Buhari

The North East Elders Coalition for Peace and Development renewed its call for President Muhammadu Buhari to fire his Service Chiefs.

They accused the army of leaving the North-East region to the mercy of Boko Haram and the Islamic State of the West African Province, ISWAP, but deployed massive force during the #EndSARS protests in parts of the country.

The elders argued that scores of civilians killed could be avoided if more tact had been adopted, but acknowledged that strategic and organisational blunders led to scores of civilians killed.

The leader of the North East Elders, Engr. Zana Goni, in a statement, emphasised the need for proactive intelligence.

As a result, the elders enjoined President Muhammadu Buhari, to show the service chiefs the way out as they had exhausted all applicable ideas.

They said this would pave the way for the appointment of a new set of senior officers who will approach their jobs with the highest degree of commitment and enthusiasm.

They also believed that the new appointees would bring fresh ideas to bear on the onerous task of bringing to an end the 11-year-old insurgency that has since caused the loss of lives and destruction of property in the region.

The statement noted that though the protests in parts of the country may have been suspended, with deaths and destruction of both private and public properties in the trail, the North East also suffered similar fate during the period of the demonstrations.

The elders lamented that an attempt to quell the protests by all means possible, and the desire to prove that they were indeed on ground, left the security of the North East worse than it was.

The statement observed that the high command of the military would have been proactive enough to know that the insurgents take advantage of loopholes, to perpetrate their wicked acts.

The elders expressed their disappointment that these gaps were not covered, thereby giving the terrorists a free rein in many communities, a situation they said culminated in many unreported deaths and destruction of property.

The elders explained that their men, women and children are tired of the needless attacks on communities, in the face of huge budgetary expenditure on the defence and security sub-sector of the nation.

They added, “We are concerned that our dear President, who is so passionate about leaving an enviable legacy of a prosperous nation in all respect, has remained adamant, as far as the military heads are concerned. This position is despite the unanimous resolution by the Senate and the House of Representatives requesting the sack of the Service Chiefs.”