The lead opposition party has challenged the ruling All Progressives Progress (APC) led by President Muhammadu Buhari to explain the whereabouts of some alleged mercenaries it procured and imported into the country to fight her political cause.
PDP said it is inexcusable to have a pseudo-government in some communities in the country who seek permission from bandits to carry out legitimate activities guaranteed by the Federal Constitution, while the Federal Government lay claims to control of the Nigerian federation.
The opposition party in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan said the All Progressives led Federal government has a responsibility to contain the incessant killings of vulnerable Nigerians by insurgents and bandits in Katsina, Sokoto, Zamfara, Borno, Kaduna, Kogi, Taraba and other parts of the country.
The statement reads in part: “PDP said the party is greatly hurt by the horror, anguish, agony, torture and cruelty Nigerian and her compatriots are facing in the hand of bandits, insurgents and kidnappers, following the failure of the APC administration to get its acts together, tighten our security architecture and secure our nation, despite the huge resources it claimed to have spent.
“Our party holds that the situation where marauders and insurgents, who had been pushed to the fringes by the PDP administration, had resurged under the APC, to the extent of occupying territories, ravaging communities and killing our citizens with reckless abandon, raises a lot of questions.
“The PDP further notes that the frightening situation where bandits have reportedly taken control of some parts of our nation and even grant permission and consent to residents before they can conduct weddings, naming ceremonies or operate their markets, is completely inexcusable.
“It is even more lamentable that the bandits had become so emboldened by the failure of the APC administration to the extent of holding Mr President’s home state, Katsina, to ransom.
“Our party invites Nigerians to note that the APC has failed to account for the whereabouts of the political ‘mercenaries’ it imported into our country from neighbouring countries, particularly from Chad and the Niger Republic, to participate in its campaigns during the build-up to the 2019 general elections.
“Nigerians can recall that the PDP had cautioned on the perils of the importation of unscreened aliens by the APC to involve in its presidential election campaign rallies.
“Our party had warned that such elements could be used to unleash acts of violence, including banditry against Nigerians. The escalation of banditry since the 2019 elections, therefore calls for a deep soul-searching by the APC and its leaders.
“Moreover, some APC governors are reported to have had contacts, discussions and even negotiations with the bandits: a situation which also demands that the APC and such governors come clean on links with marauders.
“Furthermore, Nigerians have observed the failure of the APC, as a party, to raise a strong voice in giving its government, marching orders against banditry. The APC had not taken any decisive action or proffered any significant suggestion in the effort to secure our nation, beyond lame condolence messages to victims of the attacks.
“The PDP holds that the time has come for the APC to define its stand on the issue of insecurity in Nigeria, particularly the call by well-meaning Nigerians on President Buhari to rejig our nation’s top security architecture and inject new blood into the system.
“The PDP weeps for the victims of the mindless attacks and restates its call on President Buhari to wake up from slumber and take conclusive steps, beyond speeches, to flush the bandits out of our nation, PDP stated in the statement.
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