From Fred Itua, Abuja
A former member of the House of Representatives, Sunday Marshall Katung, has called appealed to the Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai, to explore every option available, including negotiating with bandits to free abducted students of Greenfield University Students and others.
In a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja, Katung said so many people who were in the den of bandits and kidnappers must be freed by any means possible.
He said Nigerians and groups must join hands and assist El-Rufai in solving the many problems, especially insecurity, bedeviling the State.
He said: “The security situation in Kaduna state in particular and Nigeria in general is dreadfully alarming. The abductions and killing of innocent citizens across communities have become a regular feature. Even the lives of our children and young adults who go to school to seek education have been cheapened. It is almost 50days since students of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation were abducted.
“As though that isn’t hard enough, students of Greenfield University were ferried off by Kidnappers, six of whom have been killed including a staff of the university.
“Dr Zakariah Dogo Yaro, two nurses of the General Hospital Idon and over 60 people from Kajuru local government are among the many that are now trapped in the enclave of terrorist bandits.
“Thousands of citizens have in the same vein been forced to flee their farms, giving rise to a monumental humanitarian crises, with increasing number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) across the State.
“The present trend poses an existential threat to us all. I appeal to the Governor of Kaduna State to explore all options to bring our students and other kidnapped victims to safety. I also crave the indulgence of the government to rally all human and security assets that will not only assist in the safe rescue of all kidnapped victims, but forestall a future occurrence.
“This is not the time for playing politics when human lives are involved. Granted, those in leadership position today made ridiculous statements against the previous administration while seeking for power, but we cannot afford to pursue the same path that has only led to a dead end. Hence, the only reasonable and honourable thing to do is to jettison political cleavages and support this administration in fighting and surmounting this evil.
“It is obvious that the Government of Nasir Ahmed El-Rufai in Kaduna state needs help and support to navigate the already overwhelming security situation. I urge Mr. Governor to see help as a sign of strength and not weakness.
“I accordingly, invite Non-Governmental Organisations, private companies and good spirited individuals to assist the State in providing relief materials to victims of these banditry who are currently living in different IDP camps across the State.
“Finally the Federal Government must go beyond issuing occasional press releases devoid of action and do the needful to arrest this speedy descent into a Hobbesian state where life is short, nasty and brutish. My sincere thoughts, prayers and solidarity go to the grieving parents and relations of the five murdered and staff, as well as to parents, friends and relations whose wards are in captivity.”