Security: Banditry, Political Violence, Others ‘Have Become New Threats’ – Buhari

A file photo of President Muhammadu Buhari



President Muhammadu Buhari has decried the new trend of security challenges in the country, despite efforts by his administration to secure the people and their properties.

He stated this in his speech as the special guest of honour at the graduation ceremony of the National Defence College Course 27 which held on Friday in Abuja.

”In spite of the commendable progress, the Nigerian state is still beset with some existential and fundamental challenges,” the President was quoted as saying in his full address released by his media adviser, Mr Femi Adesina.

He added, “The Boko Haram, for instance, having lost their insurgency campaign, now factionalised and mutated into a new form of terrorist threat. Armed banditry and vandalism, kidnapping, pastoralist-farmers conflicts, cultism, and political violence have become new threats.”

“Other issues such as the proliferation of small arms and light weapons, drug trafficking, drug and substance abuse, and communal conflict, all add up to the security mix.

“Furthermore, the state of education, the youth bulge, unemployment, socio-political and ethno-religious divisions, fake news and hate speeches all help to quicken and compound the security challenges,” President Buhari outlined.

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He told the audience at the event that his administration has made progress in its efforts at tackling the nation’s security challenges.

The President noted that they have been working with the security agencies, local traditional leaders, regional coalition partners, as well as national and international development partners.

He said, “We have spared no effort to rid the nation of terrorism and insurgency and resolve associated national security and humanitarian challenges.

“I particularly thank the Armed Forces and other security agencies for their patriotic efforts. I also thank all our development partners and foreign governments for their invaluable contributions.”

President Buhari reiterated that his administration would promote national security and development.

He also said they remain committed to promoting a vision of a secure, safe, just, peaceful, prosperous and strong nation.

The President explained that they would employ all elements of national and human resources to ensure security and peaceful co-existence while promoting the nation’s good standing abroad.

He congratulated the graduands at the event and challenged them to use the knowledge they have acquired during their training to complement the efforts towards ensuring peace in the country.

President Buhari also commended the management to the NDC, saying the government would continue to support its development strides, particularly the speedy completion of the permanent site at Piwoyi in the nation’s capital.

Ghali Na’abba Blames Politicians For Political Violence

Ghali Na'abba Blames Politicians For Political ViolenceA former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Ghali Na’abba has appealed to politicians to embrace dialogue in order to reduce the increasing cases of political violence in the country.

Addressing participants at the 2017 National Political Summit in Abuja, where Nigerian democracy, constitutionalism and leadership recruitment paradigm was the focus.

Na’abba condemned the political development in Edo and Ondo governorship elections and the parliamentary rerun elections in Rivers state, and criticized politicians who go to the polls as if they were at war.

The former speaker said that Nigeria as a nation was founded on dialogue and asked the political class to consolidate on the gains of the nation’s founding fathers.

He said: “With the recent happenings in our political development especially the governorship election in Edo and Ondo and the legislative elections in Rivers state, can we say we are indeed making progress? It seems to me that people still contest elections as if it is a war that must be won or we perish.”

Na’abba was speaking in his capacity as the acting chairman of the governing council, Save Democracy Group Africa.

The chairman of the summit and former governor of Edo state, Oserheimen Osunbor, called for the enthronement of the rule of law.

“Democracy cannot thrive if the constitution is not right or if we are not respecting our constitution and respecting the rule of law,” he said.

The convener of the summit and Director General of Save Democracy Group Africa, Dr. Ifedi Okwenna, enumerated the essence of the national political summit.

It is to develop elite consensus on political and governance issues and promote tolerance to alternative view points and dialogue among stakeholders.

The three-day summit is expected to among other issues examine constitutional development options for sustainable democracy in Nigeria, political leadership recruitment and internal democracies in political parties.

Sierra Leone Vice President Goes Into Hiding

Sierra Leone’s Vice President, Samuel Sam-Sumana

Vice President of Sierra Leone, Samuel Sam-Sumana, has gone into hiding as he seeks political haven at the US embassy in Freetown, the country’s capital.

According to reports, Vice President Sam-Sumana and his wife fled their home after they got wind that soldiers were coming to besiege it.

Mr Sam-Sumana was expelled from the ruling party, two weeks ago for allegedly orchestrating political violence, trying to form a new party and falsifying academic credentials, claims he vehemently denied.

Reports said relations between Sierra Leone President, Ernest Bai-Koroma and his Vice, Mr Sam-Sumana had gone sour for some time.

While still in hiding, the Vice President is seeking political asylum at the U.S. Embassy in Freetown, but the U.S. Embassy has not reacted to the development.

According to him two weeks ago, he said he had chosen to be quarantined for 21 days to “lead by example” in the battle against Ebola, after one of his bodyguards died of the Ebola virus.

More than 3,500 have died as a result of Ebola virus cases in Sierra Leone, which along with Guinea and Liberia has experienced the huge majority of deaths from the disease.

Kwara Governor Warns Youth Against Violent Tendencies

In order to maintain the harmonious nature of the state, the Kwara state governor, Abdulfattah Ahmed has called on youths in the state especially the unemployed ones to desist from destructive tendencies or being used as instrument of crisis assuring of his determination to provide means of livelihood for them soon.

The governor made the call while playing host to the Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulugambari at government house who paid him Salah homage.

He noted that government would not fold its arms and allow some youths to disrupt political or social gatherings on the pretext of lack of jobs adding that efforts are on to provide jobs for thousands of youths in the next few weeks.

Professor Calls Nigeria A Racket

A Professor of criminology and social sciences at the University of Abuja, Femi Odekunle has described Nigeria as a place where politicians engage in political and economic racketeering for their selfish purposes.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, Mr Odekunle said Nigerians should disregard the comments of ministers and other government, officials, who often say that Nigeria’s macroeconomic indices are growing.

“Of course, nobody would deny that we are growing but the growth is not translating to development. Development has to do with impacting on the socioeconomic and political lives of the average citizen. It has to do with distribution of the dividend of development,” he said.

The professor said the reason why the dividend of development is not getting to the ordinary Nigerian was because of corruption.

“The consequences of the resulting underdevelopment cannot be divorced from our level of insecurity which has been worsening, if you allow me to say, from the 60s to today,” Mr Odekunle said.

Expert Advocates Withdrawal of Power To Appoint IGP From President

A security expert and National Coordinator of the Network on Police Reform, Emeka Nwanevu has said that the opaque processes by which Inspectors-General of Police are appointed, the absence of secured tenure for those that occupy that office and high turnover in the leadership of the police make planning for improvements in the performance of the force rather difficult in Nigeria.

President Goodluck Jonathan and the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar

Mr Nwanevu, who was a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, said the lack of security of tenure for the Police Inspector General as well as interference of politicians into the operations of the police make the position of IGP one of the most unstable leadership positions in the country.

He said since the President was the one who can hire and fire the IGP; he has enormous power to control the activities of the police boss.
“An Inspector General cannot flaunt the orders of the person who appoints him,” Mr Nwanevu said.

The security expert is calling for the amendment of Section 215(1) of the Nigerian Constitution which provides that the IGP “shall be appointed by the President on the advice of the Police Council from amongst serving members of the Nigeria Police Force.”

Lawyer Describes Fight Against Corruption As Cosmetic

A lawyer and member of the Crusade for Justice, Richard Nwankwo has described the efforts by the leadership of Nigeria in fighting corruption as superficial and designed to achieve nothing.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, Mr Nwankwo said the present leaders in the country lack the political will and determination to conduct a genuine crusade against corruption in Nigeria.

“When you are fighting corruption from the general point of view, the leadership must show some measure of political will and determination and some measure of drive to demonstrate to everybody that actually there is a massive campaign against corruption and that is clearly not been done here,” he said.

PDP wants power in Edo state at all cost – Kassim Afegbua

Kassim Afegbua, Director, Media and Publicity, Oshiomhole Campaign Organisation, said that the incidence happening in Edo state recently is an indication of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s desire to get into power at all cost.