Obasanjo slams Buhari for confusion and incompetence at ending incessant killings

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has again attacked the Federal Government, stating that the President Muhammadu Buhari administration is incompetent and incapable of addressing the killings and poverty in the country.

He argued that the administration was confused and had reached the end of its tether while the nation was being left perilously to drift.
Instead of proffering solutions, the former leader said the government had been wringing its hands and “giving one unrighteous and unacceptable justification after the other.”
Obasanjo said this in a letter read on his behalf at a one-day national summit on insecurity and killings in Nigeria convened by the Northern Elders Forum, Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, Ohanaeze Ndigbo and Pan Niger Delta Forum on Wednesday in Abuja.
The ex-President, who was represented by a former governor of Osun State, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, noted that Buhari was, by his action and inaction, doing a lot of harm to the nation’s commonwealth and heritage.
In the letter which was addressed to the NEF Chairman, Prof. Ango Abdullahi, the retired general recalled the discussion he had with the elder statesman about the danger to the nation’s democracy when he hosted him (Ango) in Abeokuta some weeks ago.
Obasanjo said, “When you kindly paid me a visit a couple of weeks ago, we deliberated on the danger to our democracy, our common identity, our commonality of purpose, our dream and our unity in diversity.
“We lamented the harm that the present administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, by his action and inaction, has done and is doing to our commonwealth and our common heritage.”
The Owu chief added that the nation had never been so divided along religious and regional lines as being witnessed today.
“The obvious indication is that the government is seemingly confused and has got to the end of its tether and the nation is being left divisively and perilously to drift.
“Earlier last week, I noted in a speech some undesirable elements being allowed and being introduced to our democracy by this administration. If these are not stopped, they could be the death knell of our democracy,” he stressed.
The elder statesman, however, expressed hope that in spite of the unfortunate situation created by the government, his consultations with people had given him hope.
“People are not ready to give up in despair and leave their fate and their present and future in the hands of inept leadership for their lives to be ruined. I see common concern across the nation irrespective of tribe, religion, language and social standing that the situation should be retrieved and the nation should be saved,” he stated.
The former President admonished the elders to continue with the dialogue which he said was necessary to clear misgivings, misunderstanding, misperception, misrepresentation, erroneous beliefs and outdated ideas and concepts.
Other speakers at the summit including Abdullahi, Ohanaeze President, Chief John Nwodo, PANDEF leader, Chief Edwin Clark and the Afenifere leader, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, called for measures to address the security and economic situation in the country.
Clark noted that Nigerians were living in poverty, corruption and inequity, adding that state governors who hitherto had no class had created one for themselves.
He said, “Even military governors were more liberal than the governors you have today as they only think about themselves and not the people. If we keep silent, a revolution is coming, if we fail to take quality decisions, our children will not forgive us. I don’t care who becomes the President as long as he is competent.”
A politician, Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, called for the retooling of the nation’s security infrastructure which he said must be completely rebuilt on a new philosophy, structure and commitment to security as the prime function of the state.
Baba-Ahmed, who is the Chief of Staff to the Senate President, said there were compelling grounds for restructuring of the federal system in a manner that would benefit all sections and interests in the nation.
“In this respect, the recent initiative of the Senate to initiate a review of the constitution towards creating state police should be supported as a matter of the highest national priority.
“The amendments on devolution of powers should also be revisited by the National and state Houses of Assembly. Nigerians demand that their leaders must operate with requisite sensitivity to the challenges of our existence, and must put aside parochial and divisive sentiments in dealing with national issues,” the former All Progressives Congress chieftain argued.
A former Ondo State governor, Olusegun Mimiko, called for urgent action against the killings, warning that the situation might get out of hand, noting that some victims believed they were attacked on the grounds of their ethnicity, religion and class.
A former Inspector-General of Police, Suleiman Abba, blamed reckless speeches by politicians for the killings, insisting that they laid the foundations for the killings in Plateau State by creating enmity between the Hausa/Fulani and the indigenes.
He disagreed with the opinion that state police could address the bloodshed, noting that only Lagos State could afford to fund a police force.
“Is it a state that cannot pay teachers that would pay policemen? Do you know the cost of a gun? Only Lagos is ready to fund state police,” Abba asserted.
The summit in its communique said its aim was to forge a national consensus on the key pillars required for building national security, unity and survival in a just and democratic society.
It lamented that the country had witnessed “unprecedented incompetence and enthronement of mediocrity in dealing with the horrendous spate of killings and general insecurity across the country.”
The communique, which was signed by Clark, Abdullahi, Adebanjo and Nwodo read, “In the eyes of many affected communities, there appears to be palpable government complicity in the killings. These killings claimed 3,500 lives in 2017, a figure that could be much higher in 2018.”
On the economy, the summit noted with dismay the mismanagement of the economy which it said was characterised by significant loss of output, massive youth unemployment, rising level of poverty, instability and irregular migration of skilled and unskilled labour.
It observed with concern that the nation had been adjudged to be more corrupt than it was in 2015 by Transparency International, adding that it was alarmed by the flagrant disregard for the rule of law.
The summit resolved to insist on “the emergence of a visionary and dynamic leadership which will deal with our security and economic challenges and ensure good governance in the country.”
It demanded the revamping of the security architecture, removal of killers from the communities they had occupied and return of same to their rightful owners who now live in camps.
The elder statesmen said they would strive to reach a consensus on the positions of the various Nigerian communities and arrive at an agreed template on the issue of federalism and restructuring.

No comments:

Post a comment