Insecurity: Senators divided over ethnic profiling of ‘killer’ herdsmen, bandits


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Tempers rose at Wednesday’s Senate plenary during the legislative debate on insecurity that has now become a menace in Nigeria.

In a motion on “General Insecurity in Nigeria”, which was sponsored by Senator Boroffice, Robert Ajayi representing Ondo North Senatorial district and co-sponsored by all others, the Senate insisted that criminals operating in the country must be flushed out.

But no sooner than Senators became agitated over banditry, rape and kidnapping which they believed, would dismember the nation if nothing was done to curtail it.

In her contribution Senator Olujimi Biodun representing Ekiti North Senatorial District insisted that the Federal government must act quickly, stating that no country experiences this high level of killing by herdsmen and its government’s still displays laid-back attitude in arresting the situation. She said such a country won’t survive.

“We are living in denial on the state of insecurity in the country. And I think that it is necessary we declare a state of emergency on the country’s security like we did with the COVID-19 because insecurity has more casualty figures in Nigeria than COVID-19.”

Contributing, Binos Yero representing Adamawa South Senatorial District suggested that the title of the motion ought to have been “Menace of Fulani Herdsmen in Nigeria”, saying that they were behind the security catastrophe in Nigeria, while they still enjoy government’s backing.

But Senator Abdulahi Adamu representing Nasarawa West and former governor of Nasarawa State carpeted Oyo State government for evicting Fulani herders over their alleged involvement in kidnapping and banditry in South West.

Adamu posited that the 1999 Constitution guarantees Nigerians to live anywhere and conduct their businesses, insisting that political leaders shouldn’t stoke fire by asking some ethnic groups to quit.

In a swift reaction to Adamu’s position, Senate Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe faulted him, saying insecurity in the nation was being trivialized by some lawmakers.

He said: “Mr President, distinguished colleagues, nobody was sent packing anywhere, it was criminals that were asked to quit forest reserves.

“All criminals operating in the country must be flushed out,” the lawmaker insisted.

Senator Michael Opeyemi representing Ekiti Central described illegal occupation of lands as trespass which he said, was frowned at by the constitution.

He suggested that State Governors should be empowered in a manner that they can tackle the menace and other criminal activities within their jurisdiction.

On a final note, the Senate urged the executive to among others, implement the national livestock transformation plan which it said is a modern scheme designed to eliminate trans-humane in order to prevent-herder conflicts and activate highly productive livestock sector in Nigeria.

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