Nigeria needs immediate declaration of state of emergency – PENGASSAN

Disturbed by the precarious security situation in some states in Nigeria, the blue-collar oil union, PENGASSAN has called for an overhaul of the country’s security architecture.

The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) made the call in a statement issued in Lagos on Monday.

The influential union called for “an immediate declaration of a state of emergency and overhaul of the nation’s security apparatus.

The spokesman for the association, Mr Fortune Obi, said that a state of emergency was necessary because “the security networks as presently constituted have lost their value and focus.’’

According to him, there has been numerous cases of destruction of property and incessant shedding of blood in Nigeria.

”The growing rate of insecurity in the land has become a nightmare. Daily, stories of killings in states, especially Borno, Zamfara, Kaduna, Sokoto, Yobe and Adamawa saturate the mass media.

”The Boko Haram sect and violent herdsmen have been notorious for blood shedding and destruction of property of innocent victims.

“We condemn in totality these atrocities and find the situation highly unacceptable,” he said, referring to the worrisome activities of the jihadist group, Boko Haram, herdsmen and rampaging bandits in Nigeria’s northwest.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Boko Haram has killed no fewer than 28,000 people and displaced millions, since the group launched its deadly campaign 10 years ago.

Obi said that the bloody activities of the groups had become news-worthy for the international community but that the development was putting Nigeria in negative perspective and scaring prospective investors.

He lamented that it was reported recently that Boko Haram hijacked a commercial bus conveying passengers from Port Harcourt and killed them.

”This occurrence and other related activities have made travelling through Nigerian roads, including the East-West road in Rivers a nightmare.

“The Nigeria police in reaction to this declared a state-of-emergency on the Rumuji, Ndele, Rumuekpe axis on April 28.”

He said that the story was not different in Lagos State with extra-judicial killings now the order of the day in the state.

The scribe said that the existence of notorious cult groups that cut down lives at no provocation had made citizens around the Ikorodu axis to live in constant fear.

Obi said that the existence of the criminalities had suggested leadership failure.

”That is why we call for a systematic mop up of arms and ammunitions illegally acquired by politicians in the build-up to the general elections, especially now that the electoral process is over.”

The unionist criticized agencies in charge of the nation’s borders for not living up to their responsibilities “because of self-aggrandisement’’.

He appealed to the Federal Government to apply the same level of force used in curtailing the activities of MASSOB, OPC, MEND and lately IPOB in dealing with current security challenges that had led to wanton destructions of lives and property. (NAN)

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