Amidst growing insecurity, call for sack of service chiefs rises

JOHN NWOKOCHA, in this analysis asks: Will President Muhammadu Buhari sack the service chiefs, rejig the nation’s security architecture, amidst growing insecurity in the country?
Escalation of Violence Across the length and breadth of Nigeria over the past couple of weeks, calls for President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently address the deteriorating state of insecurity in the country, by sacking the service chiefs whose tenure has elapsed in the first place, have been on the front burner.
The increasing calls by Nigerians for sack of service chiefs are hinged on the persistent killings in Benue, Taraba, Zamfara and Plateau states by alleged herdsmen.
But the calls are being intensified because of fear of escalation of violence across the country if the spate of killings in the country were not nipped in the bud.
Also, many who had expressed their displeasure at the growing insecurity argue that continuous stay in office of the service chiefs is at the expense of innocent Nigerian citizens.
Recently, precisely on Monday, July 2, seven police officers and one civilian were killed at a police post by unknown gunmen, in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, Nigeria’s capital territory.
Confirming the incident, Police sources said that the manner of killings showed that the killers were trained snipers, stressing that the killers were either ex-military or expolice marksmen.
Also, the police disclosed that the police weapons belonging to the late officers, including AK-47 rifles, were taken away by the gunmen.
Before the dastardly act, was the Plateau massacre in which about 200 lives were reportedly sent to their early graves allegedly by herdsmen operating in villages in Bakin Ladi and Jos south local government areas of the state.
The Plateau killings had sparked rage in the country with many again, calling for sack of the service chiefs.
Blueprint recalls that since December last year, there has been series of killings in the country, especially from the northeast and central.
And following fresh violence that broke in Benue and Taraba states, scores have been killed Also in Zamfara state about 22 people were killed in KuruKuru and Yar’ Kuka villages of Anka local government area of the state.
Casualty Figure Sadly, between January to date, the casualty figure is 1,813 lives lost to the worsening violent killings.
According to a report by the Amnesty International (AI) on the situation, said the killings had spread across 17 state of the country, adding that the casualty figure of 1,813 almost double the entire death toll of 2017, also caused by farmers/ herders’ clashes.
Amnesty International did not waste time to blame the federal government for failing to check the killings.
In the report, Amnesty noted that the failure of security agencies to act rapidly made attacks and reprisals frequent.
Bukola Saraki Cautions Reacting to the Plateau killings last week, President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, said lack of cohesion between security chiefs and security agencies in the discharge of their responsibilities was responsible for the persistent killings.
He lamented the gruesome killings and warned on politicising the situation.
The senate president said, “This is not something to be politicised.” “If somebody is not capable and cannot do what he has to do, let others have the opportunity to do it.
“We have had situations where security officials have told us there is poor coordination.
One, A is not talking to B, Be is not talking to A.
They don’t attend meetings jointly and things need to be done.
“Let us forget the issue of party, these are lives of people – and let’s remove politics.
It is not about who is the Speaker of the House, who is the President of the Senate.
It is about Nigeria.” He continues: “As you know, the National Assembly under my leadership, many months back, had seen this danger, called for a security summit, we had addressed the issue of security architecture.
We had said that there is definitely a failure of the security architecture of the country,” the Senate President said.
“You are all very aware that some service chiefs decided in their own wisdom that there is no need for them to work with the National Assembly to address these issues.
“There is no society that continues to see the kind of killings here and think that it should be business as usual.
It requires drastic action it requires a collaboration of all agencies and all arms of government for us to be serious.” Since April this year, the National Assembly had during a debate on the persistent killings in the Benue and Zamfara axis of the country called for sack of the service chief saying that “The government has failed.
Measures have to be taken to protect the common man.” The lawmakers noted that the service chiefs have failed in their responsibility to protect the lives and properties of Nigerians.
According to the lawmakers: “There is a complete failure in leadership.
Some bandits use weapons from the army, navy to attack civilians.
I am worried about the security of our nation and our people.
“We are getting tired of rising up to observe a minute silence for lost lives.
These killings have to end, we need to end these crises.” Miyetti Allah’s Stance However, speaking recently, at colloquium organised by the Citizens Communication and Advocacy Centre, the Secretary-General of the Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore, said that the National Assembly was laden with corruption and the legislators had not taken sufficient steps to address the farmers-herders’ crises.
Alhassan said the association did not believe in the call for the sacking of the service chiefs, noting that the association usually shared “critical intelligence” with the agencies.
He said, “The spate of insecurity in this country is worrisome to anybody that loves this country and I think our security agencies should be up and doing.
They should be able to identify the perpetrators and their sponsors and then ensure that justice is meted out to them.
We must watch closely our politicians, their utterances and their body language because some of them are the ones promoting violence we are having in this country.
“But first, our security agencies must be supported to identify the perpetrators and the promoters of this violence.
We must closely monitor some of these evangelicals that preach hatred in churches and mosques and desperate politicians that are facing corruption charges.
We must be able to get all of them and watch them closely so that they don’t set this country ablaze.
They are the drivers of the conflict.
With the worrisome deteriorating of the nation’s insecurity the time is rife for overhaul of the nation’s security arrangement in the overall interest of the country.
But with the seeming politicization of the issue will President Buhari change the security chiefs?

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