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Martins charges FG to intensify counter-terrorism measures

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Catholic Archbishop of Lagos, Dr. Alfred Martins (second left), with other priests after the New Year Mass at the Holy Cross Cathedral in Lagos…yesterday. PHOTO: FEMI ADEBESIN-KUTI


Catholic Archbishop of Lagos, Alfred Martins, has lamented that jihadist groups and other terror gangs were holding Nigeria to ransom. He appealed to the Federal Government to intensify its counter-offensive to crush the groups and restore normalcy to end fear among citizens. Martins was speaking at the celebration of the 53rd World Day of Peace at the Holy Cross Cathedral, Lagos, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reported.

According to him, Nigeria’s security needs to be taken more seriously to crush Boko Haram, Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP), kidnappers and rogue herdsmen, who made life unbearable for Nigerians.He described as sad, unfortunate and barbaric the reported beheading on Christmas Day of 11 Christians abducted by ISWAP.

“I plead with the Federal Government to put more decisive measures in place to curb the lingering cases of insecurity in the country in 2020.“It is important that the security architecture of the nation be reviewed from time to time, even if it means changing personalities.

“So, I want them to focus a lot more on security as well as do a lot more in providing infrastructure necessary for growth.”Martins also advised leaders to listen more and engage more in dialogue with the people, to feel the kind of sentiments the people were expressing.

“Leaders of any nation are going to get the best from the people, only if they listen to them and dialogue with them.“When there is exchange of ideas and thoughts, then it is possible to really harness the energies that are within the nation.

“If any leader is interested in the country or people, then such a leader needs to seek peace and seek dialogue, to achieve that peace.”The archbishop also told Nigerians to join hands with government to build a strong, united, peaceful and progressive nation.He said the need to forge a peaceful and united country in the New Year had become more desirable at this point in time.

“This has become necessary to curb the numerous divisive tendencies that have held the country hostage for years and hindered it from attaining real growth and development.”He charged all tiers of government to live above board by being sincere in their approaches to governance. The government can achieve this by formulating policies that will be in the best interest of majority of the citizens, he added.

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