GFD EDITORIAL: The curious intervention by DSS in politics
On Sunday, the country’s secret police the Department of State Service (DSS) issued a statement warning those who are criticizing President Mohammadu Buhari to desist or face sanction.
The statement stated that those who are criticizing the president are “misguided elements who have continued to threaten the government, sovereignty and corporate existence of this country.”
The DSS stated that “it will no longer tolerate deliberate machinations by subversive and hostile groups whose agenda is to throw the country into anarchy so as to serve the interests of their sponsors.”
The curious statement by the country’s secret police reminds one of the era of Marilyn Ogar as the spokesperson of the DSS, dabbling into politics rather than playing the role the service was created to carry out.
The main duty of the DSS includes counter-intelligence, internal security, counter-terrorism, and surveillance as well as investigating some other types of serious crimes against the state.
From all indications, the DSS has not been up and doing in the carrying out of such function as being ascribed to the service by the nation-state as insecurity escalated and the nation is thrown into chaos due to the breakdown of law and order by non-state action.
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It is important to note that DSS is a state institution created to protect both those in government and other Nigerians and it should be seen to focus more on carrying out its constitutional responsibility rather than dabbling into issues of politics and particularly the constitutional rights of Nigerians to freedom of speech.
Peter Afunanya should be mindful of the fate that befell his predecessor in office who walked the path of ignominy and chose to depart from the main function of the service to engage in political brickbat to please their sponsors.
The state of insecurity in the country today demonstrated the incompetence of those in the affairs of the country who ordinarily should be more concerned about the security and peace of the nation rather than jumping to defend the indefensible.
While Nigeria could be tolerant of Garba Shehu, who daily spew out vituperation against those who call out the president for his handling of the country security situation, history will not be lenient with the DSS, Afunanya and those who are pushing him to issue such outrageous statement in the face of the challenges being faced by the country.
Nigerians expect the DSS to focus more on intelligent gathering and collaborate with other sister security agencies to quickly arrest the deteriorating security situation which has put many Nigerians on the edge and fueling the call for separations and state police across the geo-political zone.
It is obvious that if the country is a secured and prosperous state, no one will care who the president is and where he or she comes from.
The DSS should also acknowledge the fact that the president was elected to solve both the security issues and revamp the economy and if those who hired him for the job think he was not doing a good job of that, then they have the constitutional right to call him out.