Insecurity may endanger 2019 polls, stakeholders warn
Stakeholders have observed that the recent killing of over 100 soldiers by Boko Haram insurgents in Metele community of Borno State is capable of impeding the peaceful conduct of the 2019 general elections if the government failed to rise up to the occasion by stemming the rising cases of insecurity across the nation.
Reacting to the development in separate interactions with The Guardian, yesterday, presidential candidate of Liberation Movement (LM), Dr. Kriz David, former President Aka Ikenga, Chief Goddy Uwazurike and standard bearer of Lagos State governorship election for Alliance for Democracy (AD), Chief Owolabi Salis, said the Federal Government must wake up to the responsibility of providing necessary security across the country if there must be free, fair and peaceful election in 2019.
They said for the military authority to have confirmed the attack on its personnel but was silent on the figures of causalities gives room to doubt about the capacity of the government to provide necessary security before, during and after the elections.
In his remark, Dr. David said, “Today, if there is anything that has been unequivocally accepted by all Nigerians is that there is colossal leadership failure. What is even more precarious about our country is that Nigeria is actually a ‘Failed state.’ The fact that killings and kidnappings have become incorrigible occurrence in different parts of Nigeria validates the failed state assertion.”
He noted that insecurity in the country is the conspiracy of the political elite and the commercial gains being made by politicians and their cohort in the security institutions, saying there are verifiable proofs to validate these assertions.
The LM presidential candidate said it is now clear to everyone that Nigerians have been fed with lies and are still being fed with lies, adding, “If the account of one of the soldiers is anything to go by, you know that the fight against Boko Haram has been a big commercial venture for these vocational politicians. Despite the several billions of naira that was voted for the purchase of “intelligence and equipment” as they claimed, our military are ill-equipped!
“If in 2018, Boko Haram can sack a military base, kill a battalion, what then is the fate of civilians? Life has become endangered in Nigeria. As president of Nigeria, I will solve the insecurity challenge within 60 days of assuming office. Let us not forget that the essence of government is the sustenance and enhancement of the quality of lives of citizens and I have a well-proven strategy and model, which I will use to achieve this. These vocational politicians created Boko Haram; therefore they can’t solve the problem they created!”
Salis said while the situation Nigerians find themselves is a sad one, he urged Nigerians not to shift focus from the upcoming elections. He insisted that it was time the electorate be more resilient not to elect leaders based on political, tribal or religious sentiments but on the basis of meritocracy.
The AD standard bearer said it was unfortunate that over 100 soldiers could be reported killed less than 82 days to a general election, noting “I consider this as a conspiracy against Nigeria. The presidency should look beyond just fighting the Boko Haram. Why all these killings? We have a great army. The presidency first needs to promote ethnic unity among our armed forces for all of them to see one another as Nigerians of equal class, fund the grassroots army directly, enterprise them and set up investigations on possible conspiracy. Are the Boko Haram Nigerians? If yes, what do they want? How do they get their ammunitions and so on? Something drastic needs to be done. And this is a very big threat to the coming elections if care is not taking.”
Meanwhile, Uwazurike expressed shock that the matter is being treated with kids gloves when election is fast approaching, saying, “I am left wondering whether the government thinks that the people who put the government in office and pay the operators are not entitled to know about the casualty figures! What is wrong with telling us the number of fatalities, the injured and the missing in action? The soldiers have families and their sensitivity must be respected. Treating the Boko Haram attack as just another banal press release is callous. Every human life matters and this is how a country is rated. The government has failed woefully in this human caring index.”