President Muhammadu Buhari has urged Nigerians to stop ethnic profiling of criminals, noting that bandits, kidnappers and insurgents are criminals irrespective of their origin and should be seen as such.
He also assured that the government would continue to kill criminals.
Declaring open the meeting of Northern Governors with Northern traditional leaders and National Assembly leaders from the North on Thursday in Kaduna, President Buhari, who was represented by Chief of Staff, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, assured Nigerian that they will continue to deal with criminals, be they bandits, kidnappers or insurgents who pose threats to innocent Nigerians.
“This kind of robust engagement provides a veritable platform for deep reflection and dialogue on unity, peaceful coexistence, security and other parameters of development. We are confronting various dimensions of security challenges that continue to slow down the emancipation of our people from poverty and economic deprivation.
“Criminals are criminals and should be dealt with as such, without resorting to ethnic profiling. Government shall continue to deal with insurgents, bandits, kidnappers and other criminals who constitute a threat to innocent citizens across the country. I have already tasked the new service chiefs to devise new strategies that will end this ugly situation where the lives of our people continue to be threatened by hoodlums and criminals.
“I expect that at this meeting, your Forum will also discuss and devise ways of building stronger collaboration with the security architecture and the people in defeating criminality across the region and the nation at large. It is pertinent to note that the increased realization of our security, democracy indices are inextricably linked. Democracy and rule of law promote stability and in turn reinforces the power to assert freedom and economic progress of our people.
“This thread of interconnection needs support of the Northern State Governors Forum and the entire citizenry of the country as any amount of positive sacrifice would be beneficial in bringing about national development and security of our nation. I appreciate the efforts of the 19 Northern States Governors’ Forum for their contribution towards national growth and development, especially in this challenging period in our nation’s being where certain fundamental issues of our corporate existence need to be frankly deliberated upon and actionable resolutions reached.
“This meeting is coming at a time when the nation is making steady progress in addressing the many challenges impeding development and progress. We are providing critical infrastructure such as roads, railways, airports among which are critical to economic prosperity of our people as well as economic opportunities for our citizens to pursue legitimate aspirations that grow the economy.
“Government also notes with satisfaction the deliberate actions of the 19 Northern States Governors’ Forum of inclusivity in addressing the challenges of governance and national development. This is demonstrated in today’s event, wherein the Forum intends to receive and deliberate on the reports from Committees that were put in place to critically look at certain challenges of the region.
“I have been informed that the issues that will be on the table cut across various sectors. These include economy, security, youth development, industrialization, energy development, role of traditional rulers in governance, the Almajiri phenomenon, and many others which are not just peculiar to the Northern Region, but also affect other parts of the country. I have no doubt that far reaching recommendations will be adopted for the good of the region and the nation.
“I urge that these crucial and robust reports should be assiduously studied and implemented without delay. This is because we are not short of policies, but often faced with challenges of implementation. I assure this Forum of the support and collaboration in implementing some of the resolutions of this meeting that may require the participation of the Federal Government.
“I wish to advocate for synergy between the Northern Governors Forum synergy and other Forums in the other regions for the collective good of our nation. You should endeavour to compare notes and peer-review one another to exchange ideas and adopt best practices for the good of the people you govern.
“I wish to commend the Chairman and members of this Forum for rising to the occasion to de-escalate the recent tension arising from clashes between herders which resulted in the loss of lives and properties. The efforts of the Forum in engaging all parties and supporting the efforts of the Federal Government have gone a long way to ameliorate the situation. We need to sustain this tempo to attain total calm.
“Today’s gathering also demonstrates the collective will of the people of theNorth to promote living together and staying amongst all Nigerians irrespective of our ethnic and religious differences. I urge that the spectrum of this kind of engagement be widened to cover all communities and geopolitical zones of the country. The Federal Government would be willing to partner with you on that.
No tags for this post.
“The very key issues bothering the Northern region and indeed the country that require collective efforts to resolve are, population growth, agriculture value chain that is anchored on diversification and improved yields, as well as the revival of industries and other economic opportunities for job creation. I shall be keenly waiting for your resolutions on these and other issues as we work together to ensure a change,” he said.