The recurrent mass kidnapping of students and citizens in Kaduna state should be a cause of serious concern to all citizens of the state and, indeed, Nigerians as well as the international community.
What is very clear is that the strategies being currently employed by the federal and Kaduna state governments are not working to combat or reduce the worsening incidence of the pervasive insecurity in Kaduna state.
In any situation where policies or strategies employed to manage an important issue are not working, the rational thing to do is to reassess and appraise the strategy to make necessary changes for better results.
The kidnapping of health workres in National Tuberculosis and Leprosy Hospital in Saye village near Zaria and mass abduction of students of Bethel Baptist School in Maraban Rido in Chikun local government area within a week should be a cause of serious concern for both the government and citizens.This is aside the students of Nuhu Bamalli Polytechnic in Zaria who were abducted and still in custody of their kidnappers. These unfortunate events call for the Kaduna state government to sincerely examine its strategies with a view to make necessary amends to make its security architecture more effective and efficient in protecting citizens’ lives and property.
There are pertinent questions citizens should ask especially with regard to the role of Kaduna state government’s in taming the pervasive insecurity in Kaduna state:1. Has the creation of ministry of internal security by Kaduna state government resulted in reduction of serious security breaches especially kidnappings in the state in the last two years of its creation?
Has the communication strategy of Kaduna state government on security, especially those that usually emanate from the governor and the commissioner of internal security, resulted in improved security and reassuring the citizens of their safety or has it merely put more information at the disposal of the criminal elements to be more daring in their evil activities?
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The view of security analysts, citizens and public affairs commentators is that insecurity has deteriorated over the last two years as evidenced by increased mass kidnappings in school and villages and displacement of more citizens from their ancestral homes.
The other major concern expressed by citizens in and outside Kaduna state is the need for more effective security information and communication strategy by especially the Kaduna state governor whenever he discusses the issues of kidnapping and banditry in the state. There are indeed situations where silence is more golden as divulging information on security strategy, plan and operation can be counter-productive.
Dr. Mijinyawa, aphysician and public affairs commentator, writes from Abuja.