From Pwanagba Agabus, Jos
A former Governor of Plateau State, Amb. Fidelis Tapgun, has asserted that banditry and kidnapping have continued to thrive in the country because the Federal Government has been treating bandits with kid gloves.
The former Nigerian Ambassador to Kenya, equally said Nigeria needs a strong willed president that will take tough decisions to tackle the myriads of challenges bedeviling the nation.
Tapgun disclosed this in an interview with journalists in Jos, the Plateau State Capital.
He said, “So many things are going wrong. People are suffering. This banditry that is going on is the most terrible thing that has ever happened.
“Banditry, kidnapping and they go to school now and kidnap students and parents have to pay ransom before their children are freed. This is unimaginable.
According to him, “This banditry is not something that government cannot tackle. As far as I am concerned, they have been very reluctant.
“They have been treating it with kid gloves and I think people got emboldened. Because in some parts, when it earlier started, the government paid money to stop them from doing what they are doing.
“When you identified them, they should be punished. You should apprehend them and punish them so that others can take a cue.
“But you’re compensating them with money, I think you are just emboldening them to do more. This thing started like kidnapping, but it has expanded to banditry”, he lamented.
“I can’t give government credit with this type of thing. One day, I believe, God will send somebody to us that will be strong-willed to take tough decisions on certain issues no matter who is involved”, he maintained.
Speaking on secession drums in some parts of the country, the former Governor said, “Yes, it is very loud. But for me, I think it is being used as a bargaining chip.
“Nobody in his real senses wants to secede in this country today, because Nigeria as it is, is an important country and everybody knows that”, he maintained.