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CAN faults Democracy Day celebration amid insecurity

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Officials of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in the 19 Northern States and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja have said that the nation has no reason to celebrate Democracy Day amid the current insecurity and poverty in the country.

The association said the poor handling of insecurity and the worsening state of the nation was highlighted by protests in some parts of the country during the anniversary.

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In a statement issued by the Northern CAN Public Relations Officer (PRO), Jechonia Albert, in Kaduna, yesterday, the group said: “In Lagos, Abuja and some southern states, Nigerians trooped to the streets in protest against the unfortunate state of affairs in the country. Without mincing words, Northern CAN wish to state that the current state of the nation has plunged the vast majority of the people into hunger, poverty, frustration and despondency.”

It said: “Amid increasing insecurity, bad economy and undemocratic tendencies among the leaders, is there anything really worth celebrating? Certainly none!

“We are particularly concerned about the security situation, which appeared to have overwhelmed the government.

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The security situation in the country today has worsened with bandits, kidnappers and Boko Haram insurgents unleashing mayhem on Nigerians, killing innocent people and sacking communities.

“Thousands of Nigerians, especially in rural communities have been rendered homeless by bandits. On a daily basis, across the country, communities are being raided. People are being killed or abducted by rampaging bandits and other criminal elements.”

The statement notes further: “The security situation has crippled the economy as travelling on the highways across the country has become a nightmare to Nigerians. The rains are here but farmers cannot go to the farms for fear of being killed or abducted by bandits.

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“The implication of this is that a looming food crisis stares us in the face and unless steps are taken to provide a secure environment for farmers to return to the farms, we may be in for more trouble with a hungry and frustrated population.”

It said: Northern CAN is also concerned about the frequent attacks on schools and the abductions of students and pupils by bandits, especially in states like Kaduna, Katsina, Zamfara and Niger. We fear that if nothing is done to stop the attacks and abductions in schools, many parents may not send their children to school again.

This will bring about serious set back to the quest by the North to bridge the wide educational gap between it and the southern states of Nigeria. We join other Nigerians to, once again, call on the Federal Government for the umpteenth time to urgently address the security situation once and for all to liberate Nigerians from criminal gangs and their reign of terror.”

It added: “President Muhammadu Buhari has repeatedly promised to address the security situation. He reiterated this during his broadcast on Democracy on Day, promising to protect Nigerians. We urge the President to go beyond rhetoric and match his words with action this time around to inspire confidence among Nigerians.”

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