Herdsmen attacks: Arrest and prosecute killers of innocent Nigerians
Apostle Eugene Ogu is former president of Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN), Rivers State Chapter and also the General Overseer of Abundant Life Evangelical Mission, Port Harcourt. Ogu told ANN GODWIN in this interview that killers of innocent Nigerians must be arrested and prosecuted.
You have visited most of the victims and states faced with herdsmen attacks; how do you feel?
I think everybody is worried about the herdsmen killings, as for me, travelling from Jos to Benue, to Kaduna State, to Borno, Adamawa, and most of all the places witnessing what is going on, it calls for concern and I think at this very point, the government is answerable to the killings, enough of the excuses. Excuses are not helping the situation and it is obvious that the constitutional responsibility of every government is to protect lives and properties and, if a government is not doing that, it means that the government has failed and excuses by government over the killings of Nigerians is no longer acceptable. The situation is so pathetic and disheartening. It will be a mark of honour for any government that has failed to take the part of honour to resign or throw in the towel for other people who have the answer to the problem. It is obvious that this present administration does not have answer to the problem and nobody will trade the life of his brother, sister or mother in support of any political party. This is not the issue of party, it is an issue of lives of Nigerians, it is an issue of lives of our children, wives, husbands, brothers and sisters and our sons and daughters. Nigeria cannot continue to be a river of blood, it is unacceptable, we no longer understand. If government feels that it is not responsible for this or has answer to it, then it should act. We don’t want to hear the answers in words, we want to have the answers in action.
How can government demonstrate commitment to this challenge?
Killing is an offence, whether the killers are politicians, government should go after them, whoever they are, they should go after them, arrest, prosecute and jail them to serve as deterrent to others.
I just returned from Jos and Makurdi, where one of my staff, a humanitarian worker was killed by the herdsmen beyond recognition. It is until this government begins to touch this untouchable people and begins to arrest those who are invisible we will begin to see results, otherwise, it’s a clear demonstration of failure by this administration.
How can government impact citizens and alleviate poverty?
The solution to the problem of today is that we must kill the spirit of tribalism and the spirit of religion. We have 1,561 widow’s children who are non-members of my church on scholarship. The message is that our leaders, Nigerians should give scholarship, jobs, appointments because the beneficiaries are citizens of Nigeria, not because they are members of your church, or your tribe or religion. I want to see a commissioner who is not from a state in another state, the only way we can solve the problem of today is by living our lives beyond boundaries. We must move out of the box of religion, tribe, and all the sentiments. Let us go by citizenship where a Nigerian, no matter, where he comes from would have the full right to work and live anywhere. I am from Imo State but people say, I am more of a Rivers man, this is because I have over 400 Rivers’ students in my scholarship scheme, so let’s live by what we preach.