Stella Dimoko Weekend Arena - When Doing Good Becomes Dangerous In Nigeria


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Friday, May 28, 2021

Weekend Arena - When Doing Good Becomes Dangerous In Nigeria

Those who follow news and events in Nigeria must have read the story of the military man travelling from Port Harcourt to Uyo earlier in the week. I read it with utmost disdain, and of course, concern. 

The soldier had asked for help from one man, driving alone to Uyo at Eleme in Rivers State. The Good Samaritan, as it appeared, agreed to offer him a lift, without knowing that danger was lurking by the corner. The ‘soldier’ attacked him on the way, killed him and dispossessed him of his car and other belongings, only to recline in a hotel to enjoy his booty, where he was subsequently arrested after words passed around.

He confessed to the heinous crime and only God knows the number of times he has done this and gotten away; with our system that lacks matching forensics. This is a lesson for innocent people who ordinarily would love to offer assistance to good people who are stranded on the way. They would look the other way when confronted by genuine people on the road, no matter how desperately they need their help.

It also throws light to what is left of our humanity in this part of the world and of course, who our role models should be. Some people would be quick to blame the economy and President Buhari or Desmond Elliot, but the reality remains that a criminally-minded person is who he is, and no amount of money will make him stop. On a number of occasions, it is not lack that prompts crime; it is the quest to have more, greed. The culprit in the above scenario is a serving soldier, who earns a monthly salary, who has the choice of planning his expenses to suit his income, and possibly unlock other legitimate options that could buoy him to financial freedom or something close. But he prefers it the hot and fast way. There is nothing bad about wanting it the hot and fast way, but ‘innocent blood’ must not be used to service that greed. The soldier’s blood would have been most preferable for his quest in this case.

The fact that he is a soldier makes it more disturbing. Official security agents of governments, like members of the military, police and all others wearing such toga are the physical government that the citizens see, and should not be caught in shameful acts of this nature. Those who are equipped with the paraphernalia of state power should naturally be elevated beyond the mundane in terms of conduct. It is only in a failing state that such happens. I can bet that nobody in his right senses would want to offer a lift to a soldier on a lonely road owing to this incident and loss of confidence in the state security is a worrying symptom.

It is proof to the flawed recruitment system into such agencies. How are they recruited? The evidences are everywhere that such jobs are either bought with huge sums of money or allocated to the high and mighty in the leadership rungs of the country to ‘dash’ to their political allies. In order to service their political interests, those jobs are given to their boys with the hope of using them as ‘legitimate’ thugs during elections. 

That is why the clamour for state police for me must be approached with utmost caution by making sure that laws are in place to make them as independent as possible. Looking at Governor El Rufai of Kaduna State, a man I admire so much, reeling out an arrest order on the National President of the NLC, Ayuba Waba, during the labour protest in Kaduna, what filled my mind was what he would do with a state police in our present condition of affairs. He may have overreacted on being pushed to the wall by the activities of those labour unions, but such circumstances also bring to the fore the attributes of leadership.

 The ability to absorb such pressures is very vital in leadership, because that is what set apart leaders like Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, Mahatma Ghandi. But who are the role models of our leaders? Mandela was human and in some of the books about him I have read, he maintained his composure in the face of provocations, save from when he was confronted by a young white reporter, who wanted to know if he had set a date to marry Samora Machel’s widow, Graca, whom he was dating then.

 He had angrily told him that it was ‘uncultured’ for a young person to ask his elder when he was getting married. Here the DSS would follow the reporter to know ‘who sent him’. The next day, EFCC and ICPC would remember his files and those of his media company. That is what you get when recruitment into such agencies is painted in the colour of bigotry.


  1. Replies
    1. I was waiting for a cab in my scrubs when a private car with 2 guys stopped and hailed๐Ÿ™„๐Ÿ™„Dokie can we give you a lift along to the popular hospital on their way, I smiled and said ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š No,thanks. My mind that morning was not willing to enter as the day had started on a wrong footing, car could not start, Uber ride was miles away delaying,running late for a grand round so I told myself to be extremely careful that day. Meanwhile the handsome dudes persisted and were prevailing on me to hop in, Nna mehn which kind of temptation is this? I quickly hopped on the bike that managed to pass through that Estate gate and moved on. Not my head or blood that early morning biko๐Ÿ™‰๐Ÿ™‰๐Ÿ™‰ How people accept lifts or ask for lifts in this horrible times are really appalling. Times are hard so we should be careful

  2. Some people are possessed of evil spirits that when you do good to them they pay you back with evil because that is what they have in them.
    The world is full of wickedness, let be careful.

  3. That's the horror we are being faced with in Nigeria.
    Horrible and senseless government, then citizen dealing ruthlessly to fellow citizens.
    May God continue save us.

  4. To think that I usually give soldiers lift to and fro work from Mile 2 to Bonny camp and vice versa, and I am a female.
    Now having double mind as I can make avoidable mistakes that my family will suffer for.

  5. Pathetic.
    The same set of persons that are meant to protect us

  6. That's very bad of the soldier.

  7. Very pathetic and heart breaking story.

  8. God help us in this country the days are evil and people are becoming more wicked as the day goes by.


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