STOP THE RIVERS OF BLOOD!
The Nigeria Labour Congress is horrified at the escalating insecurity in different parts of the country. The current sad state of affairs took another calamitous turn with the public execution of five humanitarian workers by Boko Haram in Borno State.
The Presidency has already identified these workers as staff of the Borno State Emergency Management Agency, Action Against Hunger, Rich International, and International Rescue Committee. The only crime of the affected workers was their selfless devotion to alleviating the lot of the hapless civilian population in the different crisis torn parts of North-East Nigeria.
For the past seven months, the insurgency and terrorism of the Boko Haram sect and other violent groups across the country have widened in scope. Since January 2020, Boko Haram has increased the wave of terror on major transportation arteries in the North East. Many inter-city and feeder roads in the region have been completely abandoned to the terrorists exacerbating the already precarious humanitarian situation in North-East Nigeria. So many lives have been lost in this renewed ogre of madness. A lot of public infrastructure has been destroyed in the process. Economic activities along Lake Chad Basin has been crippled and farmers in the crisis locations are attacked daily by terrorists.
Owing to renewed attacks in northern Borno State, the following Local Government Areas (LGAs) and towns have been displaced and now live in Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs)Camps: Mongono LGA, Marte LGA, Kukawa LGA, AbbadamLGA, Guzarualla LGA, parts of Gubio LGA, parts of MagumeriLGA, parts of Nganzai LGA, parts of Benishek LGA, 75% of Konduga LGA in camps, Kalabalge LGA, Dikwa LGA, Ngala LGA.
In Southern Borno State and parts of Adamawa State, renewed attacks have led to the complete sacking of the following towns and villages with no single inhabitants there now: Dagu, Huyum, Killekassa, Kopa-maikadiri, Yaffa, Ngurthlaru, Kwabula, Kuburmbula, Kaya, Guryangwal, Shawa, Gogomdi, Gwandang, Gatamarwa, Imirmulza, Thilemakalama, Yaza, Kirchinga, and Mimirsa. In the entire Gwoza LGA, the only towns where there are still inhabitants are Pulka, Dlimankara, and Gwoza. In all these locations in northern and southern Borno states, many district and village heads have been killed by the Boko Haram terrorists.
The same specter of bloodletting, destruction and dislocation areoccurring almost on daily basis in Southern Kaduna. In northern Kaduna, most parts of Katsina, Sokoto, Zamfara, Taraba, Benue, and Plateau states and other parts of North Central Nigeria, kidnapping, cattle rustling, and rural banditry have become the domineering narrative and the “new normal” as villages and towns fell one after the other to criminal masterminds. This is totally unacceptable!
The Nigeria Labour Congress had earlier alarmed the nation to the epidemic of rape mostly against the female gender. Up till now, there are no concrete assurances that the identified cases are being diligently pursued and prosecuted. The deficit of robust investigation of these violent crimes with the intent of apprehending the masterminds and foot soldiers leave citizens with the eerily feelings that the country has now degeneratedinto a banana republic where autonomous power centers boldly competes for space and subservience with the state.
We call on the Federal Government to quickly rejig our security apparatus and the security systems it has deployed to fight terrorism and violent crimes. Certainly, the current system is not working. Government must do whatever it takes under the powers bestowed on it to break once and for all the spine of terrorism and violent crimes in our country. We cannot afford to slide into a state of anarchy which is the wish of those who have picked up arms against the state and innocent civilians including workers. We must remind the Federal Government that the security of lives and property remains the numero uno responsibility of every government. The government certainly needs to do more to convince Nigerians that it is capable of living up to its promises to safeguard the lives of Nigerians and their property.
We covey our heartfelt condolences to the families of our fallen heroes particularly the aid workers who were recently executed by Boko Haram. These compatriots have paid a heavy price. Wepray that their sacrifice will not be in vain. Government at all levels and the echelon of our security apparatus must make sure that the sacrifices of our fallen compatriots are not in vain by putting a total stop to the Rivers of Blood!
Comrade Ayuba Wabba, mni
29th July 2020