Involve Obasanjo, Salkida, Others In Negotiation With Boko Haram, Varsity Dons Tell Jonathan

For the ongoing ceasefire efforts between the federal government and the Boko Haram sect to have a meaningful end, former President Olusegun Obasanjo, self-exiled journalist, Mr. Ahmed Salkida, and others who have links with the sect should be involved now.
A university don and member of the just-concluded National Conference, Professor Olawale Albert, gave this advice on Thursday at the second sociology seminar of the Department of Sociology, Bowen University, Iwo.
The lecture was titled: “Building A Resilient Nigeria: Challenges of Security, Good Governance and Development in the 21st Century.”
Albert said inviting these individuals such as former President Obasanjo, Mr. Salkida a journalist with Daily Trust and other prominent northerners who have earlier volunteered to be part of the negotiation and dialogue with the group would go a long way in solving the problem of insecurity as posed by the Boko Haram sect in the northern part of the country.
The former Director, Institute of African Studies, University of Ibadan who traced the history of the group to 2002 said the menace has cornered the country into one with high capacity of creating problems with low capacity to providing solutions for such occurrences.
Albert said unless the government is serious and take another look at the problem by seriously pursuing the dialogue and invite all the sinister groups of the sect and those who have links and have openly agreed to mediate and partake in the negotiation, the sect which he said has left over 13,000 Nigerians into their early graves might continue with their activities unchecked.
He said: “Boko Haram has graduated through the three stages of terrorism; organisation, gorilla and conventional war through the capturing and ruling the captured areas, this is now manifesting with what is happening in Borno villages where the sect has established their own “government”
He therefore identified five strategic ways of solving the problem which include avoidance/ denial strategy, strategic withdrawal, confrontation, third party decision making process and joint problem solving strategy.
Albert who said it was unfortunate that federal government is not serious in the implementation of various committees that have recommended negotiation and dialogue with the sect, however re-assured the country that the problem may still persists if the sinister groups and those who have links with the sect are not involved in the negotiation.
Earlier in his welcome address, the institution’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Matthew Ojo, represented by Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor John Akande said “academic department are often inspired to showcase their expertise in an attempt to propagate the pride and tradition of their programmes” urging other departments and institutions to borrow a leave from the department in finding solutions to challenges confronting the country.
He said “our national political superstructure stands on bedrock of sound sociological principles, I urge you to keep and make good use of whatever you learn here for advancing a greater tomorrow”
“The seminal shall also provide situational relevant knowledge needed to tackle social vices like cultist, terrorism, kidnapping, robbery, drug abuse and others that are hang in the parlance of peaceful and productive coexistence and sustainable development of our country Nigeria”.
Similarly, the Vice-Chancellor, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, Professor Adeniyi Gbadegesin, represented by Professor Dele Afolabi said there cannot be any meaningful development without adequate security. He described the lecture as
timely.
On his part, former Head of the Department, Professor O. Imoagene in his paper titled “Growth without Development” said Nigeria is rated as one of the richest countries however bemoaned the rate of insecurity in the land.
A former Head of Department of Anthropology and Archaeology, UI, Professor Olatunde Lawuyi who perceived the problems of the country to originate from the mind said it “unless we have attitudinal change of mind, the problems militating the country may still persists.”
He said inability of the leadership and the followers to analyse problems as they were the bane of development in the country.
In his own contribution, the Head of the department, Dr. Solomon
Madubuike who said seminars, workshop and conference are partners in the dance of intellectualism said the only way out of the challenges facing the country was for it to adopt lectures of such nature aimed at providing solutions to problems of the country.

Author: News Editor

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