The recent declaration by President Muhammadu Buhari that his new administration will not only intensify its effort to reposition the nation’s economy, but also secure the country, more than ever, was another assurance of good things to come in his second term.
Speaking after he was declared winner of the 2019 presidential election, President Buhari said the new administration will intensify its effort in security, restructuring the economy and fighting corruption. “We have laid down the foundation and we are committed to seeing matters to the end.
We will strive to strengthen our unity and inclusiveness so that no section or group will feel left behind or left out,” Buhari had said. The president was elected on February 23 on his renewed promises to fix the economy, fight insecurity, especially the insurgency in the North-East and tackle corruption in government.
Although, his government has earned thumbs-up on the fight against insecurity, the unending fatal clashes between farmers and herders have equally robbed his government of the gains made against Boko Haram insurgents.
We can say among other successes President Buhari has recorded is an improvement in security in the North-East. Under his watch, the military retook territory from Boko Haram militants that had been fighting to overthrow the government and create an Islamic state.
Also, scores of Chibok schoolgirls abducted by the militants were also reunited with their families. Notwithstanding these apparent successes on insurgency, the Buhari-led government still needs to galvanise enormous resources to tackle security challenge bedevilling the country.
This time, the president must walk the talk as renewed insecurity in some states like Zamfara, Benue, Kaduna and Plateau in post-election is now worrisome. The security challenges are not limited to the North-East. Violence has also flared in other parts of the country with a history of ethnic and religious conflicts. Troops had to be deployed in North- Central after deadly clashes between farmers and the Fulani cattle-herders.
This cannot continue for another four years. The unending killings in the country is troubling. For instance, two communities of Shinkafi and Anka Local Government Areas of Zamfara State were attacked by bandits, who move in high number on motorcycles, leaving scores dead.
It is not different from Benue State as no fewer than 16 persons have been reportedly killed in a fresh attack by suspected herdsmen on Agagbe community in Gwer West Local Government Area of the state. In Kaduna, sanctity of life is now treated with such reckless disregard that people derive joy in shedding the blood of others or perceived enemies.
Hundreds have been massacred in less than four weeks after the general election; it is indeed a season of endless killings and reprisals in Kaduna, Nasarawa, Benue and Zamfara states. No nation can progress in an atmosphere of insecurity. It is disheartening that over three weeks after President Buhari declared his new government’s resolve to tackle insecurity head on, no obvious sign in sight that he meant what he declared.
Of all these killings, no suspect, group or individual has been apprehended or brought to book. It is also crystal clear that Mr. President’s resolve to restructure the economy may be a mirage if the mindless killings continue as investors would avoid the country like a plague as insecurity and development don’t mingle.
First, the process of interdiction must be swift and comprehensive if President Buhari must deliver on his promises of anticorruption, security, economy much more effectively and efficiently, far more than he has previously achieved in these areas.
Second, as the president has indicated, he must form an all-inclusive government drawing to his cabinet and other sensitive areas of his administration, men and women of great talents across board. We believe that the security of our country should be treated with utmost priority and all without exception should be whipped into line in the objective to secure the country.
There should be no sacred cow and no group or individuals should be allowed to take the country to ransom. If he must secure the country as constitutionally empowered, Mr. President must be firm, resolute and determined in applying the law without discrimination.
In walking the talk, it is, however, important to respect the rule of law in the conduct of governmental affairs. The truth is that to act otherwise is also tantamount to corruption. This is the time to change the narrative.
Nigerians are no longer comfortable with lamentation as demonstrated by President Buhari on the unending massacre going on in Kaduna where he reportedly said: “I am deeply troubled by the fact that the sanctity of life is now treated with such reckless disregard that people derive joy in shedding the blood of others or perceived enemies.”
He must walk the talk, using instrumentality of the law with the rules of engagement to deal with insurgents and bandits masquerading under the guise of ethnic divide to unleash terror. Insecurity is like a cancer to Nigeria’s socio-political and economic development.
The sooner it is eliminated and rooted out, the better for the country. Nigeria deserves good governance. This, the president must ensure if his name is to be engraved in letters of gold. We urge president to seize the moment and bring happiness to the faces of majority of Nigerians and tackle insecurity head on.