By Peter Duru
The Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Monday said Nigeria is currently at the mercy of terrorists because the country is being denied access to acquire needed weapons to fight the insurgents despite efforts to do so.
The Minister who lamented the killings of 43 farmers in Zabarmari, Jere Local Government Area of Borno State said the federal government would not relent in its efforts to protect the lives and property of all Nigerians.
Alhaji Mohammed who spoke in Makurdi when he paid a courtesy call on Governor Samuel Ortom said terrorists were enjoying global funding and would require an equally global collaboration to defeat.
He said, “when people talk about terrorism, they don’t seem to appreciate the fact that terrorism is not a local issue but a global issue and there is no part of the world that is not experiencing pockets of terrorism.
“I am glad that the Governor Ortom himself has said the federal government has assisted a lot in curbing the issue of insecurity in Benue State.
“We will never stop protecting lives and livelihood of the people, but you must understand that we are also dealing with terrorists who are financed globally and we also need more support from global partners.
“For instance, Nigeria has made attempts to acquire better and more effective platforms to deal with terrorists and for one reason or the other we have been denied these platforms, and without these weapons and adequate platforms, we will remain at the mercy of terrorists.
“But you see, fighting terrorists is not a joke because what actually happened in Borno State was quite unfortunate.
“You must be also able to look at the strategy of the terrorists. You see, terrorists also use media and publicity as oxygen. So when they go on this kind of mindless killings of innocent people, it is just that a dying terrorist group will now suddenly again spring to life.
“It does not mean that the government is not doing enough. Terrorism in Africa and any other place in the world has the same concept which is, you have a group of people who are extremists in their thoughts, who don’t believe that me and you should be alive.”
Earlier, Governor Samuel Ortom had commended the efforts of the federal government to curb insecurity in the state.
He said, “this is the reason Benue is relatively calm and the issue of herdsmen attacks have been reduced to the barest minimum.”
The Governor warned that the state would not hesitate to apprehend and prosecute any herdsman caught violating the law prohibiting open grazing in the state.
He appealed to the federal government to urgently release the N10billion promised victims of herdsmen attacks to enable Benue rebuild homes of farmers sacked from their ancestral homes.