Civil Society Organisations and the Media in Niger State have called on government at all levels and security agencies to scale up security apparatus at flash points across the state, especially at border towns, to reduce the rate of killing in the country.
Leader of the Niger Accountability Group, Mathew Oladele, while making this call after a peaceful walk to commemorate this year’s National Day of Mourning and remembrance for all victims of violent killings across the country, said the walk was undertaken to express solidarity with grieving communities across the country.
Oladele said the event, which started last year, was organized by Enough is Enough Nigeria and championed by the CSOs and media in the state.
In his remarks, Oladele said: “The event was intended to stir the conscience of the political class into developing the political will to protect our commonwealth through accountable governance.
“Mr. Governor, we acknowledge the distribution of vehicles, motorcycles and other security gadgets to our security agencies in fighting violence.
“We are bordered by six states alongside other international borders, which shows that in terms of security, Niger State needs special attention.
“The reason we are gathered today on black is that the nation mourns, the state mourns, the citizens mourn.
“Our people are more than numbers.
“Our communities and states deserve to live peacefully.”
It should be recalled that last week at the opening of the National Trade Fair hosted by Niger State, the President, Niger State Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, Dr. Abdulkadir Hassan, expressed concern over the level of insecurity in the state, saying: “The fear of kidnappers is preventing investors from coming to the state.”
Oladele therefore called on the Niger State Government to scale up the security apparatus at flash points across the state, especially its border towns, to forestall influx of hoodlums into the state.
“The state government should engage security agencies, Civil Society Organizations and media to sensitize the community members on community policing and roles of community members in building peaceful society,” he said.
He also called on the State Police Command to continually engage CSOs and NGOs in the state to boost their community engagement and interventions aim promoting peace.
Also, Chairman, Nigerian Union of Journalists, Niger State Council, Comrade Abdu Idris, said issues of security should not be left to security agencies alone as it was everyone’s business.
Idris maintained that the NUJ was proud to associate itself with the day.
The ceremony, which held on Tuesday in the 36 states of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, will now be marked on May 28th every year.
A minute of silence was also observed in honour of those killed.