The Nigerian Information Minister responded to Mr. Kalu’s claims.
The federal government has replied allegations by former Abia State Governor, Orji Kalu, that security agents were responsible for some of the recent bombings in the country. The government described the allegations as ‘outlandish’ and ‘irresponsible.’
Mr. Kalu had on Tuesday, while hosting members of the Abuja chapter of the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, SWAN, said the security agencies and not the Boko Haram were to blame in some of the bombings in Northern Nigeria, saying that they were doing it to attract more funding from the federal allocation.
In his reaction, the Minister of Information, Labaran Maku, said such an allegation was unbecoming of such a highly placed former public official whose words could dampen the enthusiasm of the security personnel who are sacrificing their lives for the sake of the country.
“There has not been any month that passed without the police or the military losing their own personnel in the course of recent challenges that this nation has faced, particularly in the area of the terrorist violence in the northern part of the country.
“And the least that is expected of us as leaders and citizens is that we appreciate the sacrifices of members of our Armed Forces,” the minister said while answering questions from State House reporters at the end of the weekly Federal Executive Council meeting on Wednesday.
He said there is no family in Nigeria “that will like to lose their children who have taken up the uniform to defend the territorial integrity of this country and to secure our lives.”
“So when we sit out and make those outlandish accusations, what we do is to show ingratitude, is to show lack of sensitivity, and lack of responsibility. And this is really very sad. This is truly very sad. Check other countries, when America deploys their troops and security forces to defend their country, you see that their citizens speak with responsibility. But in Nigeria we have politicized virtually every aspect of our country including ongoing security operations.
“So the police are the ones bombing police barracks and killing their members. That is what the allegation means. I do not expect this kind of statements in my opinion from highly placed public officers. At any rate, if anyone for example like the person you mentioned has any information about this, the best that would be done is for him to forward the information properly, connect either to the next police station or report to the Inspector General of Police, look I have fresh evidence that members of the armed forces are the ones exploding bombs. Then we will now have a formal investigation,” Mr. Maku said.
He said politicians “take the soap box to politicize the insecurity in this nation and is very dangerous.”
“Because I can tell you clearly, that if our security personnel loose morale because of the kind of statement that we make, or we try to divide their loyalty in the unit of our armed forces and the security personnel by the way we speak, we will be damaging further the security of this country and its stability.”
He also noted that countries like Pakistan, Yemen, Algeria and others have experienced what Nigeria is experiencing now, yet their politicians have not been known to make such statements as was credited to Mr. Kalu.
Mr. Maku, however, said the security agencies would continue to do their best in the fight against terrorism in Nigeria as well as make the country safer.