The United States, US, government has charged the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government not to allow perpetrators of deadly violence in many states get away with their crimes.
Making this call US Deputy Chief of Mission Nigeria, David Young, demanded a crackdown on deadly attacks, most of which are linked to herdsmen–farmers clashes, and have led to over a thousand deaths in various northern states.
He suggested ways the Federal Government could end the ongoing killings in Zamfara, Kaduna and Plateau states, noting that the attacks were tragic and very complex to deal with.
While addressing journalists in Kaduna on Wednesday, Young explained that part of the solution to the problem would be for the government to arrest those behind the killings.
Young, who said he visited the three states affected by the herders-farmers crisis, also said it was very important for justice to take place to stem the tide.
According to him, “As Nigeria deals with its issues of insecurity and violence, I know it is a major concern, that I heard about from people here in Kaduna as well as Zamfara and Plateau, about the issue of loss of lives and how tragic that is. It’s important to emphasize that for us (US) and our people, all lives are sacred and we mourn the passing and tragedy that happened.
“I learnt that in Kaduna and Zamfara during my trip that all communities are touched by this violence between farmers and herders. All are touched by this violence and again it’s a tragic loss that we mourn and we stand in solidarity with people who lost loved ones.
“I learnt that there are very complex causes for the criminality that we see across different states. I met with many people in Abuja as well and around the country and our team at the Embassy looked at these issues, talked to folks all across Nigeria.
“With great concern, I realised that it is very complex and there is no particular simple solution that is easily available.”
The envoy insisted that those indicted for the violence should be arrested.
“Obviously the critical importance is cracking down on the criminality and having effective and efficient law enforcement agencies that really focus on issues of impunity. It is very important that criminals and others are not able to get away with this kind of impunity and violence,” he said.
Young also said the government should create opportunities for the youth so as to divert their attention from criminality.
His words, “We are partnering with Nigerian leaders in some o f these areas and in terms of improving education and health, economic opportunities, agriculture and other sectors. It’s critically important that people have opportunities and hope to envisage a better future so that young people do not go into criminality.
“Another important message is that it’s important to have individuals acting as peacemakers and working to promote dialogue across communities, ethnic groups and religions.
“I heard lot of inspirational stories during my visit to here (Kaduna), Zamfara and Plateau about people who are working individually and leading other communities to work as peacemakers to prevent the cycles of violence and reprisals and counter reprisals that lead to such bloody deaths and destruction.”
NEWSWORTH is a media organisation whose activities are guided by the sanctity and majesty of news to the extent that our reports significantly advance the society and better the lot of the average person. Located in FCT - Abuja, Nigeria | 0817 331 6480, 0815 151 0458