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Time to rethink our security strategy

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The Easter Sunday bomb blast in Kaduna which claimed about 40 lives is another tragic reminder that the federal government strategy of containing the spate of insecurity in the country is far from being a success. The incident is all the more sad coming at a time when Christians are in celebratory mood which prompted security officials to heighten efforts to prevent such ugly occurrence. That the car bomb went off - in addition to other attacks in some parts of the country indicates clearly that something is quite wrong with whatever strategy being adopted by the authorities.
We recall that the United States embassy and the British High Commission in Abuja had on the eve of the Easter celebrations issued advisories to their nationals of planned attacks by Boko Haram. The UK high Commission specifically said its citizens should avoid; Kano, Kaduna, Niger, Sokoto Borno and Yobe states due to what it said is "'a high threat of terrorist attack during the religious festivities"' It is therefore disheartening that our security forces apparently did not take that advice with the seriousness it deserve hence the loss of the several innocent lives.
It is time for the security authorities to revise their strategy of combating these wanton attacks. The check points which have been mounted especially at entry points to the states have not proved very effective. This is more so considering the fact that even in states where a state of emergency is officially in place, there have been incidences of fatal bomb blasts. The Kaduna incident is a stark reminder of this; despite the check points, the perpetrators were still able to smuggle their bombs into the city with deadly consequences.
If the authorities think engaging in a war of words with Boko Haram is going to do the trick, then perhaps they should know now they are fighting a lost battle. We question the wisdom of President Goodluck Jonathan when, in far away South Korea, he declared that the Boko Haram insurgency will be over by June this year. Such reckless statement, in our opinion, will serve nothing but to embolden the sect to carry out deadlier attacks. Besides, we wonder what parameters the president used in arriving at such precise date it will all come to an end. What happened in Kaduna also casts strong doubts in the president's assertion. Talking tough and boastful can never win the war. The president would do well to warn his men against such.
Without doubt, some level of success has been achieved in containing the Boko Haram attacks and indeed those of other miscreants who hide under the guise of the sect. It is always heart warming when our security agencies intercept vehicles laden with explosives and apprehend would be bombers, but a lot more however needs to be done if we are to successfully overcome the security challenges facing the nation. As has been argued in the past, focusing more attention on intelligence gathering and co-opting traditional rulers, community leaders and all citizens would help a great deal in exposing the bad elements in our midst.

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