Former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, on Monday, tasked President Muhammadu Buhari to take action in addressing the rising insecurity, agitation and other related hostilities in Nigeria.
Anyim, however, urged President Buhari to set up a fresh commission of inquiry as a way to nip in the bud the increasing insecurity in Nigeria.
The former Senate President made this known in a statement signed and addressed to President Mohammadu Buhari and forwarded to DAILY POST.
The letter reads in part: “I have decided to do this open letter just to be sure that it will get to you, because I suspect that the private one did not get to you. Most importantly, I would not have bothered to write you this letter if the unfortunate and avoidable circumstances we have found ourselves in, as a nation, have not continued to fester to the magnitude of threatening the fabric of the nation. This letter, therefore, is to recover my earlier suggestion which, I want to believe, did not get to you.
“The perilous threats to our national sovereignty at the time you took over the reigns of power in 2015 were the Boko Haram insurgency in the North East; the armed agitation in the Niger Delta Region, and the IPOB agitation in the South East. Mr. President, on your assumption of office the most striking promise you made to the nation was to tackle insecurity with emphasis on reclaiming the territories occupied by Boko Haram.
“I must admit that you did approach the insecurity challenge with commendable determination but unfortunately, the challenge, with time, became hydra headed and no doubt went beyond your control.
“I wish to note that every violent agitation originates from a non-violent agitation that was not attended to. Today, Nigeria is bedeviled with violent and non-violent agitations. It is also a fact that the current violent agitations originated from non-violent agitations e.g., Boko Haram started as a non-violent procession; the herders/farmers clashes which has
degenerated into a deadly conflict with many states now bloody theatre of war; ethnic conflicts in Kaduna, Ebonyi, Cross River, Benue, Plateau states etc.
“It is escalating to an unmanageable scale; Armed Banditry in virtually all states of the federation particularly Zamfara, Katsina, Kaduna, Niger, Sokoto which has overwhelmed the Law enforcement agencies, kidnapping which has become occupational in most parts of the country.
“To worsen matters, Boko Haram, has acquired a new impetus that they now overrun the military and have even expanded their base to Niger State. IPOB has become a regional challenge. On the non-violent side, agitations for restructuring are scaling up in momentum, ethnic consciousness and allegiance even among the elite are far eroding national concerns. All these and many more coupled with gross downturn in the national economic, social and political space has become an apparent threat to our nationhood.
“I am to add that it must be known that military actions or even foreign help alone cannot bring permanent solutions to ethnic conflicts or nationality agitations. Mr. President, you need to create a platform to hear Nigerians out” he said.
Anyim however, tasked President Buhari to set up an urgent fresh commission of inquiry to address these youths agitation and other insecurity that is wracking havoc and threatening the unity of the nation.
“I make bold to recommend that Mr. President should make history by empaneling another commission of inquiry to inquire into the violent and non-violent agitations in Nigeria and make recommendations on the immediate-, short- and long-term solutions as a way of first de-escalating the rising tension in the land and a process for the renewal of our march to nationhood.
“It is important to note that in a democracy, no action is deemed successful or completed until the buy-in-of the people is secured through a democratic process. This buy-in- is an imperative that is yet to be pursued in the fight against violent agitations in Nigeria. I must say that as long as the people are not part of the process of finding solutions to the conflicts, a permanent solution will be a mirage.
He however enumerated the benefit of the commission to include; “The de-escalation of the current tension in the country and creation of a platform for exchange of ideas. It is a natural Governmental process of addressing challenges of public importance. The report of such a commission will put in proper perspective and provide basis for further action.
“It will offer the citizenry the opportunity and platform to share their concerns and to be heard. This helps to build confidence and reduce animosity and mutual suspicion. It identifies the immediate and remote causes of the current challenges and provide a framework for their resolution.
“Such a commission will aim not only to unravel the remote and immediate causes but also determine the various dimensions and define them accordingly. E.g. democratic agitations will be separated from violent crimes to the understanding of all. It will also capture the reasons for the agitations and the Justice thereto.
“Such a Commission will propose immediate-, short- and long-term solutions and develop a roadmap towards addressing them. Such roadmap used as a national reference document would guide further interactions and process for implementation. Such document will be the foundation for a new Nigeria anchored on negotiated settlement derived from the legitimacy bestowed by citizen participation and the credibility of the commission” he added.