- The killings in Zamfara has been condemned by Senator Saraki, who called on the security agencies to end the carnage
- The Senate president says Nigerians should not allow criminal elements to take over parts of the country
- Saraki also called on President Buhari to widen the consultation within the armed forces on the search for solution to this problem
The president of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, has condemned the killings in Zamfara, describing them as barbaric and unacceptable.
Vanguard reports that Senator Saraki, who stated that the killings were a major threat to the nation's democracy, called on the security agencies to swiftly devise a strategy to tackle the menace.
Legit.ng gathers that he made his position known in a statement signed by his special adviser on media and publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu.
According to the Senate president, the Zamfara killings are not getting enough attention from the media and the non-governmental organisations.
He said the Senate had sent an investigative team into the area a few months ago after Senator Kabiru Marafa raised a motion on the floor and as at then, the Senate called on other security agencies to help the police in dealing with the matter.
The statement read: “There is need for certain and proper profiling of the situation so that we can know whether it is simple cattle rustling, vicious armed robbery on a large scale, religious cum ethnic crisis or invasion by foreign forces.
“Our security agencies must immediately come out with a proper understanding of the situation, the right strategy and deployment of the necessary troops to tackle the menace."
He said within the next few days, the right signals must be sent to the criminals in that area that the Nigerian State will no longer tolerate the on-going blood-letting.
“We must immediately change our strategy. Also, the President has to take full, direct control. May be the President must widen the consultation within the armed forces on the search for solution to this problem. He must go beyond the first line military top brass. We need to get ideas from more sources than we presently do.
“In 2014, I remember that President Jonathan was told that ‘you control the armed forces and you are the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces of the Federal Republic, why should any part of the country be under occupation by criminals’. Why should we not apply the same logic to the occurrence in Zamfara today?
“Just as we also flayed the pre-2015 government, the situation in Zamfara presents a picture of the government denying the citizens their fundamental rights to life and rights to own property. The government must correct this by stopping the carnage in Zamfara immediately," the statement added.
Saraki said it was expected that the president would have arranged a meeting with leaders of the National Assembly, legislators, traditional rulers and other key stakeholders from the affected state, to exchange ideas and proffer lasting solutions to the issue.
He urged Buhari to immediately give a marching order to the various security agencies and tell them to give him progress report on a regular basis. He said there is need to use the Zamfara case to demonstrate to all criminal elements that the government will not tolerate those who hide under whatever guise to shed human blood in our country.
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“We should look at the Zamfara killings as a major threat to our democracy, particularly as we move towards election period in the next 50 days. We should not allow criminal elements to take over parts of the country. The situation in that state is an example of why we need to overhaul our security architecture in order to bring them to a state where they can tackle emerging challenges," he added.
Legit.ng previously reported that the federal government said the persistent attacks on residents of Zamfara by bandits would affect food security in the country.
The minister of interior, Alhaji Abdulrahman Dambazau, said this in Gusau on Wednesday, December 26, during an on-the-spot assessment of the activities of the bandits in the state.
He said: “Since those affected by the killings are largely the agrarian rural dwellers, the activities of the bandits will have a serious impact on agriculture and food security.
“This is a final warning, the bandits must stop these acts forthwith because the Federal Government has devised more stringent ways to deal with them."
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