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- UN says Nigeria government not doing enough to curb violence, banditry
- Accept, don’t go on an ego trip with the UN – PDP advises.
The federal government of Nigeria on Friday faulted the United Nations (UN) report on violence in the country.
The government in a statement by the presidential spokesman Garba Shehu on Friday said the damning report was simply blaming the government of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Shehu argued that community, inter and intra-groups caused much violence.
“While we agree that the violence in Nigeria, or in any country, is a major concern and that there is a rippling effect, we are disappointed that the rapporteur was silent on intra-group violence.
“In Benue, Taraba, Cross River States and many parts of the country, most of the casualties result from intra-group, inter-group and community violence.
“Many of the displaced persons across the nation are also victims of these conflicts,” the spokesman said.
The government argued that Buhari’s administration had made an effort to quench the violence.
There is absolutely no doubt that violence between farmers and herders, which has a long history in our country spiked in recent years but the effectiveness with which the Federal and State authorities responded made a big difference.”
Shehu added that “calm had virtually returned to all parts affected by the peculiar violence.”
The Spokesman expressed sadness that the rapporteur refused to address intra-ethnic conflicts and cattle rustling as key elements in herders/farmers conflicts.
Shehu opined that the UN refusal to address that was a move to blame the federal government, adding that security is a community-based and collective responsibility.
“The UN representative needs to be truthful and even-handed in her assignment.” He added.
The UN Rapporteur Report on Nigeria
During a 12-day visit to Nigeria, Special Rapporteur Agnes Callamard accused the Nigeria government of not doing its best in resolving the crisis between herders and farmers in Central Nigeria.
She said the government was lacking in addressing the increasing cases of kidnapping for ransom and banditry in the northwest which are responsible for thousands of lives.
The report which did not spare the security forces in the country urged the government to stop extra-judicial killings.
Amnesty International had also accused Nigeria security of abuses and execution of suspects.
Nigeria government have continued to deny the allegations.
Accept the Truth, Seek Help, PDP Counsels Buhari
The main opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party advised Buhari to accept the “bitter truth that poverty, international conflicts, bloodletting, banditry, kidnapping, insurgency, abuse of human rights and general national insecurity” have escalated under his watch.
The PDP in a statement by the National Publicity Secretary Kola Ologbondiyan on Saturday described the current government as divisive, vindictive and repressive.
Ologbondiyan advised the President not to embark on an ego trip and picking a fight with the UN Rapporteur, instead, seek help as he has no solution in sight to the festering problem.
“If anything, the UN Rapporteur report only reinforces the positions of credible international bodies including the United States Department of State, Amnesty International (AI) and Transparency International (TI) which also reported cases of arbitrary and extra-judicial killings, illegal arrests, arbitrary detention, torture, festering violence, reported disappearances and abuse of human rights under the Buhari administration”
The opposition argued that Nigeria has become one of the most unsecured places to live.
“Citizens can no longer move freely around their country as marauders, kidnappers, insurgents and bandits take over the highways, pillage communities, kill and take citizens captive at will.
“By fighting persons or organization that tell us the truth instead of seeking solutions, the Buhari Presidency is doing a great disservice to Nigerians especially those in communities being ravaged by insurgency, banditry, kidnapping and ethnic clashes,” the PDP lashed.