Northern Elders, Afenifere Back House’s Summon of Buhari over Insecurity

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The pan-Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, Northern Elders Forum (NEF) and the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), have backed the moves by the two chambers of the National Assembly to ensure that the executive take immediate step to address the rising wave of insecurity in the country.

They supported the House of Representatives’ motion inviting President Muhammadu Buhari to explain what his administration is doing to combat the worsening insecurity in the country.

They also endorsed the call by the Senate for the removal of the service chiefs.
In addition, the NEF demanded the resignation of Buhari following what it described as the mounting security challenges in the country.

While the House, after an hour of heated deliberations yesterday, resolved to invite Buhari to appear before it over the security situation in the country, the Senate asked the president to relieve all the service chiefs of their appointments over the rising wave of insecurity.

Also yesterday, the governors of North-eastern states threw their weight behind the call by their Borno State colleague, Prof. Babagana Zulum, on the federal government, to hire mercenaries to fight Boko Haram in the region.

But Vice President Yemi Osinbajo expressed the federal government’s commitment to finding a new approach to combating insecurity, saying it will review conventional ways of handling security challenges in the country.

Reacting to the positions of the National Assembly, Afenifere’s spokesman, Mr. Yinka Odumakin, told THISDAY that the latest step by the federal legislature to combat insecurity is heart-warming.

“It is heartwarming to see both chambers rising up for the country in the midst of the total collapse of security with lamentations being the only thing we hear from the presidency. The country needs a Commander-in-Chief desperately as there is lack of a functional one at the moment,” he said.

The Executive Director of CISLAC, Mr. Auwal Rafsanjani, supported the move by the lawmakers to invite Buhari, saying that the president must rise up to take over the communication with Nigerians.

Rafsanjani said if the executive had taken action on the various resolutions by the National Assembly, especially demanding the change of the service chiefs, the lawmakers would not have had any reason to summon the president.

He said: ”In other countries where democracy works, the president regularly communicates with the citizens but in our own case, some people are making it impossible for the president to be visible and communicate with the citizens.

“So, I am not surprised that the National Assembly wants to invite the president to explain what’s going on within the security challenges that we are facing.

“The North-east and North-west have become a no-go area in terms of insecurity. All that the aides to the president will come and do is to attack the citizens that are victims of insecurity.

”That’s why the president must rise up to take over the communication with Nigerians.

His aides are not communicating very well with citizens rather they are causing more harm. The president should be communicating with Nigerians, not through his aides.”

Northern Elders Ask Buhari to Resign

NEF demanded the resignation of the president over his inability to tackle the mounting security challenges.

It also expressed outrage over the massacre of Borno rice farmers, saying life has no value under the Buhari administration.

The Director of Publicity and Advocacy of the forum, Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, in a statement yesterday, also described the response by a presidential spokesman, Mallam Garba Shehu, that the slain farmers did not get security clearance from the military before going to the farm as ‘most insensitive.’

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