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February 25, 2021

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Declare state of emergency on insecurity, Senate tells Buhari

4 min read

The Senate on Wednesday asked President Muhammadu Buhari to declare a state of emergency on security without any delay.

This was a sequel to a Point of Order raised by Sani Musa, the senator representing Niger East Senatorial District, calling for urgent action on Tuesday’s abduction of some teachers and students of Government Science Secondary School, Kagara, Niger State.

Mr Musa said if action was not taken, the fate of the victims may be sealed with the kidnappers.

PREMIUM TIMES reported how suspected bandits, dressed in military uniforms, attacked the boarding school and abducted the victims.

The exact number of students and teachers kidnapped has not been confirmed. However, some students are said to have escaped after the raid.

The attack comes days after 21 travellers were also kidnapped in the state.

In his contribution, Muhammad Enagi(APC- Niger South) wondered how long conversations around insecurity will be held.

He also wondered if state governors should be given enough power to handle issues of insecurity because of the federal government’s incompetency.

The seemingly frustrated lawmaker wondered if citizens should be allowed to carry arms to defend themselves amidst rising cases of banditry and kidnapping across the country.

He said, “The enemies of God, bandits, terrorists, kidnappers are everywhere. Where are we heading to in this country? What else do we need as lawmakers that we are not doing?

“Can we rightly say that the government, is incompetent? Because this issue has been discussed here over and over and there is no improvement. It is getting worse. I’m sure everybody here has stories to tell about the security challenges. What else are we supposed to do that we are not doing? Are we supposed to amend the laws in this country to give every citizen freedom to carry arms?

ALSO READ: Insecurity: Again, Senate indicts FG, demands rejig of nation’s security architecture

“Are we going to amend the constitution to give more powers to the governors who are the security heads in their various states because our government at the centre is showing incompetence in handling insecurity – because it is not his son or his daughter that has been kidnaped. I expect everybody in government to think like that.”

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Instead of creating economic opportunities that will engage the unemployed and generate employment, the government is giving palliatives, he said.

On his part, the Deputy Chef Whip, Sabi Abdullahi, warned that Niger State is not far from the federal capital and that if action was not taken, the ones who feel safe in the FCT will no longer do so.

At the end of the debate, the Senate asked Mr Buhari to, as a matter of urgency, declare a state of emergency on insecurity in the country.

It also urged him to consider and implement the recommendations of the Senate adhoc committee on Nigeria’s Security Challenges as a response to the mounting security challenges across the country.

The Senate had previously asked the president to bring the security challenges confronting the nation to an end.

It also asked him to sack the security chiefs, who eventually resigned their positions on January 26.

It is currently screening the new set of service chiefs appointed by the president.

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