A pan-Yoruba socio-cultural organisation, Afenifere, has warned that the festering expansion of Boko Haram terrorists and bandits, with the alleged establishment of camps in Abuja and some parts of Niger State, is a strong indication of looming danger in the country.
It, therefore, tasked the federal government to redouble its efforts in tackling insecurity by doing away with primordial cleavages and declare bandits as terrorists as recommended by the National Assembly.
Newsmen report that the Niger state governor, Abubakar Sani Bello, had earlier in August announced that Boko Haram terrorists had captured some areas in the state and had even hoisted their flags in those communities.
The group in a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Comrade Jare Ajayi, contended that “with the ever-growing reports of how much terrorists are gaining grounds in Nigeria, urgent, decisive, enduring and sincere actions need to be taken to prevent the country from going into smithereens.”
According to the statement, “the reports of how gunmen overran the police divisional headquarters in Umulokpa, Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State on Friday, October 9, 2021, in broad daylight and abducted a police officer and the abduction of seven inmates of St Albert the Great Institute of Philosophy, a Catholic seminary in Fayit, Kaduna State, on Monday, October 11, are the latest of instances epitomising the level of how the government is failing in the most basic of its responsibilities – protection of the citizens.
“Only last week, unrefuted reports had it that bandits suspected to be remnants of Boko Haram terrorists were setting up camps in villages in Kuje Area Council of Abuja Municipality. Penultimate week, chairman of Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger State, Suleiman Chukuba, disclosed that insurgents had taken over about 500 communities in his council, forcing the residents of the communities into becoming Boko Haram members and equipping them to fight against the government.
“As such, allowing the terrorists to establish in the state can be dangerous, not only to his state but also to the country. Niger and Nasarawa are not the only states that terrorists have set up camps. Zamfara, Borno, Kaduna, Benue, Yobe have caches of lands where bandits have established themselves from which they unleash terror on the people and government interests.
“In the South-West, Ibadan to Ijebu-Ode highway, parts of Ondo, Ekiti, Ogun and Osun states posted cases of armed attacks and abductions almost on a daily basis. The same way it is happening in Edo State, among others.
“In the South-East, besides frequent killings by gunmen, the effectiveness of the ‘stay-at-home’ order being given by a non-state actor, IPOB, is an indication of how much governments seem to have been consigned to feebleness by insurgents that kept getting emboldened by the day.”
The group warned that the failure of the government to act decisively on security challenges confronting Nigerians will imperil the socioeconomic activities in various parts of the country.