The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, wants the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government to relieve Minister of Defence, Major General Bashir Magashi, of his duties, for allegedly abdicating his statutory duties in asking unarmed Nigerians to defend themselves against armed aggression by bandits and terrorists.
The party described the statement by the minister as “reckless, irresponsible and a confirmation that the Buhari administration has surrendered to outlaws and has no determination to fight them.”
This was contained in a statement signed by Kola Ologbondiyan, national publicity secretary of the PDP.
“It is unthinkable that a government would describe unarmed victims of armed aggression of terrorists and bandits as ‘cowards’ while those who were elected and given the necessary resources to defend them recede in the comfort and safety of their offices in Abuja.
“Such disposition to security; a statutory responsibility of government, goes to validate apprehensions that our nation is indeed descending to a failed state under the Buhari Presidency, where the government can no longer perform its duties while unarmed citizens are left to confront bandits and warlords.
“Given the silence by the Buhari Presidency, our party holds that the defeatist comment by the minister represents the disposition of President Muhammadu Buhari and his security architecture, and explains why the administration has remained complacent in the fight against terrorism and banditry in our country.
“Such statement by the Buhari administration, at the time it ought to be scaling up its security strategies to guarantee the safety of all Nigerians, have been emboldening bandits, terrorists and kidnappers to escalate their acts atrocities against our compatriots.
“Moreover, with such disposition, the Buhari administration is creating a lucrative job for bandits, terrorists, and kidnappers who are settled with huge ransom instead of being faced with firepower.
“Our party however urges Nigerians not to despair at this moment but brace up as it has become obvious that we are now in a despondent situation where the government has shown that it can no longer defend the citizens,” the statement read.