Failure of Intelligence Gathering in Nigeria

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The news on the invasion of the Oyo state secretariat at Agodi in Ibadan, by some Oodua nation agitators penultimate Saturday hit most Nigerians like thunderbolt with many shocked over lack of intelligence gathering on the part of security agencies in the country.

The group, dressed in military camouflage, had removed the Nigerian national flag at the secretariat and replaced it with their “Oodua nation flag” before the intervention of the security personnel. Videos of the incident that appeared on social media showed two persons – a man and a woman – declaring that the “Oodua Nation” had separated from Nigeria.

Though security operatives arrested some of them while others escaped into the nearby bushes, the incident showed the complete lack of intelligence gathering by security agencies in the country.

Virtually all security agencies in Nigeria, whether the Nigerian Army, Navy, Air Force, the police, NSCDC and the Department of State Services (DSS), have intelligent units or departments. In fact, the DSS was specifically established to nip such terrorism and treasonable crime in the bud through intelligence gathering.

While the agitators were sewing military uniforms, amassing weapons and training for the operation, many Nigerians were surprised that their plan did not leak to security agencies, particularly the police and DSS, for them to burst their activities before the actions were executed.

What is really the work of the security agencies if not to burst crimes through intelligence gathering?  Why is it that in Nigeria, whenever terrorists are planning evil against the country or persons, their evil plots are not prevented?

A few years ago, there were media reports that the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) had established and successfully trained its militant wing, Eastern Security Network (ESN) for months in a forest in Delta State without the knowledge of the police and DSS. It was not until the video of the training went viral on social media that the security agents knew that there was such training. 

Many Nigerians believe that security operatives, particularly the army, police and the DSS only show their power and might when dealing with unarmed civilians while heavily armed non-state actors hold the country to ransom.

Indeed, many security agencies are pre-occupied with inglorious roles which have continued to make Nigerians to hold them in disdain.

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