Open letter to President Tinubu on the insecurity situation in Northern Nigeria
By Muhammad Nazir Faruk, Esq, Aciarb
To: His Excellency, President Bola Ahmad Tinubu, GCFR, President and Commander-in-Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Presidential Villa, Asokoro, Abuja, Nigeria.
I extend my heartfelt congratulations to you for your recent triumph in the Supreme Court of Nigeria, where you emerged victorious in a highly contested election petition case. This momentous victory has paved the way for you to lead our nation with legitimacy and confidence during these crucial times.
As a proud Kano State coordinator of the Incorporated Trustees of the Tinubu Legacy Forum, I wholeheartedly share in your success. Our collective efforts, before and throughout the electioneering campaign, underscore the importance of our cause.
With a deep sense of passion, patriotism, and activism, I write this letter on behalf of the Incorporated Trustees of the Voice of Arewa, aiming to draw your attention to the prevailing and distressing security challenges plaguing Northern Nigeria.
In my capacity as the General Secretary of the Voice of Arewa, I wish to express our profound concerns regarding the recent abduction of 24 students from the Federal University of Gusau. This incident took place in June when bandits invaded the Sabon Gida Community within the Bungudu Local Government Area of Zamfara State. This community is situated just 20 kilometers away from the state capital and is in close proximity to the main campus of the Federal University of Gusau.
Regrettably, the aftermath of the attack on the three female hostels has left the victims still in captivity, with little visible progress towards securing their freedom. The Voice of Arewa has been actively engaged in supporting the affected families and providing them with a glimmer of hope for the safe return of their children.
The harrowing experiences of these kidnapped students, including daily assaults and persecution, have left them and their families in a state of severe psychological trauma.
Furthermore, our recent press conference on the state of insecurity in Northern Nigeria, held on October 28, 2023, at Arewa House in Kaduna State, has prompted more concerned parents to reach out to us in desperate search of hope for the return of their loved ones.
The persistent security challenges across the nation, characterized by recurring incidents of violence, kidnapping, terrorism, banditry, cult violence, and armed robbery, are gravely affecting socio-economic activities. Recent events in Nchya village and Heipang community in Plateau State, where innocent lives were lost, further highlight the gravity of the security situation in the North.
A recent report from Global Rights has revealed the alarming numbers of casualties and abductions by various armed groups in the country. This escalating violence not only endangers lives but also jeopardizes the stability of our nation.
It is crucial that the government, as the primary protector of its citizens, takes decisive action to address this menace and uphold the dignity and well-being of our people. The rise of non-state actors and their activities paints a grim picture, positioning Nigeria as one of the world’s most fragile states, as indicated by the 2023 Fragile States Index.
In this context, I urge Your Excellency to act swiftly by setting measurable targets for the service chiefs and replacing them if their performance falls short of the required standards. Empowering the National Security Adviser to coordinate the efforts of the service chiefs is vital, and close attention to the outcomes of their actions is essential.
Moreover, we must harness advanced technology for effective crime management. Comparatively, our surveillance capabilities lag behind other nations. Increased use of CCTV cameras, as seen in countries like China and the United States, can greatly aid in enhancing our security efforts. Additionally, addressing the rampant illegal arms trade, estimated at 350 million by the UN, is of utmost importance. Strict border controls and the pursuit of those who finance this illicit trade are essential steps toward curbing our security challenges.
In conclusion, I respectfully implore you, Mr. President, to urgently address the plight of the 24 abducted students from the Federal University of Gusau in Zamfara State and similar situations across the country. The anguish of the parents is indescribable, and their fervent hope is for the safe return of their children. Your timely response and intervention in this matter are highly anticipated.
Thank you for your prompt and considerate attention to this pressing issue, Sir.
Muhammad Nazir Faruk, Esq.