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Reps blow hot over renewed killings, kidnapping by terrorists

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… knock Buhari, demand NSA, Defence minister’s sacking

The continued bloody attacks by terrorists on innocent citizens in some communities in the North got members of the House of Representatives enraged on Wednesday. They expressed anger at President Muhammadu Buhari and the various heads of security agencies for failing in their responsibility to protect Nigerians.

The House on Wednesday in a fresh motion on the recent killing of over 92 Nigerians in the communities of Kanan and Wase local government areas of Plateau State renewed their call for the sacking of the National Security Adviser, Babagana Mongunu, and the Minister of Defence, Bashir Magashi.

Chairman of the House Committee on Navy, Hon. Yusuf Gagdi, at the plenary raised the motion titled, “Terrorist Attack on Kanam and Wase Communities of Plateau State” under matters of urgent public importance.

According to Gagdi, on Sunday 10th April, 2022, terrorists unleashed terror on the people of the local government areas.
He said, “On Sunday 10th April, 2022 around 10am, terrorists unleashed terror on the People of Kanam Local Government and neighbouring Communities killing 92 persons, injuring over 20 people and destroying properties in Kukawa, Kyaram, Gyambau and Dungur among other communities. A total of Forty one (41) houses, Eighty six (86) shops and Eight (8) motorcycles were completely burnt and destroyed, leaving a total of 3,413 persons displaced.
“Over 20 victims that sustained various degrees of injuries are currently receiving medication at Garga Primary Health Care, Dengi General Hospital, Federal Medical Centre Bauchi and Jos University Teaching Hospital. Dengi, the headquarters of Kanam Local Government Area, Jarmai, Garga, among the locations housing various displaced persons. Wase the headquarters of Wase Local Government is housing over 40 displaced families.”
He said that despite intelligent reports, the security agencies had failed to act.
“Despite intelligent reports by the Department of State Service, on the influx of terrorists fleeing to Plateau and other neighbouring communities of Wase and Kanam Local Government areas, no proactive measures were initiated by security agencies to avert these ugly terror attacks.
“The security agencies have reliable information at their disposal of the various camps of these terrorists in Kambari forest in Taraba State as well as Bangala in Wase Local Government Area of Plateau State where these terrorists use to organize and coordinate attacks on innocent citizens of Plateau State and other parts of Nigeria.
“The House of Representatives passed a resolution on a similar motion on 14th December, 2021 and many other security resolutions over the past and have communicated all the resolutions to Government and all security agencies, but unfortunately no action was taken by the Government.
“If no stringent security measures are taking to safeguard the lives of our people in compliance with Chapter 2 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) particularly Section 14 (2) (b) which clearly states thus: that the security and welfare of the people shall be the primary purpose of government”, Gagdi said in the motion.
Speaking further, the lawmaker said the powers to secure Nigerians squarely falls on the President.
He said, “Who’s responsible is the question. We have governors. We have National Assembly members. Who’s responsible for the safety, security of lives and properties of the people of this country. Without fear of political misrepresentation, it’s Mr. President.
“We must ask ourselves questions. Insecurity issues will never be discussed correctly if you don’t detach political affiliation from it. Is Mr. President aware of what is going on in this country? Before people are killed, one of the operational commandants must be responsible. Who allowed that thing to happen? Who are the various security agencies that are supposed to protect the lives of the people, of course, the armed forces, call them. We both vote money to these agencies every year and we provide supplementary budget to them.
“We must hold someone accountable, there must be someone somewhere that has neglected his responsibility. Either the President doesn’t hold the services accountable for protecting the lives of citizens of Nigeria and the services commandant too for not responding to security report and distress calls and allow Nigerians to be killed like animals. This is not acceptable. We must hold somebody responsible for failing in the discharge of the duties to Nigeria people.”

Similarly, Hon. Bamidele Salam (PDP, Osun) in his contribution said that the parliament must rise up to hold the government accountable.
“We have come to a situation in this country where evil is perpetrated and no one is held accountable for the perpetration. We are the privileged class. We move around with convoys and security men. We are being paid to occupy this position of privilege by the sweat and taxes of some people. The part of this motion that touched me was the reference that there were early warning signals, information given to security agencies about the plans by some terrorists to attack innocent persons and this information were not acted upon by the security agencies. Is it that they feel the information is not important or that there are people they can’t touch? We must get to the root of this matter. This has to come to a stop. It appears there’s absence of government from executive level. The parliament must rise up to that responsibility”, he said.
Hon. Fatuhu Mohammed (APC, Katsina) in his contribution accused the security agencies of abdicating their constitutional mandates.
“I advise that we the National Assembly as lawmakers need to do more than we think we are doing. When it’s appropriation period we don’t take things seriously. These people will come and present their budget and we approve and they move on. There’s no oversight so how do you excuse to checkmate them? It’s business, there’s no military coup so they know the only way they can make money is through this. In my constituency, no security is doing his job. They all ask for money. None is willing to come out and protect the lives and properties of Nigerians. I don’t understand what is happening in this country”, he said.
In his remarks, the Deputy Speaker, Hon. Idris Wase (APC, Plateau), who presided over the plenary regretted that the early warning signals were not heeded.
He also revealed that a police personnel was supplying uniforms to bandits.
“The early warning that was given I brought the motion and it was well debated. This situation is not about politics. Anyone that wants to politicize this is making a huge mistake. In my own community, we heard a soldier who was supposed to be in Zamfara, given pass for consecutively six months, giving uniform to the bandits. Till this moment he has not been taken to court. I want you to understand the complicity of security agencies in this matter. Why would you give your personnel 6 months pass? Even when we raise motions, it’s sufficient for securities to act but they are adamant. Drastic actions must be taken against some officers”, he said.

On his part, Hon. Bello Kumo (APC, Gombe) suggested that the NSA and the defence minister should be relieved of their duties for not being diligent to their duties.

“I believe the President of the country is responsible for every action or inaction that happens in the land. He took an oath that he’s going to perform his responsibilities and duties without fear or favor. I believe he’s old enough to give this country the leadership it requires, but why I blame the President is why would he believe monopoly of knowledge. Why would you continue maintaining one national security adviser over all these years of your government? The NSA is supposed to present to the President an executive summary of what the security situation of the land is, and the President will act on his advice. So why keep someone who cannot see outside the box? If the President means well for this country, he must sack the National Security Adviser and the minister of Defence. A minister that cannot move to Kaduna when there are train attack, how can he coordinate the defense apparatus?”

Adopting the motion, the House adopted the calls for the sack of the security heads.

It also urged the President to as a matter of urgency direct the Minister of Defence, Chief of Defence Staff, the Inspector General of Police and the Director General of the State Security Service to initiate a coordinated Joint Security Operation and provide aerial surveillance and support to flush out the terrorists and destroy their camps particularly in Kambari in Taraba State and Bangala in Wase Local Government Area of Plateau State.
The House urged the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Farouk Yahaya, to establish military bases in the affected communities in Angon-Gyero, Kyensar in Munbutbo, Garga, Kyaram, Gyambau, Kukawa, Dada areas of Garga, Dugub in Kanam Local Government Areas; Zurak Pinau, Zak, Sabon gari, Dogon-ruwa, Gimbi, and Yuli of Wase Local Government Area; Gwamu, Barkin amar, Kwata, Nanido, Tungan Shishsi, Gora, Kurmin shofol.
The parliament also urged the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba Alkali, to immediately deploy mobile police in the affected communities.

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Hold Peter Obi, supporters responsible if anything happens to me – Reno Omokri

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Reno Omokri

Former presidential aide, Reno Omokri has raised an alarm over the continued threat to his life and that of his immediate family.

Omokri who served under President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration said Peter Obi and his supporters should be held responsible if anything happens to him and members of his family.

“If anything should happen to my immediate and extended family and I, Peter Obi and his consultant broadcast journalist should be held responsible!”

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Galandachi, National Mosque Imam, cautions politicians against using religion to divide Nigeria

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Elder statesman and Imam (Murshid) of the Abuja National Mosque, Prof. Shehu  Galadanchi

Elder statesman and Imam (Murshid) of the Abuja National Mosque, Prof. Shehu  Galadanchi, has cautioned politicians against using religion to divide Nigerians, saying it would not augur well for the country.

The cleric, who spoke at the National Inter-Religion conference organised by the Kano State government observed that some politicians from both Christianity and Islam, have already started exploiting religion to cause confusion and violence in their campaigns.

He also flayed politicians who out  to rig the coming elections by hook or by crook, alleging that among those determined to use illegal methods to win the polls were those ones deploying religion in their campaigns, including religion, to achieve their goals.

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“Some of our politicians, unfortunately from the two religions, are using their religion to emphasise our differences and causing disagreements, violence and fights among Nigerians.  This has already begun to happen during their campaigns in many places…Let me say that one would be standing on a highly dented ground if he used religion in this manner and at the expense of his own country. I find it pertinent, in a situation like this, to remind ourselves as Nigerians that Almighty Allah has graciously granted us, in this country, unlimited bounties. We have a very beautiful country, this is a very beautiful country, a very fertile country, full of natural and human resources.”

Galadanchi observed that all of these were granted to Nigeria so that its people would work together for its development and to bring it at equal standing with the rest of the developed world.

He restated the need for the political class to be reeducated to recognise the fact that Islam and Christianity preach tolerance and peaceful coexistence among its people and among the members of the human community. SUN

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Obasanjo: 2023 poll should be Nigeria’s turning point

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Former President Olusegun Obasanjo is optimistic that next year would be a turning point for Nigeria after successful general elections.

He however cautioned Nigerians not to allow emotions cloud their sense of judgement at the poll.

Obasanjo spoke on Sunday when the leadership of Mzough U Tiv, a Benue socio-cultural group, paid him a visit at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL) in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

He said the elections should be a turning point for Nigeria, adding that he is in support of a change of leadership from the North to the South.

The former president urged the middle belt to subsequently advocate for power to come to the region.

“If Nigeria is ready to get it right, the 2023 election should be a turning point. We should not go for emotion that will destroy us,” he said.

Obasanjo said with the growing population of the country, agriculture would be the solution to feeding Nigerians and not oil and gas.

“Only farming and agribusiness could tackle the nation’s growing population. Farming and agribusiness is what will feed the nation,” he said.

Obasanjo encouraged Tiv people to focus on farming and agribusiness, adding that he hopes to establish an industry in the state next year.

Iorbee Ihagh, leader of the group, said the visit was “basically to interface with you as our former head of state, a political pillar, a nationalist and elder statesman to appreciate your overwhelming love, passion and concern you have demonstrated over the Tiv people”.

He asked the former president to consider the need for the establishment of a fruit juice industry in Benue state and the power-sharing formula in the country.

“With regards to the current power equation in the country, we in the Mzough u Tiv in conjunction with the Middle Belt Forum had unanimously resolved for power shift from the north to the south for fairness, justice and a true federalism,” he said.

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