Finger off the Trigger, a national peace, unity and disarmament campaign initiative, has called on the Federal Government to step up measure in addressing the challenge of insecurity in Nigeria especially the North.
The Chairman of Northern Youth and Elders Awareness Forum who is also the Project Committee Secretary of the campaign, Mr Mahmud Yerima, said this in a statement on Monday in Abuja.
Yerima said the initiative made the call at a strategic multi-stakeholders forum in Abuja.
He said that the forum was organised by Salute Nigeria Initiative, Northern Youth and Elders Awareness Forum (NOYEAF) and The Patriot Media and Educational Foundation in collaboration with the Nigeria Police Force.
The forum, he said had in attendance former Inspector General of Police Mike Okiro, former Minister of Youth and Sport Development, Bala Kaoje, the Sapei of Garki, Dr Usman Nga-Kupi, among others.
Yerima said that as a Northerner it saddened him to realise that the impact of insurgency and banditry in the country was much rooted in Northern Nigeria.
“It is therefore natural for NOYEAF to be associated with this timely project, as finding a lasting solution to the security challenges in the North is one of the cardinal objectives of the forum,” he said.
He said that the group worried over the present alarming state of insecurity in Nigeria ranging from Boko Haram, kidnapping for ransom, cattle rustling, farmer-herdsmen, communal clashes, to armed robbery.
“The high rate of crimes in Nigeria today, more especially in the Northern part of the country, is a matter of serious concern,” he said.
Yerima quoted former Inspector General of Police, Mr Mike Okiro as also expressing concern at the rate of insecurity in the country, which he said must be stopped by all means possible.
“There should be synergy between the police and all the security agencies; all the security agencies are out there to secure the country,” he quoted Okiro as saying.
He said that Kaoje in his remarks, urged the Youth to take the issue of insecurity in the country more seriously as the future of the country was in their hands.
Kaoje according to him, advised the government and private sector organisations to make effort in creating jobs and opportunities for the Youth.
The Sapei of Garki, said that the traditional rulers had a major role to play in the fight against insecurity and must use their position to promote peace and unity in their various communities.
He quoted the convener of the forum, Amb. Chielo Ojirika, as saying that all arrangements were in place for the nation-wide sensitisation tour being packaged in phases starting with a two day seminar/ launching for May 21, and May 22.
Ojirika said that the event was expected to be attended by top government functionaries, representatves of multi-national organisations, the security chiefs, royal fathers, and religious leaders.
The convener, he said, pleaded with all friends of Nigeria to lend their support to the campaign to strengthen democracy and further unite and stabilise Nigeria.