Senate Calls For Removal Of Service Chiefs Following Insurgent Attack On Farmers

A file photo of lawmakers in the Senate.

 

The Senate has recommended that President Muhammadu Buhari remove the Service Chiefs and replace them with people with fresh ideas and solutions.

The lawmakers are also asking President Buhari to restructure and remodel the entire security architecture and investigate allegations of widespread corruption and leakages within the security architecture.

The lawmakers made this recommendation at Tuesday’s plenary during a debate on security in the nation and the attack on rice farmers in Borno State which left at least 40 dead.

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The Upper Chamber also recommends the recruitment of 10,000 civilian JTF to complement the efforts of the armed forces and explore a multilateral partnership with Niger, Chad, and Cameroon.

Former governor of Borno State, Senator Kashim Shettima had earlier raised the motion at plenary noting that President Buhari should remove the security chiefs and replace them with new ones with ideas to address the alarming insecurity in the country.

The lawmaker also claimed that 67 farmers were killed in the attack.

He warned that any government that cannot protect the lives of its citizens has lost any iota of legitimacy.

Senator Ali Ndume in his contribution to the debate lamented that the national budget is woefully inadequate and soldiers do not have enough arms and ammunition.

He said he has observed in the course of visiting military formations soldiers sharing arms and ammunition. He also claims that he has not seen any soldier wielding a brand new AK47 rifle.

Senator Ndume suggested that Nigeria should explore the use of mercenaries to assist in fighting Boko Haram.

 

Zabarmari Massacre

43 farmers were killed on Saturday morning around Marrabati and Hammayya villages, near Zabarmari in Jere Local Government Area of Borno State by Boko Haram terrorists while on their way to their farms.

The farmers were waylaid on their way to their rice farms which they were harvesting before the surprise attack happened.

Some other farmers were also taken away by the insurgents.

The State Governor Babagana Zulum during the burial of the farmers on Sunday morning lamented that “it is disheartening that more than 40 citizens were slaughtered while they were working in their farmlands,” and also expressed condolence.

The governor later on Monday gave recommendations to the Federal Government on how to win the war against the terrorists. He noted that engaging mercenaries, as well as the immediate recruitment of youths into the military to boost its strength, will go a long way to defeat the insurgents.

President Muhammadu Buhari condoled with the victims and their families.

In a tweet, on Monday, President Buhari said he has given a ‘marching order’ to the Nigerian Military to take the fight to the insurgents, not on a one-off, but on a continuous basis until “we root out the terrorists.”

Without Adequate Weapons, We Remain At The Mercy Of Terrorists – Lai Mohammed

Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Lai Mohammed addressing journalists during his visit to Makurdi, Benue State capital on Monday, November 30, 2020

 

The Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Lai Mohammed on Monday reacted to issues of insecurity and the latest killing of farmers in Borno State by calling for more global support and adequate weapons.

He said terrorism is a global issue and the Federal Government needs global support to combat it. He added that the nation has been denied this support and without adequate weapons, the nation will remain at the mercy of terrorists.

“Terrorism is a global issue and there is no part of the world that is not experiencing these pockets of terrorism. I am glad that you heard from the governor himself that the Federal Government has assisted a lot in curbing the insecurity in Benue State.

“We also need more support from global partners. For instance, Nigeria has made attempt to acquire better and more effective platforms to deal with terrorists. But for one reason or the other, we have been denied these weapons. And without adequate platforms and weapons we remain at the mercy of terrorists,” the Minister said.

READ ALSO: Insurgents Attack On Borno Rice Farmers Wicked, Unwarranted – NGF

Lai Mohammed made this reaction while speaking with journalists in Makurdi, the Benue State capital after a meeting with the State Governor Samuel Ortom for a scheduled event of the official handing over of the Nigerian Institute of Hospitality and Tourism.

He lamented that the insurgent attack in Zabarmari, Jere Local Government Area of Borno State which led to the death of 43 farmers is unfortunate and the Federal Government is doing all possible to eliminate the insurgents.

“What happened in Borno State was quite unfortunate but we must also be able to look at the strategy of the terrorists. Terrorists use media and publicity as oxygen.

“When they go on the mindless killing of innocent people, it is like a dying terrorist group which suddenly spring back to life. This doesn’t mean that the Federal Government is not doing well enough,” Mohammed added.

43 farmers were killed on Saturday morning around Marrabati and Hammayya villages, near Zabarmari in Jere Local Government Area of Borno State by Boko Haram terrorists.

The farmers were waylaid on their way to their rice farms which they were harvesting before the surprise attack happened.

Some other farmers were also taken away by the insurgents.

Insurgents Attack On Borno Rice Farmers Wicked, Unwarranted – NGF

A file photo of members of the NGF at a meeting in Abuja in January 2020.

 

The Nigeria Governors Forum has reacted to the killing of over 40 rice farmers in Garin Kwashebe in Jere Local Government Area of Borno State describing it as “wicked, unwarranted, and morally reprehensible.”

The governors in a statement signed by its Chairman Kayode Fayemi said the attack brings back ugly memories of several dastardly attacks on soft targets in the state.

“The farmers were attacked while harvesting their produce totally oblivious of the danger that awaits them in nearby bushes. This method is consistent with the senseless bombings of busy markets, bus stations, schools, and abattoirs whenever the terrorists feel overpowered by the security operatives or feel their backs against the wall.

READ ALSO: Governor Zulum Leads Residents To Bury Farmers Killed By Boko Haram

“Governors, under the platform of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), view this attack, like many before it, as obnoxious, wicked, unwarranted, and morally reprehensible,” the statement read in part.

The governors added that this sad narrative raises questions on the general security situation in the country and around the capability of the nation’s security architecture. It also raises questions on whether or not there are adequate arrangements to protect lives and property.

“Since insurgency engulfed the country more than a decade ago, each time it seems like the situation is coming under control, the enemy strikes again. This has happened consistently.”

Governors said they are concerned that the carnage is degenerating beyond explicable limits, yet again, and the catalogue of destruction is not only seeming to be endless and intractable but it has an adverse effect on everything in the state and the country at large.

The NGF, therefore, vowed to collectively review these issues at their next meeting to forge the way forward.