NIGERIA: When Soldiers Went Mad in Lagos

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It is not the first time that persons concerned with the protection of institutions as well as the state would take laws into their hands and unleash the unthinkable. What happened on Ikorodu road, Lagos, last week, has no definition in any sane clime. The fact that soldiers, having committed an offence against the state would go to the extent of burning down about eight buses belonging to the state in addition to sacking the place and environ still beats the imagination of even cynics.
This, unfortunately, is becoming a pattern of some of the nation’s unruly soldiers and for obvious reasons. That the authorities concerned have never made a scapegoat out of such a mess is a factor. Perhaps, the commandants of these soldiers often give their consent to such barbaric display of power in public. However, for the discerning, there is a growing but frightening pattern – a monster to be precise and it seeks to consume all by the time it is fully grown.

A certain woman recently told the story of how a soldier had jumped a queue at the international airport, Lagos, just to check-in some lady standing by and enjoying the crudity of the Khaki boy. And when cautioned, he allegedly retorted: “Soldiers don’t queue”.
Of course, his use of force was resisted and was made to do that which he had not wanted to do. But sit back and ponder, what could be responsible for such increasing lawlessness, more so by the military? Is there a link between their attitudinal disposition and the political state of the nation? Maybe, just maybe!
The Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, said a few weeks ago at a news conference that the President Jonathan administration is operating a diarchy and by that means, sharing power with the military. Do not ask too many questions; the indices are palpable. From Lagos to Ekiti and back in Lagos, there is no doubting the fact that the nation’s democracy is under a serious threat.

Sadly, the president does not give a damn, worsened by the fact that he does not seem to be in a position to accurately analyse as well as interpret some of the factors that constitute the threat. That, if you’d agree, is the tragedy of the Nigerian situation as it were.
For whatever it is worth, the Lagos incidence must not be allowed to go without bringing to book those behind this dastardly and unpatriotic act. The state has made its law and must be respected by all, the governor inclusive. To resort to animalism in the name of wearing Khaki portends serious danger for all. And to those who seem to be enjoying the rhythm now, pray they are alive to tell the story.

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