Group protests insecurity in northern Nigeria

..says govt not doing enough to check the trend

By Ummi Ismaeel,

Group of youth organizations, Coalition of Northern Youths (CNY), Niger State chapter, yesterday in Minna, the state capital, staged a peaceful protest over incessant killings in Niger State and the entire northern states.
The CNY is blaming the governments for inactive in tackling the security challenges bedeviling northern Nigeria as armed bandits kill citizens, rape women and their daughters and destroy properties with impunity while the government seems to be watching helplesslessly.
The protest, which took off from the Central Mosque to the Emir’s palace, was led by the state Chairman of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Yakubu Garba and Comrade Bello Ibrahim, the convener of, Concerned Nigerlites Forum (CNF).
At the Emir’s palace, the group presented a ‘‘Passionate Appeal for Quick Intervention’’ letter to the Emir of Minna Alhaji Umar Faruk Bahago for onwards submission to Governor Abubakar Sani Bello and President Muhammadu Buhari to end blood letting in the region.

Ibrahim, while reading the letter before the Emir said that the palpable fears across Niger State following incessant killings, rape, kidnappings for ransom and maiming of innocent law-abiding citizens calls for urgent attention of the federal government.
The group, which made recommendations on how to check insecurity, lamented that hundreds of people had been rendered homeless, properties that cannot be quantified monetarily destroyed or stolen, millions of Naira paid as ransom, children orphaned and human dignity butchered.

“It is worrisome and regrettable that unarmed citizens had been recklessly neglected by the very government that swore to protect them under whatever circumstances, thereby compelling locals to resort to self-help which amounts to insensitivity and abdication of responsibility on the part of the government”.
He said, “Government has failed in its responsibility of protecting lives and properties of Nigerians as sworn.
“We presume that the government is not willing to tackle this head-long as no group of criminals can be bigger and better equipped than government forces”.
The nine local governments in Niger State affected by the criminals’ attack include Shiroro, Munya, Rafi, Mariga, Paikoro, Lapai, Gurara, according to the youths, while threatening to take up arms in self-defence if the government fails to act immediately.
“Our patience has exhausted as our communities and villages are being wiped out due to incessant attaks which has left hundreds dead, many with life-threatening injuries and properties are destroyed on a daily basis,” the group stated.
Ibrahim however appealed to the federal government to urgently consider the establishment of military base along the affected areas and Forest Guards to check criminals using them as hideouts.
Also the, Niger state NLC Chairman, Comrade Yakubu Garba, urged protesters to be sober and conduct themselves peacefully and be law-abiding in the face of provocations of inactiveness on the part of federal government in checking security breaches.

He however lamented that the crises in Nigeria today were signs of leadership failure.
His words: “The current government has failed citizens of this country. There is the urgent need to retrace your steps and fulfillment of campaign promises made to Nigerians during electioneering”.
Responding, the Emir of Minna, Alhaji Umar Faruk Bahago, appreciated the peaceful conduct of the youths, saying, “Everybody is concerned about the security situation.”
He advised the youths to give maximum support in tackling the situation rather than resort to blaming the government.
The royal father however assured that their message would be presented to Governor Abubakar Sani Bello for onward submission to President Muhammadu Buhari.
He also urged them to eschew lawlessness by being law-abiding and always respect constituted authorities in whatever they do.

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