By Alex Uloko

Interesting times are indeed here with the way, and manner events are unfolding in Nigeria with regards to the fight against terrorism. Some conspiracy theorists have argued that there is more than meets the eyes in the battle against the Boko Haram terrorist group in North-East Nigeria.

Some have alleged that some foreign interest has been covertly fuelling the crisis by providing logistics support to the Boko Haram terrorist group; some have also claimed that a particular European country has been selling arms and ammunition to the group. While all of these postulations are true, the main culprit in the whole debacle is indeed France.

I recall that in times past, a credible newspaper in Nigeria released an investigative report exposing how France has been fuelling the Boko Haram war in Nigeria in an attempt to cause a gradual disintegration of the country. In the said report, it was stated that “Intelligence sources stated that the possession of sophisticated weapons for insurgents, logistics and medical supplies by the Boko Haram terror group showed signs of funding by foreign interests.”

The investigative report further added that “we have seen these types of automatic weapons when they are dislodged or killed. These are not ordinary weapons; they are sophisticated machine guns and rifles, and sometimes they have tanks that are not our tanks. We have seen weapons with numbers that show that they were not just sourced through the black market but directly supplied by known arms manufacturers from France.”

If this is the case, then there is every reason to believe that, indeed, some countries are bent on seeing to the disintegration of Nigeria. Like I stated earlier, it is no other country, but France and I say this for two reasons. One is the fact that Nigeria is surrounded by the Francophone countries, whose borders these arms, ammunition, and military tanks are brought into the country. The second fact is the presence of a 4,500-strong French force, which is permanently headquartered in N’Djamena; the capital of Chad code-named Operation Barkhane, a supposed anti-insurgent operation in Africa’s Sahel region.

The question thus is, if there is the presence of a French troop in Chad, then how could one explain how and why the Boko Haram fighters were able to regroup on the fringes of the Lake Chad Basin region and launching attacks in Nigeria? How could one also explain how caches of arms and ammunitions would pass through the Chad-Nigerian border into Nigeria, and there is a French troop supposedly meant to fight terrorism.

Let us learn to call a spade a spade and understand that the French troops stationed in Chad are there to provide that logistics support to the Boko Haram group because there is no way there would be a French troop stationed in a country and a terrorist group would use the same country as their training camp and avenue for bringing in arms and ammunitions. It is also no longer news that Boko Haram’s presence in Chad has been most strongly felt around Lake Chad, which lies primarily within Chadian territory. What does this tell us?

I stand to be corrected in this regard because there have been instances where concerned stakeholders in the fight against terrorism have raised an eyebrow as regards the commitment of the French authorities. This much has led to demonstrations in Nigeria against the activities of French NGOs in operation in Nigeria. Without mincing words, it is most despicable how France has brazenly supported evil against a sovereign country.

The danger of this is that should the relevant authorities refuse to interrogate and ask critical questions; I am afraid France might succeed in its desire to recolonize Africa through the back door. The international bodies such as the United Nations must also rise to this challenge and ensure that the nefarious activities of France in Africa are curtailed in the interest of peace and tranquility.

To think that a country like France would harbor the idea of making the African continent unstable so it could achieve its desire to dominate its affairs is most unthinkable. To make matters worse, the avenue with which it intends to accomplish this is demeaning and should not be tolerated by discerning minds.

I am also appalled that the president of France, Emmanuel Macron, would harbor such disdain for the African continent by promoting terrorist activities. I recall at a press conference at the G20 summit in Hamburg, he was asked about a “Marshall Plan for Africa.” The president gave a disquisition on Africa’s “real” problems – among them, in his view, demographics and lack of “civilization,”

If the above statement does not give us a hint on how the mind of Emmanuel Macron works, then nothing else would. It is a clear case of the hand of Esau and the voice of Jacob because, in public, he appears to be advocating for a better Africa continent, but in truth, his disdain for the African continent is legendary.

I think with the avalanche of revelations as to the involvement of France in spreading terrorism in Nigeria and the African continent; it’s time for African patriots to stand in one voice to condemn France under Emmanuel Macron because this is the height of deceit and it must be resisted.

At this point, I must state clearly that Africa’s real enemy in the fight against terrorism is France. This much we now know, and this much we shall resist — enough of the deceit. And for Emmanuel Macron, it is indeed a great shame to think France can recolonize Africa by causing conflict and promoting terrorism.

Uloko is a researcher based in Lagos.


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