Sa’ad Abubakar, sultan of Sokoto, says the recent killings by Boko Haram insurgents would have been avoided if the government had risen to the occasion.
In the past weeks, insurgents and bandits launched series of attacks on communities in the north, resulting in the loss of lives and destruction of property.
In a statement issued through Abubakar Aliyu, secretary-general of Jamaatu Nasril Islam (JNI), the sultan, who is JNI president-general, asked the government to do more to stem the tide of killings across the country.
The sultan, who expressed shock over the “unfortunate repeated incidences of loss of precious lives and wanton destruction of property arising from well-coordinated attacks of armed bandits, Boko Haram terrorist groups and rapists”, also lamented the attitude of security agencies.
“These repeated calamitous scenarios would have been avoided had the government risen to the occasion,” he said.
“We nonetheless as always condemn the repeated brutal acts in their entirety, especially the lackadaisical attitude of relevant security agencies that seemed to be overwhelmed, despite repeated calls by concerned and well-meaning Nigerians for decisive action.
“We implore the government to take all genuine calls, concerns so raised and recommendations proffered so far, even from perceived and/or alleged antagonists in good fate, in order to move the country on the path of glory – human security, as development in whatever guise, is utterly incomplete without security.
“Government should also note that citizens have a right to be listened to over their feelings on insecurity challenge in Nigeria.”
The sultan expressed dismay over the lack of “symbolic gestures to affected communities by those in authorities”, stating that government officials “remain in their comfort zones as their subjects are subjected to arson and killings of the highest degree”.
“Government should not reduce itself to just issuing light press statements on security upheavals,” he added.
He called on government at all levels to do everything possible, as a matter of urgency, to stop the acts of terror and restore peace and security, which is their first constitutional role, noting that their inaction and silence is no longer acceptable.
He also called for effective legislation to address rape.
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