From Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
The federal government has been tasked to rescue the remaining kidnapped students in Kaduna State ‘to indicate we still have a government in Nigeria.’
The National Association of Seadogs (Pyrates Confraternity), which threw the challenge in a statement titled “The Mindless Killing of Greenfield University Students,” made available to newsmen, described the murder of the students as a direct failure of the government to secure their lives in the first place and to rescue them after being kidnapped.
The statement signed by the NAS Capoon, Mr Abiola Owoaje, expressed disappointment on how terrorists, bandits and kidnappers have turned the security agencies and political structure, including the Presidency, into ineffective and reactive lame ducks under the watch of President Muhamamdu Buhari
Owoaje, who stated that the bandits have declared war by attacking educational institutions, called on the government to respond decisively.
‘The murder of these students demands a decisive immediate response to indicate we still have a government in Nigeria. The Federal and Kaduna State Governments have a responsibility to Nigerians, especially the parents of the remaining kidnapped students of Greenfield University and those of the Federal College of Forestry Mechanization, Afaka also in Kaduna, earlier kidnapped in March, to ensure their prompt rescue and safe return to their families. It is crucial that the government unleash every legitimate force it can muster to apprehend and prosecute these criminal elements for murder. The lethargic responses to these rampaging bandits appear to have emboldened them and the government must now act resolutely to prevent Nigeria from becoming an ungoverned space and a failed state,’ the statement read.
Owoaje implored the Federal Government to take a cue on how US Special Forces rescued the American, Philip Walton in October 2020, and seek external help to end the siege of bandits in Northern Nigeria.
He advocated for an amendment of the constitution to give powers to state governors to effectively function as Chief Security Officers since the existing Police Command structure centralised in Abuja is no longer visible.
On recent calls for a Safe School Funds (SSF), Owoaje pointed out that incessant attack on schools by bandits demands support for the implementation of the National Framework for the Safe School initiative.
‘The call for the creation of the Safe School Fund (SSF), by Governors Kayode Fayemi and Aminu Tambuwal, of Ekiti and Sokoto States respectively, in bandit-prone states at the recent high-level forum on National Framework for Safe Schools held in Abuja, should be given the needed support to safeguard the future of Nigerian school children.
‘The future of generations of Nigerian students especially in northern Nigeria is under threat if we allow bandits to win. This, we must all collectively work to prevent it from happening by arresting the situation decisively,’ he added.