NIGERIA: Don’t Politicise Current Insecurity Challenge, Anyoku Warns Politicians

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 The former Secretary General of Commonwealth, Mr. Emeka Anyaoku has called on Nigerian politicians not to politicise the current insecurity challenges confronting the country, especially the issue of insurgency in the North Eastern part of the country.

Anyaoku made this call  Friday in Abuja while delivering a lecture in commemoration of the 2013 Nigeria Public Service Day.

He warned that politicisation of the current security challenges, such as some unguarded statements of some high profile citizens of the country, helps to reinforce an environment that was conducive to the activities of the Boko Haram.

He said: "On the worrisome statement being made about our 2015 elections by a number of our high-profile citizens, I call on our politicians and opinion makers to stop and think of the implications for the country's stability…of the battle lines for the elections being drawn on sectional and ethnic basis.

"We hear declarations from notable nationals that the President in 2015, must come from a specific area of the country, and we also hear at the same time from similarly notable nationals that a different area must have two terms of eight years".

"In our ethnically and religiously diverse country that is still to be coarse fully into one nation, the potential consequences of the failure by either side to win the presidency in 2015 are the grounds for my worry", he remarked.

Anyaoku noted that "if we are to promote our national solidarity, and if we are to succeed in entrenching our democracy, our politicians and leaders of thought must move away from section-based to policy-based politics".

He added that campaigns and advocacy of support for candidates should be based on manifestos of political parties outlining policies and programmes for addressing the various challenges facing the country and its citizens.

He stressed further that, competition among individual candidates for political office should be driven by specific pledges of how to serve various concerns of the electorate rather than sheer quest for position and power.

He appealed to politicians not to politicise the current insecurity" my second point is once more to appeal to all our politicians not to politicise the current very serious insecurity challenge confronting our country. Politicization of the challenge reinforces an environment that conducts to the activities of Boko Haram".

Speaking further, the elder statesman described the Civil Service as an embodiment of ideas, which was yet to recover from the depredations inflicted on it during the so-called purge in the system in 1975, after the overthrow of the Gen. Yakubu Gowon's regime.

He pointed out that a number of efforts have been made by succeeding Administrations to reform the civil service but it must be said that in quality and service delivery, the civil service today is still way below the level attained by it in the pre-1975 period.

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