Senate In Focus: Insecurity Has Gone Worse, Senate Now Alerting Military On Terrorists Hideouts
The primary functions of the legislative arm of government is to make laws, carry out oversights on the executive and the judicial branches, carry out the duty of appropriation, screen president’s nominees amongst others.
In the United States of America, the lawmakers, especially the Senate, declare war whenever there is threat or external aggression.
The present administration which came in 2015, campaigned to tackle insecurity, corruption and revive the economy.
Based on records on the ground, the administration has failed woefully on these three items listed above.
On insecurity, the scourge was limited to the North East where Boko Haram terrorists were operating but with the coming of the present administration, terrorists have spread to almost every nook and cranny of the country with the President and Commander-in-Chief, Muhammadu Buhari, repeating threat to crush them but seems overwhelmed.
In the 9th Senate, resolutions concerning insecurity don’t always get quick attention from the executive despite the said cordial relationship with the branch that is supposed to implement government activities.
Despite numerous approval of funds for security agencies in the country by the Senate, Nigerians are not getting positive impact on the protection of their lives and properties.
The railway line which Nigerians have been rushing to whenever they are traveling from the capital city Abuja to the North Western States for fear of kidnappers on the roads, came under attack with many killed while others are still in captivity three months after.
The airports are still under threats while the blame game continue in a country the terrorists are establishing enclaves on a daily basis.
The abismal performance of the security agencies when it comes to intelligent gathering and protection of lives and properties, the Senate is now the organ identifying terrorists hideouts.
The Senate has identified terrorists’ enclaves in communities within three local government areas of Kwara and Niger States, respectively.
Accordingly, the chamber, last week, urged the Military to carry out a comprehensive onslaught of terrorists elements within Kainji Lake National Park and the identified communities.
The names of communities given by the chamber include Kaiama, Karonzi-Yashikira in Baruten local government, and Wawa and Babanna areas in Niger State.
This was what formed part of their resolutions after it considered a motion on the “worsening insecurity in Kainji Lake National Park and existential threat to communities in Kaima, Baruten and Borgu Local Government in Kwara and Miger States.”
The motion was sponsored by Senator Sadiq Sulieman Umar (Kwara North), and Co-sponsored by the Deputy Whip, Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi (Niger North).
In his presentation, Senator Umar noted that, “kidnapping and other forms of criminality is becoming a recurring decimal in communities close to Kainji Lake National Park particularly Nanu, Nuku, Woro, Kale in Kaiama and Yashikira in Baruten local Government of Kwara State and some part of Borgu Local Government in Niger State.
“This has led to people living in perpetual fear of either being kidnapped and or Killed by kidnappers suspected to be armed terrorists;
“Further notes that Kainji Lake National Park covers an area of about 5,341km square with deep forest vegetation. This park which is reserved for tourism is becoming fort-filed in harboring bandits and other forms of criminals;
“Also notes that park rangers meant to man this park could no longer protect the forest reserve as they have lost control of the park to terrorist;
“Worried that people living in these communities are predominantly farmers and their means of livelihood is threatened by the activities of these criminals as many are leaving their villages and farms to seek refuge in the towns that will soon be threatened as well if nothing is done about this insecurity situation. In fact, some communities have started paying the criminals some sort of tax to be allowed to stay safe;
“Aware that the first incident occurred in year 2008 which led to the death of several Local Vigilante group members in an attempt to dislodge these criminals from the Kainji Lake National Park;
“Also aware that there is a Forward Operating Base (FOB) established immediately after the first attacks and subsequent approval for the establishment of Military barrack in the local government, but these attacks keeps on happening with reckless abandon; and
“Cognizant that in this year 2022 alone, several cases of kidnapping were reported in villages like Nanu, Nuku, Woro, and so on with several people reported dead. Others who returned were released after the payment of millions of Naira.”
The Senate, in its resolutions, mandated the Committees on Defence; Finance and National Planning to jointly interface with the Ministry of Defence to determine status of the establishment and funding of Army Barrack in Kaiama and Forward Operating Base (FOB) in Babanna in Kwara and Niger States, respectively.
It urged the military authorities to carry out a comprehensive onslaught on bandits and other criminal elements within Kainji Lake National Park, especially Kaiama, Karonzi -Yashikira in Baruten local government, and Wawa and Babanna areas in Niger state.
This is the sad tale of several villagers in a country practicing democracy. The blame game continues while poor villagers, travellers and other unlucky Nigerians are bearing the brunt.
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