By Henry Umoru
ABUJA— FORMER Federal Commissioner for Information and South-South Leader, Chief Edwin Clark, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently suspend all democratic institutions in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states and declare a state of emergency in the states to allow for full military control.
Addressing journalists, yesterday, at his Asokoro residence, Abuja, Clark, who condemned in very strong terms, the resurface of Boko Haram insurgents in these states and the abduction of over 110 innocent secondary schoolgirls in Dapchi, Yobe State, said he had sleepless nights when the ugly news of Dapchi broke out.
He, however, accused Governors Bindo Jibrilla; Kashim Shettima and Ibrahim Geidam of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states respectively of frustrating efforts of the Federal Government to nip the unfortunate war in the bud because of what he described as the governors’ selfishness and what they stood to gain.
Clark added that the Borno State governor took advantage of being the Chairman, Northern Governors’ Forum to always travel out of the state and abandon his people.
In an open letter to Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN, Clark said: “The political dimension of the fight against the insurgent has not been adequately considered; yet this is the point of the fear in the containment fabric.
“The governors of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states, to Nigerians and interested observers, as criminal aloof, and distant from a situation that is primarily their responsibility in each one’s respective state where he is the chief security officer, and behaving like any other governor in Nigeria.
“It is in the light of this obvious, gross dereliction of constitutional duty of these civilian governors that I am here, calling on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately declare a state of emergency in each of those states.
“In an emergency situation, which is total, and in which the civilian administration is completely neutralised for a period of six months, a sole administrator is more likely to take a very pragmatic military view and strategy against those tormenting his territory; and will be assimilated and fully involved in the military operation.
“Above all, I recommend this drastic action because the people of those states need immediate succour, and peace, to return to normalcy that will enable them participate as integral parts of the Nigerian nation.
“Once again I congratulate the armed forces for their brilliant job. But we will be deceiving ourselves if we continue to believe that we can defeat the Boko Haram by allowing the state government to operate side by side with the military.
“Today, we are confronted with the remnant of Boko Haram moving in and out of Nigeria carrying out attacks and engaging in frequent suicide bombings in Sambisa forest, which had earlier been the headquarters of Boko Haram but now taken over by our gallant forces.
“But let me warn that the battle is not over yet unless the Federal Government takes an unprecedented drastic action to flush out the disturbing and periodic actions of the insurgents.
“I have had sleepless nights thinking about the recent easy abduction of over 110 innocent secondary school girls in Dapchi, Yobe State, while we are still lamenting and grieving over the abduction of the Chibok schoolgirls on April 14, 2014.
“These have no doubt thrown a big challenge to the wonderful work being carried out by the military in terminating the insurgence from the North East of Nigeria.
“I submit that the present security situation in the country, particularly in the North-East, where the insurgents are still challenging the territorial integrity of Nigeria, bombing and killing innocent citizens and the recent abduction of over 110 schoolgirls in Dapchi, Yobe State, which has now attracted global and local attention, like the case of Chibok schoolgirls, can no longer be regarded as a normal situation.”