By Aminu Abubakar dan musa
Reports had it that the executive governor of Katsina state, the right honorable Alhaji Aminu Bello masari is set to meet the bandits commanders in their camps in an attempt to bring an end to the constant attacks on the innocent people of katsina state.
Ordinarily, we should be elated with this new development. Katsina has become an amphitheater of blood and chaos due to the un relented attack on hapless communities.
Killing, kidnapping, rustling and arson has become the lot of our people. Most villages are now deserted. People can not even go to their farms for fear of being killed.
So it’s quite heartening to hear the governor, directing the SGS to arrange a meeting with the bandits in their forest hide out.
Interestingly the SGS was recently showed in the social media debunking the intensity of the crisis in katsina and blaming the media for misrepresenting the true situation in katsina, the true situation being katsina is peaceful.
Katsina is far from being peaceful.
In fact as today katsina ranked either as first or second in the ranking of most dangerous place to live in, at least to some of us in the front line local governments.
Back to the meeting.
I wish his excellency well, but let us ponder on some issues.
First, this is not the first time the government will have a so called peace meeting with the bandits.
This should be the second or third meetings, and the government is quick to assured us after each meeting that, the magic wand has been found. The pondora box of violence has been shut.
But what fallows later is more killings , more kidnapping and more attacks.
On the first meeting which was so much celebrated by the Government, the SGS was reported as saying the peace parley and its commitments coast the government of katsina over 1.8 billion Nairas.
Off course, as we all know, the parley turned out to be a jamboree with no peace achieved.
The bandits become more emboldened, more armed and we’re getting free meals from government, without abiding toone single terms of the agreement.
Two, I know his excellency has no security background, and I am not aware if any of his inner cabinet had.
I don’t also know wether he knows or heard of a course called strategic studies.
His excellency may do himself and the people of katsina good if he would enmeshed himself in the rudimentary basics of strategic studies before he negotiate.
Negotiations are a very effective way of resolving human conflicts.
But there is a catch.
For negotiations to achieve the desired effects there has to be certain basic conditions first.
First of this conditions is that of strength. The government must be in a position of strength to dictate the terms of the peace. It must be able to demonstrate that failure of the deal will have serious consequences on the lives of the defaulters.
For instance our people will want the peace, because they want to go back to their normal life.
What of the bandits?
What do they have to lose if they break the peace?
How does the peace brings them the millions of nairas they are getting almost daily without much work?
The point of peace negotiations according to strategic studies is that , the government must take the fight to the bandits in to the bush, flush them out and make life un bearable for them .
Strip them of the chance of banditry and making money, then initiate a peace parley.
The bandits will then see its in their interest they keep the peace. For if they didn’t, the consequences of not keeping the peace will be graver than on keeping it.
My point sir is, before you negotiate, create the conditions for the peace parley to succeed.
Your parley now will never succeed, because all you have to offer now is money and more money to them, which will not be enough for them who are used to collecting millions.
And for how long will you even sustain that?
Sir, parley on the position of strength not on position of weaknesses
Allah ya kara girma
Aminu is civil servant.an indigine of katsina based in legos