The sad and brutal assassination of the former Chief of Defence Staff and former Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh, a day after President Buhari’s birthday, is a despicable and cowardly act.
Not only was he an officer and a gentleman but he was also a profoundly good man who was criminalised, humiliated and treated in a malicious and unacceptable manner by a vicious, malevolent and evil government that had targeted him for vilification and destruction right from the start.
Despite the fact that he was subjected to a well-orchestrated and relentless degree of persecution from the Buhari administration, he remained a believer in Nigeria and a heroic, courageous and unrelenting critic of tyranny, injustice and ethnic and religious subjugation till the end.
He knew many of the Buhari government’s excesses and secrets, he worked quietly against them from behind the scenes and, by his numerous actions and interventions, he saved the lives of many of his Middle Belt people.
Those that were behind his assassination know who they are. They shall not escape justice and they will pay a terrible price for their wickedness. His assasination is a debt that will be repaid by God and the people no matter how long it takes.
In the fullness of time the Lord of Hosts and the Ancient of Days, in whose bosom he now resides, will avenge him.
These are still early days and the investigation is yet to commence but I do not accept the suggestion that some have already made that his murder was a random and isolated event. That is just too convenient a conclusion to come to and it seeks to cover the tracks of the masterminds of this heinous and ungodly crime. In any case many questions need to be answered.
For example, how come a former Chief of Defence Staff and a former Chief of Air Staff did not have any military personnel or security details guarding and protecting him? This is especially so given the fact that it appears that he was on a long distance drive on a road which has proved to be dangerous in the early hours of the evening.
Badeh was entitled to that level of protection by virtue of his position as a former Chief of Defence Staff. How come he was denied it? Who withdrew his men? Who wanted him to be alone with just his driver on that journey? Who wanted him dead?
There are many other questions which we shall ask at the appropriate time. And one day we shall get the answers.
Meanwhile, I add my voice to those who have called for an independent and public commission of enquiry into this courageous and noble soul’s brutal assasination.
With his murder it is clear that, under Buhari, ours is a nation of not just ethnic and religious cleansing but also a nation of political cleansing.
Adamawa state, the Middle Belt, Christendom and indeed the whole of Nigeria has lost a great man who though maligned, demonised and misrepresented by his numerous and powerful detractors, still had so much to offer our nation. May his beautiful and precious soul rest in peace.
Permit me to conclude this contribution with the following aside. Given this sad event, if anyone still believes that President Buhari will conduct a free and fair election and, after losing, hand over power quietly and go back to Daura without a fight next year, that person is gravely mistaken and painfully naive.
Those that believe this have still not fully understood the nature of the beast that we are dealing with. What they fail to appreciate is that it is not about Buhari alone but about who and what he represents. And those that he represents are not ready to relinquish power and lose all the ground that they have regained over the last three years and six months.
Consider the following words which were sent to me by an insider who wishes to remain anonymous.
“Air Chief Alex Badeh the former Chief of Defence Staff who called the Nigerian President, Mohammadu Buhari a “religious bigot” to his face was assasinated yesterday after he had threatened to expose the government over its involvement with Boko Haram prior to removing Jonathan. Just before he left office, he visited Maiduguri in a covet operation and ran into some top members of the current day government as they were coming out of a meeting with Boko Haram Commanders at the Nigerian Army underground Armoury which was seized by Boko Haram. He ordered his boys not to open fire but took pictures which he refused to hand over to the government when he was retired. He raised an alarm first week in November 2018 when 2 hooded men tried to break into his Asokoro house but DSS played it down. He was assassinated in cold blood by unknown gun men one month later”.
I cannot confirm the veracity of some of these assertions but two things are self-evident. Firstly that he was indeed murdered on December 18th and secondly that there is a dimension to this matter that few are familiar with.
Yet whatever we choose to believe or choose not to believe we must always remember the following: theirs is an ancient and hegemonic agenda and it is as real today as it was 58 years ago when we won our independence from the British.
First it was Rear Admiral Daniel Ikoli, the Fleet Commander of the Western Naval Command, who reports suggest was conducting an investigation into secret arms sales to Boko Haram, that was assasinated.
Then it was ex-Military Intelligence Chief and the former Director of Administration of Defence Headquarters, General Alkali, who was privy to a lot of damning information, that was assassinated.
Then it was the ex-Chief of Defence Staff under whose leadership Boko Haram was annihilated, Air Vice Marshall Alex Badeh, that has been assassinated.
All three of these worthy and noble warriors and sons of Nigeria were murdered in the last one year and all three had quite a story to tell about what was really going on in certain circles in our country! I urge our people to ponder on this and to think, think and think again!
The cabal is very much in control, the game is on and the next few months will be a rough ride. Yet no matter what comes our way one thing is clear: God is still on the throne and all power belongs to Him.
He rules in the affairs of men, He forges the destiny of nations and His counsel alone shall stand. Fasten your seat belts and let us see what will unfold.
Mr Fani-Kayode was a former Minister of Aviation.