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The political leadership, of all the parties in Nigeria have been enjoined to come together and take a common stand on the deteriorating security situation in the country, and to prioritise the collective interests of the people.
Also, the security and intelligence services, as well as the Police and Armed forces, were also urged to take practical steps to ensure the immediate rescue of the abducted Chibok school girls along with others languishing in the various detention dens of terrorist and criminal gangs across the country.
The calls were made by the Civil Society Delegation to the National Conference in a release issued and jointly signed by the group yesterday. Members of the delegation include Femi Falana, Jaye Gaskia, Abiola Akiode, Ezenwa Nwagwu, Auwal Musa Rafsanjani, Joe Okei Odumakin, and Kyauta Giwa.
According to the release, the delegation noted that “the entire pro democracy civil society movement in Nigeria continues to be alarmed at the deteriorating security situation in the country, boosted by the failure of governance at all levels, and amplified by the collective irresponsible actions and inactions of the political elite.
“We are worried that weeks after the abduction of 234 teenage school children, and days after nearly 44 of them, through their own efforts escaped from their abductors; not only has the entire security architecture failed to locate let alone rescue the pupils; but also the political elite leadership has continued to engage in a shameless blame game, competing to make political gains out of our collective misery.
“Furthermore, just over 14 days after the dastardly bomb blast in Nyanya Abuja, which left over 75 people killed and hundreds wounded and or missing; the nation has continued to be subjected to wanton acts of terrorism and criminalities that continue to leave scores of our compatriots dead, wounded, maimed, orphaned, widowed and traumatised, among other things.
“Yet in the face of these deepening monumental crises of existential proportions confronting our nation and people; the political leadership continue to be incapable of rising to the occasion, while the military and security forces along with the intelligence services continue to be dithering, as if overwhelmed by the challenge”.
According to the delegation, “at such a critical moment such as this, it is incumbent on ordinary Nigerians to rise to the occasion, make their voices heard, and call the leadership to order.
“We demand that as a measure of the seriousness of the current situation that all political parties cease their premature and illegal campaigns for the 2015 general elections, and thus stop mocking our collective loss, dancing on the graves of our murdered compatriots, as well as trivialising the trauma of our collective grief.
On the security situation and abducted Chibok girls, the delegation demanded “the establishment of a crisis centre on this issue, open and accessible to the families and the public, and through which daily updates on the rescue efforts are given to affected families and the nation at large.
“We therefore urge a complete and thorough overall of the security architecture in the country; and demand that immediate steps be taken towards ensuring mandatory and improved coordination among security services and agencies”, the delegation added.