Senator Ali Ndume, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Army, has said the inability of the Federal Government to name and arrest those that finance terrorism in the country shows the high level of unseriousness in its fight against insurgency.
Speaking during an interview on Channels Television, Ndume said he was prosecuted by the Federal Government for allegedly sponsoring Boko Haram. He said his offense was because the Department of State Services (DSS) tracked a phone and uncovered a call made by the spokesman of the insurgents. Ndume was arraigned in 2011 for alleged sponsorship of the Boko Haram but was cleared by the courts in July 2017 after no evidence was tendered to back up the claim.
The lawmaker strongly criticized security agencies for not doing a proper investigation before subjecting him to public ridicule.
“If there is evidence that somebody is funding Boko Haram, there is clear evidence after doing your investigation, why don’t you tell Nigerians? Why don’t you prosecute them?
Just because they were tracking my phone and they said a spokesman of Boko Haram called me, they went and arrested me. They didn’t even ask me, they didn’t do any intelligence work. The Senate President called me and said the SSS wants you to report that they have some questions.” he said.
According to the lawmaker, he reported at the DSS office thinking he would be afforded the opportunity of availing them the useful information that will help in the terrorism war. He recalled that the then DSS spokesperson, Marilyn Ogar, briefed journalists where he was accused of sponsoring terrorism. He averred that if he can be tried, why can’t those who have been identified to be sponsors of terrorism not be tried as well.
”She was there on the TV saying they have discovered and arrested the sponsor of Boko Haram. That was the word she used. It was not fair on me. I am still battling with that. My children went through hell. But now they are saying ‘cover these people’. So when this government is talking about covering them. I feel we are not serious.
This 2022 I hope the President declares war. We are fighting insurgents but we have not declared war against them The President should do that against insurgents or terrorists, bandits, secessionist” he said