Says only stronger action against kidnapping and banditry can win public confidence
A Non Governmental Organization and popular peacebuilding group, Foundation for Peace Professionals also known as PeacePro has tasked federal government of Nigeria to fully digitalize the security forces in the country in an effort to address growing menace of kidnapping and banditry, noting that only digitally equiped forces can give the country leverage over kidnappers and bandits.
The group maintained that, quick digitalization of Nigerian security forces will allow them take firm control within a very short period of time and with minimal men.
This position was contained in a statement made by Mr Abdulrazaq Hamzat, an Executive Director of Foundation for Peace Professionals on wedneday.
Hamzat explained that, allowing bandits, gunmen and kidnapers to consistently and relentlessly attack innocent people, kidnap law abiding citizens and receive huge payment of ransome both from individuals and government, running into billions of naira without adequate response from security forces is a disservice to the nation.
According to him, available facts shows that about “1,100 people were murdered in 2018 in the six states of North west Nigeria by bandits, over 2,200 were killed in 2019 in the same region and 1,600 killed between January and June 2020”, adding that about 247,000 people had been displaced while their activities alone have led to the production of more than 41,000 refugees.
“In Zamfara alone, despite the murder of over 8000 people in the last decade, 200,000 displaced internally and others fleeing to neighbouring states, the state had reportedly paid close to a billion naira as ransome” he said.
Hamzat, who commended the patience and understanding of the Nigerian people over the deteriorating security situation noted that, there’s limit to patience, adding that, despite the enormousity of the challenges at hand, federal government cannot throw its hand in the air in surrender, it must mobilize the intelligent capacity of the forces to strategically nuetralize the rebels confidence.
He also noted that, if the alarm recently raised by Sultan of Sokoto is anything to go by, bandits now move in the North from house to house with AK47 unrestrained and that cannot be allowed to continue.
The peacepro director also added that, apart from the bandits operating in North West and Central, organized kidnappers are also operating across the country, especially in South west, where targeted kidnapping are taking place almost on daily basis with the security agencies acting as helpless as the helpless citizens.
He therefore called on the digital community to come to the aide of the country with ideas that could help the security forces fully digitalize as quickly as possible and combat the security situation in the country, noting that only strong action against kidnapping and banditry can restor public confidence.