By Damiete Braide
Former minister of Foreign Affairs, Prof. Bolaji Akinyemi, has flayed President Muhammadu Buhari for traveling to South Korea at a period parts of the country were being ravaged by flood and in need of urgent government assistance.
He said the president should cut short his trip and attend to the crisis posed by flood and threat to national security which has led to recent evacuation of foreign nationals out the country by their governments.
Akinyemi, who spoke in a television programme monitored in Lagos, yesterday, tasked the president to order the National Security Adviser to call all political parties and direct them to stop all forms of campaigns given the risk to lives of thousands of Nigerians who usually grace political rallies.
“I will like to see more of helicopter patrol and military presence all over the country so that the cells of bandits will know that they are being monitored and assure Nigerians that the military is in control.”
Akinyemi said the knee-jack of the government over the arming of local vigilance groups or security must stop as the country was short of police and military to combat the spate of crime.
“We must stop talking about the rights of individuals when there is an existential threat in the country and that was why I said the NSA with the permission of the Federal government to read riot act to politicians to stop all forms of physical campaigns. There are not enough policemen to provide protection during rallies and if anything happens, people will say the police did not protect us.
“We have a price to pay. These are difficult times for us which calls for difficult decisions to be made. Rather than the rally, politicians can make use of radio or television adverts or speeches to address the people. Let us repackage our political or security strategy according to the situation on ground. The government should stop demonising people who bring uncomfortable facts to their attention. We need to wake up to our own responsibilities. We know where the threat is coming from and the United States and other countries have warned us and we should not say nobody told us,” he said.