Following last weekend’s reign of terror unleashed on some parts of Kogi state, especially Ebira land by youths suspected to be political thugs, the Ebira Youth Elites Organisation of Nigeria (EYEN) has warned the political class not to turn the state which is known as Confluence of Peace to that of blood.
The group noted with dismay, “the growing resort to brigandage and the recent attempts to prime our youths to self-destruct.”
In a statement issued Wednesday in Abuja and signed by the group’s president, Yunusa Jimoh, the community based organization said Kogi is a Confluence of Peace, not of blood.
It also condemned “the violent attacks and reported counter-attack on political opponents and wish to refresh our memories to the not-so-recent past when we had a terrible war of attrition among brothers. That dark period, no doubt, set us back for several decades”.
The statement read: “While some few altruistic youths are daily racking their brains, networking and rallying forces to draw attention to the long-neglected Ajaokuta Steel Company, it is shameful that some members of the political class who have lost their voices as regards this noble national endeavour are now trying to come back to political reckoning by using as a launchpad, crude underhand tactics, including violence just in the lead-up to the 2019 General Elections.
“In case our politicians have forgotten or do not know, may we kindly remind them that even in Katsina, President Muhammadu Buhari’s home state, there are still several opposition parties and for them, the sky is big enough for each one to pursue its legitimate aspirations.
“Ours is a Confluence of Peace, not of blood. As we approach a crucial election year, partisans must play by the rules and avoid this gradual descent into anarchy or a return to the dark days of organized terror and thuggery.
“We make bold to say that an eye for an eye would soon make all of us go blind.
“From our research, poverty and drug abuse are at the root of the wave of violence that is threatening to engulf the land. While we urge the political class to do more to stem the rising tide of poverty in the land, we call on the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency NDLEA and other security agencies in the state to devise workable mechanisms of tracking the suppliers and sellers of these hard drugs.
“We also call on security agencies who are saddled with the onerous task of maintaining law and order to act on actionable intelligence at their disposal to rein in the forces of terror in our land.
“EYEN also commend those who have intervened and helped in putting an end to the impending disaster, among who is the Governor of Kogi State Alh. Yahaya Bello and his intervention team led by Engr. Abubakar Ohere. We implore all that are affected to adhere to wise counsel as we pray God to continue to sustain his peace in our hearts, our homes and in our community.
“EYEN sympathizes with the injured and those whose properties were destroyed. We urge them not to make a resort to the use of brute force by trying to retaliate.
“We certainly do not want a day whereby few forces of evil would reduce Ebiraland to a Hobbesian state where life would become hellish, nasty, brutish and short. May that day never come.”