Don't Extend Emergency Rule, North-east Governors, People Tell President Jonathan
SAN FRANCISCO, April 13, (THEWILL) - President Goodluck Jonathan has been urged not to extend the State of Emergency in Adamawa, Yobe and Borno States.
The call was made by the people and governors of the three states currently under emergency rule.
They have requested that a change strategy should be adopted in tackling the Boko Haram insurgency since the declaration of emergency rule in the states has failed to solve the problem of insecurity in the states.
They therefore cautioned the Federal Government against extending the ongoing state of emergency in the three troubled states,saying doing so will only increase the apprehension in the area instead of resolving the Boko Haram problem.
They maintained that if the insurgency cannot be contained with the emergency rule in place for almost a year now, then a change of strategy has become imperative.
federal government should know that it is the right time to change strategies.
Last week, the three governors namely, Murtala Nyako (Adamawa), Ibrahim Gaidam (Yobe) and Kashim Shettima (Borno) had said: "It is our considered view that there is absolutely no reason to even contemplate an extension of the State of Emergency in any of the three states.
"It must be noted that a counter insurgency strategy that lasted one year without achieving the desired result requires a redefinition rather than extension.
"The Federal Government should always remember that it has the obligation of protecting the lives and property of all Nigerians in all parts of the country without necessarily putting them under any special condition.
"It has the option of putting a security structure in place that can continue and intensify ongoing counter insurgency operations without an extension of emergency rule.
" They had also argued that: "After all, we had the Joint Military Task Force (JTF) in place in some of States with full military activities prior to the declaration of emergency.
"We have for many years, also have in place similar JTF in the Niger Delta to combat militancy and kidnapping, we have had same in the Southeast to fight armed robbery, we have a Special Task Force in Plateau State combating the crisis in parts of the State without necessarily putting them under emergency rule.
Besides, the Nigerian Army has in 2013 created new divisions and brigades in Borno State as permanent military establishments.
" According to the governors, "With continued motivation, continued and intensified deployment of military resources, the crisis will be overcome.
" They therefore called on residents of their respective states and other Nigerians to continue to intensify prayers for the return of peace even as they called on the security agencies to remain resolute and patriotic.
They also saluted the sacrifices of fallen heroes among the military and security agencies and the civilians who died in the crisis, reinstating their commitment and determination to continue to work with security agencies and all other stakeholders in search of lasting peace.
On Sunday, the Borno State Commissioner of Justice and Attorney-General, Barrister Kaka Lawan Shehu, said security was covered by the exclusive legislative list which gives the Federal Government the exclusive right to make law on it.
"It is a no go area for the state to legislate on,"he said as he explained that the Federal Government which had earlier declared emergency rule in 15 local government areas in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa, for the first time in May 2013 slammed curfew on the entire Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states for the first six months, which it renewed around November last year for another six months.
The Commissioner said extension of the state of emergency "serves no purpose as the military and the civilian populace in the affected states are collaborating to bring the insecurity situation to an end.
" He advised that the federal government should encourage the three states by devising another strategy to managing the crisis outside declaration of state of emergency: "More so,the state governments of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe, not withstanding the fact that security is covered under the exclusive legislative list of the constitution, have contributed greatly in motivating the military and security agencies with provision of logistics with the view to bringing the insurgency in this area to a standstill in addition to similar support, especially in Borno, extended to youth vanguards popularly called Civilian JTF.
"In a nutshell, it is not in the interest of the government to extend the emergency rule beyond this present six month that will be expiring in few days time," he said.
His advice came as the member representing Gulani, Damaturu, Gujba and Tarmuwa Federal Constituency of Yobe State in the House of Representatives, Hon.
Khadija Bukar Abba Ibrahim, also called for the replacement of the Joint Task Force Operations with the emergency rule currently running in the three north eastern States.
The lawmaker noted that the insurgency can be contained with a Joint Task Force security operations, insisting that extending the emergency rule which is due to expire on April 19 is not the best.
"Personally, I think we need to have all the help that we need to curb the insurgency.
You don't have to impose a state of emergency.
You can actually put in place a Joint Task Force within the state without actually saying there must be an emergency rule.
I think that is a possibility.
So, I don't see any reason why they should extend the state of emergency,"she said.
Another federal lawmaker from Yobe state,Hon.
Goni Bukar Lawan, in his contribution said the Emergency Rule declared by President Jonathan was not with the full support of the National Assembly.
He wondered what has been achieved by imposition of emergency so far despite the huge resources committed to the efforts.
He said as a member of the Police Committee of the House, "we have never received any report on the security of the states and nothing concrete has been done by the Police to take charge of the security situation in the troubled states.
" Also, another member of the House of Representatives, Hon.
Hassan El- Badawry, said "The federal government has not shown the desire to protect the people of Nigeria particularly the people of the Northeast.
" He therefore asked the president not to approach the National Assembly for an extension of emergency rule, saying both the Senate and the House of Representatives have agreed that there will be no further extension of the state of emergency in the three states.