PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari plans to present a supplementary security budget to the National Assembly later this month requesting more funds to help combat the growing menace of insecurity that is afflicting the country.
Despite Nigeria spending up to 20% of her national budget on security, the country remains one of the most insecure nations on earth today. Boko Haram terrorists, armed Fulani cattle herdsmen, kidnappers, rapists, armed robbers and bandits now control large swathes of Nigeria, making hundreds of towns and villages no-go areas.
Over recent months, President Buhari has been under pressure to do something about the crisis as it will likely affect agricultural output. Farming is under serious threat from the Fulani herdsmen crisis as these armed hoodlums attack farmers, burning down their villages who protest about how their livestock have destroyed their farms.
In addition, education faces being disrupted across northern Nigeria as bandits are now attacking boarding schools, abducting pupils in exchange for large ransom fees. Senate president Senator Ahmad Lawan, said President Buhari will be submitting a supplementary budget to the National Assembly later this month to enable him address the crisis and bring some form of normality back to Nigeria.
Senator Lawan who has also raised the alarm that some elites are planning to divide the country, said that those behind the minority agitations were disgruntled elites bent on satisfying their self-serving interest to the detriment of a majority of Nigerians. Underscoring the importance of unity in national development, he said those clamouring for the break-up of the country were in the vast minority.
In addition, Senator Lawan added that the unity of Nigeria would continue to be the cardinal focus of the National Assembly by ensuring equity, justice and fairness for every part of the country. He said that the National Assembly would stop at nothing to ensure that normalcy and security is restored to states faced by challenges such as kidnapping, insurgency, banditry and militancy.
Senator Lawan said: “About the issue of security, I think the National Assembly has done quite a lot in that area working with the executive arm of government and recently, on Monday or so, the speaker of the House of Representatives and I met with Mr President and the centre of our discussion was the security of the country. How do we engage the security of this country? It has been a nagging issue but it is not an issue that cannot be solved.
“With the appointment of the new service chiefs, we have seen newer strategies and Mr President and the National Assembly will be working to provide more resources in the supplementary budget which the presidency will submit sometime maybe this month to the National Assembly. “We are prepared to give every possible resource to our security agencies to fight and restore normalcy to every part of the country, whether it is insurgency, banditry, militancy or kidnapping.”
“We believe that we need to have security before life can be better because you can’t do anything or attract direct foreign investments, even farming becomes impossible in some states because of the level of insecurity. So, security is key. It is essential and a necessity that we have to restore normalcy in this area and Mr President gave the security chiefs six weeks to restore security in our rural areas, particularly because the rainy season will come pretty soon – maybe in the next two months and without security in the rural areas, there’ll be no farming.”