Opposition elements and other critics of President Muhammadu Buhari have been charged to join the government in the fight against insecurity rather than politicizing the issue.
Making the call in a press statement in Abuja, the Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) said the security situation in the country is not a trifling matter but that which calls for all hands to be on deck.
In an obvious response to recent calls for the President’s resignation, BMO, in the statement signed by its Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke, challenged the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) to tell Nigerians what it has done to complement the government’s efforts to address insecurity in northern Nigeria.
“It would be great to know the contribution of the forum to the search for peace in that part of the country.
“It is becoming the norm to see Dr Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, regularly in the media, pontificating on behalf of the Northern Elders Forum on the security situation in some parts of northern Nigeria
“But what we find worrisome is the claim that there has not been an appropriate response from the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to the problem.
“While we see it as a mischievous claim, we believe it would be good to hear the initiatives that NEF members had embarked on since 2009 to complement efforts of various governments to reduce insecurity in the part of the country.
“This is what is expected of elders and community leaders who are genuinely interested in ensuring peace in their domain.
“So, we believe that Nigerians would be curious to know what Hakeem Baba-Ahmed and his group have been doing across the 19 States of the North to ensure that the various peoples from as many as 200 ethnic groups live in peace”, the statement added.
BMO also brushed aside suggestions by NEF that the Buhari administration had not been doing much to stem the tide of insecurity in the North.
“We make bold to say that the government is not unmindful of the security concerns in some parts of the country
“We have seen credible successes at the frontlines as well as massive arrests of the criminals, some of whom have been handed lengthy prison terms after a mass trial of terror suspects.
“Only recently, about 7,000 terrorists and members of their families surrendered to the military after another round of sustained air and land raids to bring the number of those who have surrendered since September 2021 to 47,975.
“Nigeria’s military might on the watch of President Buhari is at an all-time high with a global ranking of 35th in the world, yet the government is also engaged in non-kinetic efforts to tackle the root causes of conflicts.