By Lateef Olaleye
The piece, The Obsessive Security Chap Called Yusuf Bichi, by Adebowale Yemi, which appeared in Thisday Newspaper edition of Saturday, 7th January, 2023 is by all indication a hatchet man’s job. This is more so that it came from Adebowale Yemi, the Saturday Editor who writes without logic and reason. He is a hatchet man. Aspects of his constituency have been in defence of the new paymaster in town, Chief Emefiele, the CBN Governor and former Presidential aspirant of no political party.
The connection between Emefiele and Adebowale’s enclave is not in doubt. He is one writer without focus. As loose cannon, he writes recklessly. He throws darts. He writes before he thinks. One wonders why a journalist of his standing (doubtful) would choose to write emotionally without facts. His previous writings on varied subject matters betray his exposure and composure as a lettered and trained penman. He simply casts aspersions on persons and tries to demean personalities he never came across.
His tirade on Bichi, the internationally acclaimed Director-General of the DSS is unnecessary. Bichi is known for his calmness. He is a thorough bread intelligence officer who Adebowale has tried to present as a non-achiever. No.
By the way, what does Adebowale know about intelligence and its management. I do not speak for the DSS. I will be surprised if the agency considers a response to the empty writing of Adebowale. A response to him will make him assume what and who he is not. But it is important that those who know Bichi and the discreet method of operation of the DSS put words across to the reading public lest it is believed that Adebowale is right.
On Emefiele, the DSS has not muttered a word. It is only the CBN Governor that is running helter skelter; pillar to post; mobilising all sorts of persons, groups and organisations to attack Bichi and his organisation, the DSS. Emefiele is a Nigerian. Assuming he was invited by the DSS, shouldn’t he go to answer? No one is above the law. That’s what the rule of law entails. In this same country, we saw former NSAs, Military Chiefs investigated and/or prosecuted. Sponsored groups and people will exhaust.
The time is nigh. DSS has maintained a studied silence without joining issues with Emefiele or his hired crowd. It is becoming apparent who the sponsors of the virulent attacks on Bichi are. Adebowale is doing the bidding of his pay master so he can earn his pittance. Rather than castigate Bichi, why not Adebowale and his cohorts encourage Emefiele to return to the country and not go into hiding in Jamaica and US. It is said that a clear conscience fears no accusation. Emefiele is doing all the reactions and defences. CSOs are holding press conferences for him. Clerics are defending him. Itinerant tribal associations and leaders are on his side. Good. Why don’t they advise him to come home and not abandon his seat.
Neither the DSS nor Bichi has come out to confirm they are looking for Emefiele or even declared him wanted. Yet, there are court actions initiated by Emefiele group(s). The court has issued a restraining order on the DSS from arresting Emefiele. Why doesn’t he return home to continue with his work? This is what is important now. Not to abuse or call Bichi names. I am certain the Bichi I know will not utter a word of reply unless he is not the taciturn intelligence czar we all imagine him to be.
For Adebowale, Bichi is a good for nothing person and has not achieved anything. To him and his ilk, Bichi should face criminal prosecution or get sacked as DGSS. Wonderful! What a recommendation?
Adebowale actually showed his heightened ignorance when he stupidly argued that Bichi “dabbles into areas he has no business with”. He mentioned that DSS intervention in what would have been the mother of all fuel scarcities in Nigeria prior to the yuletide if the Service did not intervene, was a waste of time. Adebowale did not think the intervention was necessary. He did not ascertain from NNPC, NARTO, NUPENG, PTD, DAPPMAN, MOMAN and the regulatory authorities if that was timely and result oriented. It is also obvious that Adebowale does not understand the role of DSS as an intelligence agency, policy adviser, security organisation and a law enforcement outfit.
That the agency is mandated to investigate economic sabotage of national security dimension is not in doubt. Only an Adebowale that did not see reason the impending sabotage was nipped. He preferred that the country went in flames as a result of the public agitations that would have followed the scarcity. The intervention did not matter to Adebowale. But it mattered to millions of ordinary Nigerians – home and abroad, who expressed their love for the agency under Bichi for the expeditious intervention.
It is needless educating Adebowale on the workings of intelligence services. A research will help him. On Sowore, Dasuki and El-Zakzaky, Adebowale should hold his jaundiced views. It is still part of his entitlement as an educated illiterate. Does Adebowale still remember that El-Zakkaky and wife in 2019 demanded while in India, to be returned to DSS custody because they preferred it to that of India. Bichi was the DG and still remains same.
Adebowale is using his pen wrongly. He is using it to misinform his audience. He is using it to espouse hate. Call him to defend his write up before the DSS and he will cry foul and run to everywhere. He cannot defend a line of his piece. He is only pushing an agenda as dictated to him by his controllers.
To say that Bichi’s “disdain for the rule of law is legendary” is a careless statement. It is idiotic if not abusive. If Bichi, “has no business staying a day longer in office”, the President and Commander- in – chief would not have reappointed him to a second term in office. He was considered for the honour of reappointment due to his excellent services. On all fronts relating to the execution of DSS mandate, Bichi has scored all time high.
Just recently, operatives under his command arrested those behind the bomb explosion in Kogi. This is just one out of many. Ask stakeholders about Bichi’s feats, analytical precision, preemptive disposition, team spirit and unparalleled achievements, he is an alpha man. He is not given to the type of noise that Adebowale’s circle make.
Adebowale and his Emefiele gang can never equal the accomplishments of Bichi. Bichi has won laurels including awards in human rights, corporate and human resource management, interagency relations, humanitarian services among many others from within and outside Nigeria. He is a champion of repute that cannot be diminished by a thousand Adebowales. In the DSS, news abound of how his staff love him because of his affectionate and fatherly mien. Adebowale, you are wrong with Bichi. Look for another target.
– Olaleye is a public commentator and resides in Ile-Ife, Osun State