By John Alechenu
FORMER Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Chibudom Nwuche, has said the only item on the agenda of the National Assembly at plenary should be the security of lives and property of Nigerians. In a chat with Vanguard, in Abuja, yesterday, the former federal legislator argued that nothing else will justify the continued stay of lawmakers in the chambers at a time like this.
Nwuche said: “Security should be the only item on the agenda of the National Assembly Plenary for now. Enough of this nonsense! Why did we elect them if they can’t secure our country?”
According to him, the nation is currently on its knees following the unchecked activities of bandits, terrorists, and other non-state actors.
Nwuche, who expressed his condolences to the Nigerian Army and the family members of gallant officers and soldiers of the elite Brigade of Guards who were ambushed and killed in Bwari, Abuja,
expressed disappointment that no one has been punished for the security breach which led to the raid on the Kuje Prison where suspected terror suspects were let loose.
He stressed that unless people were held to account for their actions and inactions such occurrences would become the norm rather than the exception
He also expressed surprise that no high level government official has either resigned or was fired after terrorists successfully raided the Kuje Correctional Custodial Centre, Abuja; setting free terror suspects and other criminals.
He noted that for as long as there are no consequences for laxity and incompetence, such occurrences are likely to become the new normal.
He explained that the basic responsibility of government as enshrined in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria was the protection of lives and property and for this to be done, government at all levels owe it a responsibility to citizens to be accountable.
His words: “It’s most unfortunate. I’ve never seen our country this traumatized with kidnapping by bandits, herdsmen, Boko Haram elements and their allies have been so rampant.
“I see the bloodbath in Kaduna of all places where people are being slaughtered in an inhumane manner all over the country. People are being kidnapped for ransom across the country including women, children, priests and others. I think the government should take more drastic measures.
“First, there should be consequences for people who are in charge of our security and are not doing their jobs. The president should be able to sanction them, if there is a jailbreak in Abuja for instance, somebody must be made to pay for it, and there must be accountability.
“That is the first step you must take otherwise, how do you restore sanity? In a polity there must be accountability not where anything happens, nobody is reprimanded, nobody is sanctioned even if they are, we don’t even know about it.
“I’ve not seen anybody resign or fired so far, I think the government should prioritize security. The sums of money I hear that the National Assembly has voted for security is huge, a lot of money. I don’t understand how and why they have not been able to contain the issue of banditry.”
According to him, if the Federal Government has established collaboration between foreign sovereign states and those terrorizing Nigeria, it owes it a duty to take up the issue with the United Nations while engaging such sovereign states.
He said: “Some have said oh, they (Bandits/terrorists) have external sponsors, if you know the sponsors engage them. If for instance, a foreign sovereign is involved, take that matter to the United Nations, let them be exposed and the necessary pressures will be put and such foreign support will be curbed.
“I believe Nigerians deserve to be secure, that is the primary duty of the government. When men come together and appoint a sovereign and give the sovereign all their powers, it is so that it can make laws for them for order, peace, good governance, and security. So, if you don’t have this, you don’t have a government.”