No to emergency rule extension, say Borno, Yobe elders
Borno and Yobe Peoples Forum yesterday said emergency rule imposed in three north-eastern states has failed and should not be renewed when it expires on April 19.
President Jonathan imposed six-month emergency rule twice in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states, taking total control of the security situation as security forces fight Boko Haram insurgency.
Deaths in the Boko Haram violence and reprisals by security forces are counted in thousands, with the victims being mostly civilians.
Addressing a world press conference yesterday in Abuja, the forum said the current state of emergency has not served the purpose for which it was invoked.
Air Marshal Al-Amin Daggash announced the demand on behalf of the forum.
The forum also called on the government to investigate the violation of the nation’s airspace in which helicopters were alleged to be dropping arms in Birnin Gwari, Benue, Katsina as well as the troubled North east, and provide safe corridors to access the affected states to deliver relief from both local and international sources.
The forum also recommended the unmasking of the sponsors of the insurgency in the area as latetey demanded for by the Northern Elders Forum.
The forum demanded for the probe of the crises with particular regards to those who master minded, encourage or financed it for the law to take its cause.
“We urge the Federal Government to implement the recommendation of the Ambassador Usman Gaji Galtimari and Barrister Tanimu Turaki Presidential committees.
“It is the considered view of many commentators that had they been implemented, the insurgency would have been largely contained,” the forum said.
It suggested that the respective state governors should rather be allowed to use their meagre resources for the reconstruction of their states as well as the rehabilitation and reintegration of the people.
The forum said the N2 billion budgeted for the North East initiative by the federal government is ‘grossly inadequate’ adding that government should rather establish a special intervention fund for the reconstruction, rehabilitation as well as reintegration of the people of the affected area.
In his welcome address, Adamu Ciroma said failure of the government to tackle the insurgency in the North east has led to its spread across the region and its consequences are being felt nationwide.
He said the recent killings of scores of students at Buni Yadi Federal College has made the insurgency a national tragedy as families across the country were affected.
He said the gravity of the situation is unbecoming and called for concerted effort by all stakeholders with a view to addressing the menace of the insurgency.
“What affects the north east will definitely have impact on the rest of the country,” he said.
From left: Retired Air Vice Marshal Al-Amin Daggash, Senator Ahmed Zannah and Ambassador Babagana Kingibe, during the Borno-Yobe People’s Forum news conference in Abuja yesterday.