President Muhammadu Buhari

Abuja-Kaduna Train Attack  Gives Citizens Reason To Doubt Capacity Of Buhari’s AdministrationTo Protect Them – SMBLF

The leadership of the Southern and Middle Belt Leaders’ Forum (SMBLF) has expressed sadness over the attack on the Abuja – Kaduna bound train by terrorists on Monday night. SMBLF strongly condemns the horrible and detestable assault on innocent Nigerians. This is another national embarrassment and a monumental indictment of the nation’s security architecture.

In a statement signed by Senator Bassey Ewa-Henshaw  PANDEF/South South; Chief Sola Ebiseni

Afenifere/South West; Amb. Okey Emuchay, MFR, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide/South East; Dr. Isuwa Dogo, Middle Belt Forum (MBF); Hon. Ken Robinson, Acting Coordinator SMBLF, the group observed that what the vicious terrorists have done by the Abuja – Kaduna train attack, the second of its type, is to say that they can take their “madness” anywhere, and at any time. They are sending a message to the government and people of Nigeria of their absurdity, intent and determination. It further indicates that the nation’s security and intelligence network has either been overwhelmed or compromised.
A few days ago, there was a reported incident at the Kaduna airport, which was an indication that these men were adventuring new fronts,  given that people are avoiding the Abuja-Kaduna road, which has become a haven for terrorists and criminals and taking other means of transportation, including the train service.
Surprisingly, the Nigerian Railway Corporation and the security agencies could not be proactive by way of ensuring that proper security measures were in place to forestall such security breaches.
SMBLF further considers President Buhari‘s belated statement on the sad incident as gaunt and disappointing. Is the presidency just realizing that the country had long been held to ransom by these terrorists? When they started levying communities in the North West, and even government officials, to pay certain amounts in order not to be attacked, what did the government do? When they hoisted their flags in parts of Niger State, and the governor raised alarm, nothing was done. Why is the againstPresident “crying” now, as if the problem is new to him? How many Boko Haram terrorists have been arrested and convicted?
Enough of bare avowals by the government, the primary duty of government is the protection of lives and property of citizens, therefore, urgent and extreme steps must be taken to deal decisively with these terrorist groups.
Indigenous populations are being massacred and decimated, especially in non-Fulani Communities, in Kebbi, Benue and Plateau States as well as in Southern Kaduna and Southern Gombe, where an untold number of citizens have either been killed or displaced by terrorists and Islamic extremists, with plausible official complicity.
The government of President Muhammadu Buhari must rise to the occasion and declare a “total” war against these insane terrorists.
The Security and Intelligence Agencies must evolve and effect proactive strategies and mechanisms to restore security in all parts of the country. Maximum measures are needed to exterminate these terrorists from our land.
It is the government’s initial tolerance and “kid-glove treatment” accorded these elements, who then camouflaged as Bandits and Killer Herders, that bolstered them to this point where they now,  daringly, attack even military formations.
If the government had launched an “Operation Crocodile” or a “Python Dance” in the North West earlier or deployed the kind of brute force it unleashed against the rather peaceful agitations of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) against the Fulani Killer Herders and Bandits, we may not have had the prevailing tragic reality. And the situation would worsen if urgent and decisive actions are not taken to check the increasing audacious activities of these terrorists and criminals.
More disturbing is the startling revelation by the Governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai while addressing journalists yesterday (Wednesday), when the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, visited the State to assess the situation following the terrorist attack on the Abuja-Kaduna train, that the locations of the terrorists were known and that there was enough intelligence; that the Department of State Services even monitors the terrorist’s telephone lines. The question then is why are the security agencies reluctant to  take decisive actions against these terrorists?
There have been reiterated reports of compromise, and even outright collaboration, by military and security officials with these men.
We have been told that these ideologically deluded, demented and deranged elements are mostly foreigners, allegedly recruited and brought into the country for political purposes; they have now become the principal security albatross for the country.
SMBLF urges the presidency to dispose of the predispositions that have characterized this administration and declare a “total” war against these atrocious terrorists undermining the territorial integrity of Nigeria and making life difficult for citizens.
SMBLF emphasizes that the government of President Muhammadu Buhari must reassure Nigerians and the rest of the world that it is capable of guaranteeing the safety and security of lives and property in all parts of the country.
SMBLF urges all patriotic and well-meaning Nigerians, irrespective of tribe, religion or political lining to unite in tasking as well as supporting the government and the security agencies to fight these terrorists and criminals in our country. Nigeria cannot afford to continue in this disconcerting trajectory. It is even more worrisome given the upcoming 2023 general elections.
SMBLF extends deepest condolences to the families of those who were killed in the horrible incident and empathizes with all victims while calling on security agencies to deploy all necessary interventions to secure the safe and immediate release of all those abducted by the senseless terrorists.
Nigerians are expecting that the perpetrators of the dastardly acts,  particularly this train attack would be apprehended soonest and made to face the full consequences of their heinous acts, through open and unbiased trials.

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