By Sanni Onogu, Abuja
The Senator representing Niger East Senatorial District, Mohammed Sani Musa, yesterday, condemned the activities of bandits in the North and the attacks on Northerners in other parts of the country allegedly by men of the Indigenous People of Biafra/Eastern Security Network (IPOB/ESN).
He urged Northern and Southeastern leaders to speak up and condemn the violent activities of terrorist groups perpetrating the acts.
Senator Musa, in a statement in Abuja, noted that the unusual silence of leaders in the Southeast has become disturbing following the continuous attack on innocent and law-abiding citizens as well as security personnel and critical infrastructure in the country by the notorious men that have come to be known in the media as the “Unknown Gun Men.”
He lamented that innocent Northerners and their means of livelihood in the Southeast have, allegedly, become the target of attacks on different occasions.
He said they have also been subjected to profiling and attacks and in all instance, there hasn’t been any form of condemnation from the leaders of the region, a development which he described as not only disturbing but that if it continues will indicate complicity on the part of the leaders.
“The recent happenings in the country, especially the alleged targeted attacks and killing of Northerners in the Southeast have made it necessary for me, as a Nigerian and a Northerner, to speak.
“The North has been a subject of ethnic profiling and attacks on several occasions in recent times, which has led to many Northerners killed, their settlements razed, their children murdered in cold blood, businesses attacked and destroyed, and even more recently alleged targeted assassination of a Northern politician.
“The deafening silence of Southeastern leaders, while these attacks against Northerners are ongoing, is disturbing and the attempt by some to even excuse it is not only sad but also comes across as an outright endorsement by the leaders.
“It is far more worrying because the North has been a home for many Easterners who have found a home, became family and made fortunes from the North and they continued to live unharmed. The Northerner’s love for peaceful co-existence must not be mistaken as cowardice.
“The Southeastern leaders must see this as a wake-up call and take it as a matter of urgency to address these incessant attacks before they spiral out of control.
“We must not fall for the attempts to provoke the North and destabilise the country, but also we cannot keep quiet and watch Northerners killed simply because of their background,” he said.
Musa called on President Muhammadu Buhari to take decisive steps towards ending the violence against Northerners in some parts of the country.
“I also urge my colleagues in the Senate, Southeast governors, and leaders to take concrete steps in condemning and curtailing the ongoing attacks and ensure that such happenings do not occur again.
“We must eschew primitive hatred against one another and learn to live with ourselves as one people,” he added.
He, however, called on leaders in the North to continue to call for calm and peaceful co-existence among the people in the region irrespective of their tribe and ethnicity as every individual has a right to live anywhere in the country while being law-abiding citizens.