Insecurity: Nigeria never had it this bad, say Onaiyekan, Kwande

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bbcec toypqry buhari x

Two Nigerian elders, the Metropolitan Archbishop Emeritus of the Abuja Catholic Diocese, John Cardinal Onaiyekan and Ambassador Yahaya Kwande have urged President Buhari to act on the worsening insecurity in the country.

The elders spoke in separate interviews with Daily Trust.

Onaiyekan said the spate of insecurity is a surprise to almost everybody and that citizens are all unable to understand what is happening.

“We cannot understand that the authorities have not been able to put it under control. I think most Nigerians have this sense of ‘we don’t know what is happening’.

“We have lived in this country for some time and have been able to move around. This is the first time we are having this kind of situation where you don’t even know how to move anywhere.

“The interesting things are that even people in authority when we talk to some of them are even saying the same thing that they are surprised. It is like we are all helpless,” he said.

On why the challenges fester, the renowned Catholic cleric lamented that the challenges have been there for years.

“So, the government must have been applying certain strategies to deal with the matter.

“But most people would say that whatever the strategy, it is not working and it needs to be changed.

“If you are doing one thing and getting certain results but as long as you continue doing it the same way, you cannot expect a different outcome.

“Somebody has to take the final responsibility for the terrible state of insecurity we are in. I cannot put the blame on my grandmother in the village. The buck stops on President Muhammadu Buhari’s table and he and his handlers have not told us that they cannot do it anymore.

“Somebody has to take the final responsibility for the terrible state of insecurity we are in. I cannot put the blame on my grandmother in the village. The buck stops on President Muhammadu Buhari’s table and he and his handlers have not told us that they cannot do it anymore.

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“As a religious leader, I am also praying to God to help us and I am sure God would not abandon us,” he said.

Former Ambassador to Switzerland, Yahaya Kwande, described the current security situation in the country as devastating, horrible and frightening.

Kwande, who is over 92 years old, explained that since he was born, he had never experienced insecurity of this nature in the country like what he was witnessing today.

“I must tell you that I have never seen my life in danger, in every minute of my life except now, especially in the last four years.

People are not frightened of the attackers but the inability of the government to handle the problem. This means there is no hope. It seems we are being ruled by insurgents. They do what they want at any given time.

Yahaya Kwande

“I cannot say the government cannot handle the situation but has failed at it. The longer it goes, the more dangerous it is to citizens of Nigeria.

“It started from the community; it went on to hamlets and now to individuals who are getting frightened by the day.

“People are not frightened of the attackers but the inability of the government to handle the problem.

“This means there is no hope. It seems we are being ruled by insurgents. They do what they want at any given time.

“They are almost on top of everything,” he said.

Ambassador Kwande further noted that the whole problem was not about Buhari as an individual but the entire government headed by him, saying “The government has failed us.”

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