The northern socio-cultural group, the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) yesterday said President Goodluck Jonathan has woefully failed to protect Nigerians, particularly from the northern region.
The Forum stated this during an emergency meeting with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from the North, held at the headquarters of the forum in Kaduna yesterday.
Addressing participants at the opening ceremony, the ACF National Executive Council (NEC) Chairman, IGP Ibrahim Ahmadu Coomassie (rtd) said there is a deliberate plan or attempt to emasculate the North economically, to reduce it numerically, disunite its people religiously and divide them politically.
According to the forum Chairman, “As we gather here today to discuss, let us not lose sight of the fact that there is a federal government whose responsibility it is to protect the lives and safeguard the property of every citizen of this country.
“What we are witnessing today is a complete reversal of that role. The government of the day under the leadership of President Goodluck Jonathan has woefully failed to protect us.
“While the North is being battered, the people in government have not made serious effort to end it. For the first time in the history of this great nation, our President is being openly condemned for his ineptitude, immaturity and ineffectiveness.
“Since the advent of the Boko Haram uprising in 2009, the region has witnessed a speedy descent into anarchy. The insurgency and insecurity situation we are faced with in the north is such that we have never imagined would happen to Arewa that we all grew up to know, to love and to cherish.
“The Arewa that was bequeathed to us by our fore-fathers is no longer the same. Today, the entire Northern region is under siege. The North is being attacked from all angles and from all fields.
“Now, the general belief is that this government and its leadership do not like us. The current policies and the government attitude towards the insurgency leave us with no better conclusion than to assume that there is a deliberate plan or attempt to emasculate the north economically, to reduce us numerically, disunite us religiously and to divide us politically.
“This is the grim situation we are faced with. As leaders of Arewa, it is incumbent upon us to rise up to the occasion. The entire citizenry of the North looks up to us with so much hope.
“We must at this point bury our individual differences, come together and critically examine the situation before us. We must come out and speak with one united voice. We cannot afford to be seen to be divided.
“This gathering must pose questions whose answers should appraise us with what is happening to the north and why Nigeria is drifting towards anarchy and shamelessness.” Coomassie stated.
Meanwhile, following the complaints by many Nigerians against the on- going political campaign for President Goodluck Jonathan to seek for re-election in the 2015 general elections, the Adviser to the president on political matters, Prof. Rufa’i Alkali has said that nobody would stop the Jonathan’s campaign support groups and individuals from their political rallies.
Alkali, who spoke on the Hausa service of the BBC, monitored in Jos, disclosed this at the weekend, while fielding questions on why Jonathan’s campaign support groups began campaigning for the 2015 election before the official time was given by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
He explained that their reason for starting campaign came, following the realization that APC and other political parties were not sleeping and therefore, would not allow the opposition to beat them in the poll.
He said, “We are engaging in our political campaign because the opposition parties are not sleeping. If we fold our hands and look at them, they will beat us and as such, we have to stand on our feet so as to withstand any possible challenge from any political party.”
Alkali noted that the political activities of Jonathan’s support group for the 2015 election did not stop or bring any hitch to preparations of INEC towards the upcoming elections and therefore, they would continue with their rallies.
He said, “Our political activities didn’t hinder the activities of INEC towards its preparation for 2015 elections. They have been doing their preparations without any problem. So, we will continue doing our rallies.”
Recall that banners, billboards and posters of Jonathan urging him to seek re-election have spread everywhere in the country, while many people in the country are of the opinion that the time for such activities was not yet ripe.