The leadership of the NCFront, a newly launched people’s alternative to the ruling government in Nigeria, has condemned in very strong terms the unabated massacre of innocent citizens in Southern Kaduna, especially the killings of 33 unarmed residents between august 5 and 6, 2020.
These killings, the group said, are most worrisome given a strictly enforced 24-hour curfew on Southern Kaduna, where the attacks took place.
In a statement in Abuja on Sunday signed by Dr. Tanko Yunusa, Head, Public Affairs Bureau, the NCFront said it was alarmed by the fact that despite the imposition of the 24-hour curfew, the attack could happen between 11pm and 4am without any challenge from Nigerian security forces.
It said: “That this happened at all is worrisome, but that it could last for over five hours without the attackers being challenged is alarming considering the recent accusation by the Governor of Borno State that the Military was complicit in the insecurity in his state having turned their assignment into a criminal business enterprise.”
The statement read in part: “The Federal Government can therefore not be dismissive of the weighty allegations against the military by Governor Babagana Umara Zulum of Borno state as the Military has attempted to do. What is required is an independent judicial inquiry into the way the security forces have carried out their constitutional mandate from 2015 to date. However, the continued retention of the service chiefs in the face of rising insecurity and against the Public Service Rules, indicates nonchalance of the Federal Government to the sanctity of human lives and the rule of law.
“The NCFront wishes to further assert that the taking over of about one third of Nigerian territory, especially in the President Buhati’s Katsina state despite the heavy presence of the Nigerian Army, Air force and other security forces in the state is condemnable, unacceptable and must be immediately addressed.
“President Buhari and his Government should be reminded that in 2015, they campaigned on the basis of the loss of some territories to Boko Haram in Borno state with a promise never to allow the ceding of an inch of Nigerian soil to any person or group of persons, and Nigerians trusting them, gave them their mandate. Therefore to allow about a third of Nigerian territory to be occupied by bandits is not only unfathomable but a betrayal of public trust by the President and a failing in his oath of office to secure the people and ensure their welfare.
“The Consultative Front is further perturbed that the ulcerating wound of insecurity in Northern Nigeria and the Middle Belt has been allowed to fester for too long. Herdsmen killings in the Middle Belt, banditry, kidnapping, armed robbery, etc in the North have made it impossible for agriculture to thrive in the vast land mass that provides a large percentage of the food need of Nigeria as well as generation of employment for our teeming youth population.
“The ravaging hunger in the land has since rubbished whatever possible gains of the Buhari administration much touted claim of achievement in the agricultural sector inspite of the enormous resources spent so far. The greater danger is that it has also created a huge reservoir of unemployed youths from among whom these criminal elements can easily replenish their dangerous ranks.
“The NCFront warns that the Southern Kaduna killings, the banditry in Katsina state, the rampant kidnappings in the country, the unabated Boko Haram insurgency and the alleged complicity of the military, all signposts a regression back to 1966 and the events leading to the 30-month bitter civil war in which over 3 million Nigerians lost their lives.
“The silence of the international community particularly the ECOWAS and AU under whose auspices President Buhari recently visited Mali to arrest the descent into anarchy inspite of the ongoing killings in Nigeria, is no longer golden.
“The NCFront hereby demands of the ECOWAS and AU in particular, a delegation at the highest level, to explore avenue for putting an end to the insecurity in Nigeria. This is in the informed national self-interest of alied countries within the sub regional body as the crisis of insecurity in Nigeria may lead to overwhelming spill of refugees into their countries.
“It is however heartwarming that the Northern Governors Forum has boldly come out to condemn the Southern Kaduna killings. The NCFront also happily notes the effort being made by Northern Governors in their desire to deal with the Almajiris crisis in the North, amongst others, which suggests that this crop of Northern Governors are willing and capable of dealing with the social problems that have for long constituted fertile grounds for the present insecurity in the North. The NCFront therefore commends them in this respect.
“However, the NCFront wishes to call on the Northern Governors Forum as well as well-meaning Northerners and the Federal Government of Nigeria to immediately send relief materials to Southern Kaduna as the tales of woes coming from there ranging from hunger, malnutrition, disease, homelessness and destitution is heart-rending and could affect adjoining States
“The Northern Governors should rise to the occasion and working with the Federal Government, find a lasting solution to the internecine conflicts in Northern Nigeria and the Middle Belt which some time adorns the garb of religion, tribe, ethnicity or politics as the NCFront believes that this crop of Governors who are highly educated and enlightened can find a lasting solution to the problem if they choose to.
“The NCFront finally wishes to call on the Federal Government to immediately set up an independent, possibly a judicial, panel of inquiry to investigate the various allegations against the role of the military and other security forces in the unending and expanding security challenges in the northern region.”