* Charges Buhari to create platform for national dialogue
Former President of the Senate, Anyim Pius Anyim, on Monday tasked President Muhammadu Buhari to de-emphasise the deployment of troops and request for international military assistance in the fight against insurgency, banditry, terrorism and agitations for self determination in the country.
Anyim, who also served as Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) during the Jonathan administration, said rather than relying solely on the use military force to resolve these challenges, the Federal Government should create a platform for Nigerians to ventilate their grievances and collectively proffer enduring solutions.
In a open letter, dated May 3, 2021 and addressed to the President, Anyim described the worsening state of insecurity across Nigeria as unfortunate but said the situation could have been avoided if the Buhari administration had given listening ears to the complaints and peaceful protests from different parts of Nigeria before these agitations turned violent.
“I wish to note that every violent agitation originates from a non-violent agitation that was not attended to. Today, Nigeria is bedeviled with violent and non-violent agitations. It is also a fact that the current violent agitations originated from non-violent agitations e.g.,Boko Haram started as a non-violent procession; the herders/farmers clashes which has degenerated into a deadly conflict with many states now bloody theaters of war; ethnic conflicts in Kaduna, Ebonyi, Cross River,
Benue, Plateau states etc. which are escalating to an unmanageable scale; armed banditry in virtually all states of the federation particularly Zamfara, Katsina, Kaduna, Niger, Sokoto which has overwhelmed the law enforcement agencies, kidnaping which has become occupational in most parts of the country.
“To worsen matters, Boko Haram, has acquired new impetus that they now overrun the military and have even expanded their base to Niger State. IPOB has become a regional challenge.
“On the non-violent side, agitations for restructuring are scaling up in momentum, ethnic consciousness and allegiance even among the elite are far eroding national concerns. All these and many more coupled with gross downturn in the national economic, social and political space has become an apparent threat to our nationhood,” he said.