Friday, July 29, 2022

USA Africa Dialogue Series - Re: The media as scapegoats

These are the terse, prosaic questions Brutus asks in his funeral oration , the same kind of rhetorical questions that can be transposed to all Nigerians engaged in giving and receiving from the various political platforms including the social media, where some of the illiterates, the semi-literates , the literates ( full and half professors, some of them forever on strike), the rich, the poor, the tourists, the literati, the ethnic jingoists , and various religious bigots of many nations, genders, shapes, shades and complexions all hang out :

" Who is here so base that would be a bondman? If any, speak, for him have I offended. Who is here so rude that would not be a Roman? If any, speak, for him have I offended. Who is here so vile that will not love his country? If any, speak, for him have I offended. I pause for a reply."

On the basis of all the negative answers to the above questions, in particular, Who is here so vile that will not love his country?, I beg to disagree more than slightly with some of Mallam Na-Allah Mohammed Zagga's various contentions in his rejoinder  "The media as scapegoats"

Obviously, no decent person  among us prefers injustice to justice, war to peace, wanton banditry and ransom kidnapping to security, the sanctity of  life, limb and private property, and as to the local terrorism being perpetrated by the various Islamic groups named by Professor Gloria Emeagwali as "AQIM, ANSAR al-Din, ISIS - GS, ISWAP, MOJWA, Boko Haram", no one prefers their trademark barbarism, signature carnage, death and destruction to the ideals of amity, national brotherhood, unity, peace and tranquillity, the very foundations of civilization,  progress,...

President Buhari  is clear enough here and has the sympathy, understanding and very best wishes of the peace-loving Nigerians and the rest of the anti-terrorist world, as the Nigerian military and security services and hastily formed local self-defence outfits battle the hydra-headed monster. 

In my humble opinion, to be fair to President Buhari and to his Minister of Information Lai Mohammed we had first of all better view the entire BBC documentary so that we are in a vantage position to be able to make any personal judgements about it, beyond second hand hearsay. The well known BBC propaganda machine is not the absolutely neutral angel that some nice, well-dressed, unsuspecting Nigerian gentlemen and gentlewomen might want to believe it to be. I am also personally, almost objectively well acquainted with the BBC and could entertain you with many anecdotes , more seriously, through following CAMERA in tandem with MEMRI and you'd be surprised at the infinite number of times and occasions that the BBC has been accused of bias in covering the Middle East crisis . I could cite many examples. You might think that Nigeria is a different kettle of fish, but Nigeria is no less real and was certainly not less real during the Biafra War or around the time of the attempted kidnapping of Umaru Dikko in 1984…

Kadaria Ahmed's support for Hon. Lai Mohamed is understandable, credible, commendable. 

There are a few loose strands in Mallam Na-Allah Mohammed Zagga's otherwise well argued rejoinder , that could be taken up, some of them disembowelled. For politeness' sake  there's this surface thought that has implications below the surface  - and of course just like other news networks the BBC also thrives on sensationalism  - whether it be exclusive rights on a reportage / interview of Bin Ladin  - one of the days it could be an exclusive interview with Elijah, the resurrected Jesus or the antichrist or Mallam Na-Allah Mohammed Zagga himself being asked about this recent statement of his :

 " The bandits kingpin apologized for attack. I can't figure out how this interview amounts to glorification of terrorism or banditry. Terrorists and bandits are actors in the violence ravaging Northern Nigeria. There is no way you can study the causes or motivations of these barbarians without talking to their leaders."

The fact is dear Mallam, as you well know,  the leader, any leader including the bandit leader  can say one thing and do the opposite. As Wole Soyinka put it, "A tiger does not proclaim his tigritude, he pounces"

On Friday, 29 July 2022 at 14:52:59 UTC+2 toyinfalola wrote:

"A government that set free 400 so-called repentant terrorists without holding them accountable for their crimes against humanity lacks the moral justification to accuse the BBC and the Daily Trust of glorifying terrorists. A government that rewards terrorists with garlands by giving them automatic clemency or pardon is grossly guilty of insulting the memories of the victims of terrorism, including our security personnel who were brutally murdered by terrorists."

Sent from my iPhone

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