Northern Elders Forum has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to strengthen security agencies to combat insurgency, bandits and kidnappers to avert wanton killings in the country.
Dr Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, the Director of Publicity and Advocacy of NEF made the appeal in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja.
“We are outraged at the killings of farmers in Borno and many other people on a daily basis in many parts of the North.
“Our voices have been raised without pausing for a long time against pervasive insecurity in our region.
“We have consistently drawn attention to the apolitical nature to fight the Boko Haram insurgency and other threats such as banditry, rustling and kidnapping by those that are supposed to protect the people.
“The lame excuse that farmers had not sought permission from the military to harvest produce merely exposes the misleading claims that our military has secured vast territories from the insurgency.
“These killings and the reality they expose will make relocation of citizens and resumption of economic activities a lot more difficult to achieve even for a leadership that attaches priority to them,” he said.
Baba-Ahmed alleged that in some parts of the North, many farming communities had not been allowed by bandits and kidnappers to plant crops.
He said that those who did were being prevented from harvesting by the same criminal elements.
“The prospects for famine are real in the face of limited production of food in many of our communities.
“Life has lost its value and more citizens are coming under the attack of criminals. We do not see any evidence of willingness on the part of those concerned to provide security over Nigerians.
“In civilised nations, leaders who fail to provide security will do the honourable thing and leave the stage,” Baba-Ahmed said.