The Governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi, has said that what Nigeria is witnessing, whether banditry or kidnapping, has no name other than terrorism.
Fayemi, who is the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, said this on Tuesday when he paid a visit to the Governor of Niger State, Abubakar Sani Bello.
He made the statement amid the kidnapping of some students and staff of the Government Science College, Kagara in Rafi Local Government in Niger State by bandits.
He said, “At the level of the governors’ forum, we met last week and we came out with some specific ideas we have shared with the federal authority but for us, our visit is in commiseration, solidarity and in identifying with you, the government, and the good people of Niger State.
“We want to reassure you that even this difficult time shall pass but we must put our heads together, put all our efforts together, demonstrate resilience, reassure our people not to give up hope because ultimately we can only defeat terrorism collectively, not in isolation.
“What we are witnessing is terrorism, there is no other name for it. We may call it banditry, kidnaping, these are the remnants of the actors in the North-East that have found themselves in other parts of the country. Whether they are known as ISWAP, Shekau faction, they are remnants of what we are still dealing with in that part of Nigeria.
“That is why we must not treat the North-East in isolation of this problem. We are all victims as long as any section of our country is ravaged by this problem.
“On behalf of all your brother governors, I want to assure our people in Niger State that we are all for Niger State. We shall not rest until we resolve the challenges we have here as we have in other states.”
On his own part, Governor Bello said it was time for the Federal Government to work with the states to find a final solution to the menace.
“Everyone you see here has been on his/her toes praying for the safe return of the kidnap victims. Niger State has always been a peaceful state. Agreed from time to time we’ve had incidences of kidnapping but not to this magnitude,” Bello said.
“I think the time has come for us to come together and impose on the federal authority to do the needful. I think there is a need for the federal authority to key in and work with state governments so that we are able to provide adequate intelligence and find a final solution to this menace.”
By Segun Adewole,
The Punch Newspaper