For the umpteenth time, some concerned Nigerians under the aegis of Coalition of Northern Elders for Peace and Development, have called for the immediate sack and replacement of Service Chiefs, saying the worsening state of insecurity across the country had made action even more compelling.
According to the elders, Friday’s attack on Government Science Secondary School, Kankara, in Katsina State, where hundreds of schoolboys were forcefully taken away by suspected terrorist elements, was a louder indication that the security architecture had become dysfunctional, literally speaking.
It was their firm view that the continuous stay in office of the Service Chiefs, whom they noted, may be breaking under the weight of exhaustion, was emboldening the enemies of state to carry on with their wicked acts.
While condemning the attack on the school children, the elders noted that the development came few days after the decapitation of over 40 rice farmers in Zabarmari Village in Borno State, was disturbing.
Consequently, the coalition reiterated its earlier call on the President, Muhammadu Buhari to seek foreign help, to facilitate the defeat of the non-state actors.
They said: “The latest attack on Government Science Secondary School, Kankara, in Katsina State, where over 333 children are reportedly missing has further confirmed our position that our region is now at the mercy of terrorists, bandits and other criminal elements.
“And as a result of this, we strongly believe that time has come for our president to bring in fresh hope and clear directions on how best the country will strategize to overcome the present insecurity situation in the country in general.”
They further noted that: “At the boiling point we have found ourselves in today, we strongly believe that it will not be out of place to seek assistance in dealing with these threats from outside.
“Our president was elected by Nigerians and the same Nigerians have spoken through their representatives in the National Assembly. Our president should listen to them by dropping the service chiefs, who have since reached retirement age in the military and appoint new ones with fresh ideas to do the job for which we elected him to do.”
While calling on President Buhari to listen to what they called “the voice of the people” by reorganising the security architecture of the country, the group added: ”The time has come when the entire country expects new ideas, philosophy and method in the fight against insurgency in the country.”
Noting that the “President’s idea about insecurity has proved inadequate to deal with the threat to our lives and property” the northern elders charged him to “urgently change tactics and personnel in order to win the war against rising threats to the lives of Nigerians.”