…Says they should be arrested

Director-General of Progressive Governors Forum, PGF, Dr. Salihu Moh’d Lukman, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to order immediate arrest and prosecution of security personnel, traditional and religious leaders of the community along the routes which the abducted GSSS Kankara school children would have passed, for their alleged complicity in the abduction.

He alleged that it is either the kidnap of GSSS Kankara students was carried out by combined operations of security personnel, traditional rulers, and community leaders in the area or the security personnel, traditional rulers and community leaders are collaborators in the exercise.

Lukman argued that it was practically impossible for over 500 school children to be taken without clear information of their whereabouts for more than 72 hours without the collaboration of security personnel, traditional rulers, community leaders, and citizens.

Recall that over three hundred students at Government Science Secondary School (GSSS), Kankara, Katsina State were abducted by Armed Bandits on Friday, December 11, 2020.

He said though the number of police personnel to citizen ratio in Nigeria which presently stands at one to 300 citizens is grossly inadequate, however, issues of capacity with reference to equipment, training, intelligence gathering, moral, are also strong factors, which need to be immediately addressed.

“Elementary knowledge of the area in question will convince any discerning mind that it is either the kidnap of GSSS Kankara students was done by combined operations of security personnel, traditional rulers and community leaders in the area or the security personnel, traditional rulers and community leaders are collaborators in the exercise.

“Given that those who carried out the kidnap would have passed through villages and communities to where they may be hiding now, how much information has been volunteered by the adjourning security posts, traditional rulers, community leaders and citizens in the villages in the routes leading to the location where these school kids are being held, hostage?

“Or could it have been the case that more than 500 people can sneak past security posts and villages without being seen by security operatives, traditional rulers, community leaders, and citizens? It is difficult to avoid the suspicion that a whole community or village may be playing host to these kidnapped children. This clearly reflects how rotten our Nigerian society is. This is not a simple matter of deciding on choices. It is a matter of life and death,” Lukman stressed.

Also recall that in February 2018, over 110 Dapchi students of Yobe State were abducted while in April 2014, over 270 Chibok schoolgirls of Borno State while kidnapped by the Boko haram terrorists with Leah Sharibu and more than 80 schoolgirls are still being held for more six years after.

Also about two weeks ago, more than 70 Zabarmari rice farmers were murdered by the same terrorist group.

The PGF DG said there is the highest possibility a section of our security agencies may have joined or are collaborators with the enemy.

He stressed that the situation required thorough introspection by not just our security agencies but also the imposition of severe sanctions against security personnel, traditional and community leaders where kidnappings, banditry, and all the crimes consuming the lives of innocent Nigerians are taking place.

“Every police, security personnel, traditional and community leader, located within Kankara or in routes where the GSSS Kankara School children would have passed should be arrested and tried. Similarly, everywhere such incidences take place, police, security, traditional and community leaders should be the first line suspect. They should be made to prove their innocence by producing the culprits, failing which, they should be convicted.

“We are dealing with a problem that is worse than armed robbery. Our Governors and our legislators in state assemblies should really act expeditiously on this matter. But to be able to succeed, the capacity of states to enforce laws must be strengthened. Without any hesitation, anybody debating whether or not to have state police is simply part of the problem. As it is now, if we need to have private police in order to protect the lives of Nigerians, nothing should stop us. In any event, what is left?” he said


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