The Pan-Yoruba socio-political organization, Afenifere, on Saturday, expressed worry over the spike in terrorism, kidnapping and insecurity, noting that President Muhammadu Buhari administration has not lived up to the expectations.
Afenifere, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr Jare Ajayi, urged the Federal Government to change “its style and confront the challenges headlong.”
The Yoruba body, however, restated its call for state and community Policing noting that it will reduce insecurity to its barest minimum.
The statement reads: “Afenifere is concerned about the spike in insecurity resulting in multiple losses of lives and properties in the country and that is why Afenifere has called on the Federal Government to change its style and confront the challenges headlong.
“This call is against the background of the latest kidnapping, terrorism and armed robbery incidents happening in various parts of Nigeria including the South West.
“Afenifere expresses regret that the government under President Muhammadu Buhari is not doing enough to stop terrorism and kidnapping incidents festering on a daily basis.
“We recall the kidnapping of about 30 children working on a farm in Mairuwa village in Katsina State, the abduction of travelers on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway including Prof Adigun Agbaje, former Deputy Vice Chancellor, University of Ibadan; the killing of dozens of people in Benue State; the killing of a NECO staff by armed robbers on the campus of the University of Ibadan, Ibadan last week and the abduction of four travellers in Ekiti as well as insistence of terrorists that farmers must pay them taxes before they (farmers) can access their farms in Niger and Katsina states. Farmers were also kidnapped on Iseyin-Ipapo Road in Oke ogun.
“We recall that President Buhari, while presenting this year’s budget before the National Assembly, assured that insecurity would be substantially curtailed before his tenure comes to an end next year. But since then, incidents of kidnapping, banditry, terrorism etc have escalated. The situation became so dire that some countries have designated Nigeria as a terrorism-prone area to be kept at an arm’s length. Governments of the United States of America, United Kingdom, Canada and Denmark have asked their citizens to stay away from Abuja, Nigeria’s federal capital.
“To underscore the seriousness they put to the terror indications that they saw, some of these governments are even evacuating some of their diplomatic staffers.
“While acknowledging the reported efforts of security agencies at checkmating the antics of bandits and terrorists, Afenifere submits that the intensity, regularity and ferocity of terrorism acts in the country tend to suggest that the terrorists and bandits are ahead of the government in the game; whereas the opposite was supposed to be the case.”
Afenifere’s spokesman expressed confidence that the government can tackle the problem by among other things “allowing states that are so desired to have their Police services. This should devolve down to the local and community levels.
“Stop the kid glove treatment being given to arrested bandits and terrorists. “Expedite action on the trials of apprehended terrorists and bandits.
“Clearly demonstrate that we are all equal before the law and that no individual, group or tribe should enjoy preferential treatment over and above the others.
“Needed equipment and incentives should be provided for security agencies to enable them discharge their duties responsibly.
“That machinery be set in motion quickly to have the country restructured in such a manner that every region or area would be operating under a true federal system.”
While it insisted that providing security and welfare are the primary duties of government, Afenifere said: “Unfortunately, government has not lived up to expectations in these and many other respects. President Buhari can ameliorate the situation within the few months that his administration still have.”