From Fred Ezeh, Abuja
Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar, has raised the alarm that the security situation is worsening and urged President Muhammadu Buhari, to as a matter of urgency, convoke a dialogue meeting to discuss the peace and unity.
Sultan said the dialogue meeting would be attended by traditional, community and religious leaders, opinion leaders, people from political and business communities and other people that matter in the affairs of Nigeria, to deliberate on issues of rising insecurity across Nigeria.
Delivering his remarks at the third quarterly meeting of the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council (NIREC) in Abuja, the Sultan said the security situation has assumed an alarming and worrisome dimension and could consume more people if urgent steps are not taken to reverse the trend.
“Things are getting worse in Nigeria by the day, especially the security situation. Unfortunately, our military and intelligence agencies seem not to be doing enough to bring an end to the killings.”
He charged security agencies to fish out the people causing the trouble across and prosecute them to serve as deterrent.
“It’s important we sit together and discuss the issues that concern this nation. Most times, we meet at NIREC, discuss issues and arrive at conclusion. Unfortunately, people would go about and be doing otherwise, particularly preaching hatred and violence. We must be truthful to one another. What is so difficult in the president organising a dialogue that would have in attendance impressive participation of the traditional rulers, opinion leaders, market leaders, elderstatesmen and every person that has something to contribute?
“If such a meeting is eventually convoked, we should look ourselves eyeball-to-eyeball and tell ourselves the truth. We shouldn’t be afraid of such conversation again because things are deteriorating. Dialogue is the best approach because whatever cannot be achieved through dialogue will remain unachieved with violence. It’s time we rise up and look beyond ethnic and religious sentiments, and tell ourselves the truth that what is happening in Nigeria is not right and make suggestions on the way forward.”
CAN President, Dr. Samson Ayokunle, in his remarks, accused President Buhari of being sentimental and bias in his approach to the issue of security and governance. He made specific reference to the recent killings in Plateau, Nasarawa and Benue States, in which he claimed President Buhari chose react to some of the attacks and keep silence in others, saying, “That’s double standard.”
But the Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, assured that President Buhari was fully aware of insecurity situation in Nigeria and was committed to bringing it to an end. The president will continue to give all necessary support to religious and traditional leaders to promote peace and unity in the country. I can assure you that the president is doing everything possible to bequeath a safe and prosperous nation to the next one.
“The president is very concerned about the level of insecurity and the high cost of living in Nigeria. He is working on how to resolve these challenges in the shortest possible time.”
Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong, in his remarks, disabused the minds of the people that the crisis in the state was religious or political, insisting that it was purely criminal act that would be punished soon.