SWITZERLAND, DECEMBER 02 – Following the recent gruesome killings of scores of farmers in Borno State by the Boko Haram terrorist group, the Northern Elders Forum, has berated the government of President Muhammadu Buhari, remarking that life has lost its value under him.
The organisation also said that threat of farming in Northern Nigeria was real in the face of limited production of food in many of the communities.
The NEF Director (Publicity and Advocacy), Dr Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, raised these views in a statement on Tuesday night on the recent killings of 43 farmers in Borno.
He said, “Under this administration, life has lost its value, and more and more citizens are coming under the influence of criminals. We do not see any evidence of a willingness on the part of President Buhari to honour his oath to provide security for Nigerians. In civilized nations, leaders who fail so spectacularly to provide security will do the honourable thing and resign.
“The Northern Elders Forum joins Nigerians in expressing outrage at the killings of farmers in Borno State and many other people on a daily basis in many parts of the North. Our voices have been raised without pause for a long time against pervasive insecurity in our region.
“We have consistently drawn attention to lack of political will to fight the Boko Haram insurgency and other threats such as banditry, rustling, and kidnapping. We had offered suggestions on how the security infrastructure could be improved and leadership of the military could be made more effective. Obviously, along with advise and concerns from many other Nigerians, these have made no impression on President Muhammadu Buhari.
“These particular killings have been greeted by the most insensitive response by spokespersons of the President. The lame excuse that farmers had not sought permission from the military to harvest produce merely exposed the misleading claims that our military had secured vast territories from the insurgency.
“These killings and the reality they expose will make relocation of citizens and resumption of economic activities a lot more difficult to achieve even for a leadership that attaches priority them, and this administration does not.
“Elsewhere in many parts of the North, many farming communities have not been allowed by bandits and kidnappers to plant crops. Those who did are being prevented from harvesting by these same criminals. The prospects for famine are real in the face of limited production of food in many of our communities.”