It is evidently clear that some persons are hell bent to destroy this country and we shall resist it by all means.
We were misinformed and misled to believe that soldiers killed peaceful protesters at the Lekki toll gate, whose bodies are yet to be seen, family members yet to be seen crying and the hospitals they were taken to yet to be seen or shown to us. We have not heard parents or relatives of the deceased coming out to cry. The governor confirmed only one death which was not as a result bullet, and it is yet to be confirmed if the incident happend at the scene of the protest at Lekki.
The burning and destruction of Public infrastructure, media houses and attacks on the Oba of Lagos and other personalities has shown the evil intent of some anarchist. We shall not allow this, and the best way to resist this madness is by resisting to be tempted to respond to their evil act, but to allow the constituted authority to do the needful.
Our young people up here in the North must keep calm and refuse to be tempted to see the violence from a regional, tribal or religious angle because that is their intention. Those in Plateau that have subconsciously allowed themselves to be used must wake up and note that they are only playing to the gallary of some evil persons.
We shall soon mobilize young people of influence from this part of the country to have a talk and see how to prevail on other young people with tendencies not to contemplate taking laws into their hands. Violence has never defeated violence.
We urge all voices of young progressive Nigerians both those for and against SARS to speak up against this insincerity and intent to burn down our country.
The IPOB guys have proven a point and we must resist them by refusing to be violent while we note that not all Igbos are members of IPOB.
President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for listening to the voice of the Nigerian people over their dissatisfaction with the operations of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad(SARS) of the Nigeria Police Force.
Lawan said with the courageous decision to dissolve the police unit, the President and his government have shown themselves as responsive to the feelings of the people.
“I am applauding the President because it is a demonstration of good leadership to yield to the demand of the populace in difficult situations like this,” Lawan said.
He also commended the Inspector-General of Police for the decision and challenged him to come up with measures for the transformation of the Nigeria Police into an effective law enforcement and crime fighting agency that is also a true and respected friend of the Nigerian people.
The Senate President said the measures should fully address all the issues that earned the dissolved SARS the odium of the Nigerian people, and in particular of the articulate Nigerian youths.
“The expectation is that this situation offers us another opportunity to reform the operations of the entire Force.
“I also reiterate my call for the prosecution of all security personnel whose extra judicial killings and other acts of misconduct brought us to this sorry pass.
“I hope that the steps taken by the Inspector-General of Police will be followed with more comprehensive reform of the Police,” Lawan said.
The statement was made available yesterday by Ola Awoniyi, the Special Adviser on Media to the President of the Senate.
Borno State Governor, Babagana Umara Zulum is saddened by the killing of 11 security personnel made up of eight policemen and three civilian JTF members ambushed on their way to Baga as security backup in reconstruction efforts.
The governor was in Baga from Thursday to Friday in part to supervise efforts to return residents as part of strategies that aim to cut Boko Haram’s long use of the commercial town as main transit for undertaking major fishing trade and tax administration from which the insurgents fund their murderous activities. Baga, Borno’s largest fishing community in the shores of the Lake Chad with water ways to neighboring countries is considered strategic to Boko Haram’s operation.
Zulum’s spokesman, Malam Isa Gusau, in a statement issued Saturday, said two convoys, one belonging to the Governor and another for a committee on Baga reconstruction had safely plied the Maiduguri-Baga route previous days before the third convoy of security men was ambushed on Friday morning even after precautionary steps had been taken to ensure safe trips.
“Governor Babagana Umara Zulum is saddened by this unfortunate carnage. He shares the grief of families of these 11 priceless heroes to whom Borno shall remain grateful. The governor prays for the repose of their souls and urges all stakeholders to remain committed to ongoing peace building efforts. Zulum is of the opinion that we must continue to keep hope alive even in the face of tribulations, and believe that with sustained efforts and prayers, Borno will eventually regain peace. The situation facing us is a tough one but we must choose between doing something which gives us some hope and doing nothing which will leave us more vulnerable to Boko Haram’s ultimate wish to takeover Borno and bring it under their sovereign brutal administration” the statement said.
Zulum attends Baga’s first juma’at prayers in nearly two years
Meanwhile, Governor Zulum while in Baga attended juma’at prayers held for the first time in nearly two years.
Baga town was displaced by the Boko Haram insurgents 21 months ago, with most of the residents taking refuge in Monguno and Maiduguri.
In the Governor’s convoy were the Senator representing Northern Borno, Abubakar Kyari, house of reps members representing Marte, Monguno, Nganzai, Mohammed Tahir Monguno and that of Mobbar, Kukawa, Guzamala, Abadam federal constituencies, Bukar Gana Kareto. Speaker of Borno State House of Assembly, Abdulkarim Lawan, Chairman of Baga resettlement committee and the Commissioner for Justice, Barr. Kaka Shehu Lawan were on the trip and some top government officials.
While taking tour of the construction work going on in Baga, Governor Zulum commended the resettlement committee for the quality and speed of work.
Zulum had on August 31, 2020 inaugurated a resstlmeent committee, which was mandated to commence immediate reconstruction and rehabilitation work in Baga.
President Muhammadu Buhari will depart Abuja Monday for Niamey, Niger Republic to participate in the Fifty-Seventh Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government. The one-day summit will deliberate on the Special Report on COVID-19 to be presented by President Buhari who was appointed the ECOWAS Champion on the Fight against COVID-19 during the Extraordinary Virtual Summit of ECOWAS on April 23, 2020. As a Champion, the Nigerian leader was expected to coordinate the sub-regional response against the pandemic. In furtherance of that objective, under the supervision of the Champion, Nigerian Ministers of Health, Aviation and Finance were appointed Chairpersons of the Ministerial Coordination Committees on Health; Transport, Logistics and Trade; and Finance respectively. The Summit will also receive a Special Report on the ECOWAS Single Currency Programme to be presented by President Julius Maada Bio of Sierra Leone and Chair of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ), and President Alassane Ouattara, who is Chair of the West African Economic Monetary Union (WAEMU/UEMOA). The President of the ECOWAS Commission, Jean Claude Kassi Brou will present to the West African leaders, the 2020 Interim Report on activities of the sub-regional body including ECOWAS Vision 2050. The alarming rise in incidents of terrorism, insurgency, armed banditry and piracy will also come under focus, while the disruption of the democratic process by the military in Mali, will receive further attention. Similarly, in Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea and Niger where parliamentary and presidential elections are scheduled for this year, the imperative to strengthen democracy in the sub-region by respecting constitutional provisions, rule of law and outcomes of free and fair polls, will be emphasised. President Buhari, who will be accompanied to the Summit by ministers and other top government officials, will return to Abuja after the meeting.
The statement was made available yesterday by Malam Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity.
Despite being at what he calls “the low ebb of resources caused by COVID-19 and fallen oil prices,” Nigeria will continue to provide support for the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) based in N’djamena, Chad Republic, President Muhammadu Buhari has assured.
The President spoke Friday at State House, Abuja, while receiving Ambassador Mamman Nuhu , Executive Secretary, Lake Chad Basin Commission and Head of Mission, MNJTF.
President Buhari said despite paucity of resources, security of Nigeria and that of her neighbours must have pride of place, “so I will consult with all the relevant officials, and we will do our best.”
Ambassador Nuhu gave the President updates on the proposed recharge of Lake Chad, which he said was one of the priorities of Lake Chad Basin Commission, “and for which you have great passion,” informing that the governments of China and Italy were of great support, and positive action should commence soon.
He also commended countries which have contributed troops to MNJTF, adding, however, that kinetic military approach alone would not eradicate insurgency, and emphasis must also be placed on the root causes, particularly poverty.
As stated by Femi Adesina, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity. Today August 28, 2020.
Flowing from his earlier visit to the Inspector General of Police and the critical meeting of stakeholders of Kanam Local Government Areas in a bid to curb the rising spate of criminal activities in PKK, with particular concern to the incessant kidnappings in Kanam LGA, the member representing Pankshin/Kanke/Kanam Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Rt Hon Yusuf Adamu Gagdi was today at the Operation Safe Heaven (STF) headquarters in Jos, where he held talks with the Commander for a collaborative effort to tame the tide.
The lawmaker commended the commander, Major General Okonko for his efforts to curb the wanton killings in Southern Kaduna, parts of Bauchi and Plateau, and encouraged the commander not to rest on his oars until activities of marauding killers in his areas of coverage are brought to an end.
Rt Hon Gagdi requested for the formation of military checkpoints in Garga axis, Gagdi-Dugub axis and Namaran-Kapel axis, where the kidnappers and other criminals had recently had field days perpetrating their heinous activities.
He said lack of security presence in those axis had encouraged the criminals to execute their missions unhindered, hence observed that when Join Security checkpoints are installed in the areas, the criminals will have to withdraw their activities from those areas or get apprehended by the security apparatus.
While responding, the commander, Major General Okonko promised to hearken to the lawmaker’s request in order to put paid to the criminal activities of bandits in the mentioned areas.
He said his men are well equipped and combat ready to clamp down on bandits and criminal activities in his area of coverage, while assuring that his men will redouble their efforts to ensure improved security in PKK and the whole areas under Operation Safe Heaven.
As Chairman of one of the armed forces committee in the House of Representatives who equally oversight the general activities of the military, Rt Hon. Gagdi was presented with a plague, to honour his visit to the STF headquarters.
The Commandant Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), Major General Jamil Sarham, has challenged officers of the Nigerian Armed Forces serving in the Academy to always render selfless service while discharging their duties to the nation.
He stated this at the NDA Officers Mess during the decoration ceremony for 12 officers of the Academy who were recently promoted to the rank of Major and its equivalent in the Nigerian Armed Forces.
Gen Sarham lamented on unguarded utterances associated with some military personnel. He encouraged the newly promoted officers to resist the urge to engage in such acts. Instead, he noted, they should double their efforts at carrying out their duties professionally, especially at this time that the nation and the world at large is faced with a series of security challenges.
To succeed in their careers, the Commandant urged the newly promoted officers to remain steadfast as they are likely to face tougher challenges ahead. He also charged them to always remain loyal to the military.
The event was attended by Directors, officers serving in the Academy and family members of the newly promoted officers.
The former Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sunusi II has also lent his voice to the Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir El-Rufai’s saga with the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), where he was quoted to have said:
“If you have an opinion, people will either agree or disagree with you. But a man who has an opinion that can be agreed with or disagreed with is always better than a man who has no opinion at all.
“Nasir has always had opinions. He knows what his position is on things. He says that position very clearly. People will like it, some people will not like it. And that is what people call being controversial, being controversial is actually having an opinion. If you don’t want to be controversial, you just behave like these teflons, flexible, just flow with the wind and nobody knows where you stand…
“I think the case of the crisis in Kaduna, first of all is something that predates this government. It has been on for a long time. And the governor is doing something about it. The North as a whole suffers because we have people who profit from division. We have divided ourselves against each other, whether it is ethnicity of religion.
“And when you have someone who says I am simply going to stand for justice, for the rights of human beings and doing what is right, some people who are not used to things being done in that way are going to object. I am sure that His Excellency knows that with every single issue, there will be people who will object.
“I read the petition. I was looking for the specific allegation. You said somebody does not respect the rule of law, what is the specific instance of disrespect for the rule of law. You say somebody has mishandled a crisis. What is the specific manner in which he mishandled the crisis?
“If you going to take action on people based on allegations, the President of the NBA himself has allegations against him that have not been proven, but nobody has said anything about him because it this is a matter that is before a court of law, and people will wait for the court to decide because everybody has a right to fair hearing.
“More important for me, if you feel that the governor of Kaduna State is not doing well, you should invite him to your conference and ask him and let him explain what he is doing and tell him what you think he is doing wrong. You will learn something from him, he will learn something from him. Disinviting him is not the path of people who actually want progress. Because if you disagree with someone , having him in your hall where you can tell him your view is the best way and he can defend himself. And if there are things he needs to improve he will take them on board. And if there are things that you don’t know that he is doing, you can be better informed. That is the best way to handle issues like this.
“I hope that this matter will not be turned into a religious and ethnic matter. It should be a matter of principle. I think it is their loss because if he was there he would add value to the conference and they would learn something about what he is doing.
“It is sad for the NBA itself and it is sad for freedom of speech, and also fair hearing.
“I have known Nasir since we were 16/17. He is a nationalist. He has never been associated with any ethnic or religious bigotry. All our friends are Nigerians. People don’t even think of us as northerners because really we are just Nigerians.
“Anybody who knows him will tell you that he is just a Nigerian. Look at the people that he works with, look at the people around him, look at his friends. He has not surrounded himself with people from a particular ethnic group or a particular religious persuasion. He has friends all over, pastors, reverends, imams. It is is sad that anybody can accuse him in any way of being partisan in the matter.
One of the lawyers made a comment and I think it is something that we should bear in mind. He is a governor in charge of lives and property in the state. He is the number one person concerned with peace in Kaduna because if there is no peace, he is responsible. You can’t have people crying more than the bereaved. If we do not assist him, the least we can do is pray for him, and give him a chance and advice him.”
“Needless to say, this is a sad thing. I am his friend, but His Excellency is wrong, I will say it. If I am wrong, he will say it and we would still be friends. But on this matter, it does more to the discredit of the NBA. This is one less speaking engagement.
The most important thing that Kaduna State should have peace. We should not complicate efforts at peace-building. I read today that the groups are meeting and I hope and pray that they will reach a compromise and we will see peace in the state. That is the most important thing, not speaking at NBA or what NBA says, but that there should be peace in Kaduna State and in this country.” He concluded.
Gen K. S Lawan leads delegation of the officials of the Borno State Government to Cameroon, to facilitate the return of Nigerian Citizens.
Troops of the Multinational Joint Taskforce (MNJTF) on Tuesday received 106 civilians who escaped from the Boko Haram terrorists and surrendered. 94 of the escapees were Nigerians, who were handed over to a delegation of Borno government at a remote location in the republic of Cameroon.
Of the 94 Nigerians, there were 37 adult males, 17 adult females and 40 children.
The 106 escapees included Cameroonians and Chadian. Handing them over to Borno Government, Commander of the MNJTF, Maj. Gen Ibrahim Yusuf, said some of the persons of interest voluntarily surrendered to the Headquarters Sector 1 of the MNJTF in far North Cameroon, while the women and children were rescued.
Yusuf said while the military welcomed non-kinetic approach to the War, it warned that operations would continue, adding that it will investigate some of the surrendered persons to ascertain their relationship with the terrorists.
This is a strong indication of success, because, in counter insurgency operations success is measured not just by the number of insurgents that we kill, but as well the number of those that are surrendering, as well as a reduction in their recruitment base. So, obviously this is a success indicator.
“It is because of the Multi National nature of the operations involving Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria, that by the concept of our operations, we operate seamlessly and that is why whether they surrender in Nigeria or they surrender in Cameroon, or Niger, it is the same thing for us.
“It is one cohesive force, but the onus now is on us, and we have the guidelines and since they are Nigerians, we have to transfer them to the Nigerian government and the one person from Chad, we have to arrange to get him to Chad, so it is part of our mandate,” Maj. Gen Yusuf said.
In his remarks, Borno’s Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Kaka Shehu Lawan, who led six man delegation, including Commissioners of Women Affairs and Religious Affairs and special advisers, said the state government was going to profile, debrief, deradicalize and reintegrate the escapees.
He said those profiled as ex fighters would be sent to Nigerian military’s “Operation Safe Corridor,” while the rescued women will undergo stages of counseling before they are debriefed.
“We received a report that a number of our citizens are here, surrendered to the MNJTF, and we also have others that are not members of the Boko Haram sect, but pursuant to the clearance operation, they were rescued following the liberation of villages they were held captive.
”So we are here to see for ourselves, to ascertain how many of them are truly indigenes of Borno, how many are fighters? How many are not fighters? How many women and children. Secondly, having identified the number of fighters and non-fighters, women and children, we’ll plan for evacuation of those that are innocent, those rescued as a result of clearance operation immediately to Maiduguri, with a view to reintegrating them because, they are innocent.
“And the ones that are fighters, we’ll liase with “operation safe corridor,” and transfer them there with a view to deradicalizing them,” Lawan said.
OPEN LETTER TO OUR LEADERS AND STAKEHOLDERS IN RESPECT OF THE SPONTANEOUS INCIDENTS OF KIDNAPPING IN KANAM
I am writing as a concerned indigene of Kanam. About five months ago, our Local Government Area has witnessed the following incidents of kidnapping;
A Fulani Woman around the bush surrounding Kwalmiya, Gyambar, Bungudu areas around February 2020.
Wife of Tafidan Ghal, (Younger brother to Hon. Gagdi Yusuf) in Gum-Gagdi on 16/03/2020.
Isiaka Garba Birni, he was kidnapped while taking the ransom for the release of the wife of Tafidan Ghal on the 26/03/2020
The Pankwal Bogghom at his Palace in Namaran on 20/04/2020
Dr. Idi Bukdah at his house in Zungum on 06/06/2020
The wife of Alh. Awal Ja’oji at his house in Runji on 20/7/2020
Mr. Ibrahim Kafi, a great philanthropist at his house in Gum-Gagdi on 10/80/2020
Malan Muhammad Maikudi at his house in the early hours of today in Dengi town on 13/08/2020
Alh. Umar Hayi in Dengi town on 16/08/2020
A careful study of the interval of period for every case of kidnapping revealed that in every month there would be one of two cases of the incidence. Now is getting on weekly basis.
In every incidence, huge amount of money in millions were lost for ransom. This is further aggravating the poverty of our people.
Some of the kidnapped persons are still in captivity because the ransom have not been secured.
The need for security is considered to be the most important basic needs among other needs as outlined by many philosophers. Every human being or living organisms are product of a sustained security enjoyed from the womb, childhood, adolescent and old age.
We need security to grow, prosper, make good things work and worship God. Shelter and other necessity of life are all inconsequential in the mid of serious security challenge.
Food security is also part of the components of security challenges and if this kidnapping continue, our farmers in the rural areas would not be spared and we will suffer food insecurity. The end effect of this inflicted calamity would be hunger as well as lost of business men and women. Therefore the importance of security cannot be overemphasize Sir.
Given the reoccurrence of the incidents of kidnapping in Kanam LGA, we wish to sincerely appeal to the following leaders to as a matter of urgency and compassion come to the rescue of the people of Kanam before things get out of hand:
The Executive Governor of Plateau State.
The Senator Representing Plateau Central District.
Hon. Member Representing Pankshin, Kanke and Kanam Federal Constituency PLHA.
The Deputy Speaker and Member Representing Dengi Constituency PLHA
Hon. Member Representing Kantana Constituency.
The Acting Chairman Kanam Local Government Council.
The President Kanam Traditional Council.
Religious leaders. Call for special prayers and fasting. The Emir of Kanam may wish to invite the religious leaders for a meeting with the view to declare two or three days of fasting and prayers for divine intervention against this menace.
Leaders of youth groups to organize special programs that will help in curbing this menace.
Our social media activists in Kanam to please for the sake of this ugly trend in Kanam, dedicate all our social media activism on the issues of kidnapping in Kanam and how to get out of the situation.
We are appealing to all security agencies and concern citizens of Nigeria resident anywhere who have what it takes to please come to our help to get out of this serious security challenge facing us with crippling effects on our socioeconomic wellbeing.
While we will do everything possible within our reach to reach out to the concerned leaders mentioned above, we wish to appeal to all other critical stakeholders in Kanam Project to rise above board as we chant community measures to confront this menace head long.
May Allah in His infinite mercy and compassion help our people out of this painful trial. May Allah expose anyone who directly or indirectly is involved in the planing, execution and perpetuation of this ugly incidents of kidnapping.
ND Shehu Kanam Community and Rural Development Advocate.