Friday 22 June 2012

Defining Role for Academic Community in Combating Terrorism in Nigeria - Abimbola Adigun

An appeal has gone to the members of the academic community to join hands with the federal government in the fight against terrorism and other crimes in Nigeria.

Mr. Oludare Ogunlana, a Counterterrorism Expert made this assertion on Thursday, 21 June 22, 2012 while delivering a paper on the Security Challenges in Nigeria and the role of Education in Combating the Menace.” The public lecture in honor of Dr. James Ojebode was organized by the Federation of Oyo State Students Union at the Assembly Hall of the Polytechnic Ibadan.

The Chairman of the forum, Dr. Adebayo Adewusi, former Commissioner of Finance in Lagos challenged all the participants to support the government in an effort to make Nigeria a peaceful place to live. He identified corruption as the number one threat to Nigeria development and call on the young people so speak and act against the evil of corruption in our society.

Comrade Olusegun Olaleye, a member of the Oyo State House of Assembly also called on the government to adopt an open ended policy to tackle the problem of terrorism in Nigeria. He identified the weak law enforcement and failure of intelligence as part of the major problem that the federal government must address in order to effectively mitigate against terrorism in Nigeria

The guest lecturer, Oludare Ogunlana said the freedom and liberty of every Nigerians is under attack because of the operation of the terrorist organization in Nigeria and there is a need for everybody to cooperate with the government to combat our current challenges.

He explained further that the country’s security must be a responsibility shared across our entire Nation. It must cut across our Local, State, and Federal governments, faith-based, academic community, and the Civil Society organizations, and businesses must be partners in securing the Homeland

“No country, no community, and no person is immune to the impact of disasters. However, disasters can be and have been prepared for, responded to, recover from, and had their consequences mitigated to a certain degree,” said Ogunlana.

The policy makers at all levels are advised not to overlook the role the Academic community can play to restore peace and sanity to Nigeria. He claimed that “the strategy towards combating this menace is far beyond the security of guns, gates and guards” but the Nigerian political leaders must understand the dynamic, ideological driven insurgency presently going on in the form of terrorism.

According to Ogunlana who was former President of the National Association of Nigerian Students said “the nation is going through another phase of security challenges and perhaps the most difficult trouble after the end of the civil war in 1970. Everybody is in fear, including those who are supposed to be in charge of our security.”
He called on government to spread the dividend of democracy to people because the cause of some of the problem of insecurity in Nigeria is as a result of poverty, injustice and leadership failure.  He further explained that no amount of killing can stop crime and terrorism without addressing the fundamental factors, which gave birth to terrorism and other crimes in our society.

Ogunlana Speaking to the media after the event
“The widespread believe that the terrorist enemy is finite in quantity and destructible in the near term; without looking beyond “Boko Haram” and to recognize the multiplying form that the jihadist threat is taking represents a serious failure of vision.”

He concluded, saying that “the military approach alone cannot bring about the desire solution except we include the role of education in term of; Leadership Training, Public Enlightenment, Promotion of Higher Education in the National Security and Emergency Management Studies Program to strategically meet the nation’s demand for a cadre of professionals to carry out Nigeria’s National Security imperatives over the long term during the 21st century


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