture from the same armed forces they paid to recruit, train, compensate, deploy, clothe and feed. Most of our people have only known the rule by force, brutality and draconian laws that showed no respect for human dignity. Many have been horse-whipped, kicked, dragged, flogged, belted, brutalized, and dehumanized by men of the Nigerian armed forces to an extent that using force to settle personal disputes has become the preferred option to peaceful resolution of personal quarrels. The dubious legacy of TY Danjuma is made rich by his disrespect for authority when he led the group that murdered his superiors and subsequently used, deployed and took part in coups, which were essentially for personal gains and which continually move corruption in Nigeria to a new level.

The only optimism we have left is the one that will recover the nation's wealth from those who looted it and force the Oligarchy to give back what they have stolen, and use it to avail the Almanjeris and Talakawas good education, health care, employment opportunities and social services. The fire consuming the North should reach and consume the Oligarchy and their collaborators who pretend to be interested in the perilous situation of the poor while they build personal empires for themselves. The roots of our problem are the thieves who impoverished the rest of us and the military juntas who dehumanized the nation and taught the people how to fight, maim and kill. The solution to the problem will include a forceful retrieval of the loot from the thieves, severe punishment for all those who illegally enrich themselves and a careful redistribution of wealth and resources to the masses through social services, education, job creation, welfare schemes and development. When the people's Somalialisation project begins it is very doubtful if the likes of TY Danjuma will survive the fire that will follow. While TY Danjuma was in the Nigeria Army he led and/or played active role in coups, he benefitted from coups and rose to very undeserving senior positions in the Armed Forces and government. He helped himself and served himself, and his personal interests. Coup was the spring board that propelled the likes of Danjuma, Babaginda, Useni, and Abacha to senior military positions, and they all used it for self-glory and personal gains; only TY Danjuma presented a fašade of a honest and decent person. Boko Haram, Almanjeri and the Talakawas were the creation of the Northern Oligarchy and the Military regimes that institutionalized the use of force and the abuse of citizens. Poverty grew rapidly over thirty years during the military regimes of Yakubu Gowon, Murtala Mohammed, Olusegun Obasanjo, Muhammadu Buhari, Ibrahim Babangida and Sani Abacha and TY Danjuma was connected and involved in all of these regimes either as a senior military junta leader and officer or as a benefactor of the loot and assets of state shared out to the boys. It will be poetic justice if all those who contributed to the poverty of our youths and created a militarized citizenry benefit from the campaign of Boko Haram and the Somalialisation of Nigeria.