From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
Forty eight hours after the House of Representatives, asked President Muhammadu Buhari to declare a state of emergency on security, following the recent taking over of 42 communities in Niger State by Boko Haram, Katsina State governor, Aminu Masari has said it won’t solve the nation’s insecurity problems.
He spoke to State House Correspondents on Thursday after meeting with the Chief of staff to the president, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
According to him, the military are already overstretched hence declaration of a state of emergency will be stretching them the more.
He appealed to Nigerians to stop politicizing security issues, saying policing the nation at this critical time was everybody’s business.
Reacting to National Assembly’s call for a state of emergency and of it will help with the security problem, Masari said: “It cannot because how can state of emergency solve the problem? You have a situation where the military are in all the states of the federation, then you ask yourself, how many do we have? Are we not overstretching them? So the reality is the responsibility of securing this country is ours, all of us. We have a role to play and we must play it for the sake of the country and for the sake of our children and grandchildren, not for the sake of the persons that in office.
“I think we have to understand that whatever we do to restore security today, we are not doing it for one particular person or group of persons, but we are doing it for all of us, for the country and in fact, for Africa. A stable Nigeria means a stable Sub-Saharan Africa.
“So I think we better be serious about this issue of security. If you say set up state of emergency, what do you do? We are having the same people, the same security agencies, the same capacities, and the same resources. So what are we talking about?
“We have a problem and everybody has a role to play, we better play it. Politics should be over, the security situation of this country is beyond partisan politics, it’s a national concern for all of us, every responsible person in this country.”
On fears that the Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC) there would be zero allocation for May, the Governor tasked authorities involved to ensure a way to avert that possibility.
According to him, the inability of states and local councils to fund responsibilities might escalate the security crisis in the country.
Masari said: “I think it’s something that we’ll have to work towards, without resources, again, it’s another factor that affects security, you cannot create jobs for the teeming unemployed youth in the rural communities. What do we do to make sure that those who are recruiting the youths in the localities are not given opportunities, do not have an upper hand? It’s with resources state governments and local governments will be able to contain some of these restive youths so that they can be used for better purposes because most of them might be foot soldiers to the bandits.
“So I think we have to look at this issue seriously, it will significantly affect the even the capacity of states to pay salaries and to do what is necessary for the smooth running of government and also fund of the security agencies, the logistic requirement of security agencies. I think these people better visit the states and see what the states are doing.”
Asked why security situation was getting better in Katsina, he said: “Well, thank you God, but actually the situation is still of high concern, insecurity is real and we’re doing everything to make sure that we control the situation so that it doesn’t reach the level it reached before and we’re hopeful that working together with the security agencies and the responsible people and also the repentant bandits will be able to have our state will back to normalcy.”