Wednesday, November 25, 2015


Dear Col. Dasuki,
Greetings to you. As a concerned Nigerian, I write this most open letter. I have been rather troubled lately by the accusations which have been leveled against you by the Federal Government. I have followed your case as closely as I can; and have watched events play out publicly, as most other Nigerians have. I saw the DSS camped outside your house, and I read news feeds of your house(s) been searched. The press revealed to us that weapons and large sums of money were found during the raid. I do not quite know what to make of that. I have seen you petition the Federal Government so you could travel for medical treatment – as you claimed. You see, I am a firm believer in the rule of law. I believe that people should be presumed innocent until proven guilty by a competent court of law; whose judgment has been made, based on the analysis of credible evidence that thus points at complicity in the crime on the part of the accused, beyond all reasonable doubt…and I also believe that if a person has been found guilty, they should be punished in proportion to their crime. Am I making sense? Okay, let me proceed.
So you were appointed as the National Security Adviser in 2012, by former President Goodluck Jonathan. At that time- even till now- the nation was deeply troubled by events in the North- East, as Boko Haram carried out assault-after-assault on innocent civilians, killing so many, time and time again; and also abducting school children. As National Security Adviser, you briefed the President on events concerning internal security, and gave advice and recommendations for action as you deemed fit. As a retired military man, you certainly were within your field of expertise; and as a Northerner, you had personal knowledge of the terrain of the theatre of conflict that should certainly have made you a formidable NSA. Your advice for measures to tackle the insurgency was sought by the President, and Nigerians everywhere looked to you and to our former security chiefs for respite against Boko Haram. We expected you to act decisively. It was your duty! When some soldiers were taken into military custody because of their refusal to fight the terrorist group, you were one of those who spoke out, saying that mutiny in the military must not be tolerated. We were watching. You and the military chiefs seemed to agree that our soldiers had no cause to disobey their commander’s orders to engage the enemy in combat, when they had been adequately provided for. As an ordinary civilian not privy to the ways of the military, I watched from afar. I didn’t quite buy your argument that Nigerian soldiers were adequately provided for, though. I have heard military officers complain about their poor welfare, and the substandard equipment’s they are expected to fight with, so your argument did not ring true- at least not with me. Nevertheless, I understand that the military operates by very strict principles and codes of conduct. So Colonel Dasuki, why are there all these reports of corruption and diversion of funds leveled against you? What are all these mind-boggling figures that are bandied about everywhere? Did you really divert 2billion dollars meant for the war against Boko Haram into bogus accounts, by awarding phantom contracts, while innocent Nigerians and soldiers were dying out there? Were you a war profiteer?
You see, by definition, a war profiteer is any person or organization that profits from warfare or by selling weapons and other goods to parties at war (Source: Wikipedia). If these allegations leveled against you are true, then we can say that your actions certainly qualify as those of a “war profiteer”. I try not to form an opinion or conclude on a matter until I have seen enough evidence to reach a just conclusion. The “receipts” tendered by the Federal Government allege that you awarded contracts worth billions of dollars for the supply of military equipment’s to companies which have been found to be bogus. By so doing, it is alleged that the money was diverted into someone’s account: yours? Oga Dasuki, is this true? If it is, why? What would have been the rationale for doing something so terribly evil? You are a former military man yourself. How would you have felt as a young soldier if someone put you in harm’s way without adequate provision for your safety and service? If someone sent you into a war with obsolete weapons to face a guerilla group fighting with more advanced weapons- maybe AK 47’S, Kalashnikovs and Rocket Propelled Grenade Launchers- would you go? Sir, as the first son of the now deceased 18th Sultan of Sokoto, you come from royalty. You are privileged by birth, so money should not have been your motivation for national service. As a traditional ruler, your great father was a custodian of peace. What went wrong…if indeed it did? How could you sleep at night behind your high walls in the affluent Asokoro neighborhood of the nation’s capital, while millions of Nigerians cried every night over the poor state of national security? How did you feel each time a bomb went off in Borno…in Mubi…in Baga…or anywhere else within the country, and hundreds (and thousands) of people lost their lives? How did you feel when the nation’s best and bravest soldiers who went into battle nevertheless, were falling to their untimely deaths? Did you ever attend a soldier’s funeral? Did you ever stare into the weeping eyes of a widowed wife, children left fatherless or aged parents left without a son and provider? Did you? Did it ever occur to you that most of these could have been avoided if the required equipment’s were indeed procured, and our soldiers didn’t go into battle feeling so powerless? If indeed these allegations are true, did you ever stop to think for a minute that your incredibly callous actions were tantamount to complicity in murder…that by your actions, you were indeed aiding Boko Haram to kill many more Nigerians?
You claim that this is a witch-hunt. You seem to infer that President Buhari is on some sort of revenge mission…maybe because you were one of the 4 majors that took part in the “palace coup” of 1985, and arrested then Head-of-State, Muhammadu Buhari, ousting him from power. But intriguing as that sounds, I also don’t quite buy this argument this time around as well! But who knows? Politics can also become highly personal sometimes…I guess that is why you have to go to court to argue your case. Oga Dasuki, we want answers…actually, we demand them. If you are innocent as you claim, then you have nothing to fear. Instead of running all over the place, just calm down and let your lawyers argue your case in court- I mean, that’s what SAN’s are paid to do, and you have employed their services. Nigerians are not as foolish as some folks would like to assume…we are not a gullible bunch…we have enough sense to tell right from wrong…we can reach logical conclusions. Save all the suspense and drama for court. Now you claim that the contracts and payments were awarded and endorsed by your former boss, GEJ, and that you were only doing your job making payments upon approval by the former President. You claim there were no “fictitious” contracts and no monies diverted. But a few days after your remarks, GEJ emphatically denied awarding 2billion dollars for arms procurement! So you see, this is all quite confusing. In any case, just go to court. Go to court and let us reach our own logical conclusions. If truth is on your side then you will be vindicated, and your “royal” name would be cleared; but if by competent means, you are found guilty beyond reasonable doubt, then you must face the consequences of your actions. This is not a crime that is easily forgiven. Too many have died- unnecessarily. If indeed you are found guilty, you may have to ask yourself this question behind bars- “what does it profit a man to lose his sense of humanity, and choose to prolong a war simply because of monetary gain?" As they say, “you do the crime, you do the time!” Best of luck…you’ll surely be needing it!

Buchi Obichie.

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