Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) on Wednesday unveiled Northern Regional Security Initiative, codenamed ‘SHEGE KA FASA’, as part of measures to address security challenges within the region.
Concise News understands that the CNG has urged governors of states in northern Nigeria to ratify ‘SHEGE KA FASA’.
This appears to be a response to the launch of the Western Nigeria Security Network, also known as Operation Àmòtékùn, by the governors of Lagos, Ekiti, Ondo, Osun. Oyo, and Ogun in January.
But controversy trailed the launch of the security outfit.
The governors of the southwest states had explained that the security network would support the Nigerian police and other similar agencies in ensuring the security of lives and property.
But following the launch of Àmòtékùn, Nigeria’s Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, declared it illegal.
The justice minister had said that no state or group of states had the power to set up security outfit.
Subsequently, the CNG frowned at the launch of Àmòtékùn.
And addressing a press conference on Wednesday, shortly before unveiling their outfit, the CNG said that for the past 12 years, the North had struggled with disabling challenges that include dwindling economy, and rising poverty.
Spokesperson for the group, Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, said that the.security challenges manifested in 2008 in the form of a deadly insurgency from the Northeast and within a short time, spread to other parts of the region and virtually turned the entire region into a battlefield.
“A new dimension was introduced to the farmers/herders conflict which gradually deteriorated into an uncontrollable proportion and deepened the artificial rift between communities in the region,” the CNG said.
“This trend suddenly metamorphosed into a deadly armed banditry and kidnapping for ransom which is recycled for arms and drugs. This is in addition to another frustrating trend of the theft and forced trafficking in northern children to other parts of the country for reasons that are largely dubious.
“The culmination of these security challenges has for the past decade turned the entire region into a house of horror with violent killings reported on a daily basis, communities displaced with formal and informal IDP camps spreading across the region.
“The situation today, on most northern highways, innocent travelers are waylaid, robbed and abducted, towns and villages attacked and sacked by bandits who have created an atmosphere of palpable fear across the region.
“As the situation grows more desperate by the day with the North as the most porous and vulnerable, with northerners as the most distressed and estranged.”
CNG stressed that it is absolutely impossible to expect that communities would continue to fold their arms while criminals invade their abodes, kill, abduct and displace them.
“By this, today we unveil the symbols for the Shege Ka Fasa outfit which would be formally inaugutated in the coming few weeks when all necessary legal processes might have been completed or formally adopted and ratified by the northern states governors,” it said.