An activist, Olawale Okunniyi, has cautioned the Federal Government against wasting precious time and resources on its intended dialogue with the Boko Haram sect, saying that it may never happen or yield any positive result.
Okunniyi, the spokesperson of the Pro National Conference Organisation (PRONACO), made this assertion Monday in Lagos while reacting to a statement credited to the sect’s spokesperson, Abu Qaqa, denying the latest reports of dialogue with the government.
Qaqa had been quoted as saying inter alia: “We are calling on the government to know that once it is not Sharia law that will be adopted in Nigeria, and Quran as book of laws in Nigeria in setting aside constitution that is mainly infidel’s product, then the government should not dream about peace in Nigeria. There is no single day that Mujahideens will stop fighting in Nigeria until that is achieved and we are hopeful to triumph over Nigerian government.”
Okunniyi noted that with the demand put forward by the Boko Haram sect, which according to him is purely based on faith and ideology, revealing the sect’s belief that the government is run by infidels, the Jonathan government needs no soothsayer to know that any official interface and negotiation is futile.
He doubted if the sect would have the trust and believe in any negotiations not involving other aggrieved groups and regional interests on the political and constitutional restructuring of the country leading to an autonomous federation for the country.
The PRONACO scribe, however, described the Boko Haram demand as bordering on self-determination and political autonomy driven by Sharia laws and the Koran as against the frustrating and corrupt unitary structure imposed by the 1999 Constitution.
“We welcome their unambiguous demand for self-determination and political autonomy in the northern region and think that is clearly legitimate, if their aspiration is in the majority in the North of Nigeria.
“However, we wish to advise that rather than continue to maim and kill innocent and poor people whether Christians or Muslims, whom are also fed up with the current frustrating political system imposed through the undemocratic constitution in Nigeria, they should urgently device a tactical method of organising to popularise their position in the North in proving that they are not in the minority in their region, as this will help them get the sympathy of other federating peoples of Nigeria, who have similar aspirations in wooing the international community based on the United Nations charter on rights of indigenous peoples for political autonomy,” Okunniyi charged.
He, however, reiterated his warning to the Federal Government last year that since the Boko Haram insurgency is faith-based and suicide-inclined, it cannot be treated as the Niger Delta militancy which could be contained by an amnesty deal.
“The only deal, and I repeat advisedly, the only deal that can resolve or isolate the Boko Haram suicide insurrections in Nigeria is not a negotiation with those that the sect believes are ‘infidels in government’ holding all other federating peoples in country hostage under an imposed constitution, but a popular collective negotiation and mutual agreement by all the natural federating nations and aggrieved groups in Nigeria on how they want to exist within Nigeria.
“So government is now expected to do the needful as a word is enough for the wise. They must also stop wasting the lives of innocent Nigerians, scare resources and precious time of the country on political jobbers and impostors, pretending to be acting as government fronts and strategists making hell of money out of the situation”