President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Reverend Samson Ayokunle, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to step up efforts to address insecurity.
Ayokunle, in a statement by Adebayo Oladeji, his special assistant on media and communications, said the ongoing crisis in southern Kaduna has clearly shown Nigeria “as a nation that is at war against enemies of the state”.
He warned that people might be forced to resort to self-help if the situation is not addressed by the government.
“Despite assurances from both the Federal and Kaduna State governments to nip the crisis in the bud, the spiraling of these assaults have indisputably shown that these demons of murders are yet to sheathe their swords against Southern Kaduna communities and that the government appears not to be sincere in walking the talk,” he said.
“People should not be allowed to resort to self-help, but if this situation is not addressed, self-help might be the alternative because nobody would keep on watching for these nuisances to continue to be on the prowl and snuff life out of him or her.
“There is the urgent need by government and the security forces to walk their talk and combat the raging insecurity squarely across Kaduna State and other parts of the country. The government should not think that we are not appreciative of their efforts but we say without mincing words that your present best is unacceptable.
“It is not the best Nigerians expect. How can we be seeing and reading in the news about mass burials and be happy when we are not fighting a civil war? We deserve peace in Nigeria.”
Ayokunle condemned the presidency’s comment that Kaduna killings were fuelled by politics and revenge, adding that the bloodbath is an act of criminality that should have been sanctioned.
He said it is regrettable that despite assurances from Nasir el-Rufai, the governor, to bring perpetrators of the crimes to justice, the state and security agencies involved in the maintenance of law and order are yet to fulfill their pledge.
“The leadership of CAN was flabbergasted when the presidency described the current bloodshed in Southern Kaduna as politically motivated coupled with banditry deployed along ethnic and religious lines,” he said.
“Where is the statistical evidence for that? Who are the politicians involved in this inhuman and callous act that the Federal authorities have failed to apprehend or name? Do they have the right to be doing this scot-free if it is true?
“While the present bloodbaths in the southern part of Kaduna state have been shown to be acts of criminality that should have attracted sanctions, the lackluster disposition of the government in stopping further massacre of Christians and decimation of their communities by terrorist herdsmen speaks volumes on how government values human lives and genuine intervention.”
Also, Olu Falae, a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, has said that Nigeria was heading towards “anarchy” if nothing urgent was done to stop the incessant killings by armed bandits in the country.
Falae, who spoke with SaharaReporters on Tuesday in Akure, Ondo State, condemned the killings in some villages in Southern Kaduna where over fewer 40 persons have been murdered in recent days.
The elder statesman said Nigeria was already in trouble under the government of President Muhammadu Buhari due to the rising level of killings and kidnappings in the country, adding that the government appears not to understand the tactics to use to end the menace.
He said the Nigerian people would soon have no choice than to defend themselves within the limits of the law since government had failed to ensure their security.
He said, “The killings and destruction of villages particularly in the Kaduna communities is unacceptable most especially when our President (Muhammadu Buhari) is a retired military man.
“I believe one of the reasons people voted Mr President to power is for him to restore order and deal with Boko Haram insurgents including these killings in Southern Kaduna and Niger.
“Sadly, the killings has not stopped and Fulani herdsmen keep ravaging everywhere in the country, destroying farmlands but internally this must stop and if the government doesn’t stop it, they are encouraging self protection in the country.
“For instance, if you keep attacking me and the government doesn’t do anything about it, I would have no obligation than to protect myself and with such self help, it might develop into civil war or anarchy neither of which we want.”
When asked about his opinion on the repeated calls for the sack of service chiefs in the country, Falae said the President should have sacked them long time ago since their tenure in office had elapsed.
He added, “There must be constitutionality if people are appointed for a specific period, they must go when their time expires.
“And it’s also totally unacceptable that all the security chiefs come from the same part of the country. This is partiality because when a man holds a public office, he holds for all Nigerians. The President must be for all Nigerians and he must be seen to be so.”