"The first virtue in a soldier is endurance of fatigue; courage is only the second virtue" --Napoleon Bonaparte.
Lt. Col. Abu Ali
For a while now, I have quietly recused myself from writing on unfolding stories of absurdities in  Nigeria, because the stories could make anyone with tinge of moral sense sick and mad, and writing from the position of anger is not ethical as a journalist, but the death of Ali has provoked this article. And this would be premised on two reasons: untold hardship of ordinary Nigerians and the unbridled celebration of corrupt felons.

I am of opinion that some arguments must have ensued amongst some angels when God proposed to create mankind. It could be that the angel of virtue would argue that man would be wicked in his heart and action, but angel of Justice would be happy, because justice shall be done. While angel in charge of hell would be happy that at least there will be traffic in his domain; just the way angel of death would see the creation of men as faith accompli, for him to work on the terminal project called mortal.

Metaphysics is a safe haven for any knotty issue that could not be apprehended by intelligence or nature, because that body of knowledge tolerates the duo concepts of conceivability and possibility. So long as something is conceived, it is possible either in the physical world or logical world. Unfortunately, many things are happening in this familiar world, but their answers are found in the metaphysical world, and one of them is  nexus between monumental corruption and death of gallant officers of Nigeria Army.

Lt. Col. Abu Ali is dead. The gallant officer of the Nigerian Army was a hero while he lived, he fought terrorists on our behalf, and he wrestled the insurgents and chased the infidels out of towns and settlements they held for ideological  reasons. But, Ali has to die because some fat cats had shared the funds meant for armament to battle insurgency.

It is pathetic now that the most populous country of all black nations is in a mess of economic depression, because our collective patrimony was shared and lavished during the last elections, because the people on the saddle as well as the corridors of power thought the coffer would be replenished as soon as the election was over. The skew of our mono -economic product-petroleum went south, elections were over, and the money became faeces of masquerade. Like how much are we talking about here? I don't know, but it was in realm of billions of dollars, I call it fortune of the nation. Was the fortune meant for politics? No, it was meant to save a nation from psychopaths with adulterated ideology called boko haram.

In that wise, soldiers at the theatre of war would have to fight with either obsolete armament or barehand in contention with ragtag army with sophisticated machine. In the process, hundreds of soldiers lost their lives, millions of Nigerians displaced, and children turned orphans, and the integrity of a nation injured. Yet, the funds appropriated in defence of humanity were stolen, shared, stored and used to buy  luxurious homes and automobiles. That is the imagery of wickedness in the hearts of men.

Interestingly, the sharers of nation's fortune were apprehended and tossed in detention, but unfortunately justices who are saddled to serve justice to the felons are corrupt, for they are in competition with thieving politicians. So, judgments are for the higher bidders. Those who were pretending to be conscience of nation could not watch their "partners in crime" suffering in the hands of anti-graft agency, hence they embarked on pilgrimage of shame. It is a pity that the arrowhead with robe of faith was riding horse at Sokoto Durbar, while Lt. Col. Abu Ali, the gallant fighter was being stretched to his early grave. Of course, there would not be condolence visit, because Ali was just a bloody soldier who must die. That is the story of unwise elite, hoodwinked masses, and a nation in short supply of credible leaders.

Abu Ali's death touches my heart because I have a little brother as a special force in the same theatre of war, and I know that our nation is unfair to the men we put in arms' way. I think researchers need to conduct study on why the black people are like this. It can't be in black man's DNA, because a Nigerian doctor based in USA has just blazed the trail in medical profession through unprecedented surgery for the unborn baby. Certainly, it must be something else.

Abu Ali, you came, you fought like a gallant soldier you were, and you conquered. Good night good soldier.

Butika is an intercontinental journalist.


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