How to end insecurity in the North

Since the recent rise in terrorism in the North, there have not been any drastic measure to punish the culprits. There should be a special court to suspected terrorists and summarily convict them. 
There should be special laws that specify the punishment banditry, kidnapping and other forms of terrorism. The punishment should be severe and in the public view so as to serve as a deterrence to other like minds.
The government alone cannot end this level of insecurity within a short time, that is why the citizens have to get involved. For the North, there should be an independent body or forum that will harness the expertise and resources of all active and retired professionals and elite from the region.  
The forum should be independent of government and should have a structure down to the local government levels. It should be managed by highly respected and experienced people from the region. The forum should be named “Arewa Development Forum”.

The forum will furnish the various state governments individually and as a group with ideas and strategies and help harmonise their approaches towards combating insecurity. 
The body should establish “The Arewa Development Trust Fund”, where every working and capable northerner will be contributing a willing amount of money monthly. The funds will be used for compulsory education for all and some basic infrastructure development in the northern rural areas.
The extent of the abject poverty in the north is unimaginable. There are still villages without schools, electricity, road, potable water, among other basic amenities.

 The Arewa Funds should be used to build infrastructure in these villages. It should be used to build schools and sponsor every child’s education, especially in remote areas. It should be used for free education for every northerner. Teachers should be trained recruited and adequately remunerated from the funds.
The Funds should be used to address street children begging and hawking. The Forum should conduct a census of the “Almajiri Child” for a database of their locations and their origin, with a plan to send every child back to their parents. 
The parents should be incentivised for keeping and supporting their children’s education. The Funds can also be used to support modern and mechanised farming, including animal rearing and ranches. It can also be used for capital seed for women’s entrepreneurship and businesses.
All the international donor agencies and NGOs that want to work in Northern Nigeria should work with the Arewa Development Forum. The idea is to harmonise the resources for efficiency, devoid of duplication. 

 The governments of all the northern states should contribute to the funds. International Organizations and Foundations should be solicited to contribute to the Funds. The idea is to generate and spend at least N2 trillion for education and basic infrastructure in rural areas of the region.
If we can have up to 10 million northerners who will be contributing at least N20,000 monthly, we will raise N2.4 trillion in a year. 
In addition, we can receive donations from state governments, NGOs and international agencies, and foundations. Nigerians in the southern region can contribute as well.

The local government branches of the Forum should maintain education and development statistics and a database of the people under their jurisdiction. The information will help for the appropriate allocation of these resources.
There should be a new law that will convict any person or their parents for not acquiring a minimum of secondary school education in the North. The education should be compulsory and free for all.
Banditry and other forms of terrorism are ideologies. Ideologies are groomed by certain circumstances, and they can travel everywhere. The only thing that prevents it is education.

War should be declared in the affected areas. A large number of Nigerian troops should be deployed and given the order to clear the terrorists and ensure peace in the region. 
Ultimatum could be given to some of the terrorists who are willing to lay down their arms unconditionally, beyond this should be death. There should be immediate rebuilding of infrastructure in the areas where these bandits come from so that they will have options of a new life in their towns or face death.

Finally, the APC administration must end insecurity before the 2023 elections, because the APC and President Muhammadu Buhari were voted mainly for this reason. The next administration should not inherit another insecurity challenge.

The next administration should focus on addressing other issues. We cannot afford to waste a complete eight-year tenure of an ex-Army General without addressing insecurity in Nigeria.

I call on all Nigerians to take responsibility and act, we should stop relying on government to end insecurity.
Dorcas Adams, Department of Mass Communication, Abubakar Tatari Ali Polytechnic Bauchi,

Bauchi state