The coalition of Northern Groups, CNG, have issued a three-month ultimatum to President Buhari-led government to safeguard the lives of citizens all over the country or deal with renewed protests.
The groups noted that the federal security forces must carry out proper threat assessments of Nigeria’s security situation and review the poor law enforcement, poor intelligence and lack of synergy among agencies.
The CNG’s spokesmen, Abdul-Azzez Suleiman, in a statement explained, “For the avoidance of doubt, the CNG shall see no course in holding back the commencement of renewed protests on a much wider scale if, at the expiration of the three months period, the government’s commitment to safeguarding the lives of citizens all over the country remains mere rhetoric.”
The groups lamented that for a couple of years now Nigerians have steadily lost confidence in the ability of authorities to reverse the uncertainties arising from the cyclical violence, which has continued to ravage particularly the northern part of the country lately.
According to the statement, ”the escalation of attacks on defenceless northern communities by bandits, and insurgents and atrocities of kidnappers among sundry criminal elements, raised a lot of concerns and a raging uproar from an agitated public.”
The group observed that between Monday, June 8, and Saturday, June 13, 2020, the North has lost over 240 lives in several attacks representing the highest number of deaths in such a short period in recent times.
The Nigeria Security Tracker, which compiles violent incidents around the nation stated that 114 persons lost their lives in Borno state alone within this period, with Katsina State following on the list of fatalities, as 75 people were killed.
In the previous week, according to the statement, deaths caused by violent events stood at 183, while between Monday, May 25, and Sunday, May 31, the number of violent deaths reported by the tracker stood at 149.
Alarmed by the incessant attacks and the unabated rate at which the killers roam and operate freely, the Arewa groups said they organized a series of region-wide protests against the killing of innocent people starting from Katsina and Niger States on the 16th of June, 2020.
The group said the protests were scheduled to take place simultaneously in all the remaining northern states to call attention to the numerous deficits in the security arrangement in the region.
Following these evident successes, the statement revealed that the Northern Elders Forum, religious leaders and other genuinely concerned institutions and statesmen intervened by wisely counselling the CNG to suspend its marches and explore additional avenues to sustain the momentum and ensure that the government keeps to its renewed commitment.
In place of the halted protests, the CNG said it hereby resolves to direct its state coordinators to raise their levels of vigilance and to assist the security forces with credible relevant intelligence needed to tackle the situation.
The statement noted that the ”federal authorities must tame the exponential rise in the rate of attacks and the number of terror gangs, halt the proliferation of illicit arms and mop up the estimated 350 million small arms and light weapons already believed to be in Nigeria with a large percentage in the North.” DailyPost