Nigeria: Atiku, ACN shocked by weekend bombings

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The Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has said that Friday’s deadly attacks in Kano have again highlighted the federal government’s embarrassing cluelessness on how to tackle the Boko Haram crisis, even as the group becomes more brazen and the crisis deepens.

Nigeria’s former vice-president, Atiku Abubakar has also deplored the bomb attacks, both in Kano and Bayelsa, the home state of Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan. Atiku said he was benumbed by the attacks in the two states, with the one in Kano claiming the lives of more than 20 people, according to witnesses.

Atiku’s comment was contained in statement issued on his behalf by his press office.
The former Vice President described as totally unacceptable and in negation of our humanity the justification of the killing of innocent Nigerians under any guise.

“Even with all the great strides that man has made in science and technology, he has not been able to create life. It confirms to us all as Nigerians no matter our faith that human life is the exclusive preserve of the Almighty and must never be equated to animal life that may be taken at will,” Atiku said.

He expressed his condolences to the families of all those affected by the bombings and to the government and people of Kano State; the Nigeria Police command and the Nigeria Immigration Service which were targeted in the attacks. He also expressed his condolences to the Channels TV and the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) over the death of the young Channels TV Kano Correspondent, Enenche Akogwu.

He urged the security agents to step up their intelligence gathering initiatives to avert a repeat of Friday’s incident in Kano and the one that took place in Yenagoa on Saturday.

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ACN’s National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said the party noted the irony
that the federal government that has deployed armed troops against unarmed citizens in Lagos could not checkmate those who are posing a real threat to national security, leaving them to run amok and mow down security agents and ordinary citizens, including a journalist whowas shot in the line of duty.

It warned that the longer the government dithers in seeking a creative solution to the crisis, the more emboldened Boko Haram will become, and the more the likelihood that the crisis will push Nigeria to the precipice.

”When the government decided to engage in the use of brute force, as it is wont to do when confronted with situations that demand imaginative solutions, we warned that it would be counter-productive. When the government decided to impose a state of emergency in some
states, we warned that, imperative as that might seem at the time, it would only push the sect to extend its attacks to areas not covered by the measure, hence the need to seek a lasting solution.

”Unfortunately, those warnings have proved to be prescient, and the government has continued to shy away from seeking a creative solution, which we believe is to start off by calling a national security summit to be attended by stakeholders, who will help proffer solutions to the crisis. We will also like to reiterate our call for some form of engagement, instead of relying solely on the
use of brute force, which will not work,” ACN said.

The party expressed shock and sadness at the scale of the latest attacks and the number of innocent people who were sent to their early graves, and condoled with the families of the victims.

ACN warned that if the attacks are allowed to continue, the government will lose its raison d’etre, which is to ensure the security and well-being of the citizenry, not to seek to inflict more hardship on them at a time of great insecurity to lives and property.