The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has accused the National Assembly of sabotaging the war on terrorism by distracting the Nigerian military through the ongoing investigation into the procurement of arms.
It would be recalled that the Chief of Army Staff, Maj-Gen Attairu Ibrahim, last Monday, appeared before the House of Representatives ad-hoc committee investigating arms procurement.
The appearance caused a standoff between the Army Chief and the committee members, as the latter refused to apologize over his inability to attend prior invitations.
Reacting, HURIWA advised the Senate President, Dr Ahmed Lawan, and the Speaker, Hon Femi Gbajabiamila, to provide patriotic leadership to guide the relevant defence related committees so their members are not “recruited as undercover sympathizers of Boko haram terrorists who will continue to spread sensational media stories regarding the propriety or otherwise of the procurement process observed in the Public Procurement of defence related weapons.
“We think that at a time of grave emergency and threats to the territorial integrity of Nigeria, what we expect from lawmakers is to support the hierarchy of the military with all that they need to effectively combat the threats of terrorism and after that then forensic investigations of expenses and procurements can happen in an atmosphere devoid of media sensationalism.
“We expect the legislators not to constitute unwelcome nuisance and orchestrated distractions by organizing unnecessary public show and media drama of seeking to make a devil out of the heads of the armed forces of Nigeria and by so doing create disaffection and de-motivate the combatants by feeding them with half baked and unsubstantiated innuendos that certain members of the military hierarchy may have diverted funds meant for procurement of arms. Who are these lawmakers working for? Nigeria or Boko Haram terrorists?
“This is the most inappropriate time to do that and with the methodology they adopted, they are indirectly creating the impression that some of the members of the National Assembly may actually be doing the bidding of the masterminds of the terror campaigns against Nigeria.
“If we may ask, are the legislators unaware of the very characters and political functionaries within the Ministry of Defence that are directly in charge of all procurements and don’t they know the custodian of such procurement records? Why have they not invited the minister?”
Insecurity In Nigeria Will End Soon, FG Boasts
The Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, says the recent supplementary budget sent to the National Assembly will help the federal government end insecurity in Nigeria.
Osinbajo spoke when he received the Oluyin of Iyin Ekiti, Oba Adeola Adeniyi Ajakaiye at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, yesterday.
At the meeting was the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, and Senator Opeyemi Bamidele.
The VP appealed urged traditional rulers, local and state governments to collaborate with the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to tackle current challenges.
Osinbajo recalled that Buhari recently constituted a committee to look at the security infrastructure of the country.
“The result of that is a bill before the National Assembly, a supplementary bill. The purpose is to present some of the needs of the military and other security agencies to beef up our response.
“I can assure you that soon, the issue of insecurity will be a thing of the past. We will all live in peace and prosperity in this country.”
The VP advocated vigilance at the local level, noting that most of the troubling issues occur in communities.
Probe Gumi’s Allegations, HURIWA Tells Buhari
The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to constitute an independent investigative commission to probe the allegations that security operatives collude with bandits as raised by Kaduna-based Islamic scholar, Sheikh Ahmed Gumi.
HURIWA made the call in reaction to Gumi’s claims that the Nigeria Police Force, and the Army were colluding with bandits.
The rights group urged the NPF and the Nigerian Army to investigate probe the allegations.
The Nigerian Army, however, denied the allegation, while warning Gumi against making such claims.
But the Kaduna-based cleric insisted that some bad eggs in the security system were aiding banditry with weapons and drugs.
Reacting to the allegation, the HURIWA said the security agencies should “cover their faces in unmitigated shame for their shameless cowardice and pampering of the Kaduna Islamic cleric Ahmed Gumi, who continues to defend terrorists and flouting with reckless abandon, the Nation’s anti-terrorism law which prohibits aiding and abetting of terrorists.”
In a statement by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, and the National Director of Press, Miss Zainab Yusuf, HURIWA dismissed as puerile, infantile, irrational illogical and cowardly, the official responses to the damaging allegations made by Gumi by the Army and police about the unholy communion between security forces and the terrorists terrorizing the whole of North-West carrying out a rash of kidnappings and killings.
Stressing that there are no smokes without fire, HURIWA said, “Whereas Sheikh Gumi has consistently accused the security forces of working with the terrorists, neither the Federal Government nor the security forces have instituted legal action against the prominent Kaduna based Islamic cleric who is credited by even the National Security Adviser of having unfettered access to the terrorists in the North-West of Nigeria.
“With his acclaimed access to the terrorists, is it not conceivably possible that he has some intelligence alluding to a possible unholy alliance between security forces and the terrorists?
“This clear display of unprofessionalism and cowardice by both the Army and police shows that after all, these allegations that the security forces work with terrorists deserves the most forensic and independent investigations.
“Dismissing these allegations with a mere wave of hands as have been done by the police and Army is totally unacceptable.”
The rights group then compared the tepid reactions of Army and police to Gumi’s “very elaborate accusations to the childish cries of the ‘Chihuahua pet dog.’
HURIWA said it does not make any sense that a person with considerable knowledge about the workings of terrorists in the North-West otherwise called armed bandits by the government has made such a major damaging claim of criminal collusion between security forces that ought to protect the territorial integrity of Nigeria and terrorists threatening national security, and the best response we can get are the childish cries from Army spokesman and the police.
“This is a crying shame,” HURIWA insists.
FRSC Dismisses Recruitment Rumours
The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has cautioned job seekers against online fraudsters posing as its recruitment agents.
This is contained in a statement by Corps Public Education Officer, Bisi Kazeem, yesterday, in Abuja.
Kazeem said the clarification became necessary following desperate efforts by fraudsters to defraud unsuspecting job seekers.
He said the attention of the FRSC had been drawn to an online publication misinforming the public about the release of shortlisted names for recruitment.
“This is to let the public know that the corps is presently not recruiting neither is there any shortlisted candidates list published on any platform whatsoever.
“Our recruitment processes have always been transparent, credible and made public through adequate placements of advertorials and notifications on all available media platforms.
“This includes our website: www.frsc.gov.ng, our social media handles and the National Traffic Radio 107.1FM,’’ he said.
Kazeem advised members of the public “to desist from any form of engagement with the purveyors of misinformation and outright disinformation as the corps will not be liable should anyone fall victim’’.
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