Human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana, has stated that the failure of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government to check insecurity as well as its many lopsided appointments is fuelling secessionist agitations in the country.
Falana added that the socio-economic and security challenges confronting the country could be traced back to decades of misrule, bad governance, corruption and the diversion of the commonwealth.
Femi Falana (SAN)
He lamented that killings and kidnappings were on the rise across the country due to the failure of the Buhari regime to control the violent attacks on farmers and destruction of their farmlands by marauding herdsmen.
The human rights lawyer stated these on Thursday in Abuja at a Commemorative Anniversary public lecture of the 80th Birthday Anniversary of Prof Omotoye Olorode, which is titled, “Labour and the quest for Nigeria’s National Development: Reflection and Prognosis on the Way Forward.”
He noted that it was obvious that the state was not capable of ending kidnappings or rescuing the abducted citizens, a situation which forces family members of abductees to pay ransoms to the abductors to secure the release of their loved ones.
He said the Buhari-led government had run out of ideas and was incapable of finding lasting solutions to the worsening security challenges facing the country.
Falana said, “The failure of the regime to control the violent attacks on farmers and destruction of farms by a group bearing AK-47 rifles operating as herders and the lopsided appointments by the Buhari administration have fuelled the separatist agenda of several groups.
“In spite of the programme of its own party for restructuring or power devolution from the centre to the other federating units, President Buhari has sworn to defend the status quo. A regime that has negotiated and granted amnesty to terrorists and bandits in the recent past has rejected the call for dialogue with all separatist bodies.
“It is our submission that several decades of legacy of misrule and bad governance, corruption and diversion of the commonwealth and anti-people’s policies have led to the ascendancy of insecurity in the country.
“No part of the country is safe as marauders have been abducting people, including undergraduates, secondary school students and even primary school pupils.”
Falana said the country could break up or engage in a full-scale civil war if the worsening insecurity in all states of the federation and the federal capital territory was not checked.
He added, “Having been overwhelmed by the security challenges, the ruling class will not hesitate to sabotage the democratic process or plunge the country into another civil war. No doubt, the central labour unions and individual trade unions have routinely condemned the booming business of kidnapping.
“Since 2009, the armed forces have been waging the counter-insurgency operations in the North-East region. Realising that the armed forces are ill-equipped and ill-motivated, the immediate past Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Yusufu Buratai (retd.), has predicted that the war on terror will last for another period of 20 years.
“Since the Nigeria Police Force has been demobilised from maintaining law and order by successive regimes, the over-stretched armed forces have been deployed and mandated to free many communities that have been overrun by nihilist forces in the various states.”
SaharaReporters, New York