A coalition of civil society organisations (CSOs) in Nigeria has condemned the handling of security challenges in the country.
The CSOs, in a joint statement, said kidnapping for ransom had assumed an industrial and deadly scale, urging the government to provide political and moral leadership.
According to the coalition, including the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), and Enough is Enough (EiE), the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration has failed to carry out its primary duty of protecting the lives and property of Nigerians.
A pupil was killed, with 27 other students abducted, in a recent attack on the Government Science College, Kagara, Niger State.
Three members of staff and 12 of their relatives were also kidnapped.
This abduction happened less than three months after gunmen abducted more than 300 students of Government Secondary School, Kankara, Katsina State. The students were later freed after negotiations.
Before the Kankara abduction, more than 100 girls were kidnapped from the Government Girls Science and Technical College, a boarding school in Dapchi, Yobe State. This abduction happened on 19 February, 2018.
The schoolgirls were reportedly released by the side of a road almost five weeks later. But five of the girls died and one other – Leah Sharibu – is still being held.
Also, herder attacks on unarmed farming communities and reprisal attacks in the face of government inaction and failure to bring the terrorist herdsmen and their funders to justice have been reported.
‘President Buhari and his government have failed in their primary duty under Section 14 2(b) of the 1999 Constitution which is ensuring the security and welfare of the Nigerian people’, the statement read.
The group urged Buhari to provide political and moral leadership as governors and other stakeholders seek ways to solve this problem.
‘Mobilise our rich Nigerian assets to address the insecurity situation across the country and seek international cooperation to ramp up security assets’, the CSOs said.
‘Where the president fails to fulfil his constitutional duties as stated above, we demand he steps aside or the National Assembly initiates impeachment proceedings against him on grounds of gross misconduct as provided for in Section 143 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria’.
Source: Enough is Enough
Photo source: BBC