The Oasis Reporters
March 23, 2018
By Deji Adesoye
The opposite of captivity is freedom. Release is a solution to abduction. Joy is the opposite of sadness. If this is true, then everyone that cried when girls were stolen in Dapchi are supposed to be seen rejoicing that the stolen girls have been released. But strange things are happening. Many of those who cried after the abduction have gone into deeper sorrow after the release of the girls. They now claim that the abduction and release of the girls was a plan by the Federal Government.
However, what we have found in this sorrow is just the feeling that another political card has been lost.
That human life has become political capital in Nigeria is a bitter truth that we now have to accept. This capital, [think of capital as what is put into an investment] is now wielded and exploited across the political spectrum. Human beings are now held by state actors as a means to an end, as a material to use in their pursuit of power; human beings are in the class of currencies, okada, hair driers, boreholes, tricycles, etc. which are all deployed by politicians to win elections.
In this wise, the lives and welfare of the Dapchi girls are not as important as the political score to get from their abduction. At first, the abduction was a minus, a goal concession for the All Progressives Congress and their supporters.
The Peoples Democratic Party and their sympathizers regarded it as an equalizer—‘Chibok girls were kidnapped by Boko Haram during our administration; now Dapchi girls have been abducted under their administration, goooooooal!’
While the PDP and sympathizers were yet jubilating about this and wallowing in the expectation of scoring another goal, the APC nets the ball again.
The Dapchi girls have been released!
And there is no regret about the five lives that were lost. So it is now APC 2, PDP 1. Every joy and sorrow you have seen, every hue and cry, every silence and loud criticism is a result of this league table.
And it is pathetic. Human life has always been
political capital but mainly in the hands of barbaric people and thorough-going villains. Terrorists stake peoples live to get ransom. Criminals take persons to avoid being shot or attacked, to weaken the law enforcement or their fellow villain.
But Nigeria has so degenerated that not only politicians have turned human life to political capital, even the masses who line up blindly behind these politicians and their parties cannot help but see human life in terms of its political value.
In practical terms, it is hard to see what the APC has got to gain from planning a mass abduction and release of girls. Whatever seems an indication that the whole saga is stage-managed, it is hard to find a single gain in such a venture.
For, would it have been that the APC wanted to show that Chibok girls were abducted during Jonathan’s administration and the girls were not rescued by Jonathan, whereas Dapchi girls were abducted under APC and Buhari got the girls back in a month?
Does this not indicate that Buhari has no idea of safety but only of rescue? What is to be said of the fact that children were unprotected and thereby stolen? What is to be said of the fact that more than 100 citizens were driven away from a civilized town in a jolly ride…by criminals?
What does the rescue of 105 girls after the death of five add to the security profile of Nigeria?
Evidently, safety of Nigerians aligns more with the demand for security of lives and properties than release of stolen people. The girls ought not to have been abducted in the first place.
What else could the APC gain from this saga?
It is therefore hard to find why people should think the APC planned the abduction. Some people seem to criticize the release of the girls because they need to be consistently opposed to Buhari’s government. And since they have said in the wake of the abduction that Buhari’s government has failed in his security campaign, they want it to remain a truth that Buhari’s government is always failing. The PDP has to show Nigerians that the release of the children is not an achievement.
I think Nigerians should value human life more than this. One cannot legitimately think that Buhari cannot do a single charitable thing, or that the APC is destined to fail. The APC is not destined to fail; it has only chosen the path of failure.
We have said it is unreasonable for government to plan the abduction of Dapchi girls. But that does not mean the government did not plan it. Is it not the APC? The APC that arranged that awkward audio in which Buhari addressed the Federal Republic of Nigeria in Hausa language sometime in the middle of 2017? The APC that arranged ‘the human side of Buhari’, the ridiculous documentary of the year? If with God nothing is impossible, with APC nothing is too stupid.
After all, the APC has not forgotten the ghost of the PDP. The APC are aware they have achieved almost nothing since 2015. They know they have not moved Nigerians forward from where they met them. And since they had told Nigerians that Jonathan failed, and they know that they too have failed, what they are left with presently is to show who failed better between them and Jonathan. And since the Buhari government would prefer to say that it failed better than Jonathan, there is nothing imaginable in the realm of ridicule that the government is not capable of. After all, human life is a political capital.