48 Nigerian CSOs ask Tinubu to declare state of emergency on security

A coalition of 48 civil society organisations in Nigeria has called on President Bola Tinubu to declare a state of emergency on the current security situation in the country.

The coalition made the call during a world press conference on Monday, in Abuja.

Executive Director of the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), Auwal Musa, also called Rafsanjani, who spoke on behalf of organisations, said they are deeply concerned about the rising insecurity across the country and urged the government take urgent steps towards ending it.

“Civil Society Organisations in Nigeria under the auspices of the Civil Society Joint Action Group, Community of Practice Against Mass Atrocities, and, Nigeria Mourns, are deeply concerned by the deteriorating state of security across Nigeria and its Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, and therefore call on the Nigerian government to take actionable steps to end the endemic insecurity, mitigate further attacks by kidnap syndicates and terrorist groups, and, account for persons missing in these attacks,” he said.

Mr Musa said over the past decade and a half, insecurity in Nigeria spiralled due to a variety of violent phenomena, including but not limited to terrorist activities in the entire northern region of the country, terror pillages otherwise known as banditry in the North-west, farmer-herder violence in the Middle Belt including the Benue Valley, secessionist struggles in the South-east, piracy in the southern coast of the country, inter-communal attacks, political violence, cult-gang violence and kidnapping.

He noted that these forms of insecurity have jeopardised the security and wellbeing of Nigerians, and have progressively deteriorated over the years.

He stated that endemic insecurity has persisted over the last three administrations, including that of President Muhammadu Buhari, who as a former military general, had gained public trust to run as president by promising to curb the then fledgling insecurity.

According to Mr Musa, during Mr Buhari’s second term between 2019 and 2023, at least 24,316 Nigerians lost their lives while about 15,597 persons were abducted.

He said its tracking of the state of insecurity shows that at least 2,423 people have been killed in mass atrocities-related incidents while about 1,872 persons have been abducted between May 2023 when President Tinubu assumed office and 26 January this year.

He said this alarming trend has continued despite President Tinubu’s assurance at the beginning of his presidency in May that he would tackle insecurity.

“We are particularly concerned about the upsurge in abductions, noting that at least 230 incidents, in most of which multiple victims were involved, occurred within the first two weeks of January 2024 alone,” Mr Musa said.

He further stated that the government has continued to fail in its primary duty of ensuring the security and welfare of all citizens as mandated in Section 14 (2) (b) of the Constitution, and in its obligation to enforce and fulfil the citizens’ rights to life, according to Section 33 of the document.

Consequently, Mr Musa called on President Tinubu to urgently undertake 12 measures to tackle insecurity in the country, among which are to fulfil the constitutional imperative of safeguarding the lives of Nigerians and also declare a state of emergency on kidnapping and other forms of terrorism.


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