- Category: Politics
- Published on Friday, 15 July 2011 04:17
- Written by Admin
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MORE states are moving their citizens from Maiduguri, the Borno State capital hobbled by Boko Haram violence.
Lagos, Ekiti, Akwa Ibom, Imo, Abia and Oyo are bringing home their indigenes, following the lead by some states in the North. Kwara, Kano, Kaduna, Benue and Plateau.
Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola ordered the immediate evacuation of Lagos students from the University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID), which the authorities have closed for security reasons.
The General Manager/CEO of Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), Dr. Oluwafemi Oke-Osanyintolu, said the directive covers students who are either indigenes or residents of Lagos State.
Said the LASEMA chief: “The Lagos State Government cannot fold its hands while its indigenes and residents are exposed to danger. That is why the Governor directed the immediate evacuation of those students to Lagos.”
Abia State Governor Theodore Orji has dispatched several buses to Maiduguri to bring back Abia indigenes who are students of UNIMAID.
Besides, he advised all indigenes of Abia State in other parts of the country to remain calm.
Iwuoha restated the governor’s belief in the unity of Nigeria, urging the trouble makers to allow peace to reign for the country to meet its goals.
Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi is said to be deeply concerned about the security of Ekiti students in the Borno State capital.
In a statement, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Yinka Oyebode, said the first batch of about 50 Ekiti students, who are mostly students of tertiary institutions in Borno State, left Maiduguri early yesterday for the long journey to Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.
The second batch of Ekiti indigenes are to be brought back as state officials are making frantic efforts to establish links with the remaining students in the northern state.
“The governor is concerned about the situation in Borno State and he is particularly concerned on the plight of students and other indigenes of the state resident in Borno State.
“This is our modest effort to save the lives of our kith and kin who are trapped in the precarious situation in Borno State.
“We urge Ekiti indigenes living in various parts of the country to be security conscious and not to exercise any fear in pursuit of their legitimate businesses as everything possible will be done to protect them,” the statement said.
The government of Akwa Ibom State has concluded the evacuation of its indigenes, including Youth Corps members and university students.
According to the governor’s representative, Mrs. Mary Ekpenyong, who supervised the evacuation, the government felt compelled to move its indigenes from the troubled state because of the obvious insecurity.
Speaking with The Nation shortly after arriving in Abuja yesterday; Mrs. Ekpenyong said: “Indigenes of my state were evacuated from Maiduguri on the governor’s orders. The protracted crisis has become intolerable and the state government cannot fold its arms and wait for worse things to happen to its people while the quagmire continues.
“Though we are all people of different faiths and culture, God, in his wisdom, has joined us together as citizens of Nigeria. It is regrettable that instead of improving on the legacies inherited from preceding generations, some people are hell bent on destroying them.
“The current evacuation being conducted by various states who fear for their indigenes’ lives in Borno State is also a condemnation of the prevailing level of intolerance and insecurity unleashed on law-abiding people in Borno State. In the evolving global village, youths from different parts of the world find means to work together on productive issues; youths in Maiduguri, Uyo, Lagos and other parts of Nigeria can do the same.”
Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi, has also ordered the evacuation of citizens of the state from Maiduguri.
The logistics for this immediate evacuation is to be handled by the State Emergency Management Authority (SEMA).
According to a statement by Ajimobi’s Senior Special Assistant on Public Communication, Festus Adedayo; “those to be evacuated are youth corps members, young, old, aged and all citizens of the state in the troubled state.”
Edo State has evacuated no fewer than 100 students from Borno State and also helped 50 students of Ondo State origin, who were stranded in the state, to leave.
The students were evacuated on Wednesday night.
Delta State Government on Thursday evacuated 585 students from the state studying at the University of Maiduguri.
Commissioner, Bureau for Special Duties, Dr. Tony Nwaka, told the students at the Government House in Asaba yesterday that the government is committed to the welfare of Deltans.
He condemned the activities of Boko Haram but thanked God for the safety of the students in Maiduguri and the hitch-free journey back home.
He commended Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan “for his magnanimity and in line with his care for the people, saying he also gave some money to the students to enable them travel back to their various destinations”.
Director of Socials, National Association of Delta State Students Union (NADESSTU), University of Maiduguri chapter, Terry Obukata, thanked the government for its kind gesture.
A Government House press statement yesterday signed by Alhaji Maigari Khana, Director of Press Affairs to Governor Isa Yuguda said: “The Bauchi State Government has concluded arrangements to convey back all state indigenes studying in higher institutions and those on exchange programs in Maiduguri”.
The Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE) has appealed to Southwest governors to immediately withdraw the Youth Corps members serving in violence-prone areas of the North, especially Borno and Bauchi States.
In a statement by Gen. Adeyinka Adebayo (rtd) and Chief Idowu Sofola, the group said: “This call is primarily to protect the lives of those Youth Corp members. It is necessitated by the state of insecurity in some northern states. We have all been witnesses to the fact that over the past few weeks, the pockets of violence in some northern states have escalated. The Boko Haram menace is also ever increasing.
We also appeal to the National Youth Service Corp (NYSC) to stop posting corps members to crisis - prone areas.
The elders also commended the governors for their meeting intended to jointly develop the Southwest.
Amnesty International and prominent Nigerian human rights organizations have called for an immediate end to arbitrary and unlawful killings by Nigerian security forces in response to bombings by the Islamist group, Boko Haram.
“Amnesty International opposes these abhorrent killings both by the Nigerian armed forces and by Boko Haram. They must be stopped immediately.”
Amnesty International called on the government to investigate the killings and bring to justice anyone found responsible for heinous crimes. Allegations of rape of women by members of the Joint Task Force should also be investigated.
“Nigeria must not promote security at the expense of human rights” says Tawanda Hondora, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for Africa, in a statement. “Killings and illegal detentions just serve to fuel resentment against the security forces and undermine confidence in the criminal justice system and the government,” he added.
Amnesty International and Nigerian NGOs urge President Goodluck Jonathan to state publicly that anyone found responsible for killings during security operations in Northern Nigeria will be brought to justice. In addition, the President must make public the commission of inquiry report into the Boko Haram crisis of 2009. (The Nation)