Barely four days after the apex Northern socio-cultral group, the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), wrote an openly letter to President Goodluck Jonathan, lamenting the state of insecurity in the region, the forum yesterday held an emergency meeting with non-government organisations from the North, where it accused the President of failing woefully to protect the people of the region.
The ACF National Executive Council (NEC) Chairman, Ibrahim Ahmadu Coomassie, a former Inspector-General of Police, alleged that there is a deliberate plan or attempt to emasculate the North economically and divide them politically.
The forum chairman said: “As we gather here today to discuss, let us not lose sight of the fact that there is a Federal Government, whose responsibility it is to protect the lives and safeguard the property of every citizen of this country.
“What we are witnessing today is a complete reversal of that role. The government of the day under the leadership of President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has woefully failed to protect us.
“While the North is being battered, the people in government have not made serious effort to end it. For the first time in the history of this great nation, our President is being openly condemned for his ineptitude, immaturity and ineffectiveness.
“Since the advent of the Boko Haram uprising in 2009, the region has witnessed a speedy descent into anarchy. The insurgency and insecurity situation we are faced with in the North is such that we have never imagined would happen to Arewa that we all grew up to know, love and cherish.
“The Arewa that was bequeathed to us by our fore-fathers is no longer the same. Today the entire Northern region is under siege. The North is being attacked from all angles and fields.
“Now the general belief is that this government and its leadership do not like us. The current policies and the government attitude towards the insurgency leave us with no better conclusion than to assume that there is a deliberate plan or attempt to emasculate the North economically, to reduce us numerically, disunite us religiously and divide us politically.
“This is the grim situation we are faced with. As leaders of Arewa, it is incumbent upon us to rise up to the occasion. The entire citizenry of the North looks up to us with so much hope.
“We must at this point bury our individual differences, come together and critically examine the situation before us. We must come out and speak with one united voice. We cannot afford to be seen to be divided.
“This gathering must pose questions whose answers should appraise us with what is happening to the North and why Nigeria is drifting towards anarchy and shamelessness.”