An experience Army general is like a prophet who gives prophetic warning about security issues within and around the world. Truth, be told, The former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General TY Buratai Rtd is one of the seasoned army intelligence General the country has ever produced.
This is not unconnected to his timely report days back when he declared that it’s high time African governments should classify military Coup D’etat as organized crime. His report came in handy with the ongoing reported coup d’etat in our neighboring country, Niger Republic. According to reports, Members of the Presidential Guard have detained the President of Niger, Mohamed Bazoum.
With this ugly, development, it’s advisable that African leaders should take into cognizance the postulations of Buratai which he delivered on Tuesday, July 18th, 2023 in Abuja.
Here is the report:
Buratai Reveals Why He Agrees With President Tinubu To Classify Coup D’etat As Organised Crime
The former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General TY Buratai Rtd has corroborated the stance of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu on the need for African governments to classify military coup d’etat in Africa as organised crime.
The former COAS , during his remarks at a conference organised by the Tukur Buratai Centre for Contemporary Security Affairs of the Igbinedion University, Okada, themed, “Organized Crime Network as Emergent Threats to National Security,”, stated that it is high time Nigeria and African leaders tagged coup as organised crime.
Buratai’s call was in support of the call made by President Bola Tinubu, on Saturday, calling on African leaders to respect democracy, rule of law, and ensure political stability. The President who spoke in Nairobi, Kenya at a high-level event organized by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on the margins of Fifth Mid-Year African Union (AU) Coordination Meeting called on the United Nations to take firm stance against military coups.
“As you might be well aware, the theme of this conference is International Conference on Organized Crimes as Emergent Threats to National Security. The Conference is poised to be a crucial platform for addressing the grave challenges facing Nigeria and the countries in the Sahel. By focusing on the pressing issue of organized crime and its implications for national security, this conference aims to shed light on potential strategies and collaborative efforts that can be undertaken to tackle this growing menace,” said General Buratai in his remarks.
He added that, “The gathering of experts, law enforcement agencies, policymakers, and scholars from around the globe will provide invaluable insights and knowledge exchange, ultimately equipping governments with the necessary tools to combat organized crime effectively. With Nigeria currently grappling with these emerging threats, the conference holds particular significance for the Bola Tinubu government, providing an opportunity to examine successful initiatives implemented elsewhere and adapt them to the local context. By fostering international cooperation and promoting information sharing, this conference can undoubtedly assist the Bola Tinubu administration in formulating robust policies that safeguard national security and ensure the well-being of its citizens…It is high time we also classify military coup d’etat in Africa as organised crime. ”
Furthermore, Buratai revealed that the causes of organized crime in Nigeria, are undoubtedly multifaceted. One of the primary contributing factors is the existence of porous borders, which allows for the easy movement of criminals and illegal goods across national boundaries. Also, prolonged conflicts in countries like Somalia, DR Congo, Libya, Mali, Burkina Faso, and now Sudan have a direct impact on the rise of organized crimes. Additionally, the prevalence of poverty and unemployment within the region creates a desperate environment that can push individuals towards criminal activities as a means of survival. The influence of jihadist groups in the Sahel, who exploit vulnerable populations and use violence to achieve their agendas, also plays a significant role in fueling organized crime. Furthermore, greed and the pursuit of personal gain contribute to the proliferation of criminal networks, as individuals are enticed by the potential financial rewards. Lastly, the absence of effective law enforcement (police), weak deterrence mechanisms and weak governance structures further enable criminal organizations to operate with impunity.
Continuing, Buratai affirmed that, “the alarming reality of ongoing criminal activities, ranging from the illicit theft of about 500 barrels of crude oil on a daily basis to the calculated displacement of communities for the purpose of mining minerals cannot be ignored. These multifaceted crimes not only undermine the stability and well-being of affected regions but also perpetuate a cycle of violence and exploitation. These criminal enterprises not only rob our economy of legitimate growth and development but also inflict immeasurable harm on individuals and communities”
Therefore, he believed that the ongoing battle against organized crime requires a comprehensive and collaborative approach from law enforcement agencies, government entities, and the general public to protect the well-being and future of our beloved country.
The conference which was chaired by Lt. General AB Danbazau Rtd, former COAS. Other distinguished guests at the event include Mallam Nuhu Robadu, the National Security Adviser, Retired IGP Solomon Arase, representatives of the Chief of Defence Staff and the three services as well as heads of Immigration, Customs, NSCDC, the academia and the media.