Following the killing of farmworkers in Zabarmari, Borno State, members of the Senate and the House of Representatives have been advised to face the reality on the ground and see the fight against insurgency as a collective one.
The Coalition for Truth and Justice (CTJ) gave this call on Wednesday at a press conference in Abuja.
Speaking on behalf of the group, National Coordinator, Timothy Charles noted that for far too long, the crisis in the North-East has been left for the military alone without any help from relevant stakeholders, including the National Assembly.
According to the coalition, the NASS has always danced to the gallery without proferring any solution.
To put an end to the menace, Mr Charles said all hands must be on deck, urging the National Assembly to explore ways it can use the instrument of the legislation to assist the country and the troops on the frontlines.
The coalition further challenged the lawmakers to come up with innovations that would promote the security of lives and properties in the country.
With a more pragmatic and proactive commitment from all critical stakeholders including the Senate and House of Representatives, the group, however, assured that the insurgency war would soon come to an end.
Read the full statement below:
The Coalition for Truth and Justice receives the recent statement credited to the hallowed chambers of the Senate and the House of Representatives in the National Assembly with regards to the security situation in the country.
The position of the National Assembly which from all intents and purposes is not malicious, but instead, it is out of tune with reality because the insurgency crisis in North-East Nigeria has been left for the military alone, while institutions such as the National Assembly has continued to pay lip service.
The Coalition for Truth and Justice is particularly alarmed that the hallowed chambers of the National Assembly have not been credited to have proffered any solution to the insurgency crisis in North-East Nigeria, but instead, it has been playing to the gallery through public statements that are more of rhetoric and grandstanding.
The National Assembly has again by their recent actions demonstrated gross insensitivity to the sanctity of human lives with regards to the Zabarmari killings in Jere Local Government Area of Borno State.
The Coalition for Truth and Justice is calling on members of both chambers of the National Assembly to put the interest of the country at heart in the conduct of their legislative business by exploring ways it can use the instrument of the legislation to assist the country in the fight against insurgency and other criminal activities in Nigeria.
The members of the Senate, as well as the House of Representatives, must realize that they are representatives of the people. As such, it behoves on them to see the task of addressing the security challenges in the country as a collective one.
It is also instructive to add that the people they represent in the National Assembly are also victims of acts of criminalities. As such, it is expected that our lawmakers should come up with innovations that would promote the security of lives and properties in the country.
Our lawmakers must also be seen to be a part of the solution to the spate of insecurity in the country. Their deliberations in the hallowed chambers must reflect the realities on the ground and must also be seen as having respect for the sanctity of human lives.
It is indeed instructive to state that had the members of the Senate and the House of Representatives been supportive of the efforts of the government towards tackling the threats posed by the Boko Haram insurgency, Nigeria would have made considerable progress in the war against insurgency.
The Coalition for Truth and Justice wishes to advise the members of the National Assembly to do all within its powers to render valuable support to the government on the war against insurgency in Nigeria.
It must also as matter urgency begin the process of enacting laws that would boost the operations of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria because the realities on the ground require a more pragmatic and proactive commitment from all critical stakeholders including the National Assembly.
The members of the National Assembly must see this task as a national concern and do all within its purview to ensure that Nigeria records success in the war against insurgency. It must also be stated that this is not the era for paying lip service and criticizing the government’s efforts. This is indeed the era of joining hands and working as a team towards the overarching aim of ensuring the security of lives and properties in Nigeria.
The Coalition for Truth and Justice believes that our lawmakers can enact laws that would also further strengthen Nigerians sovereignty and protect the country from external aggression and in the overall interest of the country.
This is indeed not the time to apportion blames because human lives are being lost daily, but rather this is the time for collective action and with a strategic purpose of nipping in the mid the nefarious activities of insurgents and terrorists, as well as other criminal gangs across the country.
The members of the National Assembly must also see themselves as partners in progress and not rivals in governance as recent events suggest with the unfortunate incident in Zabarmari community in Jere Local Government Area of Borno State.
The Coalition for Truth and Justice is charging the members of the National Assembly to rise to the occasion in this critical point of our existence as a country by doing the needful in support of the war against insurgency and terrorism in Nigeria.
The Coalition for Truth and Justice believes that if the National Assembly extends its support to the war against insurgency and terrorism, Nigeria shall experience tremendous success.
This is our position.